“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

It is a Good Day for a Firing Squad. Start with Directors of 3Com.

"The defense officials said it is unlikely that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States would block the deal because 3Com is being advised on the merger by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., whose former chairman is Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. White House Chief of Staff Joshua B. Bolten also is a former Goldman Sachs executive."

Merger opens U.S. defense to China

By Bill Gertz Washington Times
October 3, 2007

A Chinese company with ties to Beijing's military and past links to Saddam Hussein's army in Iraq and the Taliban will gain access to U.S. defense-network technology under a proposed merger, Pentagon officials say.

Huawei Technologies will merge with the Massachusetts-based 3Com network-equipment manufacturer in a deal announced last week. Huawei has been linked to the U.N. oil-for-food scandal, which involved millions of dollars in payoffs to Saddam's regime during a time of U.N. sanctions.

The announced merger follows a July computer attack on the Pentagon that U.S. intelligence officials say involved Chinese military hackers. The hackers were detected breaking into Pentagon computers, including an e-mail system close to Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates.

"Huawei is up to its eyeballs with the Chinese military," said a defense official concerned about the deal. Huawei was founded in 1988 by a Chinese military officer and got its start building military communications networks.

A second official said the deal comes as the Pentagon has mounted an aggressive effort to thwart large numbers of computer intrusions from Chinese hackers and spies.

"And now we are proposing to sell the PLA a key to our front door. This is a very dangerous trend," the official said, referring to the People's Liberation Army, as the Chinese military is called.

3Com announced Friday the $2.2 billion merger with Bain Capital Partners LLC and noted in a statement that Huawei Technologies will acquire a minority interest and "become a commercial and strategic partner of 3Com."

Rep. Duncan Hunter, California Republican and ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, said he is worried the deal will lead to the loss of sensitive technology to China.

"Specifically, I have some concerns surrounding the minority position of Huawei Technologies and what control the Chinese company might have over America's sensitive information," Mr. Hunter said. "In addition to encouraging the Pentagon to review how this deal may affect any of its classified contracts, I would encourage the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to conduct a thorough review."

A Pentagon spokesman said he is not aware that anyone in the Defense Department has asked Treasury's Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to investigate the merger. A Treasury spokesman had no comment.

3Com, through a subsidiary, provides the Pentagon and the Army with intrusion-detection equipment, and the merger potentially will provide Huawei access to strategic computer-network vulnerabilities, said defense officials speaking on the condition of anonymity.

Spokesmen for 3Com did not return phone calls or e-mails seeking comment. A spokesman for Bain had no immediate comment. A Huawei spokesman could not be reached for comment.

Defense officials said Huawei's past is the main cause for concern. Huawei technicians were involved in violating U.N. sanctions against Iraq in the early 2000s by illegally providing a fiber-optic network in Iraq that linked the Iraqi military's air-defense network.

The CIA-led Iraq Survey Group stated in its final report that Huawei and two other Chinese firms "illicitly provided transmission switches" for fiber-optic communications in Iraq from 1999 to 2002.

U.S. and British warplanes bombed the Chinese-made fiber-optic network in August 2001 after it was found to be part of Iraqi air-defense missile sites that were firing at U.S. and allied aircraft enforcing a no-fly zone.

Huawei also was involved in building a telephone-switching system in Kabul, Afghanistan, for the ruling Taliban militia prior to its ouster in 2001, according to U.S. intelligence officials.

The defense officials said it is unlikely that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States would block the deal because 3Com is being advised on the merger by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., whose former chairman is Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. White House Chief of Staff Joshua B. Bolten also is a former Goldman Sachs executive.

Gary Milhollin, an arms-proliferation specialist with the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control, said Huawei was founded by a Chinese military officer and got its start with U.S. technology exports.

"In the past, Huawei has shown it's willing to help America's enemies after importing U.S. technology," he said. "And it has done so in defiance of U.N. regulations. So before we make more U.S. high technology available to Huawei, we should make sure it has changed its ways."

Mata Hari was shot for less. Pity that.


  1. Are we gonna make'm "Promise?"

    "Double Pinky" Promise?

    Boy, I Hope so.

  2. As long as we are taking names:

    3Com Leadership

    Long term success in the competitive networking industry takes the talent and dedication of many people, and at 3Com we have the best in the industry. It also takes the leadership of a visionary and experienced management team. With more than 100 years of combined experience in the networking industry, 3Com's executive committee and Board of Directors is eminently qualified.

    Edgar Masri, President and Chief Executive Officer

    Dan Beck, Senior Vice President, Operations

    Robert Dechant, Senior Vice President and General Manager, 3Com Data and Voice Business Unit

    Neal D. Goldman, Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative and Legal Officer

    James Hamilton, President, TippingPoint Division

    Jerry Kelly, Chief Information Officer

    Marc Willebeek-LeMair, Chief Technology Officer

    Jay Zager, Executive Vice President and CFO

    Dr. Shusheng Zheng,Chief Operating Officer, H3C

    Eric A. Benhamou, Chairman

    Gary T. DiCamillo, President and Chief Executive Officer, GW Premier America, Inc.

    James R. Long, Retired Executive Vice President, Nortel Networks

    Robert Mao, former Executive Vice President, Corporate Development, 3Com

    Edgar Masri, President, Chief Executive Officer

    Raj Reddy, Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

    Dominique Trempont, former CEO-in-Residence, Battery Ventures

  3. I wonder if any of these assholes were ever in the military?

  4. Good Grief--What is a poor honest farmer in Idaho to do?

    I ask seriously.

  5. Compare these opportunistic scumbags to a real American. Watch the video.

  6. Spies?
    What spies?
    ...and Hillary radically surpasses Obama in the fundraising race this time:
    Chicoms aren't Stupid!
    They've had quite a good run of willing victims in the Whitehouse, why spoil a good thing?

  7. Ash, are you listening? Have you watched the video, and listened?

  8. From Errand to Fatal Shot to Hail of Fire to 17 Deaths
    New details have emerged on an episode involving a Blackwater USA convoy that killed 17 people and left 24 wounded.
    Blackwater Chief Testifies
    Times Topics: Blackwater USA

  9. Good of her to notice:


    Washington - US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has expressed her concern over the concentration of power in Russia. In an interview, she said that it was quite obvious that neither the Russian parliament nor the justice ministry were strong enough to counterbalance the power of the Kremlin. The interview with Ms Rice was held shortly after Mr Putin's announcement that he would remain active in Russian politics. The outgoing president said he would lead his party in the upcoming parliamentary elections, which would assure him of a seat in the Duma. He said he had a realistic chance of becoming prime minister. Mr Putin is serving his second term as president and is constitutionally barred from being re-elected for a third.

  10. Why don't we drop the politics, and get real, and say, we may have a problem with warming, but it is absolute non sense to say the USofA is the big bad BullY Of The World?

  11. Ash, did you listen to that fellow?

  12. This 3Com is a pblicly traded company, no?

    The US Government has not declared China to be an aggressor or terrorist State, correct?

    In fact China is one of the US's largest trade partners.
    Partner being the operative word.

    The GOP being the Party of open borders and free trade. Perhaps this deal would be scuttled under a Democratic Administration.

    Wonder what Mr Hsu would say,
    thumbs up, or down?

    It's a Brave New World.

    "Stay the Course"

  13. Good showing by Mr Putin.

    No coup, no intrigues, just a popular politician obeying the Letter of the Law.

    Redeining job descriptions in a young democracy, but an ancient country. Seems reasonable.

    Mr Clinton hopes to return to the White House, here in the US, through his wife standing for election, in his stead.

    I hear no whining that he and she are subverting the "Spirit of the Constitution".

    Ms Clinton is well within the letter of the law, so is Mr Putin.

    All conservatives should be pleased, the status que will remain conserved.

  14. It may not be a problem, bob.
    May be blessing, raising average tempatures.

    Longer growing seasons, milder winters.

    I live far from the coast, there will still be a beach, some where, no matter how much ice melts.

    The coral reefs will adapt or die, like all other living things.

    The world, it keeps on spinnin'

  15. Unrestricted Warfare.

    It would seem America is still on a nation-building lark, rather than what is needed to fight unrestricted warfare:

    "composite force in all aspects related to national interest. Moreover, given this type of composite force, it is also necessary to have this type of composite force to become the means which can be utilized for actual operations. This should be a "grand warfare method" which combines all of the dimensions and methods in the two major areas of military and non-military affairs so as to carry out warfare. This is opposite of the formula for warfare methods brought forth in past wars."

  16. The fact that Bush's advisor Townsend reported to him that Osama has been reduced to an almost powerless entity scurrying about in caves, makes "intelligence" failures prior to 911 Pale in Comparison.
    The WOT in La La Land,
    Prosecuted by Mr. Rogers.


    Oh the irony.

    The American Bar Association called signing statements "contrary to the rule of law and our constitutional separation of powers." It said presidents cannot sign bills and then declare parts of them unconstitutional because a president has only two choices -- to sign a bill and enforce it as written, or to veto it and give Congress a chance to override the veto.

  18. "Mom" got rid of little Bastard Enzo at 8 wks!
    "The school Enzo went to was good, but not my first choice. It was also recommended. One of my friend’s children went there. We had a few issues, but I suppose they would have or could have happened anywhere. This school was still a little pricey (around $5100/year for a newborn), but about average for our area.

    I think school can be worthwhile for children. I’ve seen the difference between my two kids so far.
    Enzo was in daycare from 8 weeks until he was about 3.5.

  19. A little pricy at $5,100 per year, but oh su much better than the day care provider,
    At six months we can already see the difference.

    Steve lays out a persuasive story, one that follows the scenario you and I have fretted about, lo these many moons.

    But fear not, for Ms trish tells US, ... un, No.

    So fear not, the US Government and it's combined forces has it all in hand.

  20. Um, yes!
    But then Steve doesn't know his ass, so what do I know?

  21. Why did I waste Eight years w/this Moron?
    Coulda been huntin and taking out Texas Lawyers!
    Gittin something Done!

  22. Gen. Wesley looks out for the Troops and Taxpayers, even in retirement:
    Take Rush Limbaugh Off Armed Forces Radio
    Gen. Wesley Clark, 10.02.2007
    Tax dollars are used to fund Armed Forces Radio, and that money is not intended for radio show hosts to spout insults at our soldiers.

  23. Wes is best and brightest.
    Bush should bring him back from retirement.
    A Modern MacCarther.

  24. Barbara Walters To Faith Hill: "We'd All Like To Do Your Husband"
    Little does Babs know,
    we'd all like to do her.
    Fulfill our
    Rape Our Plastic Fantastic Grandma

  25. Don't miss THAT one minute Freak Show!
    If I had TV,
    I'd probly be glued to the screen right up to the moment that I blew my brains out.

  26. dingram (See profile | I'm a fan of dingram)

    Wesley Clark should be this country's next vice president. Unfortunately, the only person whom I trust on either side of the aisle to be president, isn't running (Gore). But I could go to sleep at night a happy man if the Dems had a Gore/Clark ticket.

  27. Yes Bobal I am listening. I made the time to sit through the whole speech because you asked me to.

    The US is a great nation. Is it the greatest on the earth, better then all the rest, and therefore entitled to exert its will upon all others by any means necessary when it, in its interest, chooses to? No!

  28. Um, Not OK:
    "But in addition to the declaration, I’ve also run across e-mails sent by Sheen to Richards just a couple of months ago that outline the nature of the ongoing battle.

    For example, on Aug. 22, Sheen wrote to the mother of his children:"

    " are a pig. A sad, jobless pig who is sad and talentless and,
    um, oh yeah, sad and jobless and evil and a bad mom,
    o [expletive] yourself, sad, jobless pig."

    That’s not all. In other e-mails, Sheen ridicules Richards’ mother, who is undergoing treatment for breast cancer. "Go cry to your bald mom, you [expletive] loser," Sheen writes."

  29. In fact, Ash, as we all know,
    The USA is equal to or less than all the others.
    That's why I'm bending over as I type.
    A welcome presentation to some of my betters.

  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

  31. Doug, who is really bent over getting it up the...?

    ...a matter of perspective I guess...

    "Then I saw it: a construction crane. It was big and yellow and impressive, and when I caught a glimpse of it around a corner in a busy shopping district I thought that I was finally about to witness some of the reconstruction I had heard so much about. But as I got closer I noticed that the crane was not actually rebuilding anything—not one of the bombed-out government buildings that still lay in rubble all over the city, nor one of the many power lines that remained in twisted heaps even as the heat of summer was starting to bear down. No, the crane was hoisting a giant billboard to the top of a three-story building. SUNBULAH: HONEY 100% NATURAL, made in Saudi Arabia.

    Seeing the sign, I couldn't help but think about something Senator John McCain had said back in October. Iraq, he said, is “a huge pot of honey that's attracting a lot of flies.” The flies McCain was referring to were the Halliburtons and Bechtels, as well as the venture capitalists who flocked to Iraq in the path cleared by Bradley Fighting Vehicles and laser-guided bombs. The honey that drew them was not just no-bid contracts and Iraq's famed oil wealth but the myriad investment opportunities offered by a country that had just been cracked wide open after decades of being sealed off, first by the nationalist economic policies of Saddam Hussein, then by asphyxiating United Nations sanctions.

    Looking at the honey billboard, I was also reminded of the most common explanation for what has gone wrong in Iraq, a complaint echoed by everyone from John Kerry to Pat Buchanan: Iraq is mired in blood and deprivation because George W. Bush didn't have “a postwar plan.” The only problem with this theory is that it isn't true. The Bush Administration did have a plan for what it would do after the war; put simply, it was to lay out as much honey as possible, then sit back and wait for the flies. "

  32. Bob,

    She’s not one of us. She never was. She never will be.

  33. doug, you might like to read that article. Interesting stuff about Bremner.

    Another snippet from it:

    "American multinationals were happy to accept U.S. taxpayer dollars to reconstruct the phone or electricity systems, but they weren't sinking their own money into Iraq. There was, as yet, no McDonald's or Wal-Mart in Baghdad, and even the sales of state factories, announced so confidently nine months earlier, had not materialized.

    Some of the holdup had to do with the physical risks of doing business in Iraq. But there were other more significant risks as well. When Paul Bremer shredded Iraq's Baathist constitution and replaced it with what The Economist greeted approvingly as “the wish list of foreign investors,” there was one small detail he failed to mention: It was all completely illegal. The CPA derived its legal authority from United Nations Security Council Resolution 1483, passed in May 2003, which recognized the United States and Britain as Iraq's legitimate occupiers. It was this resolution that empowered Bremer to unilaterally make laws in Iraq. But the resolution also stated that the U.S. and Britain must “comply fully with their obligations under international law including in particular the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Hague Regulations of 1907.” Both conventions were born as an attempt to curtail the unfortunate historical tendency among occupying powers to rewrite the rules so that they can economically strip the nations they>
    By November, trade lawyers started to advise their corporate clients not to go into Iraq just yet, that it would be better to wait until after the transition."

  34. The Big Lie(s) as weapon of first resort.