Fresh from a thumping general election victory and an anti-climactic Commons vote confirming the U.K.'s departure from the European Union, Boris Johnson's Government is struggling to make up its mind about Huawei.
Britain’s choice between telecommunications efficiency and network security has the makings of a transatlantic showdown. A team of Trump administration officials arrived in London recently to raise new security concerns. There have also been bad tidings about the future of the special relationship, with warnings that the UK’s intelligence links with United States could suffer if Huawei becomes part of Britain's 5G mix.
But I’ve also been struck by the way New Zealand’s positioning is mentioned, if ever so briefly, in some accounts of Britain’s crunch moment. The idea that New Zealand has banned Huawei lives on in a recent report in my favourite newspaper, The Washington Post. And Evan Osnos, one of the best proponents of long-form journalism going around, has taken the same line in a substantial piece in The New Yorker. In case you fiercely object to my reading choices, a similar judgment about New Zealand’s approach to Huawei can be found in Sputnik.