Espionage on campuses: Beijing is always watching … and spending

Espionage on campuses: Beijing is always watching … and spending

Espionage on campuses: Beijing is always watching … and spending

American universities continue to find themselves in the crosshairs of China's communist regime – and according to a former CIA operations officer, there's ample people and funding behind their cause to exert dominance over everyone involved.

In a column earlier this year, Tony Perkins – president of Family Research Council – pointed out that for the Beijing regime, "the long game is paying off." One of those arenas is in the American education system, Perkins wrote:

"The Chinese have quietly built a foothold with local school boards, high school administrators, and county officials that's giving them a powerful voice they should never have. There are almost 60 Confucius Institutes on U.S. college and university campuses and 500 'Confucius Classrooms' in K-12 schools. It's a disturbing trend."

The American people, says Sam Faddis, must begin to understand "there really is a massive espionage effort directed at the country by the Chinese Communist Party [CCP]." It's not a conspiracy theory, he adds, nor is China's effort isolated to only a few cases – as attested to by Perkins' comments above.

Faddis, a former CIA operations officer, warns that thousands of individuals are involved in spying for the Chinese regime, particularly at America's universities; and he explains that many Chinese nationals from the People's Republic of China are "under the control of the CCP."

Sam Faddis Faddis

"This is not a matter of people deciding they want to spy on us; they have no choice," Faddis explains. To further emphasize the point, he says a Chinese national would find it nearly impossible to return to China if they disregard the CCP's demands.

"[The CCP] can even reach out and touch a family back home [to bolster cooperation]," he points out.

Every Chinese national – loyalist or not to the PRC – can "be somebody stealing from the United States and giving it to the Chinese government," he contends. "That's not a condemnation of the many great Chinese people in the country, but a recognition of reality."

China's National Intelligence Law, which was enacted in 2017, reveals the far-reaching laws and regulations associated with national security, cyberspace, and law enforcement under Xi Jinping's leadership. Any Chinese citizen, including those working abroad, is considered subservient to their government.

CCP buying influence in universities

Calling it "one of the most critical issues of our time," Faddis points out the Chinese regime is "pumping huge quantities of money" into America's colleges and universities.

"They are essentially buying universities – at best, buying influence," he says. "It makes it very difficult for a university to push back on this kind of thing when the Chinese are literally pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into schools."

Federal data indicates that Beijing and other China-based entities secured $120 million in contracts with American colleges in 2021. That year, amounts awarded to more than two dozen universities ranged from $105,000 to $31.9 million – the latter going to the University of Houston. It's all part of larger plan, Faddis argues.

"The Chinese Communist Party is very focused on stealing and taking away U.S. superiority," he explains. "[Anyone concerned should] demand that their elected representatives do something about the CCP's efforts on U.S. soil."

And anyone involved in a school, college, or university receiving money from China should bring it to the public's attention and "force schools to get serious about what they're risking," Faddis urges.

While he was in office, former President Donald Trump made inroads on the Chinese regime's operations inside the United States by introducing the anti-espionage "China Initiative." However, President Joe Biden cancelled the initiative amid criticism the endeavor involved racial profiling. Interestingly, critics included 177 faculty members across 40 departments at Stanford University who asked the U.S. government to end that initiative.

"Clearly," Faddis says, "the country is going the opposite direction, making things more permissive for the Chinese Communist Party right now – and that's very dangerous thing for the future of America."