|December 9, 2020|
Good morning! Today's newsletter includes:
- Chinese spy story shows danger of Beijing gaining influence
- Sullivan dismisses Flynn case but the madness lingers
- The Gov. answers reader about out-of-state campaign money
- Distressing news
- Most Shocking Yet Least Surprising News of the Day
Chinese spy story shows danger of Beijing gaining influence
By Mike Huckabee
There’s so much developing news today, it’s hard to know where to begin. But one emerging story ties in with something we've mentioned, that video of the Chinese lecturer explaining that, were it not for Trump, they would be having their way via their friends at the highest levels in Washington.
That story falls into the “shocking but not surprising” category. It’s chilling, if only because it seems so plausible at this time in our history. And today, we have another report, from AXIOS, about a political intelligence operation run by China’s main civilian spy agency between 2011 and 2015, during which they established and exploited “extensive ties” with local and national politicians, including Democrat Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee.
AXIOS has been investigating this story for over a year. Of course, you remember Swalwell, the shill for the Democrat Party who repeatedly lied and accused President Trump of collaborating with Russia. Swalwell was about on par with Adam Schiff, in that he could always be depended on to go before the TV cameras and say ANYTHING, no matter how outrageous or demonstrably false. It got to the point where whenever his face appeared on the screen, I had to scramble for the remote and press “mute.” Life is too short.
Beijing has obviously focused for years on gaining influence in U.S. political circles, and apparently has enjoyed quite a bit. As we see from the Chinese video, the election of President Trump was seen as their one big bump in the road. Things were going oh-so-well until he got elected. But they say that now, once again, they have someone in office that they can control---I mean, work with.
I imagine the ChiComms were really depressed the night of November 3, when they saw Trump was easily ahead. But then, the next morning, after the vote had been suspended in several states and the count suddenly favored Biden, they were popping the champagne corks for a lovely celebratory brunch.
(In related, breaking news, Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, is calling for a special counsel to investigate Hunter Biden’s ties with China and the access this might have given China to the Obama-Biden administration.)
As for this specific operative (SPY), a Chinese national whose name is either Fang Fang or Christine Fang, it appears her operation ended during the Obama administration, though China’s influence-expanding activities continue and are “a core focus for U.S. counterintelligence” (as they had better be). Fang reportedly targeted “up-and-coming” local politicians in the Bay Area and around the country, men who had “the potential to make it big on the national stage.” It’s easy to see why she might have targeted Swalwell, who doesn’t exactly come off as a rocket scientist but would relish the lights and cameras as a career launchpad.
According to AXIOS, Fang gained proximity to power through “campaign fundraising, extensive networking, personal charisma, and romantic or sexual relationships,” including with two Midwestern mayors.
A current U.S. intelligence official said that “there were some really, really sensitive people” caught up in this. I would presume this was a reference at least in part to Swalwell, as, again, he became a member of the House Intelligence Committee.
Fang took part in fundraising activities for Swalwell’s 2014 re-election campaign, although, as a foreign national, she did not –-- could not –- contribute herself. After that, she reportedly helped place at least one intern in Swalwell’s office. She also interacted with him at various events over several years.
Swalwell wouldn’t participate in the AXIOS story; his office said he hadn’t seen Fang in “nearly six years” but had provided information about her to the FBI.
This must be because around 2015, the FBI became alarmed at Fang’s activities and gave Swalwell a defensive briefing. He immediately cut all ties to her. She abruptly left the country in mid-2015, leaving acquaintances puzzled.
We don’t know how involved Swalwell was with this woman.
But what we do see from this story is how China –- like all governments that spy –- spends years cultivating relationships that might pay off even decades later. That appears to be the case here, as Fang first got to know Swalwell when he was a council member for Dublin, California. As AXIOS says, “The Chinese Communist Party knows that today’s mayors and city council members are tomorrow’s governors and members of Congress.” They play the long game.
Even FBI Director Chris Wray, in July 2020, said Beijing “is engaged in a highly sophisticated malign foreign influence campaign.” These efforts involve “subversive, undeclared, criminal, or coercive attempts to sway our government’s policies, distort our country’s public discourse and undermine our confidence in our democratic processes and values.”
As if that could get any worse. It would appear they’ve done their job, or at least are happy with what they see. But they're just getting started.
U.S. officials believe Fang was in the U.S. to gather intelligence and also “to influence rising U.S. officials on China-related issues.” China wants to be able “to sway the opinion of key decision-makers.” Fang apparently was being directed by China’s Ministry of State Security (MSS), the country’s primary civilian spy agency. Her main handlers are thought to have been in China. She was put under surveillance by the FBI’s San Francisco Division after being seen traveling around the country getting close to U.S. politicians.
Around 2015, the FBI started giving “multiple defensive briefings” to warn local and national politicians who had been targeted by Fang. That’s when Swalwell cut off ties.
“She was just one of lots of agents,” said a current senior U.S. intelligence official.
AXIOS goes through numerous reasons why the Bay Area is such a good place for the Chinese to spy. One is that it’s the home of one of our nation’s oldest and largest Chinese American communities. They want to indoctrinate Chinese Americans just as they do the Chinese.
Another reason that might not be so obvious is that Democrats run it. Those seeking power generally have to be from those circles. “Notice all the D’s next to their names,” says Jeff Dunetz for Lidblog.
One Bay Area political operative noted that Fang positioned herself “to be the connector between the Asian American community and members of Congress.” Some described her as “charismatic” and “well liked,” while others thought her “secretive” and “suspicious.”
Predictably, few professed to know her well, saying she didn’t talk about her family or hometown. But her Facebook friends list “is a virtual ‘who’s who’ of local Bay Area politicos, and includes city council members, current and former mayors, [California Rep. Ro] Khanna, and Swalwell’s father and brothers.” Again, all Democrats.
Fang is gone, but there’s no telling how many Chinese nationals are in this country for the same purposes of spying and intelligence gathering, every one as singleminded as she was.
But news is getting around now about Swalwell’s association with a Chinese "honeypot." Considering his repeated lies about Trump and Russia long after those allegations were known to be false, any bad press Swalwell gets now, deserved or not, I chalk up to karma. What goes around comes around.
Sullivan dismisses Flynn case but the madness lingers
By Mike Huckabee
On Tuesday, Judge Emmet Sullivan formally dismissed the case against Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, now that President Trump has pardoned Flynn, but it’s easy to see from the diatribe he wrote to do it that he still hasn’t let it go. I think what we’re seeing here is a prime example of Trump Derangement Syndrome being expressed from the bench.
Judge Sullivan obviously would still like to get Flynn on SOMETHING, as he felt the need to point out that a pardon “does not necessarily render” a defendant “innocent.” Also, the scope of this pardon is “extraordinarily broad,” he fumed. Every line reeks of petulance at the fact that Trump has finally put an end to this unjust prosecution. In fact, he's writing not so much as a judge in the case but as a prosecutor.
In Sullivan World, not only is Trump wrong for issuing such a broad pardon, but Flynn is wrong for accepting it. “Indeed,” Sullivan wrote, “the Supreme Court has recognized that the acceptance of a pardon implies a confession of guilt," and he cites a couple of cases. Now, wait just one minute. I’m not a lawyer, as I’ve reminded my readers many times, but this sounds to me like the ultimate Catch-22. It’s very much like what the judge tried to do to Flynn when he attempted to change his plea to not guilty. Sullivan maintained that if Flynn changed it to not guilty, that would mean he had perjured himself when he first pleaded guilty! So he either had to stick with the guilty plea or be found guilty of perjury. EITHER WAY: guilty.
This time, the judge gives him a similar choice: don’t accept the pardon and stand convicted as guilty, or do accept the pardon and, in effect, confess to being guilty. The second choice means no jail, but still, EITHER WAY: guilty, guilty, guilty.
The man didn’t do anything wrong. Evidence exists that he was ambushed in a perjury trap. There was no need even to interview him, as there had been nothing wrong with his talking to Ambassador Kislyak. It’s been shown that he was not being deceptive –- his questioners saw no sign of intent to deceive. Even Vice President Pence came to see that they’d had a miscommunication and that Flynn was not lying to him about the conversation with the ambassador.
The big problem for Flynn came with his original representation and the threats from the prosecution to go after his son, who had just become the father of a baby boy. Flynn pleaded guilty to try to end the legal nightmare. Then, when he did get a lawyer who was ready to go to the mat for him and tried to change his plea –- which had obviously been made under duress –- the judge wouldn’t let him.
Judge Sullivan doesn’t like that Trump gave Flynn a “full and unconditional pardon,” which protects him from being prosecuted for “any and all possible offenses” that might arise from the Mueller report. Deal with it, Judge.
I’m pretty sure Trump knew that with the way Sullivan keeps obsessing over prosecuting Flynn, he’d better word the pardon that way and make it crystal clear. Otherwise, Sullivan would never give up trying to find...something.
The judge goes on to call Trump’s decision to pardon Flynn “a political decision, not a legal one.” Really? With all due respect, where does he get off? How about calling it "a just and moral decision,” after this man has been put through literally years of legal hell, losing his home and his career over what was essentially nothing?
It’s the judge in this case who is guilty, of never-ending legal harassment. But in this case, I think we should allow him to plead not guilty, by reason of insanity. Then he could retire to a padded room and leave the judging to legal authorities who are not deranged.
The Gov. answers reader about out-of-state campaign money
By Mike Huckabee
Don't you literally run HuckPAC, which funnels out-of-state money into state elections? A little hypocritical here, aren't you?
From the Gov:
Thanks for writing, Erin. My commentary referred to massive attempts to “buy” state elections with literally hundreds of thousands of dollars pouring into a state such as Texas or Georgia for a single race. We’re talking about Big Tech billionaires and Hollywood moguls and celebrities donating not just to political parties but also funding so-called “nonpartisan” groups that literally pay cities to run elections their way to get the desired result. This is being done on an increasingly massive scale.
As was stated in the piece, outside money is needed by conservative candidates simply to remain competitive. The way the left organizes –- and, man, do they organize, as we are finding the more research we do –- it’s all we can do not to be steamrolled by leftists with vast, virtually unlimited amounts of outside cash. They are not about to stop doing this. As you can see if you visit the HuckPAC site, we’re helping in a relatively small way to help promote hundreds of conservative, pro-life candidates and help safeguard conservative principles.
I’d say there’s a little bit of difference between someone donating, say, $25 to support conservative principles and a California billionaire like Mark Zuckerberg essentially trying to control election outcomes in far-flung states.
By Mike Huckabee
This is distressing news: the Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal of “Parents for Privacy v. Barr, Attorney General et al.” The case challenges the federal policy of allowing students who claim to identify as the opposite gender to use bathrooms and locker rooms with students of the actual, biological gender.
This began with the 2015 Obama Department of Education ruling that it violated Title IX equal gender protection rules to prevent a male student who identified as female from using the girls’ restrooms and locker rooms at his school. It was then codified into law by the Supreme Court last June, when a majority decided that personal gender identity meant the same thing as biological sex under the 1964 Civil Rights law, an opinion that astoundingly was written by Trump appointee Neil Gorsuch. This was possibly the most clear-cut case in history of the SCOTUS not merely interpreting a law but rewriting it to twist it into something that the original authors obviously never intended.
LGBTQ activists hailed the SCOTUS’ denial of appeal as a great victory for transgender students, but to many more parents, it’s an outrageous assault on their daughters’ rights to privacy and safety, not to mention an affront to common sense. No reason was given for the Court’s rejection of the case, but with the recent SCOTUS decision and losses in lower courts, it might be hard to bring a successful challenge. (Incidentally, Joe Biden has vowed to reverse all Trump orders protecting students' rights to privacy and do even more to promote transgender rights, I assume at the expense of everyone else's rights, if this is any indication.)
Let us hope that 2022 will bring a veto-proof GOP majority back to Congress and that they will reclaim the legislature's job of lawmaking and make it clear that gender is a biological fact that doesn’t change just because someone wants it to. Providing private facilities for students who claim to identify as transgender is fine, but forcing their personal views on everyone, with no regard for all the negative consequences that might arise from people abusing the privilege, is as much of an unfair assault on the rights of girls as letting 200-pound male wrestlers who claim to identify as female pound them into the mat in girls’ school sports competitions.
Most Shocking Yet Least Surprising News of the Day
By Mike Huckabee
A video has surfaced of a Chinese professor speaking at Beijing’s Renmin University in late November. He told his audience that China had relied for decades on a network of “old friends” in “the core circle inside America’s real power” to influence U.S. policies, but the Trump administration disrupted that cozy relationship. China couldn’t rely on Wall Street because they didn’t control Trump. However, China is welcoming the prospect of a Joe Biden presidency.
Some of us had been warning about this for months prior to the election, but obviously, a lot of voters didn’t get the message (good job, mainstream news and social media outlets that make billions off of China.) The cozy relationship with China is one of the issues Biden voters say would've changed their votes if they'd only known.
Caveat: the story at the link notes that the professor also tells another story that’s been strongly disputed, but I dare social media sites to put one of their “This claim is disputed” labels on a story about how China would be thrilled over Joe Biden becoming President.
BIBLE VERSE OF THE DAY