How China Captured American Elites

Peter Schweizer details how China has captured American elites including politicians and heads of IT firms, and is using them to do their bidding.

How China Captured American Elites 1

The Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) entry into the WTO changed the global economic structure in large part because it unleashed the regime’s strategy of gaining control of America’s elite class so they would do Beijing’s bidding, according to Peter Schweizer, author of “Red-Handed: How American Elites Get Rich Helping China.”

The CCP’s objective was to target the higher echelons of big tech, entertainment, education, Wall Street, and politics, which Schweizer refers to as “elite capture.”

“It’s going to give [the CCP] leverage over them [the elites] because once [the CCP has] sort of touched them and made them rich, or as some CCP officials have said, they’ve tasted the honey that they’ve been offered, they will not want to give it back, they will not want to give it up,” said Schweizer.

“So that gives enormous leverage to Beijing over elements of our leadership class.”

The conventional belief of the elite class was that if the West cooperated with the CCP, it would become more liberal and less repressive of its own people, and it was on this basis that the CCP was allowed to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001.

How China Captured American Elites 2
U.S. President Donald Trump, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Chinese leader Xi Jinping, WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo, and Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison attend a meeting on the digital economy at the G20 Summit in Osaka on June 28, 2019.

According to Schweizer, this policy not only failed, but it was also devastating for the world.

“The CCP has become more repressive, more aggressive on the global stage. So, I think that our political and corporate elites have a lot of accounting to do for their failure. Of course, they made a lot of money by pushing this position.”

He compared the elite capture strategy to decapitating US leadership and causing misery to US citizens. “But in fact, the head has effectively been cut off, it’s been co-opted, it’s been bought, and then so the rest of the body, which is the United States and the average citizen, suffers.”

Big Tech Working With the CCP

He claims that the presidents of some of the world’s largest technology companies, including as Tesla, Google, Facebook, and others, have been duped by the authoritarian regime’s “efficiency” and have gained market share in the world’s most populated country.

“Elon Musk has said this, that the Chinese dictatorial regime is so efficient, they’re so quickly responsive to the needs of the Chinese people—which of course, if you have a dictatorship, you don’t have to worry about civil rights, property rights, an independent judiciary,” said Schweizer.

“I mean, if you’re Bill Gates and you’re worth $100 billion, still, being able to access the Chinese market is important for the continued growth of your company.”

Profit Over National Security

Elon Musk used to oppose the Chinese state, but after striking a contract with the CCP, he has changed his mind, according to Schweizer.

“So, the question is, what’s changed? And what’s changed is he became business partners with the Chinese Communist Party. They built him a large factory, Tesla factory in China, which is now churning out a large number of vehicles. He’s already said he’s going to take the design studios out of California and move them to China,” said Schweizer.

Doing business in China poses a security concern for Musk because some of the technologies used in Tesla’s cars are the same software that is used on his company’s launch satellites.

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An aerial view of Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory in Shanghai, China, on March 29, 2021. Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory is reportedly producing vehicles at a rate of about 450,000 cars per year

“Anyone who gets entangled in doing business with China that requires their good graces for their business to continue to operate is going to end up basically doing what Beijing wants, because if they don’t, Beijing is going to destroy their business.”

According to Schweizer, artificial intelligence (AI) is a critical area of technological progress, and whoever rules it will have a global economic and military advantage.

“Our biggest and brightest companies, like Google and Microsoft, are actually subsidizing research laboratories in China that are linked to the Chinese military, so they’re helping them in the competition against us.” This was “extraordinary” and “troubling,” he said.

“Google has plowed ahead, happily to do so. At the same time, Google employees submitted a petition to an executive saying they did not want to work on any Pentagon, that is U.S. military research contracts, at the same time. It’s really a stunning development.”

“They don’t recognise the role that our system of governance has played, and they’re actually subsidising our enemy,” Schweizer said, adding that US regulations have allowed these tech companies to become successful and profitable.

How China Captured American Elites 4
A Google sign during the WAIC (World Artificial Intelligence Conference) in Shanghai, China, on Sept. 17, 2018.

Google’s AI efforts in China will aid the Chinese Communist Party’s military in attacking our own country.

“You’re required by Chinese national security law—which means if you violate it, you’re going to go to jail for a very long time—you’re required to take any civilian technology or capability you have and find application to Chinese military,” said Schweizer. And in addition, “if you are a business operating in China, anything that you have, that you own—whether it’s intellectual property, whether it’s data on citizens in China or overseas—that information is available to the Chinese state whenever they asked for it.”

According to Schweizer, US Big Tech is solely concerned with profits and power, rather than treating the CCP for what it is: a totalitarian, authoritarian state that brutalises its own people. Facebook has tried a number of times to connect China and the United States via underwater cables, but the projects were suspended after the US Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a recommendation against them owing to national security concerns.

A partnership comprised of Facebook and a number of Chinese corporations, notably China Telecom, proposed the Hong Kong-America project in 2018. The fiber-optic line was supposed to connect Hong Kong and a facility in Taiwan with two locations in California.

The Pacific Light Cable Network (PLCN), a joint Facebook-Google undersea cable, was cancelled in September 2020 due to national security concerns raised by Trump’s Department of Justice.

“Did somehow Facebook or Google not know that Chinese intelligence was going to use this as a massive gateway to spy on Americans? I want to believe and I think it’s pretty obvious that Facebook and Google knew that that opportunity existed. They certainly have more technical knowledge than the Department of Justice. But the bottom line is they didn’t care.”

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Chinese People’s Liberation Army personnel attend the opening ceremony of China’s new military base in Djibouti on Aug. 1, 2017.

Wall Street Profits

Goldman Sachs, according to Schweizer, was essential in assisting the CCP in gaining access to and profiting from U.S. markets. “You don’t have to go very far at all on Wall Street to find a major firm that has contributed to where China is today in terms of its economic growth,” Schweizer said.

“But at the end of the day, when push comes to shove, it’s the CCP that maintains control. Goldman Sachs started it; other big firms have perfected it. Blackstone and BlackRock invest regularly in Chinese companies. When the Chinese government was privatizing companies and giving away ownership stakes to either political families in Beijing or to favor Wall Street clients, these big firms benefited enormously.”

Political Influence

Schweizer claims to know roughly two dozen former elected U.S. senators or congressman who currently lobby for Chinese intelligence and military-related firms.

“I’m just talking about military- and intelligence-linked firms, and they are petitioning our government, they want favors, they want to get off of restricted lists they might be on, they try to change the perception—Huawei is trying to convince people that no, we don’t have any links to, you know, the Chinese intelligence apparatus, which is absurd. And this is a huge problem.”

“Elite capture has worked for a minimal investment. They’ve enriched members of our leadership class, and that leadership class has, in turn, done their bidding, effectively doing their lobbying, in the United States.”

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  1. Check this box for transparency. Yes, I have received money, profits, gains and influence both tangible and non-trangible from any foreign agent or government directly or indirectly to myself, my family or businesses I am affiliated with.

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