Lenovo's State Dept setback

Bruce Einhorn

With right-wing critics in the GOP putting pressure on the State Department because of a deal to buy thousands of computers from China’s Lenovo, the Bush Administration has decided to split the difference. The purchase of 16,000 desktops, announced in March, will proceed. But State announced yesterday that the Lenovo machines will be used only for run-of-the-mill, non-classified systems. According to Reuters, Republican congressman Frank Wolf, the Beijing crtitic who led the opposition to State’s Lenovo deal, saw red after learning how the government had been planning on using the PCs: "I was deeply troubled to learn that the new computers were purchased from a China-based company, and that at least 900 of these computers were planned to be used as part of the classified network deployed in the United States and around the world in embassies and consulates.” Presumably those 900 PCs will now be Dells or HPs.

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