Frank Gaffney, vice-chairman of the vice-chair of the Committee on the Present Danger and host of Secure Freedom Radio, told Breitbart News on Wednesday that CIA Director William Burns must resign for lying to the Senate Intelligence Committee about ending China’s influence operations on the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a think tank based in Washington, DC.
Gaffney reflected on Burns’ former tenure as president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Daily with host Alex Marlow, author of Breaking the News: Exposing the Establishment Media’s Hidden Deals and Secret Corruption.
“The guy who now runs the Central Intelligence Agency is a long-time foreign service officer by the name of Bill Burns,” Gaffney remarked. “Bill Burns, until he took this job, ran the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Bill Burns was a guy who enabled Chinese influence operations at the Carnegie Endowment and is now, I believe, hopelessly ill-suited to be the director of our Central Intelligence Agency.”
Gaffney noted the CIA’s pushing of left-wing “identity” politics in its recent advertisements under Burns’ directorship.
“It’s not just the identity woke nonsense,” he recalled. “It’s that [Burns] seems not to have a clue about the true nature of what we’re up against [with China], but here’s the real kicker — this is the news item for your audience — Bill Burns lied to Senator Marco Rubio and the Senate Intelligence Committee when he was up for his confirmation hearing about the fact that he claimed he had shut down these influence operations which he professed to have been concerned about at the Carnegie Endowment.”
He continued, “And you know what happened? In fact, [Burns] actually allowed those to continue. Worse yet, he put a prominent Chinese influence operator on the board of trustees of the Carnegie Endowment in the period that he claims to have shut these things down.”
“Even worse than that, some of the million-plus dollars that this influence operator — a fellow by the name of Zhang Yichen — gave to the Carnegie Endowment went to set up an operation in which Carnegie partnered up with China’s MIT — its preeminent defense university — which has been found to be involved, among other things, in defense research that’s very inimical to our interests, but also actually mounting attacks — cyber attacks — against our country.”
Gaffney concluded, “Now, do you think that should be a disqualifier from being the director of the Central Intelligence Agency? I certainly do, but even if you don’t think what he was doing is bad enough, the fact that he lied to the Senate Intelligence Committee about it should require his resignation immediately.”
Burns previously worked as the president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. While testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee as President Joe Biden’s nominee to be CIA director in February, he repeatedly claimed that the Carnegie Endowment is “independent” of its financial benefactors and donors.
The Carnegie Endowment is partnered with Tshingua University in Beijing, China, but Burns denied that this partnership affords the Chinese Community Party (CCP) any influence or control over the think tank
“The center that Carnegie operates in Beijing — and has for more than a decade — is a partnership with Tshingua University,” Burns testified in February. “During my time as president, I was extraordinarily careful to ensure that the arrangements that we had as an non-governmental organization operating [in China] allowed us to continue to do independent work.”
Burns also said, “The Carnegie Endowment is a proudly independent and transparent organization, and scrupulous about ensuring that whatever financial support it receives — whether it’s from trustees or foundations — doesn’t in any way shape the content or the conclusions of our scholarly work.”
In 2019, Robert Spalding, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and author of Stealth War: How China Took Over While America’s Elite Slept, told Breitbart News how China procures political compliance among American elites — including those within academia, entertainment, media, politics, and think tanks — through development of layered financial relationships.