'Dark Gina' Elicits Blistering Rebuke From China, Which Vows To Circumvent Tech Curbs

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Dec 07, 2023 - 03:40 AM

So much for the 'stabilizing ties' narrative... China is blistering angry after weekend remarks by US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, who labeled Beijing "the biggest threat we’ve ever had" while lauding efforts that seek to block it from cutting-edge semiconductors.

China's response was swift at the start of this week: "The US should stick to the right perception and work with China to deliver on the common understandings reached in the San Francisco meeting," foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin had said Monday. America must "stop seeing China as a hypothetical enemy and saying one thing but doing another," the spokesman continued. 

AP file image

Raimondo called for tighter export controls on advanced tech at the annual Reagan National Defense Forum in California.

"On matters of national security, we got to be eyes wide open about the threat. This is the biggest threat we’ve ever had," she said. "We can't let China get these chips. Period," she said at one point.

She agreed with the Biden administration line about cooperation and managing competition in certain spheres but ultimately concluded, "Make no mistake about it, China’s not our friend."

But China says its ability to circumvent the US tech curbs is a sure thing

Wang, the Foreign Ministry spokesman, said that stance exposed the "Cold War mentality" of the US and its desire for hegemony. He also indicated that his nation would get around the tech curbs eventually.

"The violation of the rules and regulations of the free-trade market is just like building a dam with a sieve," he said. "No matter how hard you try, the water will just flow through it."

See more of Raimondo's remarks at the Reagan National Defense Forum below...

Some highlights from Raimondo's remarks:

* * *

Host: "Huawei released their new smartphone..." Raimondo: "[China's] capable of doing very bad things, and we're gonna deny the entire country this class of equipment. We can't let China get these chips. Period."

"Listen, America leads the world in artificial intelligence. Period. Full stop. We're a couple years ahead of China. No way are we going to let them catch up. We cannot let them catch up. So we're going to deny them our most cutting edge technology."

She's fed up with semiconductor firms whining: "newsflash: democracy is good for your business. Rule of law, here and around the world, is good for your businesses. It might make for a tough quarterly shareholder call, but in the long run, it's worth you working for us to defend our national security." More export controls are coming...

"Host: Are there other U.S. origin products or types of technologies that you are looking at in a similar fashion right now. Raimondo: Absolutely, in biotechnology, AI models, AI products, cloud computing, supercomputing. So short answer is yes."

On US-China dialogue: "I would say communication is a good thing but don't confuse communication with weakness or softness. On matters of national security, we've got to be eyes wide open about the threat. This is the biggest threat we've ever had, and we need to meet the moment. The world needs us to manage our relationship with China responsibly. To avoid escalation, we've got to do all that, but make no mistake about it, China's not our friend, and we need to be eyes wide open about the extent of that threat.

"I am ready to win, and I'm ready to do that with all of you, but it's time to open our aperture and challenge the way we've done business in every way if we're going to meet the threat China poses. And if we're going to do what needs to be done with this technology."