QUESTION: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Merry Christmas to you, sir.
SECRETARY POMPEO: Merry Christmas to you as well, Mark. It’s great to be with you.
QUESTION: It’s always a pleasure. First, let me ask you this question: You’ve been Secretary of State how long?
SECRETARY POMPEO: Two and a half years and change after being CIA director.
QUESTION: CIA director, Secretary of State. These are two incredibly prominent positions, foreign policy positions. You’ve worked with President Trump for some time now. Enormous accomplishments by the President and you supporting the President’s agenda, and one of them is confronting China. You’ve been confronting China. You’ve been talking out about China. You’ve been explaining that China is a grave threat to the country. Do you think people now understand that, Mr. Secretary?
SECRETARY POMPEO: Mark, I think they do more than they did four years ago by leaps and bounds, and I think the public has become deeply aware of all the risks that the Chinese Communist Party presents. It’s a direct result of the good work that the President’s done along with the team that he assembled. They can see it, right? Some of them have lost their jobs to Chinese companies that stole their software, their intellectual property. Some of them see it in their schools. They see these Chinese students that are acting in ways that are deeply inconsistent with just somebody who’s coming to study.
So I do think there’s an ever-wider knowledge of that, and of course, we’re all still suffering from this virus that I think the world can now see the Chinese Communist Party covered up and foisted upon the world and – from Wuhan, and now we’re all suffering. Many lives lost and a huge economic impact on the world as well.
QUESTION: But you don’t get much help getting this message out in American media, do you?
SECRETARY POMPEO: No. In many cases, you see American media is beholden to the Chinese Communist Party. Big media empires have operations, right? It’s 1.4 billion people in China and they want to serve that market, so they want to sell their movies or their streaming products there, and so they often bend a knee, kowtow to them. It’s unfortunate. So that means their news organizations oftentimes too are reluctant to cover these transgressions from China and worse, Mark, sometimes they actually mouth Chinese propaganda. That’s the worst of it all.
QUESTION: And they did this when the virus hit. When the President, you, and others talked about the Wuhan, China virus, they said no, no, no, no, no, that’s racist. And then they blame the President for every single death that results from this virus. Don’t you find this appalling, really?
SECRETARY POMPEO: I do. That is the same narrative that General Secretary Xi Jinping drives and his foreign ministry drives and the People’s China Daily and the Global Times of China. That is the same Chinese propaganda that somehow suggests – you’ll remember when they tried to say that it was an American soldier who had wrought this on the world. This is disinformation. And when our media picks that up, when our media refuses to report on the fact that even to this day, Mark, the Chinese Communist Party hasn’t allowed an investigation into where this began inside of Wuhan, that’s so telling. I saw a CNN piece the other day where they said oh my goodness, it looks like the Chinese may have lied and said this was breaking news. It was stunning to see a major media outlet behave in that way, and unfortunately, it deceives the American people and doesn’t give them information that’s important for them to protect their liberty and their freedom.
QUESTION: We have a regime, this communist regime in China that is running concentration camps. All kinds of information coming out about murder, about torture, about sterilization, abortions, rapes, the most horrific things you can think of – slave labor, and also a report came out the other day that more journalists have been jailed in China for the second year in a row than any other country on the face of the Earth. I didn’t even see that reported in the main media.
SECRETARY POMPEO: Mark, this story about what’s happening in western China – you described them as concentration camps. I think that’s a very, very fair description. The media has under-reported this. Nobody said a word about it until President Trump and our team began to unpack what was really taking place there. We’d known it, the world had known it, but no leaders were prepared to go talk about what was actually happening there.
So we need – that story’s important because we know history. We know when authoritarian regimes behave this way and take on people who are different from them, we know the kinds of things that can happen. I remember reading your book Liberty and Tyranny. We know this history so well, Mark, that we have an obligation to make sure we identify it, call it out, and do everything we can to make sure that at the very least American companies aren’t participating in furthering this kind of activity.
Source: US State Department