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EXCLUSIVE: The Foundation Funding the “Fact-Checkers” Who Defend the Chinese Communist Party Is Heavily Invested in China.

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The Knight Foundation – a George Soros-linked, left-wing group purporting to tackle disinformation by funding anti-conservative media operations and “fact-checkers” – has investments in firms tied to the Russian government and Chinese Communist Party, The National Pulse can exclusively reveal.

The group’s most recent financial disclosures reveal over $17,000,000 invested in a Chinese Communist Party-linked investment fund and over $1,200,000 invested in Russia Partners – which boasts of its close connections to “government leaders in Russia.”

The unearthed financial ties come as the group continues to peddle conspiracy theories about Russian influence in the 2016 election and purports to “protect press freedom” while investing in countries whose journalism sectors are consistently ranked among the least free.

China Capital and Growth.

Since at least 2011, the Knight Foundation’s financial disclosure forms reveal two investments: IDG-Accel China Capital II and IDG-Accel China Growth III.

The most recent financial disclosure on the Knight Foundation’s site shows that in 2019 the value of the investments totaled $11,597,551 and $6,066,392, respectively.

2019 990 FORM.

From 2013 to 2015, the group’s financial disclosures also listed China as a “foreign country in which organization has financial interest.”

2019 990 form.

The two Chinese private equity funds describe themselves as “making investments within China” – and often in state-run companies.

At least a dozen of the fund’s employees have ties to the Chinese Communist Party, including former officials in the technology and urban planning sectors along with the State Department., former employees of the Chinese military proxy China Mobile, and recipients of Chinese Communist Party awards for “Pushing the Area Economy Forward.”

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Senior Advisor Jianning Jiang also serves as a Chief Advisor to the body overseeing China’s various Communist Youth Leagues.

Chinese state-run media directors, several ex-employees of state-run investment funds, fellows from state-run think tanks, and professors and People’s Liberation Army-linked colleges.

Aimed at boosting the Chinese economy, the investment group describes one of its primary goals as “upgrading and transform[ing] the Chinese economy by partnering with Chinese companies to acquire technology and industrial know-how abroad” and admits to having “partnered” with the Chinese Communist Party city-level governments to do so.

Companies the firm has invested in have also count the Chinese Communist Party as customers and include firms such as Tencent – which has been described by the U.S. State Department as a “tool of the Chinese government” – in its portfolio.

…And Russia.

Since 2011, the Knight Foundation has also retained investments with the private equity fund Russia Partners.

In 2011, the foundation had two investments in Russia Partners funds valued at over $21,000,000. The latest financial disclosure reveals one investment with the company valued at $1,234,020.

2019 990 form.

Such financial ties are hypocritical given the Knight Foundation repeatedly peddling the false narrative that a Russian disinformation campaign was the genesis of Donald Trump’s 2016 victory,

“The coordinated spread of misinformation by Russia’s Internet Research Agency (IRA) trolls is evident,” the foundation, which has even filed lawsuits against then-President Trump, notes.

Russia Partners website even praises Vladimir Putin as having “prioritized building an economic base under which the democratic transition can occur, very similar to what is going on in China, and the results will continue to be very positive for Russia over the next several years.”

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What’s more, fund’s mission statement brags about its “established ties with many of today’s business and government leaders in Russia.”

“The principals are also active members of key business and industry groups, such as the U.S.-Russia Business Council, the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council, the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia, the Eurasia Foundation and the RAND Business Leaders Forum,” it adds.

RUSSIA PARTNERS SITE.

Under the guise of “combatting misinformation,” the left-wing foundation has funneled tens of millions of dollars into fact-checking operations used by platforms such as Facebook and mainstream media outlets.

And, given its repeated funding, event, and research collaboration with groups such as George Soros’s Open Society Foundation, often leverages these connections to go after conservative news sites.

Recently, a group funded by the Knight Foundation – Global Disinformation Index (GDI) – was responsible for “providing” The New York Times with the information for a hit piece on the anti-Chinese Communist Party outlet The Epoch Times.

“The data was provided by Advance Democracy, a research group, and analyzed by the nonprofit Global Disinformation Index, not provided solely by GDI,” the New York Times article reads after it was revised to include the source of its data.

Read the Knight Foundation’s most recent filing:


Natalie Winters

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