Trump and Biden camps blame each other over Chinese spy base in Cuba
06/15/2023 // Cassie B. // Views

The Chinese spy base in Cuba that recently came to light has actually been in place since before 2019, according to a Biden administration official. The base is reportedly capable of intercepting electronic signals from American military and commercial buildings.

The official claims that Biden was briefed on the base and China's plans to build similar ones in other locations after he took office. After initially refusing to confirm its existence, the administration is now shifting the blame to Trump, saying it was a problem they “inherited” from his administration and that the facility was upgraded in 2019.

However, Trump has placed the blame squarely on the Biden administration on his Truth Social accounts. He noted this week: “China just, effectively, took over Cuba. Would never have happened under the Trump administration!”

His one-time director of national intelligence, John Ratcliffe, also denied the existence of the facility in Cuba while Trump was in office, telling Fox News: “It’s just absurd, and, just like with the spy balloon situation, you’ll see Trump administration officials coming out and saying, ‘It’s simply not true. The strategy for the Biden administration is to deny it until they can’t deny it anymore, then find a way to blame the Trump administration for it.”

Last week, the Wall Street Journal broke the news that an agreement between China and Cuba was in place regarding a Chinese spy facility in Cuba that could keep tabs on the U.S. The coastline of Cuba is less than 100 miles from the southern part of Florida, which is a close enough proximity for China to carry out signals intelligence, accessing electronic communications among the many military bases in the American southeast, as well as naval traffic.


The report cited a series of anonymous sources who said Beijing was paying Cuba billions of dollars as part of the agreement.

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby initially denied the reports, claiming they were “not accurate” but failing to elaborate on which details he found fault with. However, he did concede that “we have had real concerns about China’s relationship with Cuba, and we have been concerned since Day 1 of the administration about China’s activities in our hemisphere and around the world.”

However, an American official maintained that Cuba and China recently reached an agreement to enhance the base’s capabilities.

Cuban officials also denied the report in the Wall Street Journal, claiming that they are opposed to any type of military presence by foreign countries in the Caribbean and Latin America.

A spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry claimed to be “unaware” of such a facility and said America was hypocritical. At a briefing in Beijing, he said, “The U.S. is the global champion of hacking and superpower of surveillance.”

Kirby has since confirmed the existence of the facility, however, but he is keeping details under wraps. He said the Biden administration is trying to minimize the risks associated with it.

“We’re confident that we can continue to protect our nation’s secrets in this hemisphere and beyond and that we can continue to defend the country appropriately,” he said.

Meanwhile, Secretary of State Antony Blinken is set to visit Beijing for meetings on June 18, and it is not yet known how the news of the Chinese spy facility in Cuba could affect his plans. He canceled an official trip there earlier this year after the Chinese spy balloon incident. He is set to meet with “senior PRC officials” but there is no word on whether he’ll be meeting with the president of China, Xi Jinping.

Sources for this article include:

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