President Joe Biden’s CIA Director William Burns hired members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) whilst he was running a powerful Democrat-aligned elite Washington D.C. think tank.
Burns formerly headed the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, an influential D.C. think tank that exclusively funds Democrats, including Joe Biden.
During Burns’s tenure as president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace from February 2015 to November 2021, the organization hired undisclosed CCP members as well as individuals with ties to China’s government.
These CCP members worked at both Carnegie’s Washington, D.C., headquarters and Carnegie-Tsinghua.
However, expert profiles on Carnegie’s website don’t disclose these individuals’ ties to China’s communist regime.
Their communist ties were only exposed after an analysis of hundreds of Chinese-language, Communist Party branch records and personnel profiles from more than a dozen CCP-linked organizations.
Burns’s tenure at Carnegie coincided with increased alarm from the FBI concerning the CCP conducting “malign influence operations” against key American institutions.
In July 2020, FBI Director Christopher Wray warned that the CCP seeks to “influence our policymakers” and “manipulate our public opinion” by exploiting the “openness” of our society.
Considering such warnings, employing CCP members and those with Chinese government ties raises red flags, national security experts said.
“It’s pretty much a fatal cul-de-sac that [Burns] finds himself in,” Steve Yates, former deputy national security adviser to the vice president, told the Daily Caller.
“Either he appears to have allowed government-linked experts from a hostile power to affiliate with an organization boasting many former and future U.S. appointees or he didn’t know or bother to check — a remarkable lapse in operational security for a highly-cleared former U.S. official and pretty disqualifying for a director of Central Intelligence,” said Yates.
“If you can’t track who was in your think tank, running a much larger intelligence agency is the wrong line of work.”
CCP members swear an oath to the Communist Party pledging to “fight for communism” and “sacrifice everything for the party and the people,” according to the Constitution of the Communist Party of China.
Moreover, in keeping with China’s “Thousand Grains of Sand” intelligence-gathering strategy, Chinese intelligence often recruits members of the overseas Chinese community to collect information for the state, according to the CIA.
“If any Communist Party members have easy access to any sensitive information whatsoever, they’re certain to get a visit from Chinese intelligence,” said Yates.
“They will have no choice but to gather and disclose on a regular basis going forward.”
CCP members will go to great lengths to “avoid suspicion” while they conduct influence operations against foreign institutions, added Brandon Weichert, a national security expert, and consultant for the U.S. Air Force.
“They’ll do their job and you will not know that they are actually Chinese agents of influence until the moment that Beijing decides they need something,” Weichert said.
“They could exist for years in a sleeper mentality.”
He testified under oath that he’d terminated Carnegie’s relationship with the Chinese government-backed group after being pressed on those ties by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL).
“This is a relationship that I inherited when I became president of Carnegie and that I ended not long after I became president,” Burns told Rubio during the hearing.
Rubio warned that “the Biden Administration doesn’t have a plan to protect America’s economic and national security from Beijing.”
“Either they don’t understand the Chinese Communist threat or they simply don’t care because they’re desperate for solar panels and electric batteries from China,” the senator added.