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How Communist China Supports Anti-U.S. Terrorists
By D.J. McGuire
September 11, 2005—Four years ago today, America suffered the worst terrorist attack in its history, and the worst attack of any kind since Pearl Harbor. Today, the nation is examining where we are in the War on Terror, and where we need to go. For most, Communist China will not be a topic of conversation. This is a tragic mistake.
In the myriad of pro-democracy, anti-Communist events that I have been fortunate enough to attend, I am usually the only one who brings up the War on Terror. Sadly, the consensus inside and outside the “movement” is that Communist China and the War on Terror are separate and distinct issues. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, when one examines our enemies in the War on Terror—the Taliban, al Qaeda, the Ba’athists in Iraq, and for the more expansive among us, the regimes of Syria, Iran, and Stalinist North Korea—one finds only two things they all hold in common: hatred for America, and support from the Chinese Communist Party.
Let’s begin with al Qaeda and their Taliban hosts. Communist China has tried to claim that they are al Qaeda’s victims, and as such America’s allies in the War on Terror. What follows are the facts that the cadres are hoping to conceal with their lies.
In 1998, after the American cruise missile attack on al Qaeda, Communist China paid up to $10 million to the terrorist group for American unexploded missiles. The so-called People’s Republic bought the missiles to “reverse engineer” them, i.e., use them to be able to advance its own cruise missile capabilities (Peter Finn, “Secret Tape Suggests China-Bin Laden Link” Washington Post, Oct. 20, 2001).
In 1999, a book by two Communist Chinese officers presented a scenario in which the World Trade Center is attacked as a situation that the United States would find difficult handle. The two colonels recommend Osama bin Laden by name as someone with the ability to orchestrate the attack of that magnitude via his al Qaeda group (John O. Edwards, “China’s Military Planners Took Credit for 9/11” Newsmax, September 25, 2002).
Communist China initially opposed United Nations sanctions against the Taliban, even after it refused to hand over Osama bin Laden to the United States for al Qaeda’s role in terrorist attacks against American Embassies and the U.S.S. Cole. The regime maintained its opposition until the proposed sanctions were weakened in late 2000 (“Official: China won’t stand in the way of U.N. resolution on Taliban” CNN, Dec. 5, 2000).
Communist China signed a pact on economic cooperation with the Taliban on the morning of September 11, 2001, the very day the World Trade Center fell (John Pomfret, “China Censors Anti-U.S. Reaction” Washington Post, Sept. 15, 2001). Communist China’s Xinhua press agency later produced a video on the 9/11/01 attacks “glorifying the strikes as a humbling blow against an arrogant nation” (Damien McElroy, “Beijing produces videos glorifying terrorist attacks on ‘arrogant’ U.S.” London Telegraph, Nov. 4, 2001).
The Communist leadership considered al Qaeda as “a check on U.S. power” and only decided to back away from the terrorists after deciding that “now is not the time to take on the United States” (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, “China draws closer to U.S. after terror strike” CNN, Sept. 19, 2001).
Days after September 11, as Pakistan was mulling over a request from the United States to allow its troops to be based there for operations against the Taliban, Communist China—a 50-year Pakistan ally—announced it would “oppose allowing foreign troops in Pakistan” (Kamran Khan and Molly Moore, “Pakistani Leaders Agree on Measures to Assist U.S.” Washington Post, Sept. 15, 2001). This likely made efforts to convince Pakistan to accept U.S. troops—while still successful—much more difficult.
After September 11, U.S. intelligence caught the Communist Chinese military’s favorite technology firm—Huawei Technologies—building a telephone network in Kabul (“Chinese firms help put phone system in Kabul” Washington Times, Sept. 28, 2001). Raids of al Qaeda hideouts by U.S. Special Forces and allies have netted, on more than one occasion, a large cache of weapons from Communist China, including surface-to-air missiles, mere weeks after the U.S. government warned that al Qaeda terrorists in the U.S. would try to use said missiles to take down American planes (“China-al Qaeda Nexus” Washington Times, December 21, 2001; and transcript of “CNN Newsroom” CNN, December 18, 2001).
Also during the liberation of Afghanistan by the U.S. Special Forces and local anti-Taliban Afghans, Communist China, through public statements, and behind-the-scenes actions, tried to prevent what they called “a pro-American regime” in Kabul (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, “Beijing raises 5 pointer Afghan solution” CNN, Nov. 12, 2001).
Then-Communist Chinese leader Jiang Zemin even went so far as to rip the U.S. military presence in Central Asia during a visit to Iran (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, “China opposes U.S. presence in Central Asia” CNN, April 22, 2002).
In the late summer of 2002, almost a year after Afghanistan was liberated, a three-man delegation from the Taliban,—led by Ustad Khalil, purported to be Mullah Omar’s right-hand man—spent a week in Communist China meeting with cadres, at their invitation (Carl Limbacher and Newsmax Staff, “China Still Meeting With Taliban” Newsmax, September 9, 2002).
At roughly the same time, intelligence from the post-Taliban Afghan government revealed that Communist China had turned a part of Pakistan deemed under their control (most likely “Aksai Chin,” the piece of disputed Kashmir Pakistan gave its longtime ally in the 1960s) into a safe haven for al Qaeda (China e-Lobby, Aug. 14, 2002).
In mid-2004, it was revealed that the Communist Chinese intelligence service had used some of its front companies in financial markets around the world to help al Qaeda raise and launder funds for their operations (China e-Lobby, May 5, 2004).
Remember this list the next time the cadres claim to be our “allies” in the War on Terror.
Regarding Iraq, I understand there are many, who remain unconvinced it is (or was prior to March 2003) a theatre in the War on Terror. This article will not attempt to convince you otherwise (although my book “Dragon in the Dark: How and Why Communist China Helps Our Enemies in the War on Terror” does). However, Communist China certainly believed Saddam Hussein could be useful against the United States (that “check on U.S. power” line applied to him, too). The evidence is as follows.
Starting in 2000, Communist China’s favorite military technology firm—Huawei Technologies (they of the telephone network in Kabul)—supplied Saddam Hussein with high-tech fiberglass for his air defense facilities (“Russia and China Broke Iraq Embargo” BBC, Dec. 19, 2002). In January 2001, Communist China was found to be selling Saddam Hussein missile technology (Bill Gertz, “Beijing using front companies to grab U.S. arms technology” Washington Times, January 26, 2001).
In February of 2001, the U.S. military bombed an Iraqi fiber optic network (Howard Schneider and Thomas E. Ricks, “U.S. Strike Timed to Protect Chinese” Washington Post, Feb. 19, 2001) installed by Huawei Technologies and ZTE (“China privately admits helping Iraq” Andrea Koppell, March 7, 2001, CNN) to help the Iraqi dictator integrate his air defense network. Well over a year later, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld pointedly refused to rule out continuing Communist involvement with Saddam’s air defenses: “Whether they are currently in there, I don't know” (Bill Gertz, “Allied warplanes expand counterattacks” Washington Times, September 17, 2002).
In November of 2002, a Communist Chinese shipment of missile launching patrol boats to Iraq was intercepted by the U.S. Navy (Glenn Kessler and Thomas E. Ricks, “U.S. Frees Ship with North Korean Missles” Washington Post, Dec. 12, 2002).
Communist China had a deal with Saddam Hussein in 1997, to be executed as soon as United Nations sanctions were lifted, for access to the Al-Ahdab oil field (China e-Lobby, July 13, 2005)—worth 90,000 barrels a day—and was in the process of securing rights to the 300,000-barrel-a-day Halfayah oil field.
As detailed in the Duelfer Report, the Northern Industrial Corporation (Norinco)—owned by the Communist military—received 15.5 million barrels worth of oil-for-food vouchers from 2000 to 2002 in exchange for missile technology and parts (China e-Lobby, Oct. 13, 2004). Communist China was also listed as one of the “the top 12 countries that sold Iraq arms despite sanctions.”
Of course, Communist China strongly opposed the U.S. military action in Iraq, although they preferred to let France do the heavy lifting (Willy Wo-Lap Lam, “Beijing’s diplomatic bridge-building” CNN, Oct. 1, 2002).
These are, of course, the two areas where Communist actions have led directly to a further loss of American life. The other issues described in detail below (Syria, Iran, and Stalinist North Korea) do not involve the U.S. military in combat—although there are still tens of thousands protecting South Korea from the Stalinists—but they do involve terrorism and anti-Americanism.
We’ll start with Iran, where in June 2001, the U.S. found evidence of two Communist-owned firms involved in arms sales to the mullahs that, according to Congressional staffers, “fell under the Chemical Weapons Convention” (“U.S. weapons sanctions target China and North Korea” CNN, June 28, 2001). There would be more sanctions against Communist Chinese firms for weapons sales to Iran, including missile part sales by Norinco (China e-Lobby, May 28, 2003), and an air defense system (Patrick Goodenough, “Chinese Firms Sanctioned for Helping Iran Develop Nuclear Weapons” Cybercast News, May 17, 2002; Bill Gertz, “China steps up air-defense work on Iran's border fears”, Washington Times, October 18, 2001). None of the above includes Communist China’s extensive support (China e-Lobby, June 16, 2004) for Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
As for Stalinist North Korea—the final axis-of-evil regime—it should be remembered that Kim Jong-il’s brutal dictatorship wouldn’t even exist if his father hadn’t been bailed out by Mao Zedong (Perspectives Series, Episode Korea, Episode 5, CNN). Most recently, as the Stalinists’ nuclear ambitions attracted world-wide attention, the Communists were trying to portray themselves as disinterested peacemakers (“Beijing urges caution with North Korea” CNN, Oct. 18, 2002). In reality, they have refused to push their Stalinist allies toward an agreement (Willy W-Lap Lam, “Beijing’s delicate stance on North Korea” CNN, Jan. 16, 2003), and have sold tributyl phosphate—a chemical essential to making plutonium and weaponizing uranium—to Kim Jong-il (Bill Gertz, “China ships North Korea ingredient for nuclear arms”, Washington Times, December 17, 2002). Just recently, it was also revealed that the Communist-owned Bank of China was linked to the Stalinists’ illicit money-raising schemes (China e-Lobby, Sept. 8, 2005), including narcotics, used to fund their nuclear weapons program.
Syria is the home base for the Iranian-sponsored Hezbollah terrorist organization (no real surprise given that the Ba’athist Assad family has allied itself to the Khomeinists for over a quarter-century). This hasn’t stopped Communist China from inking other deals with the Ba’athists. In fact, it was in Syria where Hu Jintao—when he was merely a high-ranking but largely anonymous cadre—referred to Israel as a “colonialist plot aimed at detaching from the Arab nation a part that is dear to it—Palestine” (“China's Hu denounces Israel's ‘arrogant use of force’” Lateline News, January 11, 2001 ).
Then there is Sudan—Osama’s former home and current recipient of massive Communist oil investment (Andrea R. Mihailescu, “Africa big oil supplier to China” July 18, 2005, UPI) and jet fighters (Charles Smith, “Sudan gets Chinese jets” World Net Daily, September 13, 2000)—and longtime Communist ally Pakistan—which may be an “ally” in the War on Terror to the U.S., but certainly isn’t to India (Rajiv Chandrasekaran and Rama Lakshmi, “New Delhi Lays Blame on Pakistani Group” Washington Post, Dec. 29, 2001).
Why would Communist China support anti-American terrorists in such an extensive fashion? For starters, we are the main obstacle to their plans for conquering Taiwan (China e-Lobby, March 27, 2005). More generally, Communist China has relied on radical nationalism as the regime’s raison d’etre ever since the Tiananmen Square massacre. That means replacing Japan as the lead power in Asia, and replacing the U.S. as the lead world power. We’re the obstacle on those, too. In other words, the Chinese Communist Party sees the United States as the chief threat to its survival in power.
This is why Communist China is fighting a cold war against the U.S. This is why the War on Terror has become part of the Second Cold War. This is why, the War on Terror can not and will not be won unless America sees the Chinese Communist Party for what it really is: an enemy. The road to victory in the War on Terror ends not in Kabul, Baghdad, Tehran, or Damascus, but in Beijing. America will never be secure until China is free.
D.J. McGuire is President and Co-Founder of the China e-Lobby and author of Dragon in the Dark: How and Why Communist China Helps Our Enemies in the War on Terror.
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