For Immediate Release
October 7, 2019
CONTACT: Hamilton Strategies, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 104
ABSENCE OF NATIONAL SECURITY REVIEW UNDERSCORES DANGERS OF MILITARY, OTHERS’ COMPULSORY INVESTMENT IN CHINESE COMPANIES
COMMITTEE ON THE PRESENT DANGER: CHINA, KEY VETERANS URGE OPPOSITION
WASHINGTON, D.C.— The fact that many Americans are unwittingly financing Chinese corporations that engage in a host of activities inimical to our national security and values is appalling. Even worse is the prospect that their numbers may soon swell as government employees – past and present, military and civilian – are compelled to invest their pension funds in companies tied to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its agenda of repression at home and aggression abroad. Fortunately, six influential veterans have joined forces to oppose that serious strategic error and to urge others to do the same.
This effort is made all the more necessary by the fact that the PRC companies in question do not have to meet the tests of transparency and accountability that are required of other firms. As a result, there is no requirement to disclose the material risks that are often associated with such investments.
Then, there is the problem that no systematic security review applies to these companies. As a result, it is possible for Americans to invest in Chinese corporations that are not permitted to do business in this country because they have been sanctioned by the U.S. government. Similarly, financing is available on our capital markets for companies that: are constructing and fortifying islands in the South China Sea; building the CCP’s surveillance state that enables the persecution of people of faith and countless others in China; and manufacturing aircraft carriers, submarines and the myriad Chinese weapons designed to kill our men and women in uniform and, in some cases, their countrymen and women at home.
The need to heighten the national security community’s scrutiny of PRC enterprises in our capital markets was recently underscored by the new Commandant of Marines, Gen. David Berger. In response to a question posed after the general’s remarks to the Heritage Foundation last Thursday by one of the veterans engaging on this issue, Gunnery Sergeant Jessie Jane Duff, USMC (Ret.), the Commandant acknowledged that he had not been made aware of the pending plan to have the federal retirement system’s Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) begin investing in Chinese corporations. With the characteristic understatement and steely resolve of a Marine, Gen. Berger laconically observed that he is aware of it now.
That being the case, it is imperative that the rest of the Joint Chiefs of Staff become similarly situationally aware. Ditto their subordinates, the Secretary of Defense and the other Pentagon civilians who have a personal need to know about – as well as a professional duty to assess – the security implications of their pension funds being made available to Chinese corporate ne’er-do-wells. They must do so on behalf as well of the millions of other government employees whose pensions face such exposure – to say nothing of the veterans and civilian retirees whose retirement savings are similarly at risk. This situation must not be allowed to persist.
To that end, Gunny Duff and five retired officers – Lieutenant Generals William “Jerry” Boykin and Thomas McInerney, Brigadier General Robert Spalding, Lieutenant Colonel (and former Congressman) Allen West and Col. Darrell Smith – have issued a call for President Trump to take the steps necessary to “prevent the Thrift Savings Plan from being tapped by companies tied to the Chinese Communist Party and thereby ensure that federal retirees will not wind up financing our foes.”
The Committee on the Present Danger: China (CPDC) has for months been raising an alarm about Communist China’s penetration of the U.S. capital markets and the resulting underwriting of many of the Chinese Communist Party’s malevolent activities. It has done so primarily through a series of CPDC Threat Briefings – including one on 12 September specifically focused on Beijing’s impending access to the Thrift Savings Plan’s half-a-trillion dollars under management. At the Committee’s website (www.PresentDangerChina.org) are relevant videos of remarks by past and present legislators like former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Senator Marco Rubio, Rep. Jim Banks; President Reagan’s former Senior NSC Director for International Economic Affairs, Roger Robinson; financial industry leaders like Hayman Capital’s Kyle Bass, Kevin Freeman, host of “Economic War Room with Kevin Freeman”and the American Securities Association’s Chris Iacovella; and public policy practitioners like Steve Bannon and the CPDC’s Chairman, Brian Kennedy.
The Committee urges Americans – whether in government, especially past and present members of the armed forces, or outside it – to join it and the distinguished signatories of the attached statement in opposing the decision to have the Threat Savings Plan mirror the Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) All-Country World Index. They can express this opposition by signing the CPDC’s “Don’t Fund the Enemy” petition at www.PresentDangerChina.org.
The mission of the Committee on the Present Danger: China is to help defend America through public education and advocacy against the full array of conventional and non-conventional dangers posed by the People’s Republic of China. As with the Soviet Union in the past, Communist China represents an existential and ideological threat to the United States and to the idea of freedom—one that requires a new American consensus regarding the policies and priorities required to defeat this threat. And for this purpose, it is necessary to bring to bear the collective skills, expertise and energies of a diverse group of experts on China, national security practitioners, human rights and religious freedom activists and others who have joined forces under the umbrella of the Committee on Present Danger: China.
For more information about the work and recommendations of the CPDC, please visit www.PresentDangerChina.org
To interview representatives from the Committee on the Present Danger: China, contact Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 104.