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The CCP’s Confucius Institutes that Infiltrate U.S. College Operations Just Rebranded

During a June 21 press conference, the National Association of Scholars (NAS) announced that the Chinese government-backed Confucius Institute (CI) program that infiltrates U.S. colleges has been rebranded as a purported Chinese language learning center in order to circumvent U.S. policy. The previous CI’s parent organizaton, Hanban under the Chinese Ministry of Education, was also rebranded as the Center for Language Exchange and Cooperation (CLEC).

In the past four years, 104 of the 118 Confucius Institutes at American universities have closed. Yet many of the colleges’ CIs have shifted to become Chinese language learning centers in universities. In reality, however, nothing has changed except the name.

Rachelle Peterson, senior research fellow at NAS, told reporters during a press conference, “We looked at all 118 Confucius Institutes that have ever existed in the United States. At least 28 that closed as CIs were replaced with something similar, usually operated in partnership with CLEC.”

Peterson told reporters that, under the guidance of the CLEC, at least 58 schools maintained a relationship with their Chinese sister universities and at least five schools recruited a new host location for their CI program in order to maintain the relationship.

As an example, the report cites Northern State University in South Dakota, which signed an agreement with the CLEC after closing the CI in 2019. Peterson said The center sends Chinese language teachers and pays their salaries and travel expenses, while Northern State University provides classrooms, teacher housing and health insurance, exactly the same arrangement as for the CI program. “Nothing has changed except the name.”

The CCP has said that Confucius Institutes were established to promote Chinese language and culture. The official website of Hanban published a report on Nov 28, 2012, when Li Changchun, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CCP Central Committee, visited the CI headquarters. Li said that the Confucius Institute is a brand that, “has an affinity in itself” and is a “pure culture.” In an earlier official Xinhua report, Li also indicated that the CI is “an important part of the CCP’s grand foreign propaganda pattern.”

CIs have a lot of requirements for their host Western universities. For example, they require the host university to sign a confidentiality agreement not to disclose the amount of funding, and to follow the Chinese version of the supplied textbook. The CI  basically conducts self-censorship. Increasingly, critics see it as an overseas political propaganda machine for the CCP, and a tool to monitor and interfere with overseas campus speech and activities. For example, in 2009 North Carolina State University canceled a plan to invite the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, to speak at the university because the CI protested this action.

The 2020 U.S, Department of State designation of CI as a “foreign mission” was bolstered by the passage of the Confucius Act in March 2021. The act stipulated that schools which maintain CI programs were ineligible to receive most Department of Education funds.

U.S. Republican Congressman Jim Banks (R-IN) said in a recent report released on the CIs that although most of the CIs in American universities have been closed, the CCP’s United Front Work Department continues to promote influence on U.S. college campuses, and he called on Congress and the Administration to take the China threat seriously.

“The mission of the CCP’s United Front Work Department is to influence foreigners and foreign institutions, especially those in the United States, whose work is visible on college campuses across the United States. CIs and Chinese universities establish partnerships with U.S. universities to receive research funding from (Chinese) government agencies. Rep. Banks said that most of the partnerships are not random, and China’s United Front Work Department has specifically targeted university institutions with strong STEM programs, and in recent years, there have been many espionage operations.”

China has always insisted that CIs and similar cultural exchange programs should not be politicized. The CCP’s media Global Times said in an editorial that CIs and similar institutions are a “platform for a comprehensive and objective understanding of China, and China firmly opposes the politicization of academic and cultural exchange activities.”

Sources:

1. Creaders.net, June 23, 2022.                                                                                                                                                               https://news.creaders.net/china/2022/06/23/2497297.html

2. Daily Caller, June 22, 2022.                                                                                                                                                                                          After Being Outed By The State Department, China’s US College Infiltration Operation Just Rebranded: REPORT                                        https://dailycaller.com/2022/06/22/confucius-institute-national-association-of-scholars-rachelle-peterson-ian-oxnevad-jim-banks/ | T

 

Pandemic: WHO Director-General Privately Said COVID Virus Was Leaked from China’s Lab

The British media The Daily Mail reported that Director-general Tedros Adhanom of the World Health Organization (WHO) had recently confided to a senior European politician that the most likely explanation for the origin of the COVID virus was a catastrophic accident at a laboratory in Wuhan, from which the infections first spread during late 2019. Officially, Dr. Tedros said that, “We do not yet have the answers as to where it came from or how it entered the human population.”

Some of the Western intelligence services questioned that the Wuhan Institute of Virology had been doing research with the virus and leaked it.

Source: Daily Mail, June 18, 2022
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10930501/WHO-chief-believes-Covid-DID-leak-Wuhan-lab-catastrophic-accident-2019.html

The CCP Will Strictly Control High Officials’ Spouses and Children Who Run a Business

According to Xinhua News Agency, the General Office of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) recently issued “Regulations on the business activities of high officials’ spouses, their children and their spouses.” The regulation offers clear and specific provisions on the applicable objects and circumstances, working measures and disciplinary requirements concerning officials’ spouses, their children and their spouses who run businesses or enterprises. The higher the level of an officials’ position, the stricter the requirements, and the integrated departments are stricter than other departments.

The “regulations” apply mainly to the officials of the CCP’s and the government’s organs, groups and organizations, enterprises and institutions at the level of department and bureau and above including the equivalent level of any position.

As for what is called “running a business or an enterprise,” it mainly refers to investing in the start of a business, holding senior positions in private or foreign-funded enterprises, investing in and engaging in private equity funds, and engaging in paid social intermediary and legal services.

According to the regulation, officials are required to report on the business activities of their relatives every year. False reporting will lead to severe punishment.

For those who are “to be promoted or further employed ” if they do not meet the regulations on the prohibition of employment for the proposed post, they should quit the business and enterprises, or will not be appointed.

Source: Creaders.net, June 19, 2022.
https://news.creaders.net/china/2022/06/19/2495931.html

Government: Authorities Used the Health Code against People Defending Their Rights

Chinascope pointed out in its analysis, “China’s Zero-COVID Strategy: Part II,” that the communist regime in China can abuse the Health Code App, a tool it developed to track people’s COVID-related health condition, to control people’s movement. The authorities can use its backdoor access to the app to freeze political dissidents or anyone they don’t like, anywhere and anytime.

A recent incident shows exactly how this abuse can be used.

A few days ago, a few local private banks in Henan Province were reported for massively stealing their customers’ money. They offered high interest rates to attract over 400,000 customers who are now facing the potential loss of a total of 40 billion yuan (US $6 billion). The government that was supposed to oversee the banks claimed that it was not responsible for the loss.

Some people then went to Henan to try to get their money back. But they surprisingly found that their Health Code apps were all turned Red (in the COVID procedure, it means the phone holder is either a COVID patient or has close exposure to a COVID patient and needs to be quarantined). Henan officials visited those who arrived there and offered them two options: either stay in Henan for quarantine (their code will remain Red and they cannot go out to talk to anyone about their bank account problem) or return home.

Those bank customers who did not go to Henan also found their code had turned Red, which then completely prevented them from travelling, or even going out of their homes.

China.com, the website managed by the State Council’s China Internet Information Center, said it was Henan Province that manipulated the health code of those bank customers even though they were not in Henan.

Related postings on Chinascope:

Sources:
1. BBC, June 14, 2022
https://www.bbc.com/zhongwen/simp/61794310
2. China.com (owned by China Internet Information Center of the State Council), June 15, 2022
http://finance.china.com.cn/news/20220615/5827254.shtml

The CCP’s Solution to College Graduates’ Unemployment: Send Them to a Remote Farmland

Chinese college graduates have faced a severe job shortage for years. The National Bureau of Statistics reported in May that the nationwide unemployment rate in April was 6.1 percent. It was 18.2 percent for people whose ages were between 16 and 24. Things will be even worse when 10.76 million students graduate from college in the upcoming two months.

The Chinese Communist Party’s solution is to send the college graduates to farmlands. Recently, the Ministry of Civil Affairs, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security jointly issued a notice to guide college graduates to work or establish their own business in remote towns or rural communities and ask villages to “actively absorb college graduates to serve as village workers.”

The government will provide incentives to small businesses that employ college graduates in villages, home services, and elderly care. However, Chinese college graduates prefer to work for high-paying companies in large cities, and there is a wide income gap between rural and urban areas.

People compare this government initiative to the “Up to the Mountains and Down to the Countryside (上山下乡)” movement that Mao Zedong initiated for the city teenagers during the Cultural Revolution. During that campaign, Mao sent several millions of teenagers from the cities to live in remote farmland for ten years, separating them from their families and ruining their lives.

Source: Epoch Times, June 13, 2022
https://www.epochtimes.com/gb/22/6/13/n137588in57.htm

Beijing Asked Foreign Investment Banks To Cut Pay to Their Executives in China

Bloomberg recently reported that China’s regulatory authorities summoned foreign investment banks, including Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, and UBS.  Beijing asked them to lower the total compensation to their executives in China and defer their bonus payments for over three years. The Chinese authorities said their substantial compensation is opposed to the “common prosperity” policy that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) promoted last year.

These foreign investment banks often hire top CCP officials’ children or grandchildren so that they can use their parents’ or grandparents’ power and influence to bring big business to the firm. In return these financial firms pay them decently and feel that pay is well worth it.

Source: Liberty Times, June 14, 2022
https://ec.ltn.com.tw/article/breakingnews/3959213

Leadership: CCDI Criticized Several Prime Ministers in Chinese History

Recently, Chinese-language media outside China reported heavily on the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) in-fighting between Xi Jinping and an anti-Xi group. Chinascope is unable to verify some of the claims but will report on these happenings.

The CCP’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) recently published two articles mentioning some prime ministers in China’s history. The CCP has a tradition of hinting about today’s politics using historic stories.

On June 1, The China Discipline Inspection and Monitoring Magazine, a semi-monthly publication by the CCDI, published an article titled “Abandoning Exquisite Egoism.” It criticized two prime ministers: Li Si (李斯) of the Qin Dynasty and Li Linfu (李林甫) of the Tang Dynasty, calling them out for using their skillful acting and carefully created justifications cleverly to conceal their selfish and greedy nature.

On June 7, the CCDI official website published an article titled, “Knowing How To Stop In Front of Your Own Desires.” It asked officials “always to cultivate the virtue of governance, always to think about the harm of greed, always to be disciplined, and always to give up improper ambitions.” It praised two prime ministers Xiao He (萧何) of Han Dynasty and Li Hang (李沆) of Song Dynasty and criticized two prime ministers Yan Song (严嵩) of Ming Dynasty and He Shen (和珅) of Qing Dynasty.

Related postings on Chinascope:

Sources:
1. The China Discipline Inspection and Monitoring Magazine, June 1, 2022
http://zgjjjc.ccdi.gov.cn/bqml/bqxx/202206/t20220601_196499.html
2. CCDI official website, June 7, 2022
https://www.ccdi.gov.cn/pln/202206/t20220607_197538.html

Communist China’s Propaganda Messages Lead the Search Engines’ Results

Brookings Institution and the Alliance for Securing Democracy reported in May that many of Beijing’s propaganda messages have shown up often at the top of search engine results. A report can be found: https://www.brookings.edu/research/winning-the-web-how-beijing-exploits-search-results-to-shape-views-of-xinjiang-and-covid-19/

The researchers collected search results on two topics that are critical to Beijing’s agenda: Xinjiang and the COVID-19 pandemic. They were collected from five different search engines, Google Search, Google News, Microsoft’s Bing Search, Bing News, and YouTube. The data was collected daily from Nov. 1, 2021, until Feb. 28, 2022.

Chinese state media sends a consistent stream of narratives to the web. They are free of charge and easily available to search. Beijing-backed narratives also take advantage of the algorithms in most search engines that prioritize “freshness.” These contents are also amplified by a huge number of Chinese state actors on social media. For example, they use hashtags like #covid19 and #Xinjiang.

As a result, Chinese state media content frequently appeared in top search results. If one searches for the keywords “Xinjiang,” “terrorism,” or “Xinjiang debunked” on the above platforms, Chinese state media contents appear every day on the first-page of the search results, with the exception of YouTube search, where two days out of the 120 days, it appeared on the second page of the search results.

For neutral terms, such as “kashgar,” “Urumqi,” or “Xinjiang,” ( Kashgar and Urumqi are cities in Xinjiang) Chinese state media content still appeared almost every day on news searches and YouTube searches..

The communist regime also uses influential Westerners  who have lived in China and claim themselves to be “China experts,” to defend Beijing and criticize “Western injustices and biases.”

The report also found a surprisingly large number of seemingly independent news outlets that routinely reposted CCP media reports. The top ten sources that often repost Beijing’s contents are Finland’s helsinkitimes.fi, the UAE’s bignewsnetwork.com, the USA’s msn.com, Pakistan’s dailytimes.com.pk and bolnews.com, Chad’s alwihdainfo.com, India’s indianexpress.com, Ukraine’s ukranews.com, Bangladesh’s tbsnews.net, and Zambia’s iol.co.za.

The report said that, in the early months of 2022, search engines enacted measures to limit the reach of the Russian state media. However, little has been done regarding the Chinese state media.

Source: Epoch Times, May 31, 2022
https://www.theepochtimes.com/mkt_app/beijing-remarkably-effective-at-exploiting-search-engine-results-report_4501074.html