Source: NPR Published: 2019-4-25
Editor’s Note: Wang Wen, executive dean of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University of China, was interviewed by US National Public Radio (NPR), talking about the US’s cancellation for the visas of Chinese scholars. This article is excerpted from the report of NPR.
Wang Wen proudly says that he has been to over 20 U.S. states. He flies between the U.S. and China every few months for his job as director of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, a university think tank in Beijing.
At least he did until a few weeks ago, when he received an email from the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. His 10-year U.S. business visa had been abruptly canceled with no explanation. He was told he could apply for a single-entry business visa instead, if he was able to list his last 15 years of travel history.
"It was too much personal information to American government, so I rejected having to apply again," Wang tells NPR.
Academic exchanges between the U.S. and China have blossomed in frequency and scope since relations were normalized in 1978. Now, as relations sour, Chinese scholars and students face suspicions of espionage and spreading propaganda. The U.S. scrutiny is especially intense for Chinese scholars affiliated with state-linked think tanks and research institutions.
As for Wang, he says he's sad that he won't be going to the U.S. anytime soon. He became enamored with the U.S. when he studied at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies.
"I often used to publish op-eds, articles about America, and I often suggested to my audience and readers that China should learn from America, because America is a very strong power and American culture is very popular," says Wang, who worked as an editor at a state tabloid before entering the think tank world.
He feels a bit differently these days.
"Now," he says, "I never write such articles again."
Wang Wen is executive dean of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University of China.
The balance of power has been shifting all the time, especially between the major powers. And it has been obvious that it picked up speed in the past 20 years, especially in the last 20 years. Broadly speaking, what we've called “the great convergence” has been the historical hallmark of the second part of the last century and also the first two decades of this century.