The Chinese Communist Partys United Front Strategy in Australia: what works, what doesn’t, and why?
Colloquium | March 15 | 4-5:30 p.m. | 510A IEAS Fifth Floor Conference Room
1995 University Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94704
John Fitzgerald, Professor Emeritus in the Centre for Social Impact at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne and Immediate Past President of the Australian Academy of the Humanities based in Canberra
Xiao Qiang, School of Information, UC Berkeley
The resignation of Senator Sam Dastyari from the Australian Senate in December 2017 captured international attention. Senator Dastyari embarrassed his Labor Party colleagues once too often by his eagerness to please Beijing through his fund-raising activities, his public speeches, his policy preferences, his financial indiscretions and his apparent disregard for national security. Domestically, however, the Dastyari case is just one among many involving business, media, universities, community groups and eminent public figures seeking to reconcile their principles with a wave of influence operations in Australia, loosely co-ordinated from Beijing. What does the Australian experience reveal about the Communist Partys United Front strategy in Chinas post-reform era? What works, what does not, and why? What lessons can other liberal democracies draw from the experience?