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Russian High-Tech Export Scandal Produces 8 Arrests in Houston 83

Penurious Penguin writes "Millionaire Alexander Fishenko, owner of US-based Arc Electronics Inc, and seven others have been arrested in Houston Texas, with a total of 11 indicted in a conspiracy to smuggle advanced microelectronics from the U.S. to Russia. The technology allegedly involves components of radar, weapons guidance, and detonators. Amongst the evidence are accounting records indicating notable similarity between the revenue of Arc Electronics and the Russian Federation's defense spending; intercepted phone calls and emails; and a letter to Arc Electronics from a Russian domestic intelligence lab complaining of defective microchips . A Russian foreign ministry spokesman has denied there were any intelligence connections in the affair."
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Russian High-Tech Export Scandal Produces 8 Arrests in Houston

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  • Microelectronics? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hjf ( 703092 ) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @09:04AM (#41547953) Homepage

    Microelectronics that are "components of radar, weapons guidance, and detonators". So, a DSP? A microcontroller? FPGAs?

    As if none of that shit is manufactured in asia anyway. Conspirancy to smuggle? More like tax fraud under an heroic excuse.

  • by dgharmon ( 2564621 ) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @09:13AM (#41548043) Homepage
    Is it any news that the Russians 'borrow` a lot of their tech from the west. I understand you could get such 'advanced microelectronics` in a games console. Wasn't it the case, some time ago, that a middle-eastern country was going round buying up games consoles for the chips?
  • Re:Disbelief (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ka9dgx ( 72702 ) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @09:39AM (#41548323) Homepage Journal

    Example: We used to make rare-earth magnets in Valporaiso, Indiana. The factory was sold and moved to China.

    Without those components, you can't make the high-performance servos necessary to fit into our existing missile designs where they serve to move the control surfaces to steer.

    Conclusion: Thus, if we want to fight a war, we now have to buy parts from China.

    We haven't tested our nukes in ages, we'd forgotten how to make critical parts (fogbank, for example), and they all have a half-life. We import everything. We wouldn't last a year in a world war, and those tend to grind on, in spite of faster transport.

  • Re:Disbelief (Score:4, Interesting)

    by poity ( 465672 ) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @11:18AM (#41549433)

    The US has a trump card of its own. It's still the breadbasket of the world, and while military war machines depend on manufacturing, so too do soldiers depend on food. Additionally, in a world war it also has two huge oceans and the vast Canadian wilderness protecting it from attack (barring people with nukes going insane, of course). Unless someone can convince Canadians or Mexicans to flip their allegiances, it has the option of going pure offense or pure isolationist. Very few countries can do this.

No problem is so large it can't be fit in somewhere.