U.S. Attorney General William Barr warned how the “tentacles” of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) have infiltrated the West and warned that all Beijing seeks to do is “destroy” the democratic institutions of free countries.
“The CCP has launched an orchestrated campaign, across all of its many tentacles in Chinese government [the CCP] and society, to exploit the openness of our institutions in order to destroy them,” Barr said Thursday,July 16, at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Michigan.
According to Barr’s statements, picked up by Fox News, Beijing is using “a wide array of predatory and often unlawful tactics” including currency manipulation, intellectual property theft, cyberattacks, and espionage to achieve its goals.
Warning to US Industry
Barr also addressed U.S. industry, from entertainment and technology to pharmaceuticals, noting that many productive sectors have become “dangerously dependent” on the CCP. Such is the case with rare earth materials used in a wide variety of technological devices and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs).
“As one Defense Health Agency official noted, should China [the CCP] decide to limit or restrict the delivery of APIs to the United States, it could result in severe shortages of pharmaceuticals for both domestic and military uses,” Barr official warned.
But even more so, Barr described how the CCP has taken advantage of U.S. institutions to steal data and counterfeit products.
“[T]he ultimate ambition of China’s rulers isn’t to trade with the United States. … It is to raid the United States,” he said.
Barr regretted that many American companies, tempted by the Chinese market, have given in to the demands of the CCP.
“Sadly, examples of American business bowing to Beijing are legion,” Barr said.
He cited the entertainment industry as an example, specifically how Hollywood “regularly censors its own movies to appease the Chinese Communist Party” so that it does not risk having its films banned from entering China.
“Chinese government [CCP] censors don’t need to say a word, because Hollywood is doing their work for them,” the attorney general said.
Barr also pointed to the technology giants of Silicon Valley as being “all too willing to collaborate with the CCP.”
One example, he said, is how Apple removed the Quartz news app from its online store because the CCP opposed its coverage of the protests in Hong Kong.
“If you are an American business leader, appeasing the PRC may bring short-term rewards. But in the end, the PRC’s goal is to replace you,” Barr summed up.
Barr’s statements come against the backdrop of growing tension in bilateral relations between Beijing and Washington.
On July 7, FBI Director Chris Wray issued a strong speech accusing the CCP of trying to steal U.S. scientific research and innovation. He said the number of threats from the Asian country is such that the FBI launches a counter-espionage investigation involving China every 10 hours.
Two days later, the White House imposed sanctions on four Chinese officials for human rights abuses against the Uighur Muslim minority. Among those affected is a senior leader of the CCP.
Beijing responded by blocking Republican legislators Chris Smith, Marco Rubio, and Ted Cruz, as well as Samuel Brownback, U.S. Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, from entering China.
Smith, the New Jersey representative, said in an interview with Fox News on Tuesday that the sanctions imposed by the CCP on U.S. officials were a “further manifestation the bullying of Xi Jinping, the maximum dictator of China.”
Smith accused the CCP of “crushing religious freedom” and the “the pervasive use of torture.”
He recalled the persecution that the Chinese Communist Party has been carrying out for years against Catholics, Christians, and Tibetan Buddhists. Smith has also advocated the ancient Chinese qigong discipline known as Falun Dafa (or Falun Gong), which has been persecuted by CCP authorities since 1999.