Government Watch / Politics

Communist China in Latin America


Some 30 years ago, I made my first foray to Central America, visiting Belize. Odd was the unlikely presence of Chinese nationals. Today, China’s presence is pervasive across Latin America. With that presence comes communist political pressure, corruption, and dishonesty. We must understand China’s strategy – and illegitimacy.

To those who question whether free societies can fall to faulty ideas, whether China could really be making inroads – literally and ideologically against freedom, pause. China is moving into this hemisphere – with intent, intensity, and measurable success.

In addition to China challenging American values in our own educational system, infiltrating schools, research institutions, and private sector, China is coopting allies. Examples are everywhere.

According to credible defense analysts, over the past 20 years, China’s trade with Latin America “has expanded 18-fold to $314 billion,” as Chinese companies (all linked to the communist regime) “have become important partners and suppliers for firms operating … the region’s oilfields, mines, ports, telecommunications and electricity grids.” See, e.g., Why China’s Advance in Latin America Matters.

That fact alone is telling, as it shows the Chinese concentration of effort and success in creating regional vulnerability and reliance on Chinese control of energy, maritime, telecommunications, and electricity infrastructure. Think:

In times of future conflict or diplomatic tension, how important might Chinese pressure on energy, maritime, communications, and power grids of American allies be? In a word, very.

Nor is China’s growing influence in Central and South America limited to these sectors or to loans, gifts, and shadowy deals with Latin American governments.

China’s “military police” have been part of “UN peacekeeping” in Haiti for almost a decade. The recent assassination of Haiti’s president is seen by some as an opening for China, chance to get Haiti to drop diplomatic ties with Taiwan, stir instability.

Last month, two members of Congress, Scott Perry (R-PA) and Tom Tiffany (R-WI), raised the alarm. In a letter to Biden, they wrote: “We are concerned about the potential ripple effects this assassination may have on stability, both within Haiti and across the wider region – as well as the doors it may open to political interference by the People’s Republic of China.” See U.S. lawmakers warn of Chinese meddling in Taiwan-Haiti ties.

Nor is their concern misplaced. China has been “targeting Haiti” in a “bid to isolate Taiwan” for years. Globally, China offers “interest free loans” if countries will abandon free Taiwan. See, Beijing targets Haiti as bid to isolate Taiwan from its diplomatic allies heads to the Caribbean.

But China’s influence is wider, creeping faster. China has put warships in Latin American ports, recently managed to woo US allies Brazil and Colombia into joint security exercises, while “hosting the region’s military and police officers in China.” Economic ties move to security.

As the United States scrolled back security assistance to Colombia and seven Andean countries – known as Plan Colombia, or the Andean Region Initiative (ARI) – China was quick to pick up slack. They pushed military and police aid through “defense” companies run by the government.

Last month’s loss of Peru to a Marxist president in a hotly contested election only adds concern to those tracking regional developments. Aside from election integrity, China has become a discrete contributor of inordinate security assistance to Peru, another longtime US ally. Too often, we underestimate China’s intent to peel off US allies, under they are lost.

To be clear: China’s approach to international trade and diplomacy – as President Trump identified – is patently dishonest. They would as soon coopt, corrupt, buy, or strongarm smaller nations and international organizations, as they have the World Trade Organization, United Nations Human Rights Council, recently the World Health Organization, as operate honestly.

The Wall Street Journal calls it “taking over international organizations.” Countless reports indicate a pattern and practice by China of buying and pushing communist political influence. See, e.g., How China Is Taking Over International Organizations, One Vote at a Time; China’s intimidation and endless pursuit of ideological compliance; Special Report: China uses intimidation tactics at U.N. to silence critics; China using proxies to intimidate people across world, says Canadian minister.

The result has been a bizarre attempt by China to legitimize communist inhumanity. When a UN Human Rights Council can be coopted to ignore China’s brutal repression of basic humanity in Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Tibet, across nation and region, something is deeply wrong.

In short, where the United States aggressively called out Soviet illegitimacy and must call out Communist Chinese illegitimacy. China is now leaning forward in Latin America, part of that nation’s push for global communist dominance, masquerading as economic tradecraft.

Unless the United States refocuses on allies, we can expect China to gain control over Latin American trade nodes, ports, critical infrastructure, major economic sectors, election processes, and – unfortunately – electoral outcomes, permitting military and political power projection.

One analyst recently assessed: Through economic engagement, China “employs political relationships and revisions to the institutional order … while building military capabilities with global reach to protect the nation against those that it anticipates will resist its efforts.” In that way, China is more dangerous than the Soviets were.

Bluntly, the threat is at our doorstep. “Never before in modern human history has a state so powerful, so fundamentally put at risk the global institutional order, security, freedoms, and prosperity of the rest, employing an approach that was so superficially benign …disarming its targets from within by playing to their short-term material interests.”

That is the nub. Even as we confuse allies in the Far East, China is advancing chess pieces in this hemisphere, using economic power we gave away to push communist political ends – efforts to take down, transform, coerce, and control governments.

What must be done is simple but takes courage – from the US and global allies. Chinese Communism must be called out as Ronald Reagan delegitimized Soviet Communism as inherently deceptive, dishonest, corrupt, brutal, and in direct opposition to individual freedom and equal opportunity, against American values.

As brave Chinese citizens rose in Hong Kong, Xinjiang, Tibet, and Tiananmen Square – facing communist tanks and machine guns – Communism is surely illegitimate. It is an enemy of free people everywhere, including this hemisphere. We must say so.

We hope you've enjoyed this article. While you're here, we have a small favor to ask...

Support AMAC Action. Our 501 (C)(4) advances initiatives on Capitol Hill, in the state legislatures, and at the local level to protect American values, free speech, the exercise of religion, equality of opportunity, sanctity of life, and the rule of law.

Donate Now

If You Enjoy Articles Like This - Subscribe to the AMAC Daily Newsletter
and Download the AMAC News App

Sign Up Today Download

If You Enjoy Articles Like This - Subscribe to the AMAC Daily Newsletter!

Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 year ago

Hey, got news for ya…….Communist China is in the USA!!!!! That’s what we have to stop. Gotta get rid of the commies in the WH.

1 year ago

Biden and the democrat/socialist party will do nothing to seriously confront China. And while the American people are “sleeping” (through the lies), if any country would physically attack America we would find out very quickly that we don’t actually have many “friends” that would come to our aid. The vast amounts of money that we give to many countries would be quickly “out bid” by China. China is growing more powerful every year. If the yen becomes the world standard America is distant history. Most likely we will be taken from within (as we are seeing now), not a physical attack.

Geraldine McGann
1 year ago

I remember a HS teacher in the late ‘ 60’s saying if there was ever a WWIII, it would be Russia (at the time, USSR) allied with US against China. Seems plausible now….

1 year ago

Does China own any businesses in the USA ?

1 year ago
Reply to  Paul

China owns literally hundreds of businesses outright in the United States and has spent over $2,000,000,000 to buy up American farm land. I would imagine they also are minority owners in thousands more businesses all across the country, since Chinese financial companies have been investing in everything they can get their hands on here for decades now. However, precise figures on Chinese minority ownership in businesses isn’t tracked as well as it should be by the federal government.

1 year ago
Reply to  Paul

They own the dementia ridden person posing as president and his entire family so in a way they own our country and it’s businesses!

1 year ago

America needs to keep allies we have had since WWII & Trump did not help this goal with a few of our allies. Also, Trump did not treat/recognize Puerto Rico as an American territory when hurricane devastated PR. He bashed PR at the start & that kind of treatment does not create a good allie.

1 year ago
Reply to  JohnH

But you’ll ackowledge he had a better approach than the clown show in power now?

Or Orange Man Bad?

1 year ago
Reply to  JohnH

johnH = Chinese spies every where

mary howard
1 year ago

Just saying China is a corrupt regime will not stop Chinese aggression. The United States is no longer Reagan country and the socialists in congress are making headway every day. I am so glad we have representatives and senators that stand up to the threat but it seems we are fast being outnumbered. Besides that, unless your head was in the sand, the 2020 election was stolen from President Trump and those loyal, law abiding Americans who thought their vote counted. We are in a war with evil and that evil is the Chinese Communist Party.

1 year ago
Reply to  mary howard

Have not seen any proof of stolen 2020 election but opposite that AG Barr found no significant fraud. But I do like your comment about Reagan country. He came in & was good for America & wonder if another like him exists today.

1 year ago
Reply to  JohnH

Look around. Unless you’re deaf, dumb and blind you should be able to see the proof

1 year ago
Reply to  HocasPocas

The proof HAS been uncovered including VIDEO proof. The liberal media just refuse to acknowledge it. And too many of “we the people” buy in to the garbage. The liberal media have a seething hatred for Trump (just like Pelosi) and won’t even try to uncover the truth.

1 year ago


China has never been shy about laying out its strategy for world supremacy since President Xi has taken over. If anything, he and the CCP have been overly honest about how they intend to make China the dominant world power and bring every other nation to heel. The various white papers that China publishes on the subject essentially lay out their long-term plans and how they intend to achieve each one. You have no doubt read them all the same way I have, so you know they are fairly specific in laying out the Chinese objectives and means to achieving them.

The problem isn’t China per se, but rather the rest of the world NOT taking the threat seriously until very recently. Too many world leaders and businesses transfixed on the potential money to be made in a market of 1.4 billion people, while ignoring the obvious reality that the Chinese communists would NEVER give up their power.

Aside from President Trump and his administration bringing the threat to the forefront and then trying to bring the rest of the world leaders on board to provide a unified front, not much in the way of tangible resistance was offered in the past. Now unfortunately, President Trump has been removed and replaced with someone who is obviously not able to stand up to China or anyone else like Russia, Iran or North Korea. So of course China is going to take advantage of this opportunity to expand their influence around the world. Any intelligent leader would under the circumstances.

So while we focus on mandatory diversity training of our military, non-existent systemic racism and move our economy to becoming even more closely tied to China, via the whole climate change scheme that will require the United States to become dependent on China for nearly every major piece associated with a “green energy infrastructure” and end our own energy independence, China is gobbling up resources and countries as fast as it can. It’s almost like watching a multi-car pile-up in slow motion with our future being the casualty.

1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Outstanding post. Spot on.

I must add that the rest of the world has pretty much followed America’s lead with regard to China, specially ever since we sent our then former Ambassador to the UN, young George HW Bush, into Communist China. Nixon? As our politicians have been increasingly led around by short term corporate interests as the foremost priority over evn lasting national security, we have literally designed our own undoing, beginning with the programming of a perpetual naivete’ into our recent generations of public school graduates.

The absurdity of our media portraying American “nationalism” as a bad thing today is perhaps the most insulting thing of all. Every other political entity on the planet has its own self-interest in proper

1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

Very well said!

1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE


Stukahna Sandbahr
1 year ago

Yeah, the world’s real safe with Bullwinkle in office

1 year ago

Especially since China gave Biden $17 million, we know he owes them something for this enormous payoff.

Stephen Russell
1 year ago

To set up Venezula as a Cuba for siting missiles ala Cuba 1962??

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x