Far more than trade is involved.
My previous article for FrontPage Magazine focused on specific threats to the United States that were linked to border security issues raised in the January 29, 2019 Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Worldwide Threats that was itself predicated on the Intelligence Community’s just-released World-Wide Threat Assessment.
I used the information disclosed at the hearing and contained in that threat assessment report about the dangers to America created by transnational criminal organizations and translational gangs such as MS-13 and the drug cartels in Mexico, as well as the crimes and activities of human traffickers that support the Trump administration’s demands for a border wall, a wall that unbelievably, the leaders of the Democratic Party adamantly oppose.
However, the report included much more material about other global threats that confront the United States and its interests. Simply stated, the world is a dangerous place.
Among the other threats addressed in the report were those posed by China, Russia, Iran and North Korea.
Today we will take a hard look at China and how its aggressive and relentless pursuit of global dominance threatens America.
Before we go any further, we must remember that China is led by a totalitarian Communist regime that is not an ally but rather a serious adversary of the United States.
President Trump is the first American President in decades to take a strong position against Chinese transgressions against the United States where trade, currency manipulation and espionage are concerned.
China has moved swiftly to consolidate its stranglehold on its own citizens by politically eliminating presidential term limits and exploiting ever more sophisticated technological tools such as social media, facial recognition technology, and other such hi-tech means.
On January 13, 2019 CBS News’ 60 Minutes aired a report on the developments in artificial intelligence (AI) brought about by venture capitalist Kai-Fu Lee’s investments and China’s effort to dominate the AI field.
There is no shortage of specific examples of Chinese espionage committed against the United States and U.S. companies. Such espionage has become so routine and commonplace that the U.S intelligence services have come to refer to this as “Chinese Take-Out”!
Frequently Chinese citizens who acquire lawful immigrant status and United States citizenship use that status to facilitate espionage against America and American companies.
To cite a recent example, on December 21, 2018 the Justice Department issued a press release, Chinese National Charged with Committing Theft of Trade Secrets that began with the following statement:
Hongjin Tan, a 35 year old Chinese national and U.S. legal permanent resident, was arrested on Dec. 20 and charged with theft of trade secrets. Tan is alleged to have stolen the trade secrets from his employer, a U.S. petroleum company.
The announcement was made by Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney Trent Shores for the Northern District of Oklahoma, and Special Agent in Charge Kathryn Peterson of the FBI Oklahoma City Field Office.
“Hongjin Tan allegedly stole trade secrets related to a product worth more than $1 billion from his U.S.-based petroleum company employer, to use for the benefit of a Chinese company where he was offered employment,” said Assistant Attorney General Demers. “The theft of intellectual property harms American companies and American workers. As our recent cases show, all too often these thefts involve the Chinese government or Chinese companies. The Department recently launched an initiative to protect our economy from such illegal practices emanating from China, and we continue to make this a top priority.”
On January 28, 2019 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) issued a press release, Chinese telecommunications conglomerate Huawei and Huawei CFO Wanzhou Meng charged with financial fraud.
On that same day, January 28th, the Justice Department issued a press release about the same investigation, Chinese Telecommunications Device Manufacturer and its U.S. Affiliate Indicted for Theft of Trade Secrets, Wire Fraud, and Obstruction Of Justice /Huawei Corporate Entities Conspired to Steal Trade Secret Technology and Offered Bonus to Workers who Stole Confidential Information from Companies Around the World.
The DOJ press release also included a link to the ten count indictment.
Besides imposing tariffs against Chinese imports, President Trump has also imposed restrictions on Chinese students who are studying in the United States. This was the focus of my article, “Trump Administration Restricts Chinese Students – Finally, America confronts a massive espionage operation.”
This is a welcome change by the administration to protect America and Americans. I have written several articles about Chinese espionage and belligerence and how, for decades, our universities have been training foreign students who seek to exploit our educational system to further the goals and agendas of America’s adversaries, including hundreds of thousands of Chinese STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) students who, as they acquire first-rate education in the United States, have been able to work for American companies under the auspices of Optional Practical Training that enables foreign students to apply their training and education in real world jobs for American companies in the United States. This program has facilitated Chinese espionage against American companies including ones that have military contracts.
These long-overdue efforts of the Trump administration should be cheered and supported by all Americans and even American allies around the world who should take similar actions.
Three of my relatively recent articles highlight China’s massive espionage campaign against the United States:
Chinese Citizen Arrested By FBI For Spying On U.S. – A case that highlights the nexus between immigration and espionage.
China Ratchets Up Its U.S. Spying Programs: American Universities and financial institutions are at risk.
Educating America’s Adversaries: China’s engineers are building China’s military. Who taught them?
When American companies, in a quest for cheap labor and reduced regulation, have set up factories in China, China has seized the opportunity to engage in industrial espionage against those companies proving that sometimes short-term savings cost more, often much more, in the end.
In some instances, American companies have voluntarily cooperated with China’s totalitarian regime. For example, Google has been enlisted by the Chinese government to help crack down on civil liberties in China against its own citizens even as Google actively and aggressively opposes any efforts by the U.S. government to protect America and Americans from the threat of international terrorists.
Eager to do lucrative business in China, Google was willing to “go along to get along” while its dealing with the U.S. government went in precisely the opposite direction.
A September 21, 2018, Newsweek article, “Google Brainstormed Ways To Combat Trump’s Travel Ban By Leveraging Search Results For Pro-Immigration Causes,” included the following excerpt: “Google, along with Apple, Facebook and other technology companies, filed a joint amicus brief challenging the travel ban, stating that it “inflicts significant harm on American business, innovation and growth.“
Now let’s turn to the Threat Assessment. Consider this excerpt that is found on pages 24 and 25:
The Chinese Communist Party’s Concentration of Power
China is deepening its authoritarian turn under President Xi Jinping, and the resulting hardening of Chinese politics and governance probably will make it more difficult for the leadership to recognize and correct policy errors, including in relations with the United States and our allies and partners.
President Xi removed one of the few remaining checks on his authority when he eliminated presidential term limits in March 2018, and the Chinese Communist Party has reasserted control over the economy and society, tightened legal and media controls, marginalized independent voices, and intensified repression of Chinese Muslims, Christians, and other religious minorities.
The Chinese Government also is harnessing technology, including facial recognition, biometrics, and vehicle GPS tracking, to bolster its apparatus of domestic monitoring and control.
Beijing’s increasing restrictions on scholars’ and researchers’ freedom of movement and communication with US counterparts may increase the prospects for misunderstanding and misinterpretation of US policies.
Universities in the United States have been willing to accept Chinese demands for changes in curricula in exchange for funding from China. On January 17, 2018 Politico published a report, How China Infiltrated U.S. Classrooms that begins with this passage:
Last year, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte made an announcement to great fanfare: The university would soon open a branch of the Confucius Institute, the Chinese government-funded educational institutions that teach Chinese language, culture and history. The Confucius Institute would “help students be better equipped to succeed in an increasingly globalized world,” says Nancy Gutierrez, UNC Charlotte’s dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and “broaden the University’s outreach and support for language instruction and cultural opportunities in the Charlotte community,” according to a press release.
But the Confucius Institutes’ goals are a little less wholesome and edifying than they sound—and this is by the Chinese government’s own account. A 2011 speech by a standing member of the Politburo in Beijing laid out the case: “The Confucius Institute is an appealing brand for expanding our culture abroad,” Li Changchun said. “It has made an important contribution toward improving our soft power. The ‘Confucius’ brand has a natural attractiveness. Using the excuse of teaching Chinese language, everything looks reasonable and logical.”
Li, it now seems, was right to exult. More than a decade after they were created, Confucius Institutes have sprouted up at more than 500 college campuses worldwide, with more than 100 of them in the United States—including at The George Washington University, the University of Michigan and the University of Iowa. Overseen by a branch of the Chinese Ministry of Education known colloquially as Hanban, the institutes are part of a broader propaganda initiative that the Chinese government is pumping an estimated $10 billion into annually, and they have only been bolstered by growing interest in China among American college students.
Yet along with their growth have come consistent questions about whether the institutes belong on campuses that profess to promote free inquiry. Confucius Institutes teach a very particular, Beijing-approved version of Chinese culture and history: one that ignores concerns over human rights, for example, and teaches that Taiwan and Tibet indisputably belong to Mainland China. Take it from the aforementioned Li, who also said in 2009 that Confucius Institutes are an “important part of China’s overseas propaganda set-up.” Critics also charge that the centers have led to a climate of self-censorship on campuses that play host to them.
Remarkably, even as Antifa thugs and university administrations seek to block American conservatives from providing their perspectives on college campuses across the United States, Communist China’s outrageous propaganda is embraced and welcomed on American college campuses.
Lenin has been quoted as saying, “The capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them.” Today there is a fire sale on rope in America and it must end. The sooner the better!
EDITORS NOTE: This column with images originally appeared on FrontPage Magazine. It is republished with permission.