How China Manipulates the Media | Joshua Philipp

published on July 2, 2020

the Chinese Communist Party is

responsible for the coronavirus but it's

manipulating the global media to paint

itself as the world's Savior is it

working this is China uncensored I'm

Chris Chappell

if you want to know how China affects

your life be sure to subscribe and check

back every Monday Wednesday Friday and

Saturday for new episodes we found out

YouTube is not sending out notifications

to all subscribers and actually secretly

unsubscribing people from the show so

yeah check back frequently so you might

be wondering how 2020 became the year of

cowering in your homes while fighting

your neighbours for toilet paper well

the answer is the Chinese Communist

Party it's been very well documented

that they knew about the corona virus

early and covered it up they hoarded

medical supplies and got the World

Health Organization to downplay how

serious the disease was that's why I

called the corona virus the CCP virus

put the blame where the blame is due

right well the Chinese Communist Party

is the master of propaganda they're

spending a false narrative that they

actually saved the world and they've

gotten a lot of Western media to buy

into the lies joining me today is Joshua

Phillip senior investigative reporter at

epic times and host of the TV show

crossroads thanks for joining me Josh

it's a real pleasure Chris thanks for

having me sure so how has the Chinese

Communist party's propaganda narrative

changed over the course of the

coronavirus the Chinese regime has gone

through several different phases of its

propaganda push of course it started off

by saying there's no problem in China we

have the whole thing under control

there's no human to human transmission

nothing to be concerned about if you put

travel bans on China you're racist if

you try to say that we're not handling

it well you're spreading misinformation

and causing panic

then of course it turned out that they

were censoring people who tried warning

the rest of the world about it the fact

that they did that turned into a scandal

and so when a scandal came out and it

started spreading around the world they

changed their narrative what did they

say they said that the Chinese regime

itself was not responsible for it the

virus came from America not from China

they say they shifted the blame right

and they said that they started calling

at the us a virus that came before

this propaganda narrative saying that

maybe the American military brought it

to China during the during the October

2019 wargames in Wuhan right and then

they called it the USA virus then they

said oh it came from Italy it's the

Italian virus now they're saying it's

the French virus from France then they

shipped at the propaganda narrative

again and they started saying that what

we need is you know international

harmony we need cooperation we need

us-china cooperation and they played up

this whole harmonious you know we are

you know we are the world type narrative

and now they're shifting it again now

that different countries are calling for

investigations into the Chinese regime

and you know its handling of the virus

into the w-h-o for its ties to the

Chinese regime and also within to the

origin of the virus it's not just the

us calling for this but a lot of

countries including most of Europe right

now Australia of course the US and

others and so it has been changing the

narrative when it comes to this

disinformation and propaganda campaign

basically going by what the rest of the

world is saying and it does appear that

they're losing this battle on many

fronts

and of course we say propaganda

propaganda misinformation and

disinformation of course different and

the CCP is using a blend of all of these

well I know another big propaganda

narrative they've been pushing is that

China bought the world time but the us

blew it they botched it I think that's

an important one to also bring up yeah

that's that's a big one they're doing

right now – so the CCP has been put in

the latest the latest campaign they're

launching for example Xinhua news

which is of course state-run media one

of the main one of the Chinese regimes

main state-run news outlets now

currently listed as a foreign mission of

the Chinese regime under the State

Department which means it's not only

just a foreign agent you know under the

foreign agents Registration Act Farah

which it was before but it is now listed

as a foreign mission in other words

basically a branch of the Chinese regime

it's considered it's a media but it's

considered a branch of the Chinese

government itself they put out these

different viral type of videos where

it's like a Lagos you know a Lego puppet

show looking thing and they have the

Lego representing China calling you know

saying things like oh you know we're

dealing with this virus and they have

one representing the USA saying oh it's

nothing but a flu oh there's nothing to

worry about oh no now we're getting the

virus and of course they paint the

Chinese regime as being the sensible

voice in that in the US one is being the

irrational voice in that and of course

reacting to it now when it comes down to

how this whole thing is played out the

FCC chair actually had a great Twitter

thread which I went over in my one of my

episodes on crossroads and he really

breaks down the different points the

regime is made on that and I won't I

won't really you know go over the entire

thing here but essentially here's what

it said the CCP is basically using

disinformation and if they're of course

many different types of disinformation

but when you get into it it I'd say on

the deeper end of it goes into the

footnotes of narratives and so when

you're dealing with this propaganda

campaign the CCP has launched what are

the footnotes the footnotes are how the

regime itself played out its propaganda

under the Chinese regimes footnotes

there was no such thing as the Chinese

regime arresting doctors there was no

such thing as them disappearing

journalists there was no such thing as

them you know the lying for example

about the fact that you know there was

human human to human to human

transmission and allowed people in China

to travel abroad and even criticize

countries for banning travel from

notably after the Chinese regime itself

had banned for example internal travel

from Wuhan they were still letting these

people go abroad and the Chinese regimes

narratives none of that happened and so

there they're basing their arguments on

a limited scope of information and

they're building narratives on top of

that limited scope of information

they're presenting a false picture of

the situation that took place and using

that false picture as the footnotes to

build additional arguments and so if

people have not been exposed to the

actual context it does seem that they're

new that their narratives are reasonable

and this is how the regime is playing

this out right now I know you're not you

are an expert on disinformation how does

it really work because you know the

Chinese commies party has been doing all

of these different propaganda lines is

it because one isn't working and those

they have to do something else or is

that all part of how disinformation

works so let's look let's look a bit at

first of all the institutions and then

how these things are defined so for the

Chinese regime they have actually

adopted into the Chinese regimes

military doctrine is the three Warfare's

concept the three that in other words a

propaganda disinformation system based

on three different areas one is legal

warfare the manipulate the manipulation

of international legal systems media

warfare the control of outlets of

information not just news outlets but

social media any kind of forum where

people could communicate will be

targeted through it and there's also

psychological warfare and psychological

warfare is not necessarily lying on the

surface psychological warfare is is

using any means to alter the way people

perceive information so that you and I

could be looking at the same set of

information we could be looking at the

same collection of facts and come to

wildly different conclusions based on

those that is the purpose of

psychological warfare so for example

when it comes to this virus we have

three different elements of it media

warfare legal warfare psychological

warfare the legal war firs of course the

battle over who can be held responsible

over this

many countries including the United

States are threatening legal action

against China and of course you know

even class-action lawsuits at different

places that aren't necessarily being

done by countries be they're being done

by individuals that is a legal warfare

element the Chinese regime is saying

first off that you cannot sue us and

second off it's saying well how about we

sue you back and of course in China

where they have these state-run kangaroo

courts they can do whatever they want of

course if they challenge anything within

Chinese you know core the Chinese court

system they can do whatever they want

the second one being media war if it

would be the control of outlets of

information and of course the CCP does

have its state-run media it also has

foreign experts it can send for

interviews and major foreign news

outlets who appear to be independent and

you know respectable but are really just

a lot of times parroting the CCP and of

course then there's the psychological

warfare which in this case would be the

narrative the alteration of the

narrative in other words do you perceive

the Chinese regime as having been

responsible having handled this virus

outbreak well of you know having say

taken precautions at other countries but

did not when it comes to handling it and

do you see them as having for example

warned the world as opposed to you know

covering up information from the world

within the Chinese regime spectrum of

information that they presented that is

the picture they're trying to present

but if you of course like you and I have

been following the entire breadth of

information you can see right through it

we know that the Chinese regime is you

know of course manipulating courts

manipulating news outlets at least the

outlets of information and we know the

Chinese regime is basing its arguments

on incomplete information and of course

if you know the Chinese regime is

different forms of cover-up you know

that they you know did not alert the

world of what was happening quite the

opposite they were lying to the world

about what was happening they were

covering up information they were

arresting doctors they were disappearing

journalists that that would be again

breaking it down three Warfare's

doctrine the CCP has other branches for

this of course propaganda Department the

official one 50 cent army army of

Internet trolls and when it comes to the

political realm they have

example the liaison department which is

the it operates under the general

political department which is the

political warfare branch of the Chinese

military and so when it comes to

influencing politicians the realm of

politics they use the liaison department

for that they also have different

networks for high-level influence two of

them in fact at least one of them being

the committee of 100 which is a group of

high-level influencers in the United

States for example who can write op-eds

and news outlets who can write you know

papers and so on and defend the Chinese

regimes positions they also have the

United Front work Department which

operates through its consulates in

different countries a lot of times

through the cotton from the consulates

managing through the Chinese tongs or

hometown associations which can work as

the grassroots voices of the regime in

different parts of the world and so they

maintain this entire very large system

guided by different forms of policies

and you know of course state controls

but when we get into the the deeper

picture of disinformation propaganda and

misinformation you know a lot of media I

mean understandably of course a lot of

media use these words interchangeably

without actually understanding the

nuances between them propaganda is not

necessarily a lie propaganda is meant to

cause an emotional reaction you can

think of it it's like a like a Pavlov's

dog effect an unconscious reaction to a

stimuli and so the stimuli can be a

country a stimuli it could be a race of

people a stimuli it could be you know

the CCP itself basically how do you

react when you hear or see something and

of course propaganda can make you feel

patriotism it can make you feel hatred

it can make you feel you know that

someone has been wronged or dishonored

if you know of course there's propaganda

posters during wartime meant to make you

feel you know support for your country

and hatred towards an enemy there are

many uses of propaganda again and

there's also when you get into communist

tactics they talk about ads prop

agitation propaganda

in other words ways of agitating you

emotionally in teaching you to associate

that emotional agitation with a

political issue with you know targeted

party enemy and so on the Chinese regime

uses all of this well speaking of

emotional agitation what role has

American media played in this have they

have they been helping the American

population see what the Chinese

Communist Party is doing or have they

played into it the media reaction in the

US has unfortunately in my opinion very

much aligned itself with the Chinese

regime on many on many issues they have

been critical of the CCP in some regards

but I think we're facing a very

unfortunate situation on two fronts one

being that this issue has been

politicized the virus has been

politicized and a lot of organ is a lot

of news organizations whether it's them

or the parent companies which are

usually you know is big in you know

multinational corporations they of

course want to defend these global

institutions like the w-h-o a lot of

these social media for example they you

know for example YouTube the head of

YouTube came out and announced that they

would be you know deleting videos that

go against w-h-o recommendations Mark

Zuckerberg and Facebook came out with

statements saying that they know they

would of course be fighting

misinformation around the virus NBC had

an article saying that part of that

battle against what they call but they

considered misinformation misinformation

being just the outright statement of

false information you know at least as

they perceive it that they would be

directing people to the w-h-o for

accurate you know quote unquote

information and of course when it comes

to the political issue being politicized

unfortunately one of the scandals being

used right now by a lot of the outlets

that you know of course associate

themselves with political agendas is

that Trump is being criticized of having

mishandled the virus and of course

that's one of the big political talking

points and so when the Chinese regime

the Chinese dream has been using a lot

of the media reports about that for its

own propaganda and of course a lot of

different countries

when the Chinese regime comes out and

supports that narrative they of course

quote it because it serves their agenda

as well at least it seems and so you

have seen a lot of that at the same time

because there is such huge pushback

against the CCP some outlets actually in

addition to that have come out and

criticized the Chinese regime and have

criticized what it did but it's mixed it

does seem to be that that is changing

right now especially as countries call

for investigations into the origin of

this virus they seem to be aligning

themselves more with the Chinese regime

and the w-h-o then with the idea that

there should be say independent

investigations into this and try and to

try to figure out what's really going on

well so how successful has the Communist

party's propaganda narrative been

earlier you said it seemed like it

wasn't working but based on what you

just said it sounds like it's going very

well it's mixed the Chinese regime is

pretty much mobilizing its entire force

of controlled institutions of different

voices and it has like the you know

50-cent army and stuff but they've

pushed it so hard that it's becoming

obvious and a lot of people are you know

despite the propaganda despite the

narratives despite all of this

mobilization of all the you know Chinese

regimes foreign forces people are seeing

through it it's it's actually incredible

to see and even a lot of different

countries leaders now that were

previously a lot of times very favorable

to the CCP such as in the UK such as in

Australia they're coming out now and

calling out the Chinese regime and it

seems that are no longer afraid to do so

and when the CCP has come back and

threatened them now I think the Chinese

regime I think believed it had more

control than it did when it comes down

to it and they're seeing they're seeing

that when they come out and do that even

though within their own country things

like that might work when it comes to

the international community it has the

opposite effect if you come out and

threaten someone for speaking bad about

you not even speaking bad a lot of times

just for say calling for independent

investigations and they come out and

attack them it's had the opposite effect

and not only just the you know

grassroots into

well people at different countries is

charging to see through it but even a

lot of state leaders are starting to see

through it and call it out and so I'd

say even though the regime has been very

very aggressive on this and is launching

very large-scale campaigns of

disinformation misinformation and

propaganda a lot of people see through

it can't see everyone sees through but a

lot of them do what's at stake for the

Communist Party if it can't control the

narrative about the coronavirus right so

of course you know Chris had you on my

show just recently crossroads and we

talked about this a little bit and one

of the things I mentioned which I'll go

into a bit more here is that really when

it comes down to it when you boil it

down there are two international battles

right now at least from the standpoint

of the CCP there's the Battle of the

institution's there's the battle for who

controls say businesses and doing

hostile takeovers of companies do you

know using foreign direct investment

when the global economy is destabilized

there's the control over institutions

such as the United Nations or you know

say influence over the institution's

United Nations w-h-o others there's the

control and influence over global media

not not always direct control but

sometimes just say having a Chinese

academic go and you know write an op-ed

or do an interview with them that

presents the ccp's issues as if it were

coming from a grassroots voice there's

this large-scale system of control and

it does seem that the CCP not only has

strong control over that but can use the

virus to expand that for example one

belt one road foreign direct investment

it is being called out in some countries

but when it comes to say Latin America

Africa some parts of Asia they don't

have the ability to stand up to it as

much and so the regime might gain more

control in some regards through that but

there's also the battle of narrative the

battle of ideas the war of perception

right and really when it comes down to

it when you're dealing with free

countries everything is directed by

perception because the basis of

independent countries of free countries

is that the people themselves decide the

outcome right if they vote for the

politicians they vote for that they can

to a large extent for the policies that

determining you know in terms of who

they vote for public opinion is what

directs a lot of things in public and of

course politics are privy to public

opinion to a large extent they have they

have to follow it at least to a pretty

large extent if unless they want you

know don't want to get reelected and so

in other words the basis of free

societies is an informed public making

decisions and so information is a huge

huge part of that and the Chinese regime

is losing the information war because

they're pushing so hard and so

aggressively that everybody is seeing

through it and even a lot of their

narratives are really flimsy for example

we mentioned these different district

disinformation campaigns are launching

right now they seem very well form they

seem very well polished but they're

fragile and of course they're being

called out left and right it's not even

it's not it's not even a partisan issue

at this point you even have a lot of

very you know left-wing countries

calling out the CCP in the US it's

become almost a bipartisan issue in a

lot of regards although there are some

who do seem to align themselves with it

more but for the most part it does seem

to bite it does seem to be bipartisan

that they see the regime for what it is

and so by losing the idea the battle of

ideas they can lose the overall battle

and it does seem that that is the

direction it's heading in at least in my

analysis so after the corona virus

pandemic is done do you think things

will go back to the status quo or has

the international relationship with

China changed forever

I'd say changed forever and in my

opinion I I don't I've been saying that

I don't think the Chinese regime has a

good chance of surviving this and I say

that based on a few different points of

information one is now for the Chinese

regime itself it's a totalitarian system

and it what is the basis of that it's

three points one is the internal

narrative that the Chinese regime can

make better decisions than you can that

to justify its control of what you

believe what you think what you do in

your life that the regime itself has you

know your self-interest in mind more so

than you do and is able to make better

too

and you can that narrative internally in

China has been shaken up because a lot

of people do not agree with the way the

Chinese regime handled this although the

propaganda coming out right now is

saying otherwise that the people are

saying oh you know the China handled it

the best of any country we all know how

those things are formed of course but in

Wuhan you know we had reports for

example of people being so angry at the

CCP that the only outlet they had was to

go out on their porches at night and

yell curses at the Chinese regime into

the sky you have people who lost family

members and are getting ashes back that

do not appear to be the ashes of their

family members you have people who have

had family died been locked in their

apartments you have a lot of rumors

spreading around about you know who's

responsible you have businesses going

out of business because of the lockdowns

and because of the measures the CCP took

which brings me into the next two

elements of social control in China one

is the idea of fear and so are you more

afraid of the party than you know afraid

to stand up for your rights do you

perceive the ability to stand up against

it as being more dangerous to your

well-being then say you know laying down

and just dealing with it the Chinese the

Chinese people do know they no longer

seem to be afraid of the CCP

and even a lot of local government

officials seem to be defying even higher

government orders there's there's a

balkanization taking place even among

different Chinese provinces when it

comes to how to deal with things and you

see even low level officials criticizing

high level officials which you would

never see before I mean really rarely at

least and then there's the financial

element to it and really already before

this virus took place that that element

was being shaken up by the us-china

trade war and even more so now where

businesses are going out companies even

the ones that have started back up or

having trouble restarting because

there's no there's no demand people

aren't buying they're having trouble

getting workers and you know many other

issues and so things are destabilized

across the board for the CCP and at the

same time you have countries like Japan

paying companies to move their

businesses outside of China you have the

us different companies pulling out

even during the us-china trade war

before the virus that was happening and

so that entire manufacturing base in

China is pulling out

you have possible sanctions underway

against Chinese high-tech industry in

industries such as Huawei you have

rumors at the US might for example ban

the sale of semiconductors to China

which means that the high tech industry

in China is about to go under you have

talked of international law suits

against the CCP in one of the ways the

Trump administration is floating that as

a possibility because it is hard to sue

a country as they might do it through

sanctions and so the CCP in every single

way internally is being destabilized all

they have right now and all they're

playing with are the different systems

of international control and a lot of

those systems they're using them to such

an extent that they're basically the

masks have fallen off and people see

them for what they are well thanks for

joining me Josh that was very insightful

hey my pleasure Chris and thank you for

joining us you can find crossroads on

YouTube I was actually interviewed this

week by Josh so I'll have a link to that

one below once again I'm Chris Chappell

see you next time

[Music]

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