Fully safeguarding advanced battery technology critical to U.S. military applications and power and communications grids against nefarious use by China requires the Obama administration to forbid its bankrupt U.S. maker's sale to a Chinese firm tied to China's government.
Wanxiang Group won a December auction for battery-maker A123, which went bankrupt in October — despite Washington pouring $250 million in taxpayers' money into its research. Led by the Treasury Department, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States could rule on the sale this month, The Washington Free Beacon reports.
Wanxiang — a major Midwest property owner and employer for nearly two decades — has agreed to allow U.S. firm Navitas Systems to buy A123's government business, including defense contracts. But any resulting sense of enhanced security would be false — sensitive applications of A123's battery technology are inseparable from other applications.
Allowing Wanxiang to acquire A123 would leave the U.S. military dependent on a supply chain that Beijing could cut off, as it did Japan's supply of rare-earth minerals. U.S. infrastructure would be vulnerable to Chinese cyber attacks. And Chinese military forces and satellites would be enhanced.
What the foreign investment committee must do is obvious: Prohibit this deal — period. It's the only way to ensure that A123's U.S.-funded, U.S.-developed advanced battery technology aids only America and its allies, not increasingly hostile China.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pittsburgh Laurels & Lances
- Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances
- Those revised gun forms: A full explantion is owed
- Greensburg Laurels & Lances
- The medical device tax: An abject failure
- Saturday essay: Saving Catalpa
- Connellsville’s clash over authority: Work it out
- An independent Scotland? Think again