Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned during a Wednesday speech at Georgia Tech that the Chinese Communist Party views many U.S. colleges and universities as “easy targets” to infiltrate and influence for Beijing’s benefit because they are “rife with anti-Americanism.”
Throughout 2020, top U.S. officials have given speeches outlining the threats posed to the United States by communist China. The officials include Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General William Barr, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien.
“It’s that the Chinese Communist Party wants what we have, and they will do whatever they must do to take it and get it,” Pompeo warned. “They will steal our stuff. They will pressure critics of the Chinese Communist Party to keep quiet. They will do whatever it takes.”
“And it’s important to come and talk with the American people about this because Americans must know how the Chinese Communist Party is poisoning the well of our higher education institutions for its own ends, and how those actions degrade our freedoms and American national security,” Pompeo continued. “If we don’t educate ourselves, if we’re not honest about what’s taking place, we’ll get schooled by Beijing.”
Pompeo noted that Chinese General Secretary Xi Jinping plainly states that he wants total control in China and wants China to be the world’s number one superpower.
“He’s building up the People’s Liberation Army,” Pompeo said. “He’s manipulating international organizations for Beijing’s benefit. And he’s engaging – as we have seen in TV only just these last two days, he’s engaging in a vast influence campaign all across the world.”
Pompeo’s remarks appear to be in reference to the recent bombshell report from Axios that Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) got entangled with a Chinese spy and that the FBI became so alarmed that it had to intervene and warn Swalwell.
Just think about it. Chinese Communist Party scientists aren’t pioneering cancer cures. We are. And it’s not North Korean biochemists that are producing safe COVID vaccines. We are. And Iranians aren’t ahead in supercomputing. No. In fact, we are. It is the free world and free peoples that produce these superior results. And we should be very proud of that fact.
But we have an obligation to protect it, to preserve it, to make sure that that’s the case 10 and 50 and 100 years from now.
Because on places like this campus, scientists have pioneered quantum computing, artificial intelligence, pediatric technology, even autonomous robots that can function without human control – and I must say that frightens me just a bit.
Look, the Chinese Communist Party knows it can never match our innovation. It has state-owned enterprises; it’s an authoritarian regime; it is a government-centric focus. That’s why it sends 400,000 students a year to the United States of America to study – 400,000 students a year studying in our universities come from one country. It is no accident.
Much of the high-end industrial base inside of China is based on stolen technology, or technology purchased from other nations. It’s not home-grown.
Beijing doesn’t want Chinese researchers to stay here in the United States. Indeed, after they’re trained, they want them to come back. They want to induce their return for the singular purpose of serving the Socialist Motherland.
Look, the Party’s propaganda apparatus cannot tolerate pesky Americans or Chinese nationals exposing its bankrupt system, or the fact that the Chinese people can actually flourish when they are in free societies.
Pompeo highlighted numerous high-profile cases of alleged Chinese spies that have been arrested in the U.S. for criminal activity related to stealing intellectual property and noted how China attempts to lure American professors into their talent programs where they give them a lot of money to give up technology that was funded by U.S. taxpayers.
But look, the CCP doesn’t just target Chinese nationals. They want to influence American students as well, professors and administrators too.
Look, they know that left-leaning college campuses are rife with anti-Americanism, and present easy targets for their anti-American messaging.
That’s why they planted Confucius Institutes on our campuses. And under President Trump, our State Department has made very clear these Confucius Institutes are literally up to no good. Many have gone away. Many campuses have seen that and they’ve chosen to close down these institutes. But right here in Georgia, Wesleyan College still has one in Macon.
Look, it’s why there are groups on campuses called Chinese Students and Scholars Associations here too. They’re directed and almost always funded by the Chinese Embassy or a local Chinese consulate. Its purpose: to keep tabs on students and to press pro-Beijing causes.
Look, we can’t let the CCP weaponize political correctness against American liberties. We have to protect and preserve them.
Fraudulent cries of racism or Sinophobia should never drown out a candid exposure of the activities of the Chinese Communist Party.
But we see too often on American campuses that there is silence and censorship. It’s being driven by the Chinese Communist Party. It usually boils down to something far less idealistic. So many of our colleges are bought by Beijing.
Pompeo also noted a case of a Chinese national who returned to China after studying at the University of Washington and was placed in a reeducation camp. The State Department and the woman’s family allegedly pleaded with the University of Washington to advocate for her return but were rejected by the school because “of a multi-million dollar deal with China,” Pompeo said. “Now, thank God, Vera was eventually released and returned to the United States, but no thanks to the University of Washington and no thanks to the deal that it had made with the Chinese Communist Party.”
The U.S. Department of Education over the last years has found that schools have taken an estimated $1.3 billion from China since 2013. That’s just what we know about. Like so many – like Columbia – so many schools that have failed to report the true amounts.
What more – what more bad decisions will schools make because they are hooked on Chinese Communist Party cash?
What professors will they be able to co-opt or to silence?
What theft and espionage will they simply overlook? What business deals will get done as a result of that?
Look, there’s a lot of work to do. And I have laid out a pattern and practice that every American needs to know about.
And we need to begin to respond to this sooner rather than later. And our administration has begun to do that, but there is an awful lot more work to do.
We cannot allow this tyrannical regime to steal our stuff, to build their military might and brainwash our people, or buy off our institutions to help them cover up these activities.
We cannot – we cannot let the CCP crush the academic freedom that has blessed our country and blessed us with great institutions like the place that I am standing today.
But we need your help.
We need help of students. We need help of faculty. We need help of administrations all across America. We need trustees to police their endowments and the deals their universities are striking with the CCP and CCP-backed groups.
We need administrators to close Confucius Institutes and investigate what so-called student groups backed by the CCP money are actually up to on their campuses. The government will help, but we need people to assist us.
We need researchers to be vigilant against fraud and theft, and the academic community to reject the CCP’s financial siren songs.
And we need students to truly stand for free speech – the free speech for themselves, those who grew up here in America, and especially the free speech of Chinese students who are on our campuses, who are here to study and learn and to improve their rights, their lives, and to enjoy the fruits of the freedom that we provide them here in the United States of America.