What you’re about to read is not the plot of some futuristic, apocalyptic Tom Clancy thriller. Unfortunately — tragically — it is another real-life example of how American leadership is selling out our very national security.
The Clinton administration has approved a plan to lease the former U.S. Navy base at Long Beach, Calif., to a Chinese military front that, according to U.S. intelligence sources, plans to use as a joint Chinese-Russian intelligence operation and rocket-launching pad.
China and Russia signed a secret spy-partnership agreement in 1992 — and this deal, according to the Sept. 8 issue of Insight magazine, is the piece de resistance to that pact.
The current plans call for the infamous Chinese company Cosco to build a 275-acre, $200 million terminal and on-dock railyard, making it the largest such facility in the United States. Right next door, Sea Launch, an international venture led by the Russian rocket firm RSC-Energia, will build a launching pad capable of blasting satellites into orbit.
Sea Launch is controlled by the GRU, the Russian military-intelligence successor to the KGB, according to both U.S. and Russian intelligence officers.
“The concern is that Beijing, teamed with Russia, eventually will own a West Coast rocket-launching pad and a naval base on U.S. soil from which to transfer secret high-tech equipment back to the People’s Liberation Army, or PLA, in sealed containers aboard huge Cosco ships,” reports Insight.
Cosco commands a 600-ship fleet with a shady recent past. Last year, 2,000 AK-47 assault rifles bound for U.S. street gangs were seized on one of the vessels in Oakland by U.S. Customs agents. But that kind of thing is child’s play, according to one investigator quoted by Insight, compared to Cosco’s plans for Long Beach.
“Cosco has specific roles in the PLA’s contingency plan of dominating East Asia and future war with Taiwan,” he said. That role is to steal sophisticated technology from the West in peacetime. “Their strategic thinking is very similar to the Japanese in the 1930s. Sooner or later they are going to confront us on who is going to be the boss out in East Asia.”
Despite congressional pleas for review of the plan, the Clinton administration’s decision is final. That means our national security concerns rest in the hands of some city officials in Long Beach, some of whom are dazzled by promises that some 600 jobs will be created and millions pumped into the local economy by the construction and operation of the facility.
But you’ve got to believe that there’s more to this sellout than wishful thinking on the part of administration officials. Remember that President Clinton granted Cosco adviser Hongye Zheng permission to attend one of his Saturday morning radio broadcasts last year before the election. This invitation, of course, came at the same time Clinton and the Democratic National Committee were courting mysterious Asian dollars for their campaign warchests. It came after Johnny Chung, now thought to be hiding in China, raised some $391,000 for the party.
In fact, it was shortly after that contribution that Dorothy Robyn of the president’s National Economic Council called Long Beach officials with this great plan. That’s right. The whole idea was initiated by the White House — or, should we say, Beijing West.
I seldom find myself at a loss for words. But this Long Beach deal staggers the imagination. It’s difficult to believe that there are any Americans — anywhere, let alone the occupants of the White House — who can’t comprehend the threat such a project poses to America’s security.
Yet, I closely monitor our national press and see little interest. I watch in bemusement the Sunday talking head shows, and the topic seldom provokes any discussion. It hasn’t even come up in the campaign-financing scandal hearings of Sen. Fred Thompson.
Is it possible in this so-called enlightened, information age that such a monumental decision could be made without any debate — without any referendum, congressional action or independent analysis or sober review?