(TibetanReview.net, May10, 2018) – Calling it “a new global battle”, former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton warned countries of China’s attempts to gain political power and influence even over their domestic affairs during a speech in Auckland, New Zealand, reported theguardian.com May 8. She has said Chinese interference in domestic policy was apparent in Australia and New Zealand as well as the US.
“In Australia and here in New Zealand experts are sounding the alarm about Chinese efforts to gain political power and influence policy decisions,” Clinton was quoted as saying.
And she has warned, “[Academic] Anne-Marie Brady of the University of Canterbury has rightly called this a new global battle, and it’s just getting started. We need to take it seriously.”
New Zealand’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, has told reporters that Clinton’s statements about China were not new and sought to present the issue in a wider perspective. “There are a number of world powers that have an interest in our region and, of course, New Zealand needs to maintain our role in building our relationships because there is that greater presence here,” she was quoted as saying.
The report noted that Clinton’s comments followed testimony from the Australian academic Clive Hamilton to the US Congressional-Executive Commission on China that Beijing was waging a “campaign of psychological warfare” against Australia, as America’s most significant ally in the region, undermining democracy and cowing free speech.
Last year Australia announced that it was tightening its espionage laws in response to China’s creeping influence on all aspects of the country’s affairs, including through donations to political parties, disrupting academic freedom in universities and setting up of Confucius Chinese language classes as a front for promoting its propaganda.