The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has ties with several anti-American entities and individuals in the United States who work to subvert democracy, promote communism, and justify or deny Beijing’s wrongdoings. A recently uncovered media communiqué dating back to 2017 exposes a vast network of pro-CCP entities in the United States. The network pushes communist propaganda by taking advantage of American society’s freedom and openness.
The report was published by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) on its website in April 2017. It brags about the CCP’s propaganda efforts in the West. The CAC itself is a department dedicated to “online propaganda and public opinion work” while upholding “socialist core value view.” It is also responsible for enforcing online censorship in the country. The document reveals the following efforts made by the communist regime:
- State-backed China Daily bought placements in US news entities like The Washington Post, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal. It allowed Beijing to publish pro-CCP content on leading American news outlets.
- The CAC proclaims to have promoted more than 10,000 pieces of propaganda to international audiences, working together with Western think tanks to attain this goal. One of the think-tanks CAC has an association with is the Berggruen Institute. Its members include former ministers from the United States, UK, France, Australia, and Denmark. Big Tech leaders like former Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey are also part of the institute.
“Through cooperation with think-tanks such as the Berggruen Institute in the United States, the Canadian Center for International Governance Innovation, and the Australian Lowy Institute for International Policy, we have attracted nearly 200 overseas think-tankers as special commentators on China Daily. In one year, it published more than 300 of their signed articles, enabling these “influential people” to influence more overseas audiences and tell China’s stories well,” the CAC says.
The Berggruen Institute has ties with several CCP-backed entities like the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, the China Institute for Innovation and Development Strategy, the Chinese Association of Artificial Intelligence, and the Beijing Academy of Artificial Intelligence.
Berggruen executive Nils Gilman was involved in an anti-Trump exercise called the Transition Integrity Project (TIP). He collaborated with Rosa Brooks, a former counsel for billionaire George Soros. TIP promoted the idea that Joe Biden should not concede in the 2020 presidential election should Trump win. TIP closed down just before Election Day.
Another entity mentioned in the CAC document, Australian Lowy Institute for International Policy, lists Biden’s National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan as a fellow. Sullivan also has ties to CCP entities like Harvard’s Belfer Center and Yale’s Paul Tsai China Center.
Chinese vs. Western governance
The widespread infiltration of the CCP in Western intellectual circles means that pro-Beijing forces are always ready to write opinion pieces that put communist China above the ‘faulty’ Western democracies. One such individual is Oxford-trained Daniel A. Bell, dean of the School of Political Science and Public Administration at Shandong University.
In 2016, Bell wrote a book called The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy. He argued that Beijing’s governance system is superior to the Western liberal governance system. Bell even said that communist China is far more harmonious than democracies like the United States.
Columbia University China specialist Andrew Nathan has criticized Bell’s viewpoints, explaining that he exaggerates the benefits of the Chinese model and democracies’ faults.
“China is one of the most conflict-ridden societies on the planet… The China Model is a mix of the empirical and the imaginary… Bell compares the meritocratic system’s potential rather than the actual performance with the actual performance of liberal democracies,” Nathan said in the critique.