Peter Thiel, the billionaire founder of PayPal and Facebook board member, has urged the FBI and CIA to investigate whether Google has been infiltrated by the Chinese.
Thiel made these remarks while speaking at the National Conservatism Conference in Washington DC on Sunday (Jul 14)
Thiel said that Google’s decision to work with the Chinese military is “treasonous” and insinuated that tech behemoth’s senior leadership may have been compromised by Chinese intelligence.
In an exclusive interview to Tucker Carlson of Fox News on Monday (Jul 15), Thiel said that he he would like Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai to answer three questions about the company's relationship with China.
“I would say answer my three questions. How many foreign intelligence agencies have infiltrated Google? Have the Chinese, in particular, infiltrated? And why are you working with Communist China and not the U.S.? What is the reason you’re doing that?” Thiel told Carlson during the interview.
During the interview, Thiel also hinted at the possibility of investigating agencies already probing on the alleged links
“It’s possible that there are people in the U.S. government looking into it and they haven’t told us. But yeah, I think the FBI and the CIA would be the natural places to look into it. The FBI would look at it from the domestic side; the CIA would look at it from the outside” he explained.
Last year, Google’s parent company Alphabet Google chose not to renew its contract for its controversial work providing artificial intelligence to the U.S. Department of Defense for analyzing drone footage after its current contract expires. Google employees resisted the project, known as Operation Maven, raising apprehensions that it would be used to improve the accuracy of drone strikes.
In a bid to re-enter the Chinese market, Google was also planning to launch a censored version of its search engine that will adhere to the draconian content regulation enforced by the ruling communist regime.
The search engine project, which is internally code-named Dragonfly, was conceptualised early 2017 and has gained momentum following a December 2017 meeting between Google’s Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai and a top Chinese government official.
Google‘s China relaunch raised disturbing questions about the company’s values and ethics, given China’s long history of suppressing free speech by clamping down on the internet.
Responding to Thiel's remarks on Sunday, Google reiterated that it does not have any dealings with the Chinese military. It described Thiel’s allegations as false.
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