China expert Gordon Chang reports that the Chinese Communist Party likely has thousands of American professors on its payroll. The senior fellow at the Gatestone Institute cited as part of his report the case of Charles Lieber, former chair of the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard. Lieber was recently found guilty of six felony misrepresentations and lying to government officials.
Lieber had been known as one of America’s top research chemists but was later caught lying to the FBI about his involvement in the Chinese government’s “Thousand Talents Program.” It was learned that he was receiving approximately $50,000 a month from the Chinese and further failed to declare the income on his tax returns.
Chang reported that the case against Lieber was “airtight” but still resulted in many of America’s elite academics protesting his prosecution by the Justice Department. He said the resistance was because the Chinese regime has “bought America’s academic community.”
He said that the government did not prosecute Leiber for stealing intellectual property or spying for China but instead went after relatively more minor charges to ensure convictions. Nevertheless, he insists that Lieber caused significant injury to the US and recruited fellow Americans to work in China.
Charles Burton, a Canadian expert on China’s infiltration of the West, said that scientists worldwide who are research leaders in their fields have been targeted by China’s use of extravagant incentives that exploit the academics’ “vanity, naiveté, and greed.” As an example, China offered to support Lieber in his attempt to win a Nobel Prize in addition to the money he was paid. Chang added that he believes Lieber probably lied because he knew he was wrong to harm the US by receiving payments.
Chang went on to say that he has been told by experts that there are “thousands” of professors in California’s universities alone who are receiving money from the Chinese regime.
Because China treats the competition for scientific talent as an international war, Chang says that Americans taking payments from Beijing are, in essence, traitors to the US, “whatever their intentions.”