Monday, February 21, 2022

News on the China Initiative

Via the New York Times, this news on the Justice Department's China Initiative: 
WASHINGTON — The Justice Department will soon announce changes to the China Initiative, a Trump-era effort to combat Chinese national security threats, after civil rights proponents, business groups and universities told the Biden administration that the program had fostered suspicion of Asian professors working in the United States, chilled scientific research and contributed to a rising tide of anti-Asian sentiment, according to people briefed on the matter.

The likely changes, including retiring the China Initiative name, are the result of a three-month evaluation undertaken by Matthew G. Olsen, the head of the Justice Department’s national security division.

The modifications to a program that brought espionage, trade-secrets theft and cybercrime cases under a single banner comes as Beijing continues to use spies, cyberhacking, theft and propaganda to challenge America’s standing as the world’s pre-eminent economic and military power — activity that has only grown more acute...
This closing comment bears some comment: 
Andrew E. Lelling, who was on the working group that led the China Initiative when he was the U.S. attorney in Boston, was one of the program’s strongest backers. His district was filled with institutes, universities and high-tech companies whose researchers were taking money from foreign governments, and he oversaw the case against Dr. Chen, as well as the successful prosecution of a chemistry professor at Harvard who hid his affiliations and payments from China.

Mr. Lelling said his thinking on the program had changed, in part because researchers were less of a concern. “We’re now in a different place from where we were four years ago,” he said. “Deterrence has been achieved.”
I'm terribly curious to ask Mr. Lelling: "at what cost?" 

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looks like Blogger doesn't work with anonymous comments from Chrome browsers at the moment - works in Microsoft Edge, or from Chrome with a Blogger account - sorry! CJ 3/21/20