Beijing-funded institutes 'shrouded in secrecy'

Tuesday, May 9, 2017
Chad Groening, Jody Brown (

Confucius InstituteAn organization founded to confront and defend academic freedom at American colleges has released a stunning report about a Chinese government-funded effort to spread propaganda on U.S. campuses.

Since 2004 the Communist Chinese government has been planting teaching and research centers known as "Confucius Institutes" (CIs) around the world, including more than 100 in the United States. While ostensibly they offer Chinese language and culture courses for college credit, the Institutes are in fact educating a generation of American students to know nothing more of China than the regime's official history.

The National Association of Scholars has released a new report called "Outsourced to China," which reveals some sobering facts about these Institutes. The NAS found cause for concern in four areas: (1) intellectual freedom, (2) transparency, (3) entanglement, and (4) soft power.

Rachelle Peterson, who is director of research projects at NAS, authored the report and was a recent guest on the American Family Radio program "Sandy Rios in the Morning."

"China spends more than $10 billion annually on overseas propaganda. Confucius Institutes are a large part of that," Peterson shared. "The Chinese government spends several million dollars every year funding American college classes and funding teachers and textbooks that they can control in the U.S."

Confucius Institute, Univ. of KansasAccording to the NAS, the CIs are largely staffed and funded by an agency of the Chinese government's Ministry of Education that's known as the "Hanban." The report quotes a former head of propaganda for the Chinese Communist Party describing the Confucius Institutes as "an important part of China's overseas propaganda set-up."

Peterson explained that no discussions of Chinese human rights atrocities, like Tiananmen Square, occurred at the Institutes where case studies were conducted.

"They couldn't talk about the 1989 massacre of pro-democracy demonstrators – and they couldn't show any of the famous images that we know but are, of course, banned and censored in China," Peterson told AFR. "They could only give what the Chinese government permits its own people to know about, which is the modern-day square filled with tourists."

NAS conducted its case studies at 12 Confucius Institutes, two in New Jersey and ten in New York. A quick Internet search reveals CIs are located at numerous major universities in the U.S. – including Rutgers University, Ohio State University, University of Arizona, North Carolina State University, University of Tennessee, George Washington University, University of Minnesota, University of Illinois, University of Delaware, and University of California-Los Angeles.

In its report, NAS recommends that all universities close their Confucius Institutes and end all contracts with the Hanban. In lieu of that, the organization urges a series of steps it says are designed to "protect the integrity of American education and intellectual freedom." It also recommends that federal and local governments investigate whether the Institutes pose a threat to national security and human rights.


We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details





The biggest highlight from the final presidential debate was…(Pick up to two)





Maine supreme court declines to extend mail-in vote deadline
US Navy: 2 onboard training plane killed in Alabama crash
Fighting over Nagorno-Karabakh goes on despite US mediation
Trump, Biden scrap on oil, virus with just over a week to go
Trump campaign sues in Nevada to stop Vegas-area vote count
Some hospitals in crisis as US nears high for COVID-19 cases


San Bernardino, Calif., police shooting sparks night of unrest
Trump 'coyote' remark confuses Twitter, including Georgia state Democrat
Putin: Russia-China military alliance can't be ruled out
Trump calls Biden's 'transition from' oil comments 'perhaps most shocking admission ever made'
Oops: Photograph of Joe Biden and Hunter's business partner found on Burisma's website


Cartoon of the Day
Thomas More aids pro-life school club

I am the pro-life generationIt's an all-too-familiar occurrence on high school campuses: students attempt to start a pro-life club but school administrators object and block them.