The administration of President Barack Obama, whose official blogger while Obama was a candidate came under attack for hanging a Communist Party flag in his Harvard apartment, apparently has given permission to raise the emblem of Communist China over the south lawn of the White House.
The plan, reported by several English-language Chinese media outlets, has raised concern among those who are working to guard the United States from outside influences that could be threats.
According to the Global Times English-language edition, the national flag of the communist People's Republic of China on Sept. 20 will be raised for the first time on the White House's south lawn – a secured area seldom available for public events – in recognition of the Chinese anniversary.
"The ceremony has gotten official approval," Xiao Shuigen, secretary of the Union of Chinese American Professional Organizations, told the Times.
"It was always my dream to raise a Chinese flag in the center of Washington, D.C.," Chen Ronghua, chief of the U.S.-Fujian Association, told the newspaper. "This year, my motherland's 60th birthday, is the perfect time for it."
According to China Daily, Chinese associations in the United States applied to have a ceremony.
Such emblems were an issue during Obama's presidential campaign, when a Houston Fox TV affiliate captured images of a volunteer in an Obama campaign office working in front of a flag featuring the image of Che Guevara, the South American revolutionary who became Fidel Castro's executioner after the communist takeover in Cuba.
At that time, the Obama campaign issued a statement calling the flag "inappropriate" and noting that the office where it was displayed was funded by "volunteers" and was not the official campaign headquarters.
However, it was Sam Graham-Felsen, a journalist-on-leave from The Nation, who joined Obama for America in 2007 and worked as the official blogger. He, according to a 2003 article in the Harvard Crimson, adorned one corner of his shared student apartment with "a Communist Party flag ... bought on their trip to Russia the summer after sophomore year."
The proposed event at the White House was condemned on the forums page on Fox News commentator Sean Hannity's website.
"People could understand if there was a Chinese visitor at the White House and the Red flag was placed on the stage behind the speakers, but to hoist the commie pinko flag in 'honor' of the founding of the People's Republic of China is absurd," the forum participant said. "This only goes to prove the Obama administration is out-of-touch with the American people."
William Gheen, chief of Americans for Legal Immigration, the pre-eminent organization battling against illegal immigration, said it's the message that is sent to the world that will be significant.
"Our concern is that sovereign wealth funds, like the Chinese, now control the executive branch more than the American people," he said. "China is not our friend. China is our enemy. Our enemy is coming and raising their own flag in a type of proclamation.
"I expect the Chinese media will make a big thing of it," he said, saying something like, "'Look how strong and powerful China is, raising our flag on the White House.'"
He said it conveys the same message as if Old Glory would be raised on the property of the Kremlin.
Gheen said the issue becomes clear "why the new water stations at illegal alien crossings into the United States have instructions in English, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese."
At the Red County blog, the author said, "Celebrating Americans of Chinese descent is one thing. Celebrating Communism is another. Now our president will hoist the Communist flag over the White House. How fitting and in sync with his political belief system."
A spokesman for the American Legion told WND that if the proper protocols are followed, there should be no issue with the actual display of a Chinese flag, especially since diplomatic visits routinely include the display of foreign flags.
But those with obviously U.S. leanings on the Global Times forum page were outraged.
- "Another public short coming and failure by the Obama administration."
- "It can now be official – leave the flag there."
- "So let me get this straight – the Chinese are going to celebrate the founding of their country on the south lawn of the White House! Did we celebrate the 4th of July in Beijing in front of their Leader's House? What other proof do you need that Obama is the Manchurian Candidate."
- "Oh Crap, Have the Chinese foreclosed on us already?