Why is Michelle Obama in China? What is the real purpose of Michelle’s, her mother’s, two daughters’ and 70 palace-flunkies-in-waiting’s Chinese junket?
“The nature of her visit is really quite different,” deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters ahead of the trip. “What the first lady really brings is the power of her own story, the power of American values.” (The Washington Times, March 20, 2014)
Michelle Obama is the 13th first lady to travel to China. But none of the others claimed to bring “the power of her own story” to the Orient.
Mrs. Obama claims her trip is all about “education and cultural exchange”.
History proves that no matter how overbearing the self-proclaimed missionary, China has not accepted the culture of any foreign country in its more than two thousand year old history.
Hanging ornaments depicting Mao Zedong on the White House Christmas tree and throwing one 2011 state dinner for a former Chinese president does not guarantee Chinese interest in “education and cultural exchange”.
The week-long feel-good tourist event now underway in the Orient goes much further than complaints back in America about taxpayers having to foot what is reckoned to be the coming astronomical bill.
Even worse, Michelle Obama in China is U.S. security at risk.
Chinese government officials say “It’s advisable for all international travelers to take due precautions with their computers and cellphones.” (The Washington Post, Sept. 26, 2011)
“Travelers there often tote disposable cellphones and loaner laptops stripped of sensitive data. Some U.S. officials take no electronic gear. And a few corporate executives detour to Australia rather than risk talking business in a bugged Chinese hotel room.”
How many of the 70 hangers-on traveling with Michelle in China brought along their electronic doodads in order to send pictures of the panda bears at Chengdu to the folks back home?
Do Malia and Sasha use Ipads?
There are some 22 events scheduled during the Obama China trip with no reporters in tow.
“It’s real easy for them (the Chinese) to read everything that goes in and out of the country because the government owns all the networks,” said Jody Westby, chief executive of Global Cyber Risk, a consulting firm.(Washington Post)
“The real problem here is economic espionage,” she said. “There are countries where the search for economic information and high-value data is so aggressive that companies or people are very hesitant about taking their laptops to those countries.
“Business travelers began adopting such safety measures for China several years ago, experts say. On the eve of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Joel Brenner, then the U.S. national counterintelligence executive, first issued government safety guidance to overseas travelers, with such tips as: “If you can do without the device, don’t take it.”
“He based his 2008 warning on cases in which Chinese malware was remotely inserted into cellphones; the malware then infected computer servers in the United States. He said the networks in every major Chinese hotel are monitored by Chinese security agencies.”
Computer servers in the U.S. don’t need Chinese malware.
Can Michelle Obama be trusted to remember during her Chinese junket that “Loose Lips sink ships?”
Here’s hoping the end of this latest trip doesn’t come with a T-shirt that reads, “I went to China with my Mom and all I got was hacked”.
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Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years’ experience in the print media. A former Toronto Sun columnist, she also worked for the Kingston Whig Standard. Her work has appeared on Rush Limbaugh, Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, and Glenn Beck.
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