The Chinese Consulate in Houston May Have Provided Financial and Logistical Support to Protest Groups


About Gordon G. Chang: Gordon G. Chang is the author The Coming Collapse of China and Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes On the World, both from Random House. His writings have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, The National Interest, The Weekly Standard, and National Review among other publications. He has given briefings at the National Intelligence Council, the CIA, the State Department, and the Pentagon. He has spoken at the Council on Foreign Relations, The Heritage Foundation, The Brookings Institution, Bloomberg, Sanford Bernstein, Royal Bank of Scotland, Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia, and other institutions. Chang has appeared on CNN, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, MSNBC, CNBC, PBS, and Bloomberg Television. He is a frequent co-host and guest on The John Batchelor Show. He has given testimony to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. He is a columnist at The Daily Beast.

The Trump administration closed the Chinese consulate in Houston in July. Regarding this issue, Asia analyst Gordon Chang stated the background.



— You have long been advocating decoupling from China in an economic sense. Now is the time to take that recommendation very seriously. But there are still many companies seeking profits in China including Japanese companies. Would you give us your thoughts on the way to accelerate the decoupling from China?

Gordon: Analysts keep on saying that China is the “world’s factory floor,” but that is not going to be true for long.

Xi Jinping, with his highly discriminatory policies, is pushing foreign companies out of China, but “decoupling” will proceed much faster if countries pull companies out. Countries can accomplish that with either incentives, like Japan is doing, or prohibitions. A combination of the two will do the trick of convincing them to take their operations off Chinese soil.


Wolf Warrior Diplomacy

In one sense, companies will believe it to be in their best interest to get out of China as fast as they can. They are seeing that Beijing’s “wolf warrior diplomacy” is bringing China into conflict with its major trading partners, including Japan.

Take the example of Japan. China wants, among other things to dismember the Japanese nation. Beijing has designs on not only the Senkaku’s but also on the Ryukyu chain.

Beijing’s territorial ambitions are insatiable, and that means Japanese companies will tend to avoid China.

If there is more geopolitical tension, companies will try to shield themselves from China. China is creating that tension.


China Election Intervention?

— It is said that China might be intervening in the presidential election. Do you know anything about this and, if so, could you share with us the degree of influence that the CCP may be posing on the coming election?

Gordon: China has already been intervening in the U.S. election, and it looks like it trying hard to unseat President Trump. As the New York Times reported, Beijing this March tried to cause chaos in America by spreading, through text messages and social media feeds, coronavirus rumors about Trump locking down the entire country. Beijing obviously knew the rumors were false.

Moreover, a Chinese troll farm, dubbed “Spamoflauge Dragon,” has been relentlessly attacking the President. YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter have taken down its accounts.

— Joe Biden is criticized for his economic ties with China, as well as Bill Clinton. Could you share your view with us about the collusive relationship between the Democrats and the Chinese Communist Party?

Gordon: Both of the main political parties in the U.S. are guilty of supporting the Communist Party.


China and U.S. Protests: Dirty Tricks?

Furthermore, in connection with the George Floyd protests, Beijing has stoked racial tensions with inflammatory words, blatant distortions, and outright lying. This is subversion, and it undermines the President.

There are also suggestions that Beijing changed the TikTok algorithm to inflame those protests.

Furthermore, Beijing may have used the app to pull a prank on the Trump campaign in connection with his Tulsa rally in June. Then, many teens, by reserving seats with no intention of showing up, used TikTok to publicize their campaign to substantially reduce attendance. It’s possible that Beijing, by curating content on the app, “boosted the signal” and helped the pranksters.

We can be sure that in the next months Beijing will play dirty. That’s the way Chinese communists operate.


What would a Biden Presidential Victory look like?

— If Joe Biden wins the next election, how do you think American policy toward China would change? Will the U.S. continue to take a hardline approach on China?

Gordon: Every new American president spends at least a year trying to develop friendly ties with Beijing. This is not, however, a time when the U.S.—or the world—can afford to waste a moment in confronting the militant regime that Xi Jinping leads.

Another concern is that the Democratic Party’s foreign policy establishment is wedded to discredited “engagement” policies. President Trump has ditched that generous but discredited approach. We should not pursue that again.

On top of all this, Biden has an extraordinarily benign view of the Communist Party and its leadership, something evident from his comments of last year.

Yet there is one reason why America’s China polices may not change much in a Biden presidency. Xi Jinping will sense Biden’s weakness and, instead of returning the generosity, press the advantage.

Xi is a monster, and not even Biden can develop a “friendly” relationship with him. The Chinese drive events in the world these days. All others—and this includes the United States—are just reacting.

So Biden, whatever he may be thinking at this moment, will not be able to nudge Xi and his horrific regime in better directions.


Consulates, Financing and Spying

— The U.S. has ordered China to close its consulate in Houston. In fact, the Chinese Communist Party uses its embassies and consulates for spying. On FOX News you pointed out the possibility that the Chinese consulate in Houston had links with protest groups in the U.S. providing financial and logistical support. You said, “That’s unconfirmed,” but could you tell us greater detail about this story?

Gordon: It is rumored that Beijing was using the Houston consulate to provide logistical and financial support to protesters in America.

In addition, Radio Free Asia reports that a People’s Liberation Army intelligence unit, working out of that consulate, was using big data to identify Americans likely to participate in Black Lives Matter and Antifa protests and then created and sent them videos on how to organize disruptive events.

Subsequently, we learned the PLA employed technicians from Huawei Technologies. Moreover, they used the TikTok app both to identify people likely to engage in violent acts and to distribute videos to them.


Unrestricted Warfare

These rumors are unconfirmed, but there are troubling indications the Communist Party this year has ramped up its “unrestricted warfare” to subvert American society. First, in late January U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents in Minnesota seized $900,000 in counterfeit $1 bills, sent from China. Nobody prints $1 notes for profit. Therefore, it’s possible, in the months before the George Floyd protests, Beijing was surreptitiously funding individuals or groups in Minneapolis or other parts of the United States.

Beijing itself was involved? It’s extremely unlikely that anyone could run an operation counterfeiting U.S. currency in China’s high-tech surveillance state without its knowledge, which means the counterfeiting almost certainly had the Communist Party’s backing.

Moreover, no one could make automatic weapons there and export them to the U.S. without Beijing’s knowledge. In May, U.S. Customs in Louisville seized 10,800 assault weapons parts shipped from the Chinese city of Shenzhen.

China was trying to subvert the United States and needed a number of bases in the U.S. to support these efforts. Analysts think the Houston consulate was the nerve center.


Expanding the Spy Network

— Could you explain to us how China expanded its spy network around the U.S. in the last decades?

Gordon: China devoted enormous effort to collecting information from the United States. Beijing tried to use almost every contact with America for this purpose. What they could not take by guile they bought, often with under-the-table payments.

Of course, China was able to steal so much information because Americans were unsuspecting and lax. We were oblivious, and China after a while found that the theft was easy. The Chinese, therefore, were stealing candy from a baby, as people in my country would say.


Building a Coalition Against China

— It seems that a united front on China is starting to take shape. This movement is gaining momentum and we should accelerate this movement to protect us from the Chinese dictatorship. What do you think we should do to get many other countries included in this movement?

Gordon: China’s victims need do little to build a coalition against China. China, by itself, is convincing everyone to join. Beijing’s belligerent conduct is creating adversaries.

The world should have listened to Japanese political figures, who early on suggested like-minded democracies band together. For instance, Taro Aso when he was foreign minister wanted countries to form an “Arc of Freedom and Prosperity.” The United States and the region should have listened to him. That would have saved a lot of heartache over the years.

The Chinese Consulate in Houston May Have Provided Financial and Logistical Support to Protest Groups
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