The Chinese national called Fang Fang or Christine Fang targeted up-and-coming local politicians in the Bay Area and around the country who had the potential to make it big on the national stage, according to Axios’s report.
A suspected Chinese intelligence operative developed extensive ties with local and national politicians, including the U.S. Congressman. U.S. officials think it was a strategic intelligence activity conducted between 2011 and 2015 by China’s largest civilian spy agency.
Christine Fang was able to gain proximity to political power through campaign fundraising, extensive networking, personal charisma, and romantic or sexual relations with at least two Midwestern mayors, according to current and former U.S. intelligence officials and one former elected official.
The case “was a big deal, because there were some really, really sensitive people that were caught up” in the intelligence network, a current senior U.S. intelligence official said.
Private yet unclassified information about government officials—such as their habits, interests, schedules, social networks, and even their rumors—is a source of political intelligence. A key part of what foreign intelligence agencies do is to collect such information.
Christine Fang was enrolled in college & President of the Chinese Student Association
Christine Fang was enrolled at Cal State East Bay University, according to an archived web page that lists her getting the “pioneer pride award.”
She’s listed as “Fang Fang from the Chinese Student Association.” She also was president of the campus chapter of Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs (APAPA).
“Traditionally, this award honors students and student organizations that have demonstrated outstanding Pioneer Pride in the campus community,” the article says.
One Facebook post she shared in 2012 read, “As young members of APAPA, our association helped to set up the Congresswoman Judy Chu’s meeting in Cupertino Community Hall.”
Which Ohio Mayor had a sexual encounter with Christine Fang in a car?
The Axios report did not name the two Midwestern Mayors allegedly involved in romantic or sexual relationships with Fang.
From the report:
Fang engaged in sexual or romantic relationships with at least two mayors of Midwestern cities, said one U.S. intelligence official and one former elected official.
At a 2014 conference in Washington, an older Midwestern mayor “from an obscure city” referred to Fang as his “girlfriend” and insisted the relationship was genuine despite the clear age difference between Fang and himself, according to former Cupertino Mayor Gilbert Wong, who was directly present for the conversation.
Fang also had a sexual encounter with an Ohio mayor in a car that was under electronic FBI surveillance, said one current U.S. official. When the mayor asked why Fang was interested in him, Fang told him she wanted to improve her English, the same official said.
The Axios report alleges that U.S. officials now believe that Fang was operating as a “political intelligence operation run by China’s main civilian spy agency between 2011 and 2015.”
The most significant targets of Christine Fang was Rep. Eric Swalwell
Christine Fang participated in a fundraising activity for Eric Swalwell’s 2014 re-election campaign, according to a Bay Area political operative and current U.S. intelligence official. The Swalwell office was directly aware of these operations on its behalf, the political operative said. The same political operative, who observed Christine Fang’s campaigning on behalf of Swalwell, found no proof of improper donations.
Christine Fang helped place at least one intern in Swalwell’s office, according to those same two people, and interacted with Swalwell at multiple events over the course of several years.
Federal investigators became so alarmed by Christine Fang’s behavior and activities in a widening counterintelligence probe that they alerted Swalwell to their concerns around 2015, giving him what is known as a defensive briefing.
Christine Fang left the country unexpectedly in mid-2015 amid the investigation.
Christine Fang’s Facebook shows glamour shots & a beauty pageant picture
Christine Fang’s Facebook page is still up, although the photos on it date to 2016 at the most recent. Eric Swalwell’s father and brother are still listed as her Facebook friends.
The page is filled with glamour shots, and pictures from a beauty pageant.
There are no visible posts. She did put up a new profile picture in November 2020. “Wow!Beautiful and classy as always!!Looking fabulous,Christine!!” a California man wrote. She responded with thanks.
The case shows the strategy of China to cultivate relationships that may take years or even decades to bear fruit. The Chinese Communist Party knows that the mayors and members of the city council today are the governors and members of Congress tomorrow.
“She was just one of lots of agents,” said a current senior U.S. intelligence official.
Beijing “is engaged in a highly sophisticated malign foreign influence campaign,” FBI director Chris Wray said in a July 2020 speech. These efforts involve “subversive, undeclared, criminal, or coercive attempts to sway our government’s policies, distort our country’s public discourse, and undermine confidence in our democratic processes and values,” Wray said.
“Fang’s friends and acquaintances said she was in her late 20s or early 30s when she was based in the U.S. and was enrolled as a student at a Bay Area university.”
“She also engaged in sexual or romantic relationships with at least two mayors of Midwestern cities over a period of about three years, according to one U.S. intelligence official and one former elected official.”
“At least two separate sexual interactions with elected officials, including one of these Midwestern mayors, were caught on FBI electronic surveillance of Fang, according to two intelligence officials. Axios was unable to identify or speak to the elected officials.”
“Fang helped with a fundraiser for Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) in 2013, according to a flyer from the event Fang shared on Facebook. She appeared in photos over multiple years with a host of California politicians, including Khanna, Swalwell, Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) and then-Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.).”
Republican leader Kevin McCarthy reacted to the news: “Rep. Swalwell has long been disqualified from serving on the Intel Committee. For years he peddled Russian disinformation for political gain. Now we find out he was involved in an effort by a reported spy to gather info for China. Swalwell is a national security liability.”
Updated: Eric Swalwell’s brother, dad finally unfriend Chinese spy Christine Fang
The father and brother of Rep. Eric Swalwell unfriended the suspected Chinese spy who got close to the California Democrat and other elected officials in a bid to infiltrate the US political system.
Eric Swalwell, the congressman’s father, and Joshua, his brother, had remained friends on Facebook with Christine Fang, also known as Fang Fang, as late as Wednesday, even after the lawmaker said he cut off all ties with the suspected spy after being briefed by the FBI, New York Post reported.
She left the country in 2015 amid the FBI investigation into her activities. But in 2016, she liked a video posted by Joshua on his Facebook page with his brother.
China ‘has people at the top of America’s core inner circle of power and influence’
A Chinese professor said that between 1992 and 2016, China and the US were easily able to fix quarrels because China had “people at the top” of America’s core inner circle of power and influence – but that all ended once Donald Trump was elected as US president.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson ran a segment on a video deleted from Chinese social media of this professor.
- China ‘has people at the top of America’s core inner circle of power and influence’
- Dominion Voting Systems’ server connected to China and Iran, affidavit claims
- 1.5 million fake ballots printed by China for US presidential election 2020?
- Has China’s Communist Party Interfered in the U.S. Election?—Gen. Robert Spalding