How U.S. Tech Companies Fueled China’s Surveillance State

Liza Lin and Josh Chin:

As the U.S. government intensifies its efforts to decouple American technology from China’s sprawling surveillance state, a new report by the U.N.’s human rights agency demonstrates the urgency of that task. The U.N. found that China’s treatment of Turkic Muslims in the remote region of Xinjiang “may constitute international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity.”

The Chinese government’s chilling campaign to forcibly assimilate minorities in Xinjiang relies heavily on a sophisticated system of mass digital surveillance—one that was built, and continues to operate, thanks to contributions from Silicon Valley. U.S. companies have long sought to profit off China’s desire to monitor its citizens, and it is surprising how deep those connections go.