By George Miller
Channel Islands Republican Women Federated hosted Dr. Wen Chen as the featured speaker at their recent meeting at a popular harbor eatery. Her mission was to expose what she and many others believe to be the significant menace posed by the Chinese Communist party (CCP).
Dr. Chen, a noted speaker on Chinese culture, history and human rights, grew up in China in an environment dominated by the CCP, which rules the nation with an iron hand. She came to the US on a student visa, with a scholarship to CalTech, works as a biologist and information scientist and also focuses on raising her children and speaking.
Her presentation: “Chinese Communist Party’s Censorship and Infiltration into the World”, more than lived up to its already ambitious objective. You can view the visuals here: CIRWF_20210127
From the original event announcement:
A conversation with China specialist Dr. Wen Chen
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) quickly gained financial power after China joined the World Trade Organization. During the past 20 years, the Chinese government built up business ties with Hollywood and over 30 mainstream media worldwide to tell a better story about China. Hundreds of universities, including the college board, outsourced mandarin teaching to the Chinese government.
The Chinese consulates actively manipulate Chinese Americans and business owners who may steal intellectual property or influence elections. The U.S. lawmakers cannot stop at “condemning human rights abuses in China.” They must take serious actions to prevent American businesses from sponsoring the CCP. We also need serious measures to protect academic and press freedom.
It was supported by comprehensive visual aids (see link above) and was very impactful in describing: the heavy oppression and surveillance the Chinese Communist Party imposes upon citizens; the shocking degree of infiltration of institutions, governments and societies around the world; the surveillance, intimidation and co-opting of Chinese citizens abroad; the reign of fear and terror it maintains at home and is rapidly spreading abroad. Finally, she connected some of the dots to show us how they are employing espionage, pressure tactics, infiltration, blackmail and more to exert a huge amount of control in the USA and what might be done about it.
Considering all of that, it is not hard to understand why the Trump administration departed from past practices and worked so hard to change US policies regarding China. This recent article in the Epoch Times covers that. In fairness, China’s greatly increased aggressive policies in recent years made it more evident, making both the threat and the need to address it more obvious. Dr. Chen did not delve much into related partisan issues.
Things are Bad In-County
Dr. Chen first described the Chinese Communist Party rule as “totalitarian,” a total surveillance and controlled society- by the party and for the party. She outlined generations of rule, including:
1957-60- The Great Leap Forward” which resulted in a famine and 30 million dead.
First generation- Mao Tse Tung (ruled 1949-1976) and the Great Cultural Revolution, which resulted in schools being shut down for ten years and eradication of the elites. She said 2 million died, antiques and temples were destroyed and Mao was portrayed as a god.
Second Generation- Deng Xiaoping. He was best known for brutal repression, illustrated by the Tiananmen Square Massacre which followed a peaceful protest.
Third generation- Jiang Zeman brought about more major, brutal repression, which has also resulted in millions killed, imprisoned, tortured, organ-harvested, sexually abused, and more, especially to the Falun Gong group.
Major censorship and repression of activities, media, political and social expression is worsening. Censorship is impacting books, foreign media, Internet access, blogging and viewing, especially political and social. China has largely separated the public from the worldwide Internet and gone to its own Intranet, fenced off by the “Great Firewall of China” (a play on “The Great Wall of China”) complete with 2 million “Internet Police.” Phones are also monitored. (But, then that’s also beginning to occur in the USA.) She gave an estimate of over 200 million surveillance cameras in the country. Much of this equipment is augmented by speech/visual recognition and artificial intelligence systems.
But while all this was happening, China was developing and building an industrial, technological, commercial and organizational base for the future, After joining the World Trade Organization (WTO) things really took off. But there was a dark side to all this, Chen pointed out. The ruling CCP resorted to any and nearly all methods to win and dominate, many of them illegal, unethical and cruel.
Currently, the government, which is ruled by the CCP, controls all media, with censorship of books, films, social media and foreign media exclusion. They have blocked most of the worldwide Internet, However, dissidents have had some success breaching “The Great Firewall”. The same repression applies to telephone systems. The Communist Party has chapters in every company, school and organization. Artificial intelligence, facial recognition and social credit surveillance are employed.
She pointed out that American Companies have helped CCP tyranny, including CISCO helping to build the Great Firewall and Yahoo giving them Chinese journalists’ email.
Chen asserted that China controls the UN, pointing out the countries in its orbit which usually vote with it, not only in the General Assembly, but on numerous committees and organizations within the UN, such as the World Health Organization (WHO).
CCP throws up huge obstacles to American business, imposing rules making it tougher to do business and make a profit. They are infamous for intellectual property (IP) theft and coercing transfer of IP, reverse engineering and counterfeiting. They make it very difficult if not impossible to contest this. They engage in currency manipulation and do export subsidies in violation of WTO rules. They do not hold themselves to the same anti-pollution and labor laws as much of the rest of the world and have negotiated tremendously lopsided advantages for themselves in agreements such as the Paris Accords, which were rejected by the Trump Administration but immediately re-accepted by Biden.
But the CCP Control is Spreading World-Wide
Dr. Chen pointed out that China is propping up other totalitarian dictatorships, such as North Korea, Iran & Cuba and even providing them resources to stir up trouble elsewhere in the world. This includes support for NK’s nuclear program and exporting US technology to Iran.
To start with, CCP attempts to monitor and control Chinese Americans’ activities, via holding families as hostages, and extreme pressure tactics. Citizens are recruited to spy on each other- in fact, that’s often a condition for foreign postings, study and work.
Chinese consulates are utilized as spying and control hubs to monitor Chinese Americans’ activities (students, workers), pressure them via passport renewal cancellations/visas, threats to family back in China, forced return.
CCP is buying or obtaining operating contracts for ports and other key infrastructure.
Chinese electronics can have “backdoors” built in which facilitate surveillance, remote control, even sabotage.
CCP’s Belt & Road initiative locks up weaker countries in one-sided trade, development and loan arrangements.
CCP Influence Increasingly Gripping the USA
Many of the worldwide threats mentioned above also affect the USA. Chinese students, businesses and workers in the US are often pressured and controlled. Spies steal military and industrial secrets/intellectual properties in industry, academia and the military, not just in the US, but in countries/companies abroad.
They are making large donations to US universities, funding chairs/schools and spreading their ideas via the “Confucius Institute and influencing curricula.They even form CCP chapters right here in the US.
CCP has made increasing inroads into Hollywood, sometimes influencing or demanding movie content changes, or influencing what productions occur. They even own the largest US movie theater chain- AMC.
CCP has stolen military and industrial technology and processes that have enabled it to leaprog generations of development, avoiding much of the time and expense while posing stronger military and competitive trade threats.
Chinese hardware and software can be used to collect the above, plus maintain surveillance on companies, military, organizations and individuals. In some cases, companies are coerced or even willingly do this for CCP. In some cases, software developed for repression in China is used in the US or inspires versions that are. American companies have sometimes developed this software for China. Some can be and is used in the US too.
Chinese consulates are hubs for spying on the US government, industry and society. Chinese nationals in the US are pressured to spy for the CCP.
China has infiltrated American Academia via its “Confucius Institute ” program, funding programs, blacklisting scholars and journalists who say things they don’t like, especially about human rights- and offering special treatment to those who do. Publishers are pressured to censor material CCP doesn’t like. They control Chinese student organizations, block universities speaking out on human rights abuses, threaten student leaders.
CCP has been successful in influencing American Mainstream Media content in its favor, It even has many of them distributing its own propaganda sheets inserted into their publications. “China Watch” is inserted in numerous major papers. It comes with the LA Times one Sunday per month (see below)
Most Chinese language media in the US are controlled or influenced by the CCP. CCP media ownership is also increasing. “The Chinese government’s TV, Radio, and newspapers are made available in the U.S. At the same time, Beijing also offers to buy mainstream English media. San Francisco Examiner was acquired by a local family with close ties to the CCP.
Significantly, CCP is also influencing politics, supporting people who will help their objectives, opposing those that don’t. They have co-opted political representatives and officials via “honey traps,” money, negative publicity, special favors. Such people are strongly discouraged, even threatened, not to speak out against CCP human rights abuses, and not to support Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet or Uyghurs.
Fighting the CCP Threat
Just becoming aware of the type, source and level of threat is the first step of dealing with it.This presentation is an example.
In 2018, DOJ ordered two Chinese state-run organizations to register as foreign agents: Xinhua News Agency and China Global Television Network. The US State Department identified those and three others: China Radio International, China Daily and People’s Daily, have been identified as “Foreign Missions.” (It will be very interesting to see how the Biden administration deals with this and other China threats.)
Some US universities are shutting down Confucius Institute chapters and the US is refusing to fund programs offered by CI. It remains to be seen what the Biden administration will do about such things.
Senator Ted Cruz introduced the Stop Higher Education Espionage and Theft Act.
Wen presented Falun Gong as the most powerful mainland China counterweight to CCP tyranny. While are not designed as an opposition group, their philosophies are antithetical to much of the CCP’s and are regarded as a threat to them.
Some media, such as the Epoch Times (1 million+ circulation and growing fast) and this publication have run numerous articles exposing some of this, its consequences and what might be done about it.
Dr. Chen summarized Falun Gong resistance to CCP within China, with these highlights:
1989-1999: Chinese people remained silent towards injustice after the Tiananmen Massacre
1999-2001: Falun Gong practitioners’ public appeal against the persecution awoke Chinese society
2001 – present: Falun Gong practitioners developed & distributed free software to help Chinese people to bypass the Internet Great Firewall
2004 – present: The “Quit the Communist party” (a.k.a “Tuidang”) Movement allowed 371 million Chinese people to renounce their affiliation with the Chinese Communist Party, the Youth League of Chinese Communist Party, and the Young Pioneer of the Chinese Communist Party.
2005 – present: Hundreds of human rights lawyers emerged in China
2015 – present: Chinese people filed lawsuits against human rights perpetrators
Much more is happening or proposed than was covered in this presentation, which mainly focused on threat identification.
The presentation was very well-received by the mostly Conservative, mostly women audience. My conversations with a few attendees revealed that they were already concerned about the situation and this presentation revealed even more than they already knew.
Q & A Session (words are paraphrased, not quoted):
Q: Was the CCP virus (COVID-19) engineered?
A: A 2015 Nature article indicated the Wuhan Lab had been genetically engineering “gain-of-function” coronaviruses with collaboration with a research group in the U.S. when such funding was still allowed during the Obama administration. (while it hasn’t been positively determined that was the source of COVID-10, there are some indications that it might be.) SARS viruses escaped twice from a Lab in Beijing in 2004. In Jan. 2020, a Chinese scientist was sentenced to prison for selling Lab animals to markets. China passed the first biosafety law in Feb. 2020.”
Q: What can we do about corrupt officials/institutions?
A: First identify, expose and confront them. Hollywood belongs to the Chinese.
Q: I remarked that this was a powerful presentation with some blockbuster accusations and asked if it is supported by references/bibliography, as my publication of a report on this event would result in some pushback and demand for sourcing.
A. Dr, Chen said she would provide that and later sent me this first installment of sources: https://wenchenview.blogspot.com/2021/02/the-chinese-communist-partys.html . More will be coming, we were promised.
Q: Panama Canal belongs to (is actually operated by) Chinese.
A: Also Port of London, Some SoCal facilites and more. They have attempted to control LA, San Diego, Long Beach- rejected.
Q: You are brave- are you in danger?
A: Can’t ever return to China. Many are now speaking out about the dangers of CCP.
Q: What about students coming from China?
A: The CCP always wanted students to work for the government, whether they came by themselves or were sponsored by the Chinese authority. No matter what, once these students are here, it is their opportunity to learn freedom and democracy. The CCP encourages students to report fellow students’ activities. There is a distrust among the Chinese students regarding these sensitive topics, but they trust Americans. Americans should tell them the facts about China. I awoke from the CCP’s brainwash because my American colleagues helped me.
Q: What about “Formosa” (Taiwan)?:
A: It would be very difficult for China to take it by force and US opposes it. A free Taiwan has great importance since it is living proof of how much freer and more prosperous a free Chines society can be. It is a great example of democracy in great contrast to CCP China. It was Taiwan which was the first outside land to discover the CCP virus in China and the first to block air travel from mainland China and rely upon its own approach to dealing with it (NOT WHO’s).
Q: What about CCP “tentacles” in Argentina/South America/Patagonia?
A: I am not familiar with the situation in Argentina. The CCP has been migrating Chinese people to areas they wanted to occupy or influence, such as Tibet or Xinjiang. The same to other countries. There are many Chinese workers in countries involved in Belt & Road Initiative, such as Italy. They are also buying U.S. lands.
Q: COVID-19 vaccine?
A: The U.S. vaccine should be much better than the ones in China. COVID has a low death rate, and vaccines also have side effects. Certain people (such as those who with allergy) may not be suitable for vaccines. It depends on personal situations. A significant number of people may already have antibodies.
George Miller is Publisher/Co-Founder of CitizensJournal.us and a “retired” operations management consultant residing in Oxnard.
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