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China: What to Do About It?

China: What to Do About It?
By Gordon G. Chang

Originally Published by the Gatestone Institute.

What does China really want?

Well, China really wants to rule planet Earth. It also wants to possess and rule the near portions of the solar system. No, I am not exaggerating. No nation in history has been this ambitious.

With regard to our planet, Xi Jinping wants the world to reject the current Westphalian international system, in place since 1648. In its place, he wants China’s imperial-era system, where Chinese emperors believed they not only had the right to rule tianxia, all under heaven, but also the heavens compelled them to do so.

Xi has been grabbing territory from his neighbors. In just the past few months, the Chinese have been encroaching on India’s Sikkim as well as Nepalese territory.

With regard to Nepal, let us talk about how China actually moves against its neighbors. In January, Beijing’s propagandists, as they have in the past, bragged about how Chinese scientists were able to come up with the exact measurement of a mountain in Nepal. Not in China, in Nepal.

Now, the Chinese, and only the Chinese, call this feature Mount Qomolangma. The rest of the world, all of us, know it as Mount Everest.

What is China doing by bragging about its measurement? It is establishing the basis for a territorial claim to this mountain, which happens to be close to China. They are eventually going to say, “Well, look, we named the place, we measured it, therefore, it’s ours.”

This is subtle, but that is the way Beijing has been working. Of course, sometimes Beijing is not so indirect. We have also seen in recent months China’s encroachments into India’s Ladakh, high in the Himalayas, and its killing of Indian soldiers.

Chinese planes have regularly been flying through Taiwan’s air defense identification zone. China’s armed ships have been intruding into Japanese waters in the East China Sea around those uninhabited islets, the Senkakus. Beijing has been trying to take territory from its neighbors. It is acting especially provocatively. We have got to be concerned.

Amendments to China’s National Defense Law, effective the beginning of this year, take sweeping powers from the State Council, which leads China’s civilian government, and give them to the Communist Party’s Central Military Commission. These powers include the power to mobilize all of society for war.

Moreover, Xi Jinping himself in January told the troops of the People’s Liberation Army that they must be prepared for conflict “at any second.” Beijing could well start history’s next great conflict.

Many people will tell you that China is just bluffing, but we know from history that countries that continually talk about war, that continually bluff about it, usually manage to start them. This is the situation in which we find ourselves.

On the topic of controlling the solar system, China will land a rover, its rover, on Mars in either May or June. Mere exploration for the good of humanity? China’s officials have been talking about the moon and Mars as if they are sovereign Chinese territory — part of the People’s Republic.

They look at near heavenly bodies the same way they do the South China Sea, something that should be theirs. This means that if they get there, China believes it has the right to exclude other nations.

Everything they do, whether it is seemingly innocuous, such as measuring a mountain or putting a rover on Mars, is a means of claiming sovereignty, of enlarging the People’s Republic.

Now, of course, there are, in addition to these acts, China’s militant, hostile, belligerent actions. We see these all the time.

We all have heard about China’s behavior, but today let’s focus on three things that China is doing relating to genetics. First, China is collecting the world’s DNA. Second, China is genetically engineering the Chinese to become a superhuman race, in other words, eugenics. Third, Chinese researchers are working on pathogens, new pathogens, artificial ones, to create the world’s next pandemic.

First, China is gobbling up the world’s DNA. So far, it has amassed the world’s largest collection of DNA profiles of humans. It claims about 80 million of them. Of course, it wants more. We need to be concerned about the way China is doing this.

Chinese hackers, for instance, are going after insurance and healthcare companies to get DNA profiles. We saw this in January 2015, when we learned that China had hacked Anthem, America’s second‑largest insurance company. It got health information on 80 million Americans who were either insured or Anthem employees.

Beijing is building this massive database also with its Phase 3 trials for its two vaccines, especially in Africa, both north and south of the Sahara. Think of Morocco as well as Nigeria.

China is also getting DNA by buying American businesses. For instance, China’s BGI Group, the world’s largest genomic sequencing company, collected the largest group of DNA profiles of Americans when it purchased Complete Genomics in 2013. In January, China’s Harbin Pharmaceutical Group passed its last hurdle in purchasing GNC, which has health information of Americans as well.

Another way China is collecting DNA is by offering low‑cost genetic sequencing services to ancestry companies and also to research laboratories and others. In 2019, there were 23 Chinese or Chinese‑linked companies that were accredited in the US to provide DNA sequencing services.

We know, of course, that China has had a number of research partnerships and other ventures with American institutions, such as Johns Hopkins.

If you want to find the largest collection of genetic information of Americans, you do not go to America. You go to Beijing.

The story here is that we allowed the Chinese to plunder our society for data.

The second point, eugenics, is downright frightening because biological research in China is heading in very distressing directions.

Bing Su, a geneticist at the state‑run Kunming Institute of Virology, recently engaged in a number of experiments putting human genes into monkeys, including the MCPH1 gene relating to brain development. That means these monkeys will have intelligence closer to humans than to lower primates.

Bing Su is not stopping there. His next experiments are going to be taking the SRGAP2C gene, which relates to human intelligence, and the FOXP2 gene, which permits language development, and also putting them into monkeys. It is as if nobody in China has seen the “Planet of the Apes.”

In China, there is an unrestrained ambition to experiment in weird ways. For instance, if you want to know what happens when you mix pig and monkey DNA, well, just ask the Chinese. They have been involved in other similar experiments as well.

This whole subject was brought to the attention of the American public by John Ratcliffe, then director of National Intelligence, when he wrote that China was trying to grow super‑soldiers. Ratcliffe mentioned that China is already conducting experiments on people in the People’s Liberation Army to enhance their abilities, to create, as he called it, “biologically enhanced capabilities.”

The Communist Party is also experimenting with humans other than soldiers. It was, for instance, a Chinese researcher who was the first, and so far only, person to use gene‑editing tools on human embryos to create live births.

A Chinese professor, He Jiankui, in Shenzhen in southern China, actually used CRISPR, a gene‑editing tool, to remove the CCR5 gene to create live births of twins in late 2018.

He said he did this because he wanted to make the twins resistant to HIV, but there are also suggestions he was enhancing the intelligence of the twins. This, of course, evokes the eugenics experiments of the Third Reich to create a “master race.”

He is not the only person to experiment on human embryos. We are seeing similar experiments across the Chinese research community. Chinese geneticists are now trying to use the CRISPR tool to fundamentally alter humans.

The Chinese regime does not have ethics or morality. It is not restrained by law. It does not have a sense of restraint. The regime is trying to create the perfect communist. China has the ability and the will to do this, which means that the world has got to prevent this experimentation.

As for the third topic, pathogens, a little background might help. China uses its doctrine of Comprehensive National Power, CNP, which they got from the Soviet Union. It is an empirical tool to rate the strength of countries. China is relentlessly seeking the Number One CNP ranking.

China can become number one in two ways. It can enhance its own CNP ranking by becoming stronger, or it can decrease the CNP rankings of other countries. That’s where pathogens come in. This notion of decreasing CNP of others meant that China had no inhibitions about spreading the coronavirus around the world.

We don’t know whether the pathogen causing COVID‑19 naturally jumped from animals to humans, a zoonotic transfer, or whether it was cooked up in the Wuhan Institute of Virology. That has yet to be determined.

We do know one thing. We know that China’s leader, Xi Jinping, took steps deliberately to spread the pathogen beyond China’s borders. He did that primarily in two ways. First of all, he lied about the contagiousness of the disease. He knew it was highly transmissible human-to-human. He told the world it was not.

Then he leaned on countries to not impose travel restrictions and quarantines on arrivals from China while he was locking down Wuhan and other portions of China, which meant he thought that these travel restrictions and quarantines were effective in preventing the spread of disease. This means, of course, that he thought he was spreading disease by forcing other countries to take arrivals from China. That shows malicious intent.

Now, China’s ranking of CNP will increase dramatically, of course, if the next disease leaves the Chinese alone and sickens only foreigners. This is where some particularly distressing information has come to light.

China’s State Council which, as mentioned, is the civilian government, in May 2019 imposed new rules preventing the transfer of DNA profiles of Chinese out of the country. At the same time, Chinese officials started enforcing existing rules and the new rule more effectively.

That points to a sinister intention, but we do not really have to speculate because China’s National Defense University, in its 2017 edition of The Science of Military Strategy, actually talked about a new form of biological warfare of “specific ethnic genetic attacks.”

Bill Gertz of The Washington Times recently quoted an unnamed American official, who said China was working on germ weapons capable of attacking only specific groups. Now, China denies it has the doctrine of “unrestricted warfare.” That term comes from a 1999 book by two Chinese Air Force colonels: Unrestricted Warfare: China’s Master Plan to Destroy America by Qiao Liang and Wang Xiangsui.

The spreading of the coronavirus is indeed an application of unrestricted warfare. Many analysts have said that biological warfare does not work. I can understand why they say that, but unfortunately we have just seen a disease kill about 2.4 million people as well as hobble societies across the world. [Editor’s note: The toll, since this talk was given, has increased to 2.7 million].

COVID-19 is the ultimate proof that biological weapons work. If Chinese scientists actually succeed in developing viruses that attack only foreigners, China could end up as the only viable society in the world. This is communist China’s weapon against the world and against the United States as well.

About two decades ago, Chi Haotian, then China’s defense minister, reportedly gave a secret speech about how China should use germ weapons to exterminate Americans so that the Chinese could then inhabit North America. “Living space.” You have heard this concept, “Lebensraum,” before.

Also, in October of last year, Dr. Li Yi, a Chinese sociologist, returned to the extermination theme, this time in public. “We are driving America to its death,” Dr. Li approvingly said at a forum.

Before the Chinese actually succeed in exterminating Americans, we should start thinking about what we can do to block China.

I’m now going to give you my to‑do list. Many of the items may sound pedestrian, but remember that American policy towards China had been devoid of common sense for decades, especially during the Bush, Clinton, Bush, and Obama administrations.

These presidents maintained policies that were the opposite of common sense. I’m afraid it looks as if that is where Biden is heading to. His administration right now is engaged in a top-to-bottom review of China policy, which will probably be finished sometime in April. We do not know how it will turn out.

Yet we know what Biden has done in his first month as president. He has issued a slew of executive orders dismantling protections the Trump administration built against a militant China.

Some of Biden’s actions have been merely questionable, but some of them have been downright inexcusable and indefensible. For instance, on January 20 — just hours after taking the oath of office — Biden issued an executive order that repealed President Trump’s executive order of May 1st, 2020, preventing grid operators in the US from buying Chinese equipment.

This means China is now free to sell sabotaged equipment to the US. This is not just a theoretical concern.

Every administration looks at the China policies of its predecessors. I’m not saying Biden shouldn’t do that. What he should do is leave President Trump’s protections in place while he engages in that review because he should not leave the United States vulnerable in the interim.

China’s Communist Party, of course, has not been shy in attacking the United States. We should not be defenseless in the interim.

Moreover, whatever one thinks of Biden’s executive orders, he has ordered big giveaways to China and gotten nothing in return. In other words, his giveaways have been unilateral, a unilateral taking down of America’s protections.

There are a few things that we should be doing now to protect ourselves against China’s genetic initiatives. Here goes:

The first thing we should do is require everyone that maintains a computer network in the US, whether they are private or whether they are government, to harden them against espionage. The Chinese are villains, but we have allowed them to be villainous by leaving our networks undefended.

I am angry at the Chinese for stealing our stuff, but I’m much more angry at a series of presidents who decided to do nothing or do nothing effective. Let us impose a cost on China for stealing US intellectual property. That means we have got to go well beyond the Section 301 tariffs that President Trump imposed in 2018 for the theft of our IP.

Then-Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, in his December 3, 2021 Wall Street Journal op‑ed, put the figure of China’s theft at about $500 billion a year. This means the costs we impose are going to have to be greater than that amount if we are going to deter China.

Second, we should simply prevent China from buying any American company that possesses DNA profiles of Americans or is involved in biotechnology or genetic research. That’s just common sense.

Third, we should prohibit any Chinese or Chinese‑linked company from providing sequencing services for the DNA of Americans.

Fourth, we should end all research partnerships with Chinese institutions.

Fifth, we should withdraw from the biological weapons convention. China is almost certainly violating it at the Wuhan Institute of Virology and other locations. The convention has no inspections regime. That means this is a unilateral obligation on our part.

Sixth, we should get out—again—of the World Health Organization. The WHO was complicit in Xi Jinping’s spread of the disease. The WHO didn’t make a mistake. It absolutely knew what it was doing.

Senior doctors at the WHO knew that the coronavirus was highly transmissible, yet on two occasions, January 9th and January 14th, 2020, the political leadership of WHO spread China’s false proposition that the disease was not transmissible. I think the WHO is unreformable.

Seventh, we should impose costs on China for spreading COVID‑19. Recently, we passed that grim milestone of more than 500,000 deaths. This pathogen is not finished with us yet. We have to impose these costs on China to convince Xi Jinping that he cannot spread the next disease beyond his borders.

The next virus, as mentioned, could leave the Chinese alone and sicken everyone else. It could be a civilization-killer, which means that China could be the only viable society left on earth.

When I talk about Xi Jinping believing that he should rule the entire world, people say, “Oh, that’s ludicrous,” or, “It’s impossible.”

No, it’s not ludicrous. It’s not impossible if China is the only functioning society on this planet.

We are far stronger than China. We can defend ourselves. The Chinese unrelentingly attack us, and we do not have the political will to defend ourselves.

Let me end with one question. What are our children going to think when they realize that we had the means to protect them but chose not to do so?

Question: You mentioned that the CCP is collecting DNA. What are they utilizing this knowledge for?

Chang: There are two things. First of all, they want to be a leader in biotechnology. We know this because biotech was one of the 10 original areas in Xi Jinping’s Made in China 2025 initiative, announced in 2015. That initiative is designed to make China both self‑sufficient and a world leader in the enumerated areas.

The second thing is, as mentioned, they want to build a biological weapons capability. They have got a dual purpose here ‑‑ to lead biotech and, second, to be able to kill everybody else on the planet.

Question: What would you tell these American businesses who are eager to open up on China?

Chang: Business is business. Business will always want to make money. It will go anywhere, do anything. We have seen this, of course, with regard to China, but we also saw it in the run‑up to World War II. IBM, for instance, was providing census‑tabulating machines so that the Third Reich could count Jews.

They were doing this even after war in Europe started with the bombing of London. We know how bad and how free of morals business can be.

This is really up to the President of the United States to use his powers under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act of 1977 or the Trading with the Enemy Act of 1917 because he can prohibit businesses from going to China. He can prohibit investment into China’s markets. He can do all of the things we need as a society to do.

I know this sounds drastic to many people, but China uses all its points of contact with the United States to undermine us. Right now, the FBI and local law enforcement are just overwhelmed by what China is doing.

We do not have the capability to keep up. Until we can get a handle on this, the president, I believe, has the constitutional responsibility to end these contacts with China, business and otherwise. Yes, it is drastic, but our republic is at stake.

We know, for instance, that China does not really believe in capitalism. People say — Bill Gates has said this a number of times — that China is more capitalist than the United States. If we look at what China has been doing with regard to Jack Ma and others, we can see that no, they are not capitalists. They want to use capitalists to further their objectives, but they are not capitalists themselves. Until we come to that fundamental understanding, we are at risk.

Question: What are your thoughts about China hosting the Winter Olympics in 2022?

Chang: The International Olympic Committee should move the games to a country not tainted with crimes against humanity and other atrocities. Plus, there’s something else the IOC must do. It must ban China’s teams from athletic competition.

If we go back to 1963, the IOC banned the teams from South Africa because a large portion of the South African population was not permitted to participate in sport. That was because of apartheid.

We have the same situation in China today where Uyghurs, Tibetans, and others are not permitted to participate in sport. The IOC, I believe, has an obligation to ban China’s teams until the regime stops committing those crimes against humanity, until others can participate in sport just as well as the majority Han athletes can.

If the IOC does not do both these things, move the games and ban China’s teams from competition, we should boycott the 2022 games. I do not like the boycott idea because this punishes athletes, but ultimately, we have to do this if the IOC doesn’t make the two moves.

Question: What is the state of play today between Iran and China, especially given that the Iran deal is apparently back on with the US?

Chang: About eight months ago, we learned Tehran and Beijing signed a 25‑year, $400 billion strategic partnership deal. That, of course, would cover business relations. Also, it is military-linked. A lot of analysts correctly say that this strategic partnership will not end up being as robust as it now appears. Nevertheless, Beijing’s support of Iran will be crucial.

Indeed, what Iran has been doing in the Middle East, especially in Lebanon, almost certainly has Beijing’s blessing, because Tehran knows China has its back—and will back it with money.

China, of course, has made sure that its nuclear weapons technology has found its way to the mullahs. It has done that a number of different ways, one of them through the A. Q. Khan black market network run by Pakistan and since rolled up by the United States. It was not rolled up before Pakistan was able to send enrichment technology to the Iranians.

Also, China has facilitated North Korea’s sale of ballistic missiles and ballistic missile technology to Iran, which gives Iran the ability to deliver nuclear weapons.

You put all that together and it shows that the relationship between Beijing and Tehran is sinister, and it will continue to grow over time because Iran, right now, needs a backer and it has found it in Beijing.

Question: We are all frightened, of course, of China’s strengths. What do you see as their weaknesses? Is it their internal oppression? What is happening in Hong Kong?

Chang: China is making great progress in imposing its system on Hong Kong. It did that with the June 30 imposition of the National Security Law, which has given Beijing the ability to do whatever it wants in the territory, including extraditing people to be prosecuted in China. As people have said, the National Security Law is the end of law in Hong Kong. That’s about right.

Beijing’s most recent initiatives, if reports are correct, will be to further restrict those people who can sit on the Election Committee, which is composed of 1,200 people who choose the chief executive, the top political officer. Beijing is also going to add, according to rumors, 20 members to the 70-seat Legislative Council.

As the war correspondent Michael Yon says, what we witnessed in Hong Kong in 2019 especially, was not a protest movement but an insurgency. Yon points out insurgencies rarely die out. They can disappear for a time. They can go into tactical retreat, but they almost always come back.

That is essentially what exists in Hong Kong right now. This is going to be a long‑term struggle. It is not going to be easy, but we need to have the President of the United States impose costs on China for what it’s doing in Hong Kong. President Trump started imposing costs but did not do enough.

I hope that Biden, who ran on a campaign of trying to help the people of Hong Kong, will do so.

With regard to the broader question of China’s weaknesses, it is really a matter of overstretch. Paul Kennedy, the Yale professor, talked about this. It is a good way, a framework, of looking at it because China does not have the money to accomplish all its objectives.

Beijing spends an enormous amount of its resources on repressing the Chinese people. The government has been moving back to totalitarian controls with its social credit system, surveillance cameras, and Great Firewall. All of this is not cheap.

Also, the Belt and Road Initiative, which is to connect the world to China, means China is putting a lot of money into infrastructure that the private sector has not wanted to build. Indeed, a number of countries are not paying back China on their loans, which is a drain, certainly, on the Chinese treasury. Yes, China ends up owning infrastructure and assets, but the cost to it is exceedingly high.

This overcommitment is also evident in China’s rapid expansion of its military, for a purpose that makes people in Asia realize the aggressiveness of China’s regime.

We can see that Beijing does not really have the resources to accomplish all these outsized ambitions.

Right now, the Chinese economy may be growing, but it did not grow at the 2.3 percent that Beijing announced for 2020. It is probably just a smidgen over zero, if it is zero. We are seeing a lot of weakness in the Chinese economy, especially in the consumption area, which is a bad sign for Beijing.

Ultimately, it is a question of how productive their economy can be. It really cannot be that productive as Xi Jinping goes back to more of a state‑dominated system, where state enterprises have a greater role in the economy. They are the least productive part of that economy. The private sector is far more important and far more productive, but it now being deemphasized.

We are approaching a point where ‑‑ this will be critical ‑‑ where Biden will have to decide whether to run to the rescue of China’s regime. We know that Nixon in 1972, George H.W. Bush in 1989, and Bill Clinton in 1999 rescued Chinese communism. I hope Biden does not do that a fourth time.

Question: How do you think China will now be acting towards Taiwan?

Chang: China is especially aggressive with its aerial maneuvers. They have been doing two things. They have been flying through Taiwan’s air defense identification zone, AZID, as mentioned.

An ADIZ includes international airspace, so China has every right to fly through it. Flying through another country’s air defense identification zone is nonetheless considered to be hostile. China’s been doing that regularly.

The other thing that China has been doing in the air is flying on Taiwan’s side of the median line. The median line runs straight down the middle of the Taiwan Strait. For decades, there has been an understanding between Beijing and Taipei that Taiwan’s planes stay to the east of that line and Beijing’s planes stay to the west.

Over the last six months or so, Beijing has been violating that commitment and has been flying on Taiwan’s side of the line.

The reason why all this is important to us is that on January 23 there was a very large incursion into Taiwan’s air defense zone by nuclear‑capable H‑6K bombers.

Those bombers then, as part of this incursion, flew a simulated attack against our Theodore Roosevelt strike group, also in the South China Sea at the time. This is extremely dangerous.

Most people believe that China is not going to invade Taiwan. I agree, with one possible exception I’ll talk about later. Generally, it is not going to invade Taiwan because it does not have the capability to do so.

All of this bluffing, however, does have consequences. China has been engaging in these hostile air maneuvers. One of these maneuvers could go wrong. A plane could hit the deck. That could create a dynamic that ends up in a conflict.

That that almost occurred on April 1st, 2001, when a Chinese fighter jet clipped our US Navy EP‑3, an unarmed reconnaissance plane.

The Bush administration avoided conflict by offering to pay China a ransom, by allowing China to strip the plane, by allowing China to keep our aviators in custody, which was, in my mind, the most disgraceful incident in recent US diplomatic history. This is a stain that George W. Bush will never be able to erase, but put that aside for a moment.

I did say there was one exception where China might actually engage in aggression against Taiwan. Some of Taiwan’s islands are only two miles off China’s coast, Kinmen and Matsu.

China could grab one of those islands and then say to the world, “What are you going to do about it?” That is a real possibility. That is what I worry about, but I do not worry about an invasion of the main island of Taiwan. So far, we have been able to deter them.

The question is whether the Biden administration will act. So far, Biden has been really good on Taiwan. He has been better on Taiwan than anything else with regard to China. At least there is a little bit of comfort here. Nonetheless, this is something that could change day by day and change in a way that leads to the next great war.

Question: What do you think, in order, are the most serious, what would be your most urgent messages to the new US administration on China?

Chang: China has done so many awful things that it is really hard to put them in order.

The most important thing that Biden needs to understand is that China’s regime is not legitimate. We have to understand the fundamental nature of China’s challenge. Last year, China engaged in a series of acts of war against the US.

They were actively trying to foment violence on American streets, which is more than just subversion. They fomented violence this year in connection with the Capital Hill riots of January 6th. Both before and after that, they were openly urging Americans to engage in acts of insurrection.

I do not see how you can have a dialogue with a country like that. The first indication is that the Biden team — and they have talked about this in public — they say, “We will impose costs on China for those things which are unacceptable, we will criticize them on others, and we will cooperate where there are common interests.”

I don’t think we can do that because I do not see that we have common interests with a country that’s trying to overthrow our government. My message is understand the fundamental nature, the hostility, and the maliciousness of China, and remember one other thing.

That is, China deliberately released the disease that has killed more than 500,000 Americans. That alone means there can be no cooperation with China.

Question: If indeed China is working with Iran, how do we warn Israel where every second biotech company start‑up looks to a China exit?

Chang: This is a broader question of US relations with Jerusalem. So far, American presidents have been pretty tolerant of Israeli links with China. I generally believe that the United States ‑‑ and this is not just Israel ‑‑ we need to say this to France, to Germany, to everybody else, that this is a zero‑sum game.

You either work with the US or we do not consider you to be our friend. I think Israel would choose the right side. I’m not so sure about some of the other countries I mentioned. The point is this is something American presidents have not communicated to our friends, allies, and partners, how we feel about China.

I say we should no longer support China’s Communist regime. We consider it to be an enemy, and we will act to protect ourselves in an appropriate fashion. Remember, in May 2019 People’s Daily ran a piece that declared a “people’s war” on the US. That is all Biden needs to know.

Question: “What do they want all that DNA for?”

Chang: The more DNA you have, the better you will be able to develop, for instance, biotechnology products. The more DNA you have, the easier it will be to figure out how to create the next penicillin or whatever. The more DNA you have, the better you are able and the faster you are able to come out with drugs. Then, of course, there is their biological weapons program: the more DNA they have, the better they can figure out how to create a pathogen that attacks us and leaves them alone. The more you have, the more you can do.

Question: You mentioned that China saying that the US was not a legitimate state. Could you amplify on that a little bit more?

Chang: China is committing atrocities. Forget about what it is doing to its own people, the Han. It is committing atrocities in what it calls Xinjiang, what it considers to be the northwest part of its country and what the Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and others consider to be East Turkestan, conquered by Mao in 1950.

China’s regime has not only been running concentration camps where they have held somewhere between 1.1 and 3.3 million Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and others, but it has also institutionalized slavery, offering labor to both domestic and foreign companies, — and not just in Xinjiang, but across China, as Uyghurs are being transported in cattle cars to provide labor in factories that look like concentration camps.

The regime has institutionalized rape, with Han Chinese officials in Uyghur homes, where the male has been sent off to a concentration camp. This is the BBC story of about a few weeks ago, plus other reporting, which is absolutely horrific. Rape is used as a policy of the government to subdue the Uyghurs.

There has been the violation of Uyghur girls, minors. There has been forced organ harvesting, in all probability. That is the tribunal led by Geoffrey Nice in London. They have put children into basically jails. Because the parents get sent off to “re-education” camps, the children are put into “orphanages” that look like prisons. The list goes on and on.

We know the Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and others are dying in these facilities. The only thing that separates the People’s Republic of China from the Third Reich is that China has not gone to mass exterminations — yet.

Its acts meet the definition of “genocide” in the Genocide Convention of 1948. If Biden needs another message, this is not just a policy choice for him. We are a party to that Genocide Convention, which requires signatories to “prevent and punish” acts of genocide.

Yes, China is committing genocide. Secretary of State Pompeo issued that formal determination on January 19th of this year. Candidate Biden, during the campaign in August of last year, said the Chinese were committing genocide. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, during his confirmation hearings, said China was committing genocide. China’s regime is committing genocide. We have an obligation to do something about it.

Question: It appears we are dealing — or not dealing with — a Chinese Communist Party that is promoting “a superior race” and “a superior government,” which has, as you say, horrible echoes of the 1930s. How would you suggest the Biden administration deal with it?

Chang: I would force every US company off Chinese soil. I’d force every Chinese company in the US, every Chinese bank, to leave. I would close every Chinese consulate. There are four remaining consulates. I would strip the embassy staff in Washington down to the ambassador, his family, his secretary, and maybe a few personal guards.

I would close all the Confucius Institutes on our college campuses. I would toss out every Confucius Classroom in our secondary schools. [Editor’s note: China is rebranding Confucius Institutes “to avoid scrutiny.”]

The list goes on. I would cut all these contacts with China. As mentioned, they are overwhelming us right now. We cannot deal with it. Until we can deal with it, as a practical matter, we need to cut these contacts.

China is committing atrocities. We should have nothing to do with it. It’s not a legitimate state. It’s a danger to humanity. China is a threat to humanity.

We have got to recognize the threat. We have got to defend our society. We have an obligation, if not to ourselves, to our children.

Question: Another important question: Does the popular DNA testing company 23andMe, where you send in a sample of your DNA for information on your ancestry, have any connection to China?

Chang: This is really murky, but China has tried to compromise 23andMe, to get a bigger ownership interest in it. I believe, but I am not positive, that some of the 23andMe sequencing is done by Chinese‑linked companies. There is that link there.

The 23andMe chief executive mentioned recently about China’s attempts to take over her company, and that she successfully resisted.

Question: A final question. Xi has said that he wants all tariffs lifted to repair the relations with the US. What would you advise the US do?

Chang: I would increase those additional tariffs, which are at 10% or 25% percent, to 1000% or 5000%. I would prevent China from selling stuff to us. Even if you put aside all the things we talked about, just if you look at this as a trade matter, those Section 301 tariffs were put in place to stop China’s theft of US intellectual property.

Whatever figure you take, whether it is $125 billion at the low end or $600 billion at the high end, China is stealing our intellectual property. Obviously, what we have been doing so far has not been sufficient to stop them. We cannot do what China wants.

Wang Yi, the foreign minister, a couple weeks ago ‑‑ and this is a continuation of things that Chinese officials have said for several months – he is saying, “Look, you have to get rid of the tariffs, you have got to do X, you have got to do Y, and you have got to Z in order to create a favorable relationship.” In other words, we have to make a lot of unilateral concessions and then China will think about reciprocating.

Of course, they never will reciprocate. My sense is if you look at this as just a tariff matter, our tariffs should go to the sky. In other words, no trade until China stops stealing our tech and know-how and IP. When China stops stealing, then we can talk about reducing tariffs.

You have asked, “What should Biden do?” One of the things Secretary Pompeo said that really unnerved the Chinese was talking about in‑person diplomacy, talking to the Chinese people directly.

He also mentioned this at his Nixon Center speech in July of last year. Biden needs to do the same thing. Not every solution is military. As a matter of fact, our solutions with China are not military. They really start with talking to the Chinese people.

Gordon G. Chang is the author of The Coming Collapse of China, a Gatestone Institute Distinguished Senior Fellow, and a member of its Advisory Board. This article is based on a briefing to Gatestone Institute, given on Februray 23, 2021.

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