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China Circles the Wagons Around TikTok

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China

In follow up to the recent Congressional hearing on TikTok, Chinese state-run media was swift to condemn any scrutiny of the platform. China is claiming through its state-run media that criticism of TikTok is rooted in anti-China prejudice, that TikTok is harmless and not different from any other social media platform, and that it is the US, not China, that is the bad actor.

CCP Claims Scrutiny of TikTok Based on Prejudice Against China

According to China’s state-run media, the US is attacking TikTok out of racial and political prejudice towards China. Criticisms of TikTok based on security concerns amount to “casual, racially-charged slander” and a “Sinophobic witch-hunt,” according to Global Times. That same article claimed that TikTok “has a large target on its back simply because it is Chinese-owned.” Another Global Times article portrayed the Congressional hearing on TikTok as “xenophobic political grandstanding.”

And Chinese media used statements from Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) to launder its claim that concerns about TikTok stem from racism. China Daily quoted Bowman as saying: “…Let’s not be racist toward China and express our xenophobia when it comes to TikTok because American companies have done tremendous harm to American people.”

Another Global Times article portrayed the hearing as an “anti-Communist witch hunt,” while the same article claimed that “[t]he ghost of McCarthyism is haunting the US again.” Another Global Times article featured a political cartoon with a similar caption: “Ghost of McCarthyism haunts TikTok Hearing.”

CCP Claims that TikTok is an Innovator, and Not Different from Other Social Media

TikTok is a strong innovator not worthy of scrutiny, according to Chinese state-run media. TikTok is “an innovative app that has enriched the digital life of American people and benefited a lot of micro businesses in the US,” according to Global Times. TikTok “…is a global high-tech company representing openness, innovation, and vitality…,” according to another Global Times article. It is “a leader in digital technology and advanced algorithms” and “a competition for technology and competition for markets,” according to a third Global Times piece. It is “a massively successful business,” according to yet another Global Times article.

CCP media also claims that TikTok doesn’t pose any threat different from other social media. One Global Times article laments that there is a “plethora of international experts highlighting the massive hypocrisy that non-Chinese apps such as Facebook and Google harvest much more data than their Beijing-based rival,” and that there is “nothing to prove [TikTok] is a greater risk than any other social media.” TikTok’s CEO testified that “We are committed to be very transparent with our users about what we collect,” and that “I don’t believe what we collect is more than most players in the industry,” according to another Global Times article.

CCP Claims that Focus on TikTok Reveals US (not China) is Bad Actor

Chinese state-run media also tries to capitalize on the attention on TikTok to issue propaganda criticizing the US. The “witch-hunting against TikTok” show that the “US’ technological innovation is going downhill and the political farce against a tiny app has seriously shattered the US values of fair competition and its credibility,” states Global Times.

And the CCP media accuses the US of doing what China has doing for years: intellectual property theft. According to China Daily, the Congressional hearing “is just the latest attempt by the US to steal the company.” The “US has turned from a cradle of innovation into a robber,” according to another Global Times article.

China’s state-run media is once again trying to deflect and redirect attention away from China’s malevolent actions. With TikTok, China alleges that viewing TikTok in a critical light is racist, that TikTok is an innovative application worthy of praise, and that any criticism of TikTok reviews flaws with the US, not China. Given the platform’s increased popularity in the United States, it unfortunately appears that these CCP talking points are convincing a significant segment of the American population.

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China

Border Patrol Council President concerned over ‘influx’ of military-aged Chinese men crossing the southern border

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US chinese relations

According to U.S. Customs and Border Patrol data Border Patrol agents detained over 30,000 Chinese individuals for illegally crossing the border from January to November 2023, sparking concern.

Just The News reports that National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd on Wednesday said the United States should be incredibly concerned by the influx of military-aged Chinese men coming across the southern border.

“Why are we seeing this influx?” Judd asked on the “Just the News, No Noise” TV show. “At best, they’re just coming here for a better life or for a better job. At worse, they’re coming here to be part of the Chinese government, and that’s what scares me an awful lot.”

“We know that the Chinese have huge gangs here in the United States, and they control certain parts of our country,” he later said. “They control the drug flow. They control the prostitution. They control everything that’s illegal in certain portions of the country. We have to look into that. It’s very important that we understand why we are having so many people from China, especially military-aged men, from China.”

“I don’t want to cause mass hysteria where United States citizens are violent towards people from China,” Judd said. “However, we have to … allow the intelligence community to do their job. We’ve got to let law enforcement do their job and look into these individuals.”

Many Chinese immigrants are leaving due to economic conditions in China and its strict lockdowns, Yahoo News reported.

“Again, at best, they’re here for a better life,” Judd said. “At worst, they’re here to be part of the Chinese government to infiltrate our own country.”

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