Re: Who's squeezing Microsoft?
Maybe you are over-thinking this one. It doesn't take a conspiracy for MS to make a cockup of this magnitude.
I've worked with enough large clients (on the marketing side) to know that the inertia/momentum in something like a car company will propel stupid decisions with an unstoppable force. Everyone below board level knows it's a disaster but it's not worth anyone's career to argue.
Before the Second World War (and for some years after as their factories had not been worn out or bomb damaged) American cars were common on every continent. Just look at movies of the period.
Microsoft is at the same size and life-cycle stage as the US car giants were in the 60s when, even at home, their products began to be displaced by better made imports.
What happened with IBM when, irritated by PC clones, they brought out the PS/2 range with non-standard connectors ? Obvious (to everyone except IBM) that many customers would switch to Compaq and Dell to maintain compatibility.