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CNN’s Fareed Zakaria Met With Chinese Communist Party Think-Tank Linked To “Favorable Coverage” Junkets.

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CNN Host Fareed Zakaria met with officials from a Chinese Communist Party-run think tank linked to the regime’s efforts to procure “favorable coverage” from Western media outlets, The National Pulse can reveal. 

The latest information adds to the plethora of evidence that Zakaria – one of CNN’s leading anchors – is closely linked with the Chinese Communist Party.

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Zakaria visited the “government-affiliated” Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS) during his stint as an editor for Newsweek. During the trip, he met with the group’s president, vice president, and various directors.

SIIS is linked to the Chinese Communist Party’s foreign influence campaign through its board member Tung Chee-Hwa, who serves as the Vice-Chairman of the “highest-ranking entity overseeing” China’s United Work Front Department, according to the U.S.-China Security and Economic Review Commission.

The effort aims “to co-opt and neutralize sources of potential opposition to the policies and authority of its ruling Chinese Communist Party” and “influence foreign governments and other actors to take actions or adopt positions supportive of Beijing’s preferred policies,” according to the U.S.-China Security and Economic Review Commission.

In addition to advising the think tank, Tung has repeatedly attended SIIS events including its 50th anniversary, hosted SIIS leaders at his events, and even funded SIIS research.

Tung also founded and leads the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF), previously exposed by The National Pulse for sponsoring trips to China for mainstream corporate media outlets in exchange for “favorable coverage.” As revealed through Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) filings with the Department of Justice, the group’s explicit goal of the trips is to “effectively disseminate positive messages to the media, key influencers, and opinion leaders, and the general public.”

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Dubbed “familiarization trips,” the criteria for participants included “effectiveness and opportunities for favorable coverage”:

“In order to develop favorable coverage in key national media, BLJ will continue to organize and staff “familiarization trips” to China. This includes recruiting top journalists to travel to China, selected for effectiveness and opportunities for favorable coverage.”

Despite SIIS overt ties to Chinese Communist Party influence operations, Zakaria met with think tank officials according to a previously unreported press release:

“June 4: Dr. Fareed Zakaria, editor of Newsweek’s international edition, author of The Post-American World, famous journalist and commentator, visited SIIS and talked with President Yang Jiemian, Vice President Chen Dongxiao, Director Ma Ying of Asia-Pacific Studies, Director Wu Chunsi of American Studies, Director Ye Qing of Research Management & International Exchanges about Sino-American relations.”
ZAKARIA AT SIIS.
ZAKARIA AT SIIS.

Zakaria’s unearthed SIIS ties follow National Pulse reports revealing Zakaria’s extensive Chinese Communist Party ties, including serving as a Guest Lecturer at Tsinghua University’s state-run, “Marxist” journalism school.

Zakaria has also attended conferences alongside Xi Jinping and is a former member of the Berggrruen Institute’s “21st Century Council,” which is linked to the Chinese Communist Party’s campaign to promote over 10,000 propaganda pieces to foreign audiences.

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Natalie Winters

Natalie Winters is an Investigative Reporter at the National Pulse and contributor to The National Pulse podcast.