China Uses TikTok As U.S. ‘Trojan Horse’

Mar 2, 2024

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A report
published Wednesday by Breitbart argued that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is using the social media platform TikTok as a “modern-day Trojan Horse” to manipulate America’s youth with destabilizing propaganda. 

Breitbart News senior contributor and President of the Government Accountability Institute Peter Schweizer said that Chinese strategists tout TikTok as “information-driven mental warfare” in his upcoming book “Blood Money: Why the Powerful Turn a Blind Eye While China Kills America.” 

Schweizer said that “leading Chinese PLA strategist, Zeng Huafeng of the National University of Defense Technology (NUDT), wrote of a cognitive, or mind, war on the United States and proposed how to defeat the U.S. without firing a shot,” Breitbart noted. (LEARN MORE: Experts Warn Of China ‘Smokescreen’)

Zeng’s Belief

“Zeng defines the “cognitive space” as ‘the area in which feelings, perception, understanding, beliefs, and values exist’ and argues that this is where the battle can be won. To that end, he said, Beijing must use ‘information and popular spiritual and cultural products as weapons to influence people’s psychology, will, attitude, behavior and even change the ideology, values, cultural traditions and social systems.’ According to Zeng, these cultural tools, including apps, video games, and films, should be used to “target individuals, groups, countries, and even people around the world.'”

Beijing is trying to destroy American minds using these four means: 

  • “Perception manipulation” via propaganda, by changing how people look at the present
  • “Cutting off historical memory” by warping their views of their own country’s past so people will be open to changing their values
  • “Changing the paradigm of thinking” by targeting people to change the way they view problems and thereby changing their beliefs
  • “Deconstructing symbols,” by getting people to reject certain traditional symbols and thereby modifying a nation’s identity

“The ultimate goal is to manipulate a country’s values and achieve strategic goals without an actual overt military battle,” Zeng added, Breitbart continued.

Content Is Control

As most young Americans consume huge amounts of entertainment, both via TikTok and other social media platforms and television/streaming services, this is the easiest way to distort unity. Many different avenues of propaganda are being employed by the Chinese to create a phenomenon comparable to “multiple voices in a choir communication subject sings its own melody.” (LEARN MORE: Chinese State-Owned Company Ordered To Give Up Land In One State)

This will, in turn, destroy the ability of young Americans to come together, find their similarities, and work through their differences. If young people are constantly being manipulated and validated in their warped beliefs, they’ll eventually become incapable of forming bonds with anyone beyond their own limited social group. From here, we will watch major industries fracture as young Americans grow into adults driven by their own limited worldviews and egos.

Young People, Elections

“The evidence is clear: Chinese psychological warfare strategists have Americans, particularly young Americans, in their crosshairs. They believe that not only are young people easier to influence but the effects of the propaganda messaging are longer lasting,” Schweizer argued. “The Chinese government is devoting serious amounts of resources to understanding how to manipulate young users. The Communist government recently opened an external propaganda office to target Generation Z audiences overseas.”

“Chinese propagandists also see social media tools such as TikTok as a way to sway elections in the United States and around the world. One official wrote that Beijing should ‘exploit big data analysis, AI processes, bots and astroturfing, grasp the different personalities of voters and realize large-scale guidance of public opinion and changing their [political] orientation,” he argued. (LEARN MORE: We’re In A ‘New Cold War’ With China, Republican Says)

American Celebrities Are Helping

Late-night host Jimmy Fallon, Ellen DeGeneres, and Cardi B were all part of the initial wave of TikTok purchases in the U.S. “What Fallon didn’t tell his audience was that he—not The Tonight Show itself—had forged a partnership with the Chinese company and created a series of TikTok “challenges” designed to grow interest in the app. The daytime talk show host Ellen DeGeneres soon followed with an equally glowing account on her show. The rapper Cardi B, for a large fee, posted some videos on TikTok—to no great effect, but it did lend her name to the platform. None of those celebrities seemed to weigh the gravity of being used to encourage Americans to download a potential Chinese spy app. How much money they were paid is not known,” Schweizer notes.

Holding China Accountable

Our current leadership may not understand the importance of holding China accountable for its repeated attacks on the U.S., but that just means you need to choose new lawmakers and politicians who will. (LEARN MORE: China’s Stealth Invasion Of America Is Happening Now, Experts Warn)

If you want your local, state, and federal government to fight China’s negative impact on America, it’s time to use your voice. Sign up for www.MillionVoices.org today (text MV to 80550) and share this article with your friends and family so they can stay informed on our current world war.

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