During a speech at the Gerald R. Presidential Museum in Michigan, on July 16, Attorney General William Barr denounced the “illegal tactics” that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) employs to achieve global supremacy.
“The CCP rules with an iron fist over one of the world’s great ancient civilizations. It seeks to harness the immense power, productivity, and ingenuity of the Chinese people to overthrow the rules-based international system and make the world safe for dictatorship,” Barr said.
Barr referred to statements by FBI Director Christopher A. Wray, who last week accused the CCP of pursuing its ambitions through nefarious and even illegal behavior, including industrial espionage, theft, extortion, cyberattacks, and undercover influence operations.
Barr said hackers are used by the CCP to steal intellectual property from U.S. companies and universities related to treatments and vaccines for the CCP virus.
As a result, the attorney general noted that the Chinese Communist Party is “stealing the future” of the next generation of Americans and also accused Beijing of being involved in a “blitzkrieg” economic warfare: an aggressive, orchestrated campaign by the Party (in fact, by all of society) to take advantage of the dominant economies and overtake the United States as the world’s dominant superpower.
“For American companies in the global marketplace, free and fair competition with China [the CCP] has long been a fantasy,” he added.
In recent weeks, the U.S. government has been taking concrete action against the CCP in the face of rising political tensions, mainly due to the CCP’s negligent handling of the pandemic, which affected the U.S. particularly hard.
Although the two countries still maintain the trade agreement signed in January, this week President Donald Trump provoked discontent in Beijing by revoking the special status for Hong Kong.
“No special privileges, no special economic treatment, and no export of sensitive technologies,” Donald Trump said at a press conference.
In addition, bipartisan legislation was passed to impose sanctions on Party officials believed to be undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy, which the CCP threatened with retaliation.
Regarding companies that have succumbed to Chinese influence campaigns, Barr gave Hollywood as an example.
“‘Take Hollywood.’Hollywood actors, producers, and directors pride themselves on celebrating freedom and the human spirit. And every year at the Academy Awards, Americans are lectured about how this country falls short of Hollywood’s ideals of social justice,” he added.
“Instead of America changing China [the CCP], China is leveraging its economic power to change America,” Barr said.
He referred to the censorship of Hollywood’s film industry in order not to inconvenience the CCP, calling it “the most powerful human rights violator in the world.”
As an example, Barr mentioned on “USA Today” the 2016 Marvel film “Dr. Strange,” where the filmmakers had changed the nationality of one of the main characters known as “Ancient Ones,” a Tibetan monk who was presented as being of Celtic origin.
“The story of the film industry’s submission to the CCP is a familiar one. In the past two decades, China has emerged as the world’s largest box office. The CCP has long tightly controlled access to that lucrative market—both through quotas on American films, imposed in violation of China’s WTO obligations, and a strict censorship regime,” Barr said during his at the Gerald R. Presidential Museum in Michigan.
Regarding China’s progress and its globalizing policies, Barr said, “Globalization does not always point in the direction of greater freedom. A world that marches to the drums of communist China will not be hospitable to institutions that depend on free markets, free trade, or the free exchange of ideas.”