Vladimir Lenin reportedly said that the communists would win their war against the capitalists because the capitalists would sell the communists the rope used to hang the capitalists. If the West ever goes to war with China, European aerospace giant Airbus will have sold these communists the weapons they will deploy against us.
Let’s take a step back and note that no one wants a war with China. But it’s important to be prepared for war, because being prepared makes it less likely to break out.
In this case, if the United States is equipped with the latest weapons and the Chinese do not have the latest technology, the threat of war is less likely. The United States will not attack China, no matter how much military advantage we have. However, if the Chinese achieve parity, or think they will, they might be tempted to attack Taiwan and start a wider war. It is therefore crucial to ensure that the Chinese remain forever behind the military curve.
NATO recognizes that China is a threat. It highlights the “systemic challenges” posed by the People’s Republic of China and notes that China’s “coercive policies” pose a threat to Western “interests, security and values”.
A European military giant, Airbus, is selling technology to the Chinese that could make the world less stable and less secure. Other companies are doing the same, but the Airbus case study shows that an American relationship between companies doing business with the United States and China often presents intractable conflicts of interest.
The Politico news agency detailed a recent report by consulting firm Horizon Advisory which concludes: “Airbus has advanced technology and manufacturing sharing agreements with entities linked to the Chinese state military apparatus.” Horizon Advisory adds: “The Airbus-China engagement involves significant ties to China’s military and civil-military fusion apparatus, including in the form of supply dependencies, technology sharing and cooperation in matters of research and development.
Airbus is also striking mega deals in China for non-military aircraft. “Four Chinese airlines have placed a mega-order for 292 A320 Family single-aisle aircraft with Airbus,” Euronews reported this month. This deal is worth $37 billion. This is important because domestic Chinese manufacturers cannot produce quality aircraft on their own. “China has not yet certified the C919 jet from its national aircraft manufacturer Comac,” Euronews explained.
Of course, the Chinese are famous for reverse engineering Western technology. Ask any company that opened a high-tech manufacturing plant in China in the last few decades, only to lose its intellectual property to the communist government. Millions of American jobs are gone because China stole so much intellectual property. China will try to do the same with Airbus technology. His communist government may end up redeploying technology from Airbus’ domestic jetliners for military use.
It is clear that Airbus is trying to make as much money as possible, as quickly as possible. However, the company is obligated to the Western world to keep its high-tech products out of Chinese hands. Airbus owes its existence to massive subsidies from European democracies. Politico explains how the European “Repayable Launch Investment” program works: “Under this program, the German, French and Spanish governments have granted loans to Airbus for the development of new aircraft models which the manufacturer will only repay if the model becomes a commercial success”.
RLI is in clear violation of World Trade Organization rules (not that China abides by those rules either) and has resulted in massive sanctions against Europe and Airbus. However, put that aside and look at the bigger picture: through Airbus, European governments are subsidizing technology that the Chinese will steal and could use against the United States for military purposes.
Airbus also wants to do business in the United States. He frequently bids for defense contracts and sometimes wins them. American warriors should not depend on technology also available to the Chinese, because our military must maintain a clear advantage if we are to reduce the threat of war.
US policymakers should deny the company any future US military contracts, at least until Airbus shows it is on our side.