The war is indeed hundreds of years old:
The silk trade was so valuable that anyone who tried to take silkworm eggs or mulberry seeds out of China was put to death. Then in 552 AD, two monks smuggled silkworm eggs to Constantinople, and silk production spread worldwide. Now that the secret’s out, we can safely talk about how silkworms and humans make luxurious silk cloth.
"The invention of gunpowder is usually attributed to Chinese alchemy, and is popularly listed as one of the "Four Great Inventions" of China. The invention was made perhaps as early as during the Tang Dynasty (9th century), but certainly by the Song Dynasty (11th century). Knowledge of gunpowder spread throughout the Old World as a result of the Mongol conquests of the 13th century. It was employed in warfare to some effect from at least the 14th century, although the development of effective artillery took place during the 15th century, and firearms came to dominate Early Modern warfare in Europe by the 17th century.
Perhaps the same for paper, printing, rockets, fine china, glazing? Not sure about bronze and iron working.
Then there are all of the traditional medicines and biodiversity around the world that is being trawled for patentable medical applications.
Given the enormous problems and inherent risks of landing a sophisticated probe in working condition, I wonder if it wouldn't be better to first send some quite dumb but very robust impactors. Gather basic information and then plan a longer duration mission.
It is possible to make some pretty durable basic sensors, batteries and a transmitter. Have a solid rocket final stage to decelerate on the way in so that they are not vaporised on impact. Launch a cluster that separate on the way and adjust slightly their trajectories to come in staggered over time and spread over distance. Camera view on the way down.
Then spend the $5B or whatever it takes to get a more capable lander / rover / driller onto the surface in working condition.
Just about every computer on the market today runs Unix, except the Mac (and nobody cares about it). -- Bill Joy 6/21/85