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Several American newspapers have reportedly received millions of dollars over the past six months from a news agency controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.
The China Daily paid more than $1.6 million to the Los Angeles Times, Financial Times, TIME Magazine and Foreign Policy Magazine to run ad campaigns, according to Justice Department revelations first reported by the Washington Free Beacon.
The breakdown of the $1.6 million is as follows: $700,000 to TIME, $272,000 to the Los Angeles Times, $291,000 to Foreign Policy magazine and $371,577 to the Financial Times. He also paid over $1 million to major newspapers, including the Boston Globe, Seattle Times, Los Angeles Times, and Chicago Tribune, to print copies of his publications,
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This is not the first time American newspapers have accepted money from organizations supported by the Chinese Communist Party. Major newspapers like the New York Times and the Washington Post ended their relationship with China Daily after critics complained they were publishing Chinese state propaganda.
China Daily often paid American publications to include inserts titled “China Watch,” which portrayed the Chinese government and China in a positive light disguised as normal newspaper articles.
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The financial relationship between major US news outlets and Chinese state-backed groups comes as many mainstream journalists admit the theory that the coronavirus originated in a lab in Wuhan is credible, after months in calling it a “conspiracy theory”.
When former President Donald Trump and his administration suggested the theory was credible, many reporters dismissed the claims as political and Trump’s way of blaming the Chinese government. Now reporters are admitting that while the Trump administration may be right, Trump bears the blame for reporters’ skepticism and the theory’s outright dismissal.