The Digital Silk Road
Jonathan E. Hillman
Its vast infrastructure projects now extend from the ocean floor to outer space, and from Africa’s megacities into rural America. China is wiring the world, and, in doing so, rewriting the global order.
As things stand, the rest of the world still has a choice. But the battle for tomorrow will require America and its allies to take daring risks in uncertain political terrain. Unchecked, China will reshape global flows of data to reflect its interests. It will develop an unrivalled understanding of market movements, the deliberations of foreign competitors, and the lives of countless individuals enmeshed in its systems. Networks create large winners, and this is one contest that democracies can’t afford to lose.
Taking readers on a global tour of these emerging battlefields, Jonathan Hillman reveals what China’s digital footprint looks like on the ground, and explores the dangers of a world in which all routers lead to Beijing.
The Digital Silk Road traces China's rise as a digital superpower and provides a sobering analysis of its challenge to American technological leadership, economic competitiveness, and national security. Jonathan Hillman shows how private entrepreneurship and government support have enabled a technologically backward country to acquire leading-edge communications capabilities long thought to be the exclusive preserve of rich democracies. This important and well-crafted book should be required reading -- Minxin Pei, author * China's Crony Capitalism * Essential reading for understanding one of the greatest geostrategic challenges of our age: China's technological rise and global push to dominate the vital systems upon which militaries, markets, and modern societies depend -- Admiral James Stavridis, 16th Supreme Allied Commander at NATO and author * 2034: A Novel of the Next World War * An urgent, engaging look at China's push to build digital influence and leverage, project by project, as it makes a play for global dominance -- Jon Huntsman Jr, former US ambassador to China A timely and fascinating account of how China is shaping the digital universe, redrawing the connections that carry data from ocean floor to outer space, and harnessing the means by which both commerce and warfare will increasingly be conducted, framed in a century-defining contest for control -- Charlene Barshefsky, 12th United States Trade Representative Praise for The Emperor's New Silk Road: An outstanding book by one of the most interesting and original thinkers about the rise of China, the Belt and Road Initiative and what both mean for the rest of the world. Filled with insights into the changing world of the 21st century - essential reading -- Peter Frankopan, author * The Silk Roads: A New History of the World * For all the hype and hand-wringing over how the [Belt and Road] could usher in the Chinese century, Hillman's engaging mix of high-level analysis and fieldwork in more than a dozen countries paints a much more nuanced picture -- Keith Johnson * Foreign Policy * A first-rate blend of analysis and journalistic reporting from the front lines of economic statecraft -- Michael J. Mazarr * War on the Rocks * A probing look at China's quest to dominate the technosphere [and] a cogent warning that the West has much work to do if it is to contain Chinese expansion into cyberspace * Kirkus *
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