China, Hacking, and Murder
By Cliff Kincaid 11/11/2014
NSA defector Edward Snowden arrived in China, before going to Russia, and his disclosures included documents on NSA surveillance of the giant Chinese telecommunications firm, Huawei, one of many sources of hacking attacks on the United States.
Chinese hacking attacks have been increasing since the Snowden disclosures. In May, the U.S. Department of Justice indicted five Chinese military hackers for computer hacking, economic espionage and other offenses.
In a 2012 report, the House Intelligence Committee had called Huawei a threat to U.S. national security interests.
“Our country has been sold out for money and power,” says Mary Todd, mother of an American murdered while working on a secret project involving the Chinese firm Huawei. “China has bought out our government.”
The story of Shane Todd is much worse than the latest in a series of hacking attacks by China. An American citizen working on a Chinese project in Singapore, he was murdered just before he was scheduled to return to the United States. He had expressed fears that the project could jeopardize U.S. national security and he wanted out.
The title of their book, Hard Drive, is a reference to a computer hard drive found after his death that documents the relationship between IME and Huawei, and the nature of the technology and its military applications.
Pictures of the young man after his death showed he had defensive wounds, making the official claim of suicide impossible to believe.
Mary Todd cannot get either Congress or the Obama Administration to take up the cause of her murdered son. She told me in an interview that she and her husband had met with Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA)about her son’s murder and that Wolf had warned her about the ability to get to the bottom of the scandal, saying, preceded those comments by saying, “Mary, Think about Benghazi.” This is the scandal involving the deaths of four Americans in Libya and an on-going cover-up by the Obama Administration.
Mary Todd reports in her book, Hard Drive, that the Congressman “informed us that he was already familiar with our story and that he believed us.” That meant that he believed her son, Shane Todd, who was working on a contract involving the Chinese company Huawei, had been murdered. Authorities in Singapore, where Shane Todd worked, called it a suicide. The U.S. State Department went along with the cover-up.
“You are doing the right thing to press for a congressional investigation, but you are not going to get anywhere,” Wolf told them. Shocked and bewildered, she asked, “Why not?”
He replied, “Huawei has a law firm on every corner in Washington D.C. and has helped elect several current members of Congress.”
Mary Todd writes that she couldn’t believe what she had been told and said to herself: “Does China really have that much influence over our country’s political decisions?”
She says Wolf tried to help, by asking the FBI to pursue evidence in the case.
Then-Senator Max Baucus (D-MT) tried to help as well, at least at first. But Mary Todd, who lives in Montana, says the assistance eventually dried up. When she asked for the Senator’s help in getting some documents in the case and for the FBI to meet with them, the Baucus staff aide, Laura Rauch, said that the Senator “would be unable to assist with this request.”
Mary Todd adds, “Later that afternoon, we discovered from a news report that Baucus had been appointed Ambassador to China by President Obama.”
Rep. Wolf’s endorsement of the book says:
“I appreciate the Todd family sharing this important story with the American people about how certain foreign actors, especially Chinese companies like Huawei, should be viewed with suspicion and concern. It’s important for Congress to ensure that the federal government does all it can to protect national security and the safety of Americans, both at home and abroad, when challenged by foreign influences, especially countries like China that steal our technology and don't share our values. We should all keep Dr. Shane Todd’s story and the Todd family’s experience in mind as we consider future cooperation with certain countries and companies.”