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Biden Scraps Trump Mandate For Universities To Report Chinese Dealings

President Trump made sure that any institutions failing to comply would lose certification for the Student and Exchange Visitor Program. Now Biden has scrapped the policy.

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Joe Biden has scrapped a policy instituted by President Trump that mandated US colleges and universities to report all connections with the Chinese government to encourage transparency in the face of evidence that CCP propaganda is infiltrating the education system.

Axios reports that Trump enacted a policy demanding that education institutions disclose all dealings with the controversial Chinese Confucius Institute.

Trump made sure that under the new policy any institutions failing to comply would lose certification for the Student and Exchange Visitor Program.

However, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs documents show that Biden scrapped the policy on January 26, with an ICE official also confirming to Campus Reform that the policy was done away with by Biden.

In 2018, Trump also signed the National Defense Authorization Act, into which Senator Ted Cruz had placed a provision prohibiting funding to the Chinese-run Confucius Institutes on American campuses. Since that time, scores of schools have closed their Confucius Institute, according to Human Rights Watch.

However, College Fix reported that multiple institutions being scrutinised by the Department of Education have refused to provide internal documents that are thought to contain evidence of undisclosed financial grants from the Chinese government.

Now they don’t have to. Biden has seen to that, once again placating the Communist state.

As we previously reported, many universities throughout America are still allowing what have been described as Chinese propaganda centers to operate on their campuses, despite warnings from intelligence officials that the communist state is using them to infiltrate US society and indoctrinate Americans.

US intelligence agencies have previously labeled the Confucius Institutes as a national security threat, and several universities have since trashed the programs.

In congressional testimony in 2018, FBI Director Christopher Wray warned that “The level of naïveté on the part of the academic sector about this creates its own issues. They’re exploiting the very open research and development environment that we have, which we all revere. But they’re taking advantage of it.”

In January, the Department of Justice also arrested a professor at Harvard, as well as two Chinese nationals for reportedly acting as foreign agents.

An engineering professor at the University of Arkansas was also arrested by the FBI and faces up to 20 years in prison for allegedly hiding funding that he received from the communist Chinese government.

Congressional Republicans also expressed concerns that China is attempting to hinder US coronavirus research through such infiltration of US universities.

In May last year, the FBI issued a PSA warning of the Chinese government’s intention to steal American medical research in its quest to find a cure for COVID-19.

Speaking to Campus Reform, Gordon Chang, an expert on United States-China relations, and author of The Coming China Collapse, noted that “estimates put the annual theft of American intellectual property at somewhere between $150-600 billion a year.”

“Some of that actually takes place on American college campuses. China has bought a number of college professors, a number of them have been fingered by the FBI and they’re pending investigations, and Chinese students have been engaged in activities…for instance, downloading entire databases for China.”  Chang added.

Referring to the Confuscious Institutes, Chang said that they “report in reality to the Communist Party’s United Front Work Department. That means these are attempts to subvert other countries.“

“The U.S. is not permitted to have institutes like this in China. You don’t have a Lincoln Center or Roosevelt Institute… we know that propaganda is absolutely critical to totalitarian regimes.” Chang urged.

“They want to put forth narratives and restrict what is said about China on American campuses.” Chang asserted, adding that “You’ve got to remember that the Chinese regime is deeply racist with its Han nationalist ideology. This is something we haven’t quite seen since The Third Reich.”

The problem extends beyond the US, with European officials also expressing concerns that China is using the programs to infiltrate and spy on other countries. Some nations have outright banned the Chinese from setting up the institutes at their universities.

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US Tells Snowden Return Home To “Face Justice” Or Risk Conscription In Russian Army

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Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for WIRED25

Upon learning of Monday’s decree signed by Vladimir Putin to grant Russian citizenship to ex-NSA employee Edward Snowden after having been given asylum since he arrived there in 2013, the US administration called on Snowden to return to American soil to “face justice”.

“Mr. Snowden should return to the United States where he should face justice as any other American citizen would,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said Monday.

But Price followed with a claim that’s being disputed by Snowden’s legal defense team. “Perhaps the only thing that has changed, is that as a result of his Russian citizenship, apparently now he may well be conscripted to fight in Russia’s war in Ukraine,” he said.

In response, Snowden’s lawyer was quoted in Russia’s Sputnik as saying since Snowden never served in the Russian army, he will not be impacted by the ‘partial mobilization’ – which applies to reservists, though there have been conflicting reports of instances of draft notices being sent out to Russian young men:

“He did not serve in the Russian army, therefore, according to our current legislation, he does not fall into this category of citizens, which is now called up. You know that now they are calling up reservists who have served and have the appropriate specialty. And then he will act according to the law, as everything is provided for in Russian legislation,” Anatoly Kucherena, Snowden’s laywer in Russia, said.

The decree enacted on Monday stated as follows:

“In accordance with paragraph ‘a’ of Article 89 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, I decide: to accept the following persons in the citizenship of the Russian Federation: Edward Joseph Snowden, born June 21, 1983, in the United States of America.”

In a statement posted to Twitter, Snowden said he had applied for and obtained dual citizenship on fears that he could be separated from his son without Russian citizenship.

Snowden remains America’s most visible whistleblower, after a career in US intelligence, including as a contractor for the NSA and CIA, he exposed pervasive US government domestic surveillance, which critics say is a severe violation of individual Americans’ rights as guaranteed under the Constitution.

This post originally appeared at Zero Hedge

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Video: French PM Declares EU Will Be ‘Vigilant’ Against ‘Threat’ Of Democratically Elected Italian Leader

“In Europe, we have a set of values ​​and, of course, we will be mindful that these values ​​are respected by everyone.”

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Steve Watson

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Following the stunning election of conservative candidate Georgia Meloni to the office of Prime Minister in Italy, Meloni’s French counterpart has declared that the EU will be ‘vigilant’ against any ‘threat to human rights’ posed by the democratically elected leader.

France’s Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, stated during an interview that the EU intends to scrutinise the actions of the Italy’s first woman PM.

“In Europe, we have a set of values ​​and, of course, we will be mindful that these values ​​are respected by everyone when it comes to human rights and the right to abortion,” Borne proclaimed.

Meloni, a Catholic, has previously promised that there will be no crack down on abortion in Italy, but has expressed a desire to see more alternatives offered to women.

The comments of the French PM come after European Commission head Ursula von der Leyen threatened to punish Italy for electing a right-wing coalition government.

Von der Leyen stated that “we have tools” if Italy is not “willing to work with us”:

The thinly veiled threat was blasted by Matteo Salvini, head of Lega (The League), the party expected to form a coalition with Meloni’s government.

“These are disgusting words, the threatening tone is unacceptable,” Salvini urged, adding “Our parliamentary group will present a motion of censure,” and emphasising that the Italian people control what happens in their country, not “the Brussels bureaucrats”.

Following the victory of Meloni’s Brothers of Italy party, hysterical media coverage ensued, with numerous publications warning of the “return of fascism in Italy.”

Those concerns were rubbished by, of all people, former leftist Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, who called them “fake news.”

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    China Accuses NSA Of Hacking Into Government-Funded University

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    Three months after US security agencies warned that Chinese-backed hackers had been targeting “major telecommunications companies and network service providers” for over two years, Chinese state media on Thursday accused the National Security Agency (NSA) of infiltrating a government-funded university and gaining access to ‘China’s telecommunications network,’ CNBC reports.

    Citing an unnamed source, the Global Times accused the NSA of phishing – a hacking technique which uses malicious links or other methods to trick users into providing access credentials – to gain access to Northwestern Polytechnical University, where they allegedly stole “core technology data including key network equipment configuration, network management data, and core operational data,” along with other files.

    The report goes on to claim that the NSA infiltrated Chinese telecom operators in an effort to “control the country’s infrastructure.” 

    The Global Times, citing its unnamed source, reported that more details about the attack on Northwestern Polytechnical University will be released soon.

    For several years, China has accused the U.S. of cyberattacks but has not been specific. However, in the last few weeks, Beijing has been more vocal in attributing particular attacks to the U.S., in a ramping up of tensions between the two nations in the cyber sphere. -CNBC

    The alleged attack was discovered by China’s National Computer Virus Emergency Response Center several weeks ago, which also accused the US of engaging in “tens of thousands” of cyberattacks on Chinese targets.

    Conversely, the US has accused China of massive hacking operations – with FBI Director Christopher Wray claiming in February that Beijing’s cyberattacks have become “more brazen, more damaging, than ever before,” in their attempts to steal US information and technology.

    In June, US security agencies warned that Chinese-backed hackers were targeting “major telecommunications companies and network service providers” since 2020.

    In a June 7 cybersecurity advisory, they urged those affected to take immediate remedial action.

    The advisory, coauthored by the National Security Agency (NSA), the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), said the hackers “continue to exploit publicly known vulnerabilities,” using tactics to bypass defenses and keeping themselves undetected.

    The agencies pointed out that the hackers allegedly utilized open-source tools, such as RouterSploit and RouterScan, and known software flaws in networking devices such as routers.

    “[T]hese devices are often overlooked by cyber defenders, who struggle to maintain and keep pace with routine software patching of Internet-facing services and endpoint devices,” noted the agencies.

    The agencies did not identify the victim companies in the advisory, but they included a list of the common vulnerabilities and exposures (CVEs) most frequently exploited by the Chinese regime’s hackers since 2020, together with vulnerability types and the major vendors—Cisco, Citrix, D-Link, Fortinet, and Netgear.

    They urged potential victims to shore up their networks by applying immediate patches, updating infrastructure, and disabling unnecessary ports and protocols.

    This post was originally published at Zero Hedge

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