FBI overplays ‘China threat’ theory to stay relevant

Source:Global Times Published: 2018/9/14 23:18:41

During FBI Director Christopher Wray's interview with CBS on Wednesday, he said that China is looking to steal secrets from the US on everything from technology to agriculture, and thus China is the target of economic espionage investigations in nearly all 56 of the FBI's field offices.

This is not the first time a senior US intelligence official has played up the "China espionage threat" theory. In July, Wray described China as "the broadest, most challenging, most significant threat we face as a country."

The US is the world's top intelligence power. It has the world's most powerful espionage and counterintelligence technologies and network, and is also constantly creating the world's most complex and thrilling spy stories.

Who would be the target of this spy kingdom? No country can choose apart from the US. Any nation, which is strong enough to challenge the US' status and can be labeled as a major US rival, may become such a target. How Wray described China is in line with Washington's strategic positioning of Beijing and caters to current US public opinion.

In the interview, Wray noted, "I see 37,000 men and women who get up every day trying to keep 325 million American people safe." But his self-praise will only aggravate the anxiety and fear of Americans.

Without fear, the FBI won't exist. Without creating more fear, the FBI would lose its reason to exist. That's why when its 37,000 employees start work every day, all they see are threats.

In his book Culture of Fear, US sociologist Barry Glassner noted that American people's fear stems largely from wrong information. The culture of fear has brought huge losses to the US, making US citizens spend time on unnecessary things. As a result, they neglect real social problems that need to be addressed, such as inequality, poverty and racism.

Wray's remarks show that fear has never gone away in the US and has been looking for opportunities to stage a comeback.

A prominent characteristic of fear is that it can lead to a vicious cycle of pathological psychology, convincing people that the threats they are confronting are continuously expanding. During the McCarthy era, some people even believed that the US government was infiltrated by Communists and thus demanded that the FBI carry out a comprehensive cleansing.

Today, as US senior officials continue to sensationalize the "China espionage threat" theory, some US universities and research institutes have already begun to investigate scholars in China's Thousand Talents Program, which was launched in 2008 to support 10,000 brilliant minds in the natural sciences, engineering, philosophy, social sciences and higher education.

The world's most powerful intelligence agency needs such fear - a fear that can make it and others feel terrified. But such fear will inevitably lead to more divisions and hostility in the globalized world.



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