Many observers suggest the Chinagate scandal is the one that will
ultimately topple the Clinton administration.
It certainly should. Yet Clinton has many allies in his battle to
stonewall the investigation of high crimes and apparent treason along
the nightmarish money trail linking Beijing, the captains of corporate
America and the White House.
Let me quote from a San Francisco Chronicle dispatch dated April 10,
1997: “In the months leading up to a crucial 1994 decision in Washington
on China’s trading status, the Chinese government made a very shrewd
political move. It spent billions.
“The money did not go to U.S. lawmakers, lobbyists or public
relations firms — at least directly. The money, in the form of future
business deals, went to Boeing, Ford, Time Warner, IBM and other titans
of U.S. industry. The companies hardly needed to be told what to do
next. None of the details could survive the imposition of new trade
barriers brought on by a deterioration in U.S.-China relations.”
So American capitalism went to work doing the bidding of the Chinese.
Executives were flown to Washington to hold urgent meetings with
legislators. Pro-China columns were delivered to newspapers. Local
organizations were established in key states. Money was distributed to
“The China lobby is among the most sophisticated in Washington,” the
report continued. “Those who help advance China’s interest include
former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, Alexander
Haig, Lawrence Eagleburger and Cyrus Vance — each of whom has earned
tens of thousands of dollars from U.S. businesses doing business in
Some, like Haig and Kissinger, get their money more directly, as well
— from government-owned Chinese companies.
When you hear Clinton partisans asking if a president could really be
bought off with a few hundred thousand dollars of Chinese People’s
Liberation Army money laundered through Johnny Chung and John Huang, you
are listening to deliberate diversion.
Firms belonging to the U.S.-China Business Council contributed more
than $55 million to political campaigns in 1995 and 1996.
Of course, that money flowed into both Democrat and Republican
campaigns — a fact that threatens any impartial investigation of the
Chinagate scandal. Nevertheless, there’s a big difference between voting
for Most Favored Nation status for China and deliberately diverting
technology with critical military significance to a hostile foreign
The congressional chambers are filled with politicians who have taken
this suspect money. Will they be able to differentiate between the bad
political decisions they have made and the national security crimes of
the Clinton administration? Will they be able to overcome the
duplicitous criticism of the ongoing investigations by the likes of
busybody George Bush? Will they be able to overcome the government-media
complex led by many of the compromised corporations already in bed with
China — from Time Warner to ABC-Disney?
I don’t know the answers to those questions, but they are frightening
to consider. The very fate of our nation hangs in the balance. In a very
real sense, China has already orchestrated a masterful international
political coup. Those who, in the interest of their country, break ranks
with the poor choices of the past risk political blackmail — or worse.
The good news is there are politicians speaking out — even
Democrats. Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, D-NY, told “Fox News Sunday”
the nuclear crisis in South Asia is a direct result of this China lobby.
“The Chinese believe we will do business with them — no matter who
they do business with,” he said.
Sens. Tom Daschle and Joe Biden have also tried to put distance
between themselves and this scandal. The House of Representatives voted
417-4 last week in favor of a resolution demanding the president give
away no new technology while in China next month. This was a very
unusual rebuke for any president, let alone this one.
Some Democrats may be preparing to jump ship simply because they fear
how history will judge them, but it’s good news, nonetheless. This
scandal will never be exposed by Republicans alone.
Is there hope? I remain an eternal optimist. I can’t believe the
American Dream is over. This country’s history is simply too great for
it to end in a political fire sale orchestrated by the fascist military
merchants in Beijing.