Home / Further Indications that the World Has Changed

Further Indications that the World Has Changed


The Chinese appear to be stealing an effective and marketable Russian weapon design; the Russian response is to threaten a lawsuit:

Russia is getting more and more upset at what it sees as Chinese making unauthorized use of Russian military technology. The latest irritation is the new Chinese diesel electric sub design, the Type 39A, or Yuan class. They look just like the Russian Kilo class…. The Russian sub building organizations are not amused, and are warning China of legal action if Yuans are offered for export (and in direct completion with the Kilos.)

Ah… I remember when this kind of problem was handled through bitter claims of ideological revisionism, dire threats of military action, and the rumbling of artillery along the Ussuri River. Now it all comes down to the lawyers…

Via Information Dissemination.

…Incidentally, we’re working on a paper on the intersection of intellectual property law and military procurement; if anyone knows a ton (or even a few pounds) about the issue, please drop me a line.

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  • Ginger Yellow

    This is the sort of thing that drives me nuts about New World Order types. Even if accept that the WTO/UN/IMF etc represent a universal government, how is this development not preferably to armed confrontation between nuclear armed powers with dubious military ethics?

  • Kelley

    Hey Farls! My law partner, Mel, practices a great deal of intellectual property law. You might ask her for some guidance on the law angle.
    Oh, and the kitties still like me best :P

  • You might want to look at the politics around the F-35 project, specifically with regard to the US’s reservations on letting the UK side see or maintain various subsystems, which included the VAAC-based flight control system originally developed in the UK. The problem I can see is that the eventual agreements were classified.
    Relatedly, you could look at other tech-transfer things, notably ones involving the US being suspicious that France would sell various things to unfriendly powers, and Israel actually doing so having reverse engineered them. Frex, the Israelis built the Dagger (export version of the Kfir), using most of the Mirage III design and most of the GE J79 engine, and then sold them to Argentina…to say nothing of the Phalcon AEW affair.
    The Royal Navy’s Tomahawk stockpile has to be maintained only by Raytheon under the terms of a contract; in the opposite sense, the UK’s Watchkeeper UAV program uses an Israeli (Rafael) design, but the procurement has been explicitly designed to create a British UAV industry.
    Of course, the daddy of these incidents was the US violation of the Hyde Park agreement in the McMahon Act.

  • The lead to this post makes it sound like the Russian design that the Chinese are stealing is threatening lawsuite. Second-generation lawfare?
    Unfortunately, though this post is a joke, typing the word “lawfare” makes me want to hit people.

  • rea

    We ought to regard this as a favorable development, given the unquestionable global leadership of the US in intellectual property litigation.

  • Rob

    Oops; corrected.

  • kid bitzer

    so basically, we are all running-dog capitalist lackeys now?

  • Linnaeus

    so basically, we are all running-dog capitalist lackeys now?
    I think I came to that conclusion when Taco Bell used the Che Guevara chihuahua to sell Gorditas.
    Viva Gordita!

  • ajay

    …which reminds me – doesn’t the original patent on the atomic bomb belong to the British Admiralty? IIRC Richard Rhodes said so…

  • rea

    doesn’t the original patent on the atomic bomb belong to the British Admiralty?
    How could that be? It was invented at Los Alamos by my mother and a few others like Oppenheimer, Fermi, and Feynman

  • errr….no.

  • DocAmazing

    Your mom had become Death, destroyer of worlds? Cool…

  • karen marie

    “Now it all comes down to the lawyers…”
    see, there you sound just like john mccain, sneering at lawyers.
    personally i think it is excellent news that the russians have chosen the law court over violence.
    shortly after 9/11/01 bush dismissed legal avenues in favor of violence, preferring to kill people wholesale instead of doing the much-less-sexy legwork involved in criminal investigation.
    but no, let’s leave the lawyers alone so they can do important work like representing robert bork in his lawsuit against the yale club or judge pearson in his lawsuit for loss of his lucky pants.
    in fact, bush and mccain may be on to something — for instance, look how many lawyers are now free from having to represent plaintiffs in employment compensation cases so they are available to represent churches out to challenge the irs.

  • Rob,
    You might want to look into the aircraft engine fiasco with Pakistan last year between China and Russia, in that case China had license to produce the engine, but not export it. Russia with its lawyer army was successful in blocking China from exporting those engines, so we have been told…
    In this case, China doesn’t have license to produce or export the technologies claimed stolen. Russia’s sole objective here is to keep the Yuan class off the export market.

  • ajay

    How could that be? It was invented at Los Alamos by my mother and a few others like Oppenheimer, Fermi, and Feynman
    Built, yes. Invented, no. A bit of research reminded me that the original patent on the creation and use of a nuclear chain reaction was filed in July 1934 by Leo Szilard, who handed it over to the Admiralty in February 1936.

  • 111

    sounds like drug runners.

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