Just days after leaked video from China exposed details of China having “people at the top of America’s core inner circle of power and influence,” which was followed by Eric Swalwell’s ‘fang-banger-gate’ debacle, Sky News Australia reports that a major leak containing a register with the details of nearly two million CCP members has occurred – exposing members who are now working all over the world, while also lifting the lid on how the party operates under Xi Jinping..
This report reinforces details exposed in 2018, when a series of leaked internal documents revealed that China’s military reforms are aimed at allowing Beijing to “manage a crisis, contain a conflict, win a war” and overtake the United States in military strength:
“As we open up and expand our national interests beyond borders, we desperately need a comprehensive protection of our own security around the globe,” read the leaked documents, which adds that a strong military is the best way to “escape the obsession that war is unavoidable between an emerging power and a ruling hegemony”.
Which led to recent concerns about China’s increasingly ‘hyrbid’ war efforts around the world.
As ABC reported in September, a Chinese company with links to Beijing’s military and intelligence networks has been amassing a vast database of detailed personal information on thousands of Australians, including prominent and influential figures.
A database of 2.4 million people, including more than 35,000 Australians, has been leaked from the Shenzhen company Zhenhua Data which is believed to be used by China’s intelligence service, the Ministry of State Security.
Zhenhua boasts of having the People’s Liberation Army and the Chinese Communist Party among its main clients.
Information collected includes dates of birth, addresses, marital status, along with photographs, political associations, relatives and social media IDs.
Zhenhua’s chief executive Wang Xuefeng, a former IBM employee, has used Chinese social media app WeChat to endorse waging “hybrid warfare” through manipulation of public opinion and “psychological warfare”.
All of which leads to today’s breaking news from Australia’s Sky News who claim that the leak is a significant security breach likely to embarrass Xi Jinping, noting that the data was extracted from a Shanghai server by Chinese dissidents, whistleblowers, in April 2016, who have been using it for counter-intelligence purposes.
“It was then leaked in mid-September to the newly-formed international bi-partisan group, the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China – and that group is made up of 150 legislators around the world.
#IPAC comment on the leaked database of the Chinese Communist Party Shanghai branch member register. pic.twitter.com/ReKT9Ge8Hd
— Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (@ipacglobal) December 13, 2020
“It was then provided to an international consortium of four media organisations, The Australian, The Sunday Mail in the UK, De Standaard in Belgium and a Swedish editor, to analyse over the past two months, and that’s what we’ve done”.
TimesNowNews.com reports that the data analysis also revealed that:
…more than 600 party members were working at 19 branches of British banks like HSBC and Standard Chartered in 2016.
Similarly, pharmaceutical giants Pfizer and AstraZeneca, currently involved in the development of coronavirus vaccines, had employed 123 CCP loyalists.
Defence firms like Airbus, Boeing and Rolls-Royce also employed hundreds of party members.
Sky News added that it, “is worth noting that there’s no suggestion that these members have committed espionage – but the concern is over whether Australia or these companies knew of the CCP members and if so have any steps been taken to protect their data and people”.
But, as ABC reported in September, a Five Eyes intelligence officer, who uses the pseudonym Aeneas, has pored over the data, and described the technique as “mosaic intelligence gathering” – sourcing vast tracts of information from a wide variety of sources.
“The individual pieces of intelligence are like tiles in a mosaic, which make sense when they are arranged the right way,” Aeneas said.
He argued it was a different way to collect information than how many western agencies went about their work.
The narrative does confirm recent comments by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who slammed China for stealing research and intellectual property, calling China’s Communist Party the “central threat of our time.”
Still, the blaring headlines from Australian media do, however, smack a little of McCarthyism amid increasing tensions with the Chinese (wine tariffs, for example) as the nation’s largest trading partner rattles it hybrid sabre over disagreeable comments from Aussie politicians/media about the pandemic’s spread. Among the 2.4 million ‘CCP members’ in the leaked database, we simply have no idea how many are ‘bad actors’ and how many are merely little-red-book-carrying Chinese citizens, living and working abroad.