CCP’s Infiltration Becomes a Nightmare for Overseas Chinese

Beijing’s systematic theft of Western technology has resulted in a growing skepticism toward Chinese nationals in the international community. They increasingly are seen as potential allies or agents of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). With Western vigilance against CCP influence overseas on the rise, the Chinese community finds itself increasingly isolated, amplifying distrust from Western institutions. Analysts suggest that for Chinese individuals to integrate into Western society, they must first draw clear boundaries with the CCP.The Growing SkepticismOver a decade ago, numerous Taiwanese students were drawn to studying in China as it facilitated easier admission to esteemed universities in the United States, said Jung-Chin Shen, associate professor at York University, in Toronto, Canada, to the Chinese language edition of The Epoch Times.He explained that back then, the quota for Chinese students was much higher than that for the Taiwanese students. “However, the dynamics have since shifted,” said Mr. Shen.Since 2018, Chinese students seeking admission to study in the United States have encountered increased rates of visa rejections, particularly in sensitive, high-tech fields, posing greater challenges compared to the past, according to Mr. Shen. “The growing suspicion surrounding Chinese students and scholars working for the CCP has raised concerns about potential harm to American interests,” he said.Between June and September 2020, more than 1,000 Chinese nationals have had their visas revoked by the United States, under a program aimed at graduate students and researchers believed to have ties to the Chinese military, according to report by Reuters.Zhong Shan, a senior engineer of a communications network in Silicon Valley, expressed to The Epoch Times that he personally experienced a similar situation during his job hunt.“Despite securing an offer from a prominent company and successfully passing the initial interview, I found myself unable to commence work due to my Chinese background, which prohibited me from gaining entry into the workplace,” he explained.Related StoriesHe sensed that there is evident covert discrimination whereby Chinese are allowed employment and engagement in non-essential roles. Nonetheless, the Chinese nationals are barred from involvement in critical positions due to concerns over their loyalty.“This is undoubtedly disadvantageous for Chinese. The CCP regime is the cause for the Western world to opt for complete rejection. If the CCP were to cease existing, this issue would undoubtedly see considerable improvement,” he said.Mr. Shen also observed that Chinese employees in Western companies are increasingly facing the phenomenon of hitting the glass ceiling: Once they reach a certain level, they struggle to advance further, and this situation may be more widespread than before.“The CCP’s influence on overseas Chinese has exacerbated suspicion from their host countries toward them,” he said.Aim to StealIn recent decades, the CCP have systematically engaged in the theft of Western technology through three primary methods: first, acquiring overseas companies or forming joint ventures with them to exchange market access for technology; second, conducting illegal cyber-hacking or engaging in economic espionage activities; and third—the most prevalent method—exploiting “gray areas” to obtain technology through channels such as educational institutions, research centers, scholars, and commercial transactions, all with significant support from the Chinese government.According to the 2020 report of the Chinese Talent Program Tracker (CSET) by the Center for Security and Emerging Technology within Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service, there were approximately 40 national-level talent-recruitment programs aimed at attracting overseas talent. When including regional-level programs, the total number was estimated to be close to 300.The most prominent program among them was the Thousand Talents Program—Overseas High-Level Experts, initiated in 2008, which targets researchers and scholars in American universities.In a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in August 2020, the studies showed 600 CCP overseas talent-recruitment stations that recruit and gather information on scientists.“I’ve seen too much of this, I don’t want to give examples, it would offend people. Some of the publicly reported cases are already very frightening,” said Mr. Zhong, regarding the Silicon Valley ecosystem.According to Mr. Zhong, Silicon Valley is also a primary target. The CCP agents specifically establish headhunting firms and venture capital focused on Chinese engineers in Silicon Valley. This allows for both the theft of technology and the implementation of technology in China.“You can’t imagine how sophisticated it is. In China, there are alumni associations of certain U.S. states’ universities, such as the California Berkeley Chinese Alumni Association, but they are no

CCP’s Infiltration Becomes a Nightmare for Overseas Chinese

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Beijing’s systematic theft of Western technology has resulted in a growing skepticism toward Chinese nationals in the international community. They increasingly are seen as potential allies or agents of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). With Western vigilance against CCP influence overseas on the rise, the Chinese community finds itself increasingly isolated, amplifying distrust from Western institutions. Analysts suggest that for Chinese individuals to integrate into Western society, they must first draw clear boundaries with the CCP.

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The Growing Skepticism

Over a decade ago, numerous Taiwanese students were drawn to studying in China as it facilitated easier admission to esteemed universities in the United States, said Jung-Chin Shen, associate professor at York University, in Toronto, Canada, to the Chinese language edition of The Epoch Times.

He explained that back then, the quota for Chinese students was much higher than that for the Taiwanese students. “However, the dynamics have since shifted,” said Mr. Shen.

Since 2018, Chinese students seeking admission to study in the United States have encountered increased rates of visa rejections, particularly in sensitive, high-tech fields, posing greater challenges compared to the past, according to Mr. Shen. “The growing suspicion surrounding Chinese students and scholars working for the CCP has raised concerns about potential harm to American interests,” he said.

Between June and September 2020, more than 1,000 Chinese nationals have had their visas revoked by the United States, under a program aimed at graduate students and researchers believed to have ties to the Chinese military, according to report by Reuters.

Zhong Shan, a senior engineer of a communications network in Silicon Valley, expressed to The Epoch Times that he personally experienced a similar situation during his job hunt.

“Despite securing an offer from a prominent company and successfully passing the initial interview, I found myself unable to commence work due to my Chinese background, which prohibited me from gaining entry into the workplace,” he explained.

He sensed that there is evident covert discrimination whereby Chinese are allowed employment and engagement in non-essential roles. Nonetheless, the Chinese nationals are barred from involvement in critical positions due to concerns over their loyalty.

“This is undoubtedly disadvantageous for Chinese. The CCP regime is the cause for the Western world to opt for complete rejection. If the CCP were to cease existing, this issue would undoubtedly see considerable improvement,” he said.

Mr. Shen also observed that Chinese employees in Western companies are increasingly facing the phenomenon of hitting the glass ceiling: Once they reach a certain level, they struggle to advance further, and this situation may be more widespread than before.

“The CCP’s influence on overseas Chinese has exacerbated suspicion from their host countries toward them,” he said.

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Aim to Steal

In recent decades, the CCP have systematically engaged in the theft of Western technology through three primary methods: first, acquiring overseas companies or forming joint ventures with them to exchange market access for technology; second, conducting illegal cyber-hacking or engaging in economic espionage activities; and third—the most prevalent method—exploiting “gray areas” to obtain technology through channels such as educational institutions, research centers, scholars, and commercial transactions, all with significant support from the Chinese government.

According to the 2020 report of the Chinese Talent Program Tracker (CSET) by the Center for Security and Emerging Technology within Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service, there were approximately 40 national-level talent-recruitment programs aimed at attracting overseas talent. When including regional-level programs, the total number was estimated to be close to 300.

The most prominent program among them was the Thousand Talents Program—Overseas High-Level Experts, initiated in 2008, which targets researchers and scholars in American universities.

In a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in August 2020, the studies showed 600 CCP overseas talent-recruitment stations that recruit and gather information on scientists.

“I’ve seen too much of this, I don’t want to give examples, it would offend people. Some of the publicly reported cases are already very frightening,” said Mr. Zhong, regarding the Silicon Valley ecosystem.

According to Mr. Zhong, Silicon Valley is also a primary target. The CCP agents specifically establish headhunting firms and venture capital focused on Chinese engineers in Silicon Valley. This allows for both the theft of technology and the implementation of technology in China.

“You can’t imagine how sophisticated it is. In China, there are alumni associations of certain U.S. states’ universities, such as the California Berkeley Chinese Alumni Association, but they are not affiliated with the official alumni management system of UC Berkeley. Similarly, the Tsinghua Cross-Strait Alumni Association is not affiliated with Tsinghua University in Taiwan. In fact, Tsinghua University in Taiwan has issued a statement clarifying that it has no connection with any cross-strait alumni associations with the CCP’s name,” he said.

Mr. Zhong mentioned that the CCP has also established technology headhunting firms related to the Chinese community. There are numerous Chinese-language headhunting accounts on LinkedIn, where they specifically target individuals of Chinese background.

“If you don’t want to deal with the CCP, then don’t leave any text in Simplified Chinese on LinkedIn,” he said, because once targeted, the CCP will repeatedly analyze any potential to exploit the target, and “invite you back to China to investigate various opportunities.”

He introduced the Chinese Association for Science and Technology, USA, as an example, which harbors around 20,000 overseas Chinese talents. “The CCP invests money to conduct overseas award programs through this association. Once awarded, doors to various opportunities in China for the returnees will open, which effectively extends the protocol of technology theft overseas,” he said.

New technologies introduced to China often require funding through technology venture capital to take off and gain support in their initial stages. A plethora of investors with Chinese faces congregate in Silicon Valley, where the money essentially constitutes red capital, much of which originates from princelings within the CCP. After red capital is laundered overseas, it circulates back as capital for technology startups, Mr. Zhong introduced.

A significant proportion of these technologies have already obtained certification overseas, and arrangements have been made inside China. “If you return to China to start a business, everything—money, office space, environment, various supporting policies—is already clearly laid out. Moreover, the operations at each stage are clearly laid out,” he said, and that’s how China suddenly produces so many new technical innovations.

He mentioned that the stealing has been done for over 30 years, and non-stop. “There’s hardly any authentic AI technology in China; it’s all stolen. The Chinese scientists take up to 40 percent of the talents in this field,” he said.

For a long time, Western governments have hoped that overseas Chinese trained by the West could become a force to drive change in China. However, the comprehensive control exerted by the CCP obstructs their opportunities for development in the West instead.

Regarding this phenomenon, a netizen commented: As long as they have relatives in China, they become potential spies who could leak information at any time. With a soft spot to exploit, a dose of nationalism, and materialistic temptations, few individuals can resist.

Mr. Zhong believes that from the outset, one should avoid dealing with the CCP and refrain from engaging in with the Simplified Chinese social media.

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Keep a Distance

“It’s better to keep a low profile. You can chat, but avoid deep involvement, and refrain from sharing too many personal thoughts. Once you’re targeted, there will inevitably be numerous intricate relationships involving united front work and overseas Chinese affairs that could entice or manipulate you,” he analyzed.

He believes that many high-caliber Chinese are entitled to living overseas and enjoying a better life. However, to start a business and achieve 50-fold growth in China, thereby tying one’s destiny to the CCP, is a path of no return, he said.

“A person’s stance determines their future opportunities for development,” he indicated.

Mr. Zhong mentioned, as an example, physicist Sir Charles Kao Kuen, a Nobel laureate, and a highly respected figure—and considered a founding father—in the field of fiber optics. “Dr. Kao Kuen never negotiated with the CCP,” he said.

Mr. Shen agreed. He said, “I know some international students initially didn’t want to participate in any political activities organized by the Chinese embassy, but they ended up going because friends invited them. If you’re on the list, they'll invite you to all the activities.”

He also knew a student involuntarily got involved, because the CCP would impose financial scrutiny or other repercussions against his parents’ local businesses back home.

Mr. Shen believes that the most effective way to root out the problem is to draw clear boundaries from the beginning, refusing to be pulled in by the CCP.

“Once you’re drawn in, the embassy will have your name and records, and they'll keep contacting you whenever there’s an opportunity. Gradually, they will consider you as one of their own, and as you get deeper, your connection with CCP will strengthen while your connection with the West weakens,” he said.

He urged the Chinese students to aim to integrate more effectively into Western society rather than excessively engaging within Chinese circles, as this can “limit your upward promotion and raise suspicions from others,” he stated.

Song Tang and Yi Ru contributed to this report.

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