Editor’s note: Andy Mok is a research fellow at the Center for China and Globalization. The article reflects the author’s opinions and not necessarily the views of CGTN.
The Biden administration has scored a diplomatic victory of sorts by strong-arming the EU, NATO and a handful of other countries into blaming China for the Microsoft exchange server hack that was revealed early this year and patched in March. But beyond the verbiage, there is no real substance behind the allegations. In fact, these allegations are only the latest installment of the administration’s doomed-to-fail ideological crusade to confront and contain China with a shaky coalition of the unwilling.
We must recognize that cybersecurity is indeed an increasingly important concern for individuals, companies, businesses and governments around the world with Eugene Kaspersky, CEO of Kaspersky Lab, the Russian cybersecurity and anti-virus provider, estimating millions of unique viruses in the wild today. Also, cyber-warfare has not only become a legitimate means of combat but perhaps even the arena in which the fate of nations will be decided. As such, any country that values its sovereignty must ensure that it possesses balanced and effective capabilities in cyber-warfare are sufficient to meet the geopolitical challenges which it faces.
And so, when I say that there is no substance behind these allegations, I am not offering an opinion or verdict on whether or not any Chinese-affiliated entities conducted these hacks. Instead, I am saying that the blame levied by the U.S. against China is disingenuous and hypocritical in a self-defeating way.
In fact, the U.S. has been the most aggressive and reckless in developing and deploying offensive cyber-capabilities. For example, ECHELON, which began in the late 1960s as a way to monitor the military and diplomatic communications of the Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc allies during the Cold War, subsequently morphed into a worldwide electronic system to conduct mass surveillance by surreptitiously intercepting and examining private and commercial communications.
And these capabilities were also used…