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Ban students from China until espionage stops, immigration expert suggests

‘Such a blanket ban would be advisable only for so long as the PRC seeks to undermine around the world the values we hold dear,’ former Trump official argues

The United States should consider a ban on students from the People’s Republic of China obtaining visas to study here until the Asian country’s values are more aligned with America’s, an immigration expert suggested.

George Fishman, a counsel to the U.S. House Judiciary Committee and a Department of Homeland Security appointee under President Donald Trump, made the case in a recent report for the Center for Immigration Studies.

Fishman elaborated further on his argument during an August 4 podcast interview with CIS, where is a senior legal fellow.

There are currently over 300,000 People’s Republic of China students in the U.S., according to Fishman. While many do not pose a threat to our national security, enough could that it is worthwhile to consider a ban on them, Fishman argued.

He wrote:

While of course not every such student will engage in deleterious activities while in the U.S. (or after they return home), a sufficiently large number will that, given the impossibility of the U.S. government conducting sufficiently in-depth background checks on each of them (as a result of a lack of resources or access to the necessary information), a blanket ban might be the only effective alternative. And, in many instances, students are only approached for intelligence gathering purposes by the PRC after they have arrived in the U.S. or after they have returned home to China. In such cases, pre-vetting would be ineffectual.

“Such a blanket ban would be advisable only for so long as the PRC seeks to undermine around the world the values we hold dear,” he wrote further. As long as PRC leadership “considers America an enemy, conducts (and solicits Chinese students in the U.S. to conduct) massive amounts of espionage against us, pilfers our nation’s intellectual property, and prepares for future armed conflict against us.”

“However, it is impossible to say when the PRC will cease and desist,” Fishman wrote.

He criticized President Joe Biden for reversing Trump’s “China Initiative” that focused on Chinese Communist Party recruitment of academics and researchers for intelligence theft and spying.

A Republican congressman criticized Biden’s change of policy at the time.

“By ending the China Initiative, the Biden administration is sending a terrible signal about the U.S. government’s commitment to countering [espionage],” Wisconsin Republican Congressman Mike Gallagher previously told The College Fix.

MORE: Former ICE official says student visa fraud could be widespread

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Matt has previously worked at Students for Life of America, Students for Life Action and Turning Point USA. While in college, he wrote for The College Fix as well as his college newspaper, The Loyola Phoenix. He holds a B.A. from Loyola University-Chicago and an M.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He lives in northwest Indiana with his family.