American Traitors: Academics Working for China

- GATESTONE INSTITUTE - Gordon G. Chang - DEC 30, 2021 -

China's regime has bought America's academic community and turned it against America. Charles Lieber (pictured), "one of the country's top research chemists," was recently found guilty of six felony crimes related to his participation in communist China's Thousand Talents Program. (Photo by Menahem Kahana/AFP via Getty Images)
  • China's regime has bought America's academic community and turned it against America.

  • "This case is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of what needs to be done by the U.S. government to penetrate and prosecute China's co-option of America's academia." — Kerry Gershaneck, the author of Political Warfare: Strategies for Combating China's Plan to "Win Without Fighting" and a professor in Taiwan, to Gatestone, December 2021.

  • "Scientists around the world, identified as leaders in areas of advanced research that are strategic priorities, are targeted by a well-funded sophisticated engagement that plays on their vanity, naiveté, and greed." — Charles Burton, former professor at Brock University and now a leading expert on China's infiltration of Canada, to Gatestone.

  • I am told there are "thousands" of professors on Beijing's payroll in California universities.

  • Xi is serious about attracting talents like Lieber. In his September speech, Xi said he would "exhaust all means" to recruit foreigners.

  • In China's official war on America — People's Daily in May 2019 declared a "people's war" on the United States — Americans working for Beijing, whatever their intention, are essentially traitors. Lieber, a traitor, has inflicted incalculable damage on America.

It took a federal jury in Boston less than three hours to return guilty verdicts on all six felony counts against Charles Lieber, the former chair of Harvard University's Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology.


Lieber, "one of the country's top research chemists" according to the New York Times, lied to the FBI about his participation in Beijing's Thousand Talents Program, did not pay income tax on money from Chinese sources, and failed to report his Chinese bank account to the Internal Revenue Service.


The case against the Harvard academic was airtight. Nonetheless, members of America's academic elite are up in arms that the Department of Justice prosecuted Lieber, and many are campaigning against law enforcement efforts.


China's regime has bought America's academic community and turned it against America.

"The conviction of Lieber is very good news," Kerry Gershaneck, the author of Political Warfare: Strategies for Combating China's Plan to "Win Without Fighting" and a professor in Taiwan, tells Gatestone. "This case is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of what needs to be done by the U.S. government to penetrate and prosecute China's co-option of America's academia."


Justice did not go after Lieber for espionage or intellectual property theft. Instead, it hit him with relatively minor charges in order to obtain convictions. Yet make no mistake: Lieber's activities were deeply injurious to the United States. The Harvard professor recruited American talent to work in China. In 2011, Lieber had agreed to become a "strategic scientist" at the Wuhan University of Technology and consequently a part of the Thousand Talents Program, an effort to attract foreign specialists for Beijing.


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