Tags: China | Silences | Critics | Inside | America

China Silences Critics Inside America

Monday, 10 April 2006 12:00 AM

China has a new and very powerful lobbyist inside Washington, D.C., and his name is George. The word inside Capitol Hill is that President Bush personally met with Senate and House leaders from both parties and demanded that they keep the ranks silent on China.

The move by President Bush followed a flurry of activity over a no-bid contract awarded to Hutchison Whampoa for the operation of a sophisticated radiation detection system in the Bahamas. The president reportedly told Democrat and Republican leaders to silence critics of the deal in Congress.

The problem with the no-bid contract is that Hutchison has direct links to the Chinese military. The company was considered a real threat to U.S. national security by the Bush administration when it tried to purchase the bankrupt Global Crossing communications company.

Now the company, so closely linked to the People's Liberation Army, is trusted enough to guard America against nuclear weapons. The award of a no-bid contract without review to a company linked to the PLA by a wide variety of intelligence and law enforcement agencies is both a foolish and dangerous move.

Yet the reason for the sudden shift in trust is simple. Hu is coming to town.

Chinese President Hu Jintao is scheduled to pay America a visit in late April. The Bush administration is so anxious to put on a smiley face for Hu that it resorted to hard-core jawbone tactics to silence critics of the Chinese communist government.

Of course, liberals should take delight in the fact that the most conservative national-security-minded members of the Republican Party have been gagged. In addition, conservatives should jump with glee when they see that even the liberal Democrat critics of Bush's Dubai ports deal are dead silent.

The real reason that both Democrats and Republicans are silent on the Hutchison deal, and the China scandal as a whole, is because lobbyists and major corporate backers bombard them. Major companies such as Wal-Mart, Disney, Boeing and Goldman Sachs have a vested interest in seeing that no minor political tiffs such as national security, nuclear weapons proliferation and simple torture of political prisoners interrupt their China dealings.

Liberal critics, Democrat spinsters and even the massive mouth of Senator Hillary Clinton are all silent on this issue. They could unload on Bush with a massive broadside aimed right at the heart of America's middle class. They could smash the Republicans in Congress – but instead, they have elected to remain as silent as the jailed dissidents outside Beijing.

Why? Several major players inside the Democratic Party have had long associations with Li Ka-Shing and his companies.

For example, West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller, vice chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence, has uncomfortable ties to a company owned by Li Ka-Shing, Pacific Century, and its former chairman, the late K.S. Wu.

Mr. Wu was so welcome in high-ranking circles that he won spots on Ron Brown trade trips to China. Wu traveled to China to meet his boss, Li Ka-Shing, in August of 1994 with a self-described "close" friend, Democrat West Virginia Governor Gaston Caperton. In 1996, Caperton described K.S. Wu as a "close friend" and a "trusted advisor to Senator Rockefeller."

Today, none dare speak of Mr. Wu. Former Governor Caperton and Democrat Senator Rockefeller both refused to comment on the late K.S. Wu. All questions to the senator's office on K.S. Wu have been greeted by with the same answer, a short and angry "No comment."

However, Mr. Wu and Li Ka-Shing shared more than just a single trade trip to China in 1994. Wu's attendance at such high-level events becomes less of a mystery when he and his so-called America investment company come into focus. Wu, according to the official Commerce Department information sheet, was chairman of Pacific Century Group, an investment firm working to finance electric power plants inside China with U.S. money.

It seems that the CEO of Pacific Century, K.S. Wu, a man well known to Senator Rockefeller, died suddenly. No Pacific Century official would comment on the departed CEO, the deals in West Virginia or his relationship with the Democratic Party. No one has ever supplied his exact cause of death.

However, Li Ka-Shing knows. Li Ka-Shing appointed his son Richard Li to take over Pacific Century after K.S. Wu's mysterious passing.

The opposition that wins in Congress is summed up in one special-interest group called the "engagement" policy wonks. Major corporations see the dollars in China. These guys have won the China debate on Capitol Hill since 1990. The sum of their argument is that China will become nice if we "engage" it through trade.

The engagement crowd has been preaching this line for 17 years, and so far China has not gotten any nicer, or less belligerent. In fact, China has spun or sold nuclear, chemical, biological and missile weapons technology to North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Pakistan.

For example, Pakistan has decided to purchase state-of-the-art Chinese F-10 (Jian-10) multi-role fighter-bomber planes. The J-10 jets will add to the growing arsenal of weapons from China. Pakistan is already armed with Chinese and North Korean nuclear-tipped missiles.

Another example is the Chinese support for North Korea and its crazy dictator, Kim Jong-il. The Chinese defense minister arrived in Pyongyang on Tuesday for unspecified talks at a time when North Korea is facing strong pressure to return to negotiations aimed at ending its nuclear weapons programs.

North Korean Vice Minister of the People's Armed Forces Kim Jong-gak greeted Defense Minister Cao Gangchuan, the North's official KCNA news agency said in a brief dispatch. It did not provide further details.

China has jailed dissidents, threatened Taiwan on a weekly basis and sent nuclear submarines into Japanese territorial waters. China continues to wage an economic war against America and the West using cheap – underpriced – goods made with slave labor.

Clearly, engagement is another word for "appeasement."

Arrayed against the appeasers is a crew of dedicated souls – national security conservatives, liberal human rights advocates and even labor unions. These folks have been right all along, speaking against the evil dictatorship that rules China with an iron fist.

These folks do not have big corporate donors backing them. Instead, they have embarrassed the major corporate raiders time and again by placing their greed on public display.

Still, America is ready to welcome the bloodthirsty dictator with open arms. Chinese President Hu Jintao is expected to deliver an address at Yale on Friday, April 21.

If President Hu wants to talk about freedom, then he should turn his voice toward his own government. The Chinese communists are so paranoid that they feel threatened by a red version of reality TV. China's version of "American Idol," called "Supergirl Voice," has been pulled off the air by strict new government rules.

The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television has issued new rules governing reality TV. The shows must be dedicated to "constructing a harmonious socialist society ... [and] must not make a hubbub about things as they please and must avoid creating stars."

According to the Chinese government, the TV shows must "avoid vulgar or gross styles" and judges cannot "embarrass or heckle" contestants.

One has to wonder why the Chinese government – led by Hu Jintao – would suddenly become so paranoid. Then again, any TV show that expresses free will and gives rewards based on talent – not party purity – would certainly scare Hu and his pals.

Still, members of Congress should take note of the gag order on "Supergirl Voice." It seems that many of the honored representatives and senators have fallen prey to the censors in Beijing.


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China has a new and very powerful lobbyist inside Washington, D.C., and his name is George.The word inside Capitol Hill is that President Bush personally met with Senate and House leaders from both parties and demanded that they keep the ranks silent on China. The move...
Monday, 10 April 2006 12:00 AM
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