David Horowitz

David Horowitz’s Archives: The Manchurian Presidency

Posted on November 9 2010 6:45 am
David Horowitz is the editor-in-chief of NewsReal Blog and FrontPage Magazine. He is the President and CEO of the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His most recent book is Reforming Our Universities

This article originally appeared at Salon, on June 21, 1999.

Thanks to the Cox Report, we now know that the seven years of the Clinton presidency have coincided with the most massive breach of military security in American history.

As a result of the calculated degrading of security controls at America’s nuclear laboratories, the Chinese communists have been able to steal the designs of our arsenal of nuclear weapons, including our most advanced warheads.

As a result of the 1993 Clinton decision to terminate the COCOM security controls that denied sensitive technologies to nuclear proliferators and potential adversary powers, the Chinese communists have been given the secrets of our intercontinental ballistic missile systems, along with previously restricted computer hardware. This allows them for the first time to target cities in the United States.

In the past few years, therefore, the Chinese communist dictatorship has been able to close a huge technology gap, and to destroy a security buffer that had kept America safe from foreign attacks on its territorial mainland for more than a century.

Throughout its entire history until 1957, the United States was protected from such attacks by the natural barrier of the oceans surrounding this continent. In 1957, the Soviet Union acquired an intercontinental missile technology that threatened to close that gap. Since then, the only real protection the United States has enjoyed has been its technological edge in developing more sophisticated warheads and more accurate missiles than its potential opponents. The edge provided a possibility that America might prevail in a nuclear war, and discouraged preemptive strikes.

The catastrophe that has occurred on the Clinton watch is summed up in the fact that this edge has now vanished, probably never to be regained.

America’s new vulnerability to nuclear attack is a reality now not merely in respect to China, because of the absence of an anti-ballistic missile defense system. This, the Clinton administration has steadfastly refused to develop, despite the emergence of rogue states armed by China or Russia. These two are the chief distributors of nuclear, missile and satellite technologies to other governments. The governments that have benefitted are notorious stockpilers of biological and chemical weapons and among the most dangerous and dedicated enemies of the United States: Libya, North Korea, Iraq, Iran and Syria.

Yet, the attitude of the Clinton administration to all this has been one of hear-no-evil, see-no-evil. The official line, ritually repeated by the Democratic leadership in the sickeningly familiar refrain from the Monica Lewinsky scandal, is thateverybody does it and it’s no big deal.

Far from acknowledging the catastrophe that has occurred or recognizing the dangers it creates, the Clinton White House has hurried to resume export sales of the same previously restricted technologies and to reassert the “strategic partnership” it promoted with the very dictatorship that has declared America its “No. 1 adversary” and has stripped us of our military shield.

Indeed, the government’s awareness of many of the losses dates back several years, during which time the Clinton reaction was exactly the same: Continue on the destructive course. According to Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., a member of the Cox Committee, at least 15 government officials have experienced the wrath of the Clinton administration because they tried to protect America’s secrets from being transferred to China. One notorious case was described in a recent Wall Street Journal article by a former security official, Michael Ledeen.

According to documents obtained by Ledeen, a mid-level government arms control bureaucrat was asked in 1997 to provide a memo supporting the administration’s certification that China was not a nuclear proliferator and could be provided with advanced technologies. This request was made on the eve of a visit from China’s communist dictator, Jiang Zemin. The bureaucrat refused and wrote that the agreement the U.S. government was about to sign “presents real and substantial risk to the common defense and security of both the United States and allied countries.”

The official added that China was actively seeking American secrets and that “China routinely, both overtly and covertly, subverts national and multilateral trade controls on militarily critical items.” This patriot was immediately told by his superiors to revise his memo or lose his job. Sadly, according to Ledeen, he complied with the order and rewrote the document to state that the proposed Clinton trade agreement “is not inimical to the common defense or the security of the United States.”

In keeping with its fierce defense of a suicidal policy, the Clinton administration has failed to prosecute the people who have been identified as being responsible for the most critical thefts of American military secrets, and has protected those whose wrists it has slapped. Wen Ho Lee, the man believed to be responsible for the most damaging espionage, is known to have downloaded millions of lines of computer codes revealing the designs of our most advanced nuclear warheads. But Wen Ho Lee today is a free man.

Peter Lee, who gave communist China our warhead testing techniques and the radar technology to locate our submarines — until then the most secure element of our nuclear deterrent — is also free, having served only a year in a halfway house for his treason.

Wen Ho Lee was actually protected while performing his dirty work. When government agents requested a wiretap on his phone, the request was denied by Clinton’s Justice Department. This was the first wiretap request ever denied in the Clinton era. Asked why it has not prosecuted Lee, the Justice Department claims that its evidence only shows that Lee downloaded the classified information onto a non-secure computer, from which others unknown may have picked it up.

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