USA/CHINA - The Newest Weapon: Visa War

Arno Froese

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 [recently], 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. 

Visas are the latest weapon in a growing rivalry between the U.S. and China. This year, the U.S. canceled visas for a number of prominent Chinese scholars with government links over concerns that such exchanges are conduits for peddling influence and for espionage. Increased scrutiny has delayed visas to hundreds of Chinese students. Meanwhile, American academics continue to fail to receive visas to China.

“The people who had perhaps 10-year multiple-entry visas—if those are canceled, they are most welcome to apply each time for a new conference. That’s what China has been doing to us for many years,” said Michael Pillsbury, an American defense scholar who’s critical of China and who has advised President Trump.

He hopes both sides, especially China, back down in restricting travel. “What I myself advocate is a cease-fire in this visa war,” he says. “It is in both sides’ interest to have scholars on the topic of U.S.-China relations be able to understand what is going on and bring their experience to bear.”

-www.npr.org, 25 April 2019

Arno's commentary

The success of today’s industrial world lies in the fulfillment of Daniel 12:4: “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.” Never before in human history have people accumulated so much knowledge, have seen such development in communication and travel as today. This, of course, will continue and increase. Those nations who place more restrictions on free travel will obviously be on the losing side in the long run.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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