A National Pulse investigation has revealed a concerted campaign of misinformation and lies peddled by Western-based “analysts” keen to promote the Chinese Communist Party’s line, and attack those intent on holding the brutal Chinese dictatorship to account.
Tom Fowdy, a British political analyst with a vast portfolio of pro-Chinese Communist Party content in Chinese state media, insists he has no affiliation with the CCP, hastily blocking National Pulse reporters and editor-in-chief Raheem Kassam for questioning him about the connection. A deep dive into his past and present commitments suggests otherwise.
Fowdy recently penned an op-ed entitled “Steve Bannon: A Modern Day Demagogue” for China Global Television Network (CGTN), part of Chinese state media’s broader smear campaign against the former White House Chief Strategist, War Room: Pandemic podcast host, and ardent CCP critic.
The outlet Fowdy frequently writes for is a registered foreign agent, operating under the auspices of the CCP.
The article swiftly followed CGTN publishing another Bannon hit piece, “Here’s why Steve Bannon can’t be trusted,” by author Hannan Hussain who faked credentials as a “security analyst” at the London School of Economics’ South Asia Centre:
When asked on Tuesday about the nature of his affiliation with the CCP, Tom Fowdy lashed out emotionally at critics, and instead of answering basic questions, blocked dozens of Twitter users calling for transparency.
Soon after, Fowdy locked his account for several hours.
But Fowdy’s status as a de facto Chinese Communist Party propaganda mouthpiece is well-documented and doesn’t even require access to his Twitter to piece together.
While Fowdy, who’s lived in Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, claims his arrangement with Chinese state media outlets is “not actually a contracted or formal job,” his own LinkedIn suggests otherwise.
At CGTN, Fowdy claims the title of “columnist,” but his work for the organization is not limited to just writing over 200 CCP puff pieces: he helps amplify the outlet’s reach.
He lists himself as a consultant for the outlet on “social media strategies.”
Fowdy’s participation also isn’t limited to “voluntary op-eds,” and social media consultancy. He’s produced multiple videos with CGTN with “political analyst” as his biography.
In the video “Is America really losing on trade?” Fowdy echoes CCP talking points, alleging President Trump’s tariffs harm Americans. He goes so far as to make the risible claim that Americans benefit from the massive trade deficit with China.
China’s exploitative trade practices disproportionately disadvantage working-class Americans unable to compete with cheap labor and low production costs, hemorrhaging nearly four million jobs in less than two decades and contributing to the massive opioid epidemic in the U.S.
In another video for CGTN, Fowdy disparages Hong Kong’s democracy protestors who seek freedom from the Chinese Communist Regime.
Fowdy justifies Chinese state-sanctioned law enforcers who cracked down on the protests, stating:
“Local authorities cannot be expected to concede on legitimate matters of law enforcement and holding those who have pursued violence and criminal activities to account. This is not political oppression.”
“The general public must become more accepting of Hong Kong’s status as a part of China in a pragmatic way. The principle of ‘One Country’ must be upheld as an unconditional line for dialogue.”
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The “One Country” doctrine Fowdy promotes is part of the CCP’s justification for the violence and repression it inflicts on Taiwan and minority groups, for the policy supports the regime’s belief it wields complete and unchallengeable imperial authority.
And Fowdy’s written commentary is equally egregious.
In reality, Huawei is a CCP-affiliated telecommunications equipment giant. Founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, a Chinese Communist Party member and former military officer in the People’s Liberation Army, Huawei’s rise stemmed from generous CCP backing.
Huawei poses “massive security and privacy risks. With 5G capabilities, the CCP could use Huawei to steal private or proprietary information or use kill switches to disrupt critical future applications like electrical grids” according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Despite this, “Consumers who enjoy and appreciate the products of Huawei should not allow Cold War opportunism to get in the way of their experience,” according to Fowdy.
He’s cast efforts to remove Confucius Institutes from American campuses as a misguided “war,” insisting that the CCP-funded entity – a trojan horse for propaganda – which has admitted to wanting to introduce Chinese “morality and values” into American schools refrains from “political subversion, spread ideology or attempt to influence local politics.”
And Fowdy uses additional Chinese state media platforms to simp for the CCP.
Penning several pieces for Global Times, a daily tabloid which is part of the CCP’s People’s Daily newspaper, he purports that “ideological narcissism causes heavy losses to West amid outbreak” while glorifying the CCP’s response:
“Beijing would be effectively declaring victory, while the West descended slowly into a state of panic.”
He also insists the “UK needs to cool anti-China rhetoric.”
Fowdy’s works entitled “China’s key role will not go away” and “Pompeo weaponizes normal exchanges” were published at the state-owned outlet China Daily, and China Plus has also shared his anti-Trump content: “as midterms approach, Trump weaponizes migrant fearmongering” and “Far-right anti-Semitism is rising in US.”
He’s even taken his analysis on “how China got to zero new domestic COVID-19 cases” to a Nigerian newspaper and the Southern African Times, in line with Xi Jinping’s 2016 declaration that “Wherever the readers are, wherever the viewers are, that is where propaganda reports must extend their tentacles.”
But his CCP ties run much deeper than commentary.
Fowdy claims he was a marketing intern at Beijing-based Hongzhou Learning, a company which has “achieved support from the Beijing Foreign Affairs Office” since it carries out the CCP’s “Belt and Road” policy, specifically facilitating “the cooperation and exchanges between Chinese universities and the Universities along belt and road countries”
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In other words, Fowdy was part of a team assisting the CCP’s message by amplifying the reach of the program.
Tom Fowdy’s other business dealings are equally questionable.
The company’s blog, which Fowdy contributes to, has posted articles including “Five extremely annoying things in the UK you won’t miss whilst visiting North Korea,” “Seven places in Britain that are scarier to Visit than North Korea,” and “Five reasons North Korea is a better holiday destination than Spain.”
The blog even asserts:
“The leadership of North Korea is poorly understood in Western political discourse. Kim Jong Un and his predecessors are vilified, mocked and dismissed with the usual western buzzwords of “dictator”, “brutal”, “despot”, “madman” and so on. When faced with the observation that many people in North Korea happen to revere the leadership, again westerners dismiss it as “propaganda”, “an act”, “brainwashing” or so on, as the average western assumes it is impossible they can be in any way legitimate.”
In an interview with Mandatory Redistribution Party, which describes itself as publishing “radical left interviews,” Fowdy admitted that while the company is “not owned by [North Korea], but you have to work in correspondence with them.”
Fowdy also says he’s trying to “myth bust” many Western conceptions about the North Korean regime, suggesting the country should be addressed in “a more objective and less antagonistic light.”
“The world could be a better place through visiting North Korea,” he adds.
The interview gets even more absurd: he justifies North Korea’s quest for nuclear weapons and declares that “China is very misunderstood by the West.”
The company’s Twitter account peddles the same narrative:
This arcade game in a North Korean kindergarten involves shooting pirates, except the pirates are Americans!#DPRK #Northkorea #visitnorthkorea #pyongyang #visitdprk #pyongyang pic.twitter.com/03F6R0GMcB
— Visit North Korea (@VisitDPRK) May 2, 2020
He was even listed as the team’s official contact.
Despite these connections, the CCP touts him as a “British political and international relations Analyst,” certainly an interesting euphemism for propagandist, consultant, Belt and Road initiative enabler, and North Korea simp.
In a comment not sent to the National Pulse, but issued on his Twitter account, Tom Fowdy insisted: “My work is motivated by a desire to promote an objective, nuanced view into China and a passionate urge to combat far-right conveyors of fake news such as Raheem [Kassam, Editor of the National Pulse].”
Those “objective, nuanced views” just happen to be commissioned and promoted by the Communist Party of China.
The National Pulse will continue to expose CCP propagandists and their bedfellows.
Kinglsey Cortes and Corby King contributed to this report.