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U.S. vs. China -- split trade from technological security

Washington must define technological security concerns more precisely

| North America
There are secrets that America does not want to share at any price.   © Reuters

The current tensions between China and America might seem to be mainly about economics. President Donald Trump's tweets complain about an unfair state-capitalist model, intellectual property theft and restrictions on foreign investment. His response, too, is all about economics: a tariff war, with demands that bilateral deficits are shrunk and trade deals are revised in the US's favor.

But behind this rhetoric is the uncomfortable reality that China's GDP will soon match America's, however it is measured. Confounded in Trump's economic bluster is the security challenge implied by China's economic heft. Today Beijing may still lag militarily, but even from this position it effectively dominates the South China Sea.

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