While the war in the Iraq is still in progress and allies soldiers and civilians are still in danger and risk their health, members of the US Congress already think about the time after the war and which cell phone system should be used in the Iraq.
Under the headline: "Congressional Lawmakers Balk At Plan To Deploy French/German Cell Phone Technology In Post-War Iraq" they published the following letter:
Dear Ambassador Chamberlain:
We understand that the United States Armed Forces and the U.S. Reconstruction and Civil Affairs Office are planning to deploy a cell phone system in Iraq that will be used by these and other organizations to meet immediate post-conflict mobile communications requirements. We presume that this system would be operated by the United States for a period of time and then privatized. We understand that decisions about the rollout of this system are being made in real time.
We have learned that planners at the Department of Defense and USAID are currently envisioning using Federal appropriations to deploy a European-based wireless technology known as GSM (Groupe Speciale Mobile) for this new Iraqi cell phone system.
If European GSM technology is deployed in Iraq, much of the equipment used to build the cell phone system would be manufactured in France, Germany, and elsewhere in western and northern Europe. Furthermore, royalties paid on the technology would flow to French and European sources, not U.S. patent holders.
U.S. developed CDMA (code-division multiple access) cell phone technology is widely recognized as technically superior to European GSM technology and is deployed in 50 nations worldwide. In addition, we understand that CDMA cell phones include an integrated global positioning system (GPS) feature that allows the precision location of callers in times of emergency. European GSM cell phones do not have integrated GPS. If U.S. relief workers in Iraq are equipped with CDMA cell phones with GPS, they will be immediately locatable in case of terrorist attack or kidnapping. Finally, because U.S. CDMA systems are compliant with the U.S. Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, this system provides all necessary access for law enforcement in post-conflict Iraq.
Finally, we understand that there are already quickly deployable U.S. commercial proposals to commence immediately with the installation of U.S. CDMA technology in Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of American jobs depend on the success of U.S.-developed wireless technologies like CDMA. If the U.S. government deploys U.S- developed CDMA in Iraq, then American companies will manufacture most of the necessary equipment here in the United States and benefit from the associated royalties.
We urge you to use American developed CDMA cell phone technology. Thank you for your consideration on this important matter.
First of all the headline really hurts me! Yes, the GSM standard was developed by French and German Telecom in early 80's but it's not "Groupe Speciale Mobile" anymore but Global System for Mobile Communication" which includes US companies like Motorola as well!
Second it hurts me to read this hate against Germany and French and doesn't makes sense for me. We are still friends - I thought - with different opinions but friends and NATO partners. I wonder how Mr. Darrell Issa, who wrote this paper, acts with his wife if they have different opinions?
Third I thought this war isn't about businees, money and oil but to free Iraq from its government?
Fourth I would like to tell Mr. Issa that "no one" else in the world - outside the US (and yes, there is something more then the US only) uses your CDMA network! There is a good reason for GSM, it's its world wide availability and which sense can it makes to implement a wireless network in this area of the world where all neighbors use GSM?
I don't want to move into a political discussion here but it frustrates me, hurts me and shocks me to read this kind of letter from a member of the US Congress!
Cheers ~ Arne
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