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Image credit: Harper Business, 2021

A new book examines the Chinese government's efforts to manufacture and provide advanced communications hardware and the many devices that connect to it, to countries, communities, and companies around the world.

Why it matters: China is planning for "a future in which all routers lead to Beijing."

In "The Digital Silk Road: China's Quest to Wire the World and Win the Future," Jonathan Hillman, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, looks at China's growing efforts in fiber optics, satellite communications, submarine cables, surveillance equipment, cloud computing and more.

  • The Digital Silk Road, first announced in 2015 as part of China's Belt and Road Initiative, involves a wide variety of projects across continents as Chinese companies sell, install and operate communications technology.

The bottom line: "As more of daily life depends on digital infrastructure, and more physical objects are connected, it is not merely different versions of the internet that are emerging but different worlds," Hillman writes.

Go deeper: Check out Hillman's first book on the Belt and Road, "The Emperor's New Road: China and the Project of the Century."

Go deeper

Dec 2, 2021 - Technology

U.S. to lead global initiative to limit surveillance by authoritarian regimes

President Biden speaks while visiting the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland on Dec. 2. Photo: Oliver Contreras/Sipa/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Biden administration on Thursday announced a global initiative aimed to prevent authoritarian governments from using technology for surveillance and human rights abuses, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: Many authoritarian governments rely on imported technology to implement state surveillance networks.

Dec 2, 2021 - Sports

IOC defends "quiet diplomacy" after 2nd Peng Shuai call

Peng Shuai during the Connecticut Open in August 2014. Photo: David Hahn/Icon SMI/Corbis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The International Olympic Committee said Thursday it held a second video call with Peng Shuai, a Chinese tennis star who disappeared for weeks after accusing a former top government official of sexual assault.

Why it matters: During the call, the IOC and Peng agreed to an in-person meeting in January, though the committee did not disclose exactly when or where the meeting would take place, as it is unclear if the tennis star is currently allowed to travel outside of China.

U.S. sounds alarm on Ukraine

Conscripts line up at a Russian railway station yesterday before departing for Army service. Photo: Sergei Malgavko/TASS via Getty Images

The Biden administration is "deeply concerned" by new intelligence — detailed for Axios and other outlets — showing Russia stepping up preparations to invade Ukraine as soon as early 2022.

Why it matters: Most of this was known from public sources and satellite imagery, but the administration is sending a stronger signal by releasing specific details from the intelligence community.