US intelligence chief says China is the biggest threat since World War II

US intelligence chief says China is the biggest threat since World War II

Washington: The US intelligence chief on Thursday described China as “the greatest threat to democracy and freedom worldwide since World War II”, as Washington was taking a tough stance on travel visas for members of the Chinese Communist Party.
Writing in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece, US Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe pointed to China’s theft of US trade secrets and defense technologies.
“The People’s Republic of China is the greatest threat to America today, and the greatest threat to democracy and freedom worldwide since World War II,” he wrote.
He also described actions in which Chinese operators used economic pressure to influence or reduce American legislators.
“Our intelligence suggests that Beijing regularly directs this type of influence operations in the US,” he wrote.
“China’s leaders want to subjugate the rights of the individual according to the will of the Communist Party,” Ratcliffe said.
“They increase government control over companies and distort the privacy and freedom of their citizens with a totalitarian surveillance state.”
Meanwhile, the State Department said members of the Chinese Communist Party are “hostile to American values” and engaged in “nefarious activities”.
Under the new effective rules, visas issued to party members and their immediate family will be valid only for one month after the issue and for single entry.
The first few visas were issued that allowed unlimited entries and could remain valid for up to 10 years.
– “Nefarious Activities” – “For decades we had allowed the CCP free and unintended access to American institutions and businesses, while these same privileges were not extended freely to US citizens in China,” the State Department said .
“Through various institutions, the CCP and its members actively work to influence Americans in America through propaganda, economic coercion, and other nefarious activities.”
It also said that the CCP sends “agents” to the United States to monitor and harass Chinese citizens studying or working in the country, as well as targeting Chinese-American groups for their politics.
The party that dominated politics in Beijing and the country had 92 million members in 2019, so the decision of the State Department covering his family could affect several hundred million Chinese.
On many fronts, tensions between the world’s two largest economies have increased and the two countries have imposed travel restrictions on each other’s citizens.
The US closed the Chinese Consulate in Houston in July, calling it the center of espionage and harassment of Chinese citizens in the US.
In retaliation, Beijing ordered the US to vacate its consulate in Chengdu.
The Department of Justice has arrested several Chinese researchers over the past year, accusing them of hiding their associations with the People’s Liberation Army.
“Those five or six arrests were just the tip of the iceberg,” Assistant Attorney General John Demers said Wednesday.
Amid those arrests, the closure of the consulate and other investigations, “more than 1,000 PLA-affiliated Chinese researchers left the country,” he said.
– Expelled journalists – Both countries have banned journalist visas, with Washington curbing the number of Chinese citizens from state-run news outlets in the US earlier this year.
China responded in March by expelling more than a dozen American journalists from The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal.
Beijing said earlier reports said the US was considering travel restrictions, “due to its hatred and unusual mentality towards the Communist Party.”
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Thursday, “Some extreme anti-China in the US, driven by a strong ideological bias and a deep-rooted war mentality, is politically torturing China.”
“This is an example of his political oppression towards China and China is strongly opposed to it,” he said.

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