Meng Wanzhou is headed back to court in Vancouver on May 8, as her extradition hearing inches nearer. The United States wants to try the Huawei chief financial officer on fraud charges, but that may be years away for the Dunbar resident living under round-the-clock security and a nighttime curfew.
Meng’s arrest last December at Vancouver International Airport prompted sympathizers to emerge, which then drew attention to the Chinese Communist Party and its program aimed at gaining influence elsewhere in the Pacific Rim under the banner of the United Front Work Department.
Clive Hamilton, a professor at Charles Sturt University in Canberra, Australia, says that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Canada’s Liberal government were caught like a deer in the headlights, dealing with a China that is acting more like a dragon than the panda they believed it to be.
Hamilton is author of “Silent Invasion: China’s Influence in Australia” and a recent visitor to Canada where he saw many parallels.
Agents of influence in Beijing-friendly business, expat and cultural clubs are exploiting the democratic practices of both Australia and Canada. They are using the free press (including social media platforms) to push the party line, using the legal process to silence critics, infiltrating political parties and grooming candidates for office. Their goal, through United Front, is to undermine resistance to the Chinese Communist Party.
“People whose allegiance is to a foreign country and a totalitarian foreign political party are now being represented at the local, provincial and federal level,” said Hamilton, in an interview with theBreaker.news Podcast host Bob Mackin. “It’s something that we, in democratic countries, have to grapple with.
“The CCP knows that its program of influence-buying and influence-gathering over the last decades has been extremely effective, so effective that it can get away with outrageous bullying and not get any pushback. Whether or not the government will push back depends, essentially, on the Canadian people.”
On this edition of theBreaker.news Podcast, hear from Hamilton, as the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre approaches.
Click below to listen or go to iTunes (aka Apple Podcasts) and subscribe.
Have you missed an edition of theBreaker.news Podcast? Go to the archive.
Support theBreaker.news for as low as $2 a month on Patreon. Find out how. Click here.