Picture: Screen shot from MIT site
“The arrest of Dr. Gang Chen on January 13, 2021, by the Boston FBI is nothing at all but thinly veiled racism,” Rao Yi, a Chinese neurobiologist, claimed in opposition to the arrest of the Massachusetts Institute of Engineering (MIT) professor Chen Gang, who was billed with “hiding” work he did “for the Chinese govt” when he was also receiving money from the US authorities for nanotechnology.
If MIT does not support Dr. Gang Chen, “MIT will be implicated in a single of the worst circumstances of academic racism in the 21st century,” Rao wrote in an open up letter to the President of MIT and Vice President of Analysis at MIT.
Chen, 56, was born in China but is a naturalized US citizen. He was charged with wire fraud, failing to file a foreign lender account report and generating a wrong assertion on his tax returns. The top prosecutor in Boston reported Dr. Chen appeared to have acted out of loyalty to China, US media claimed.
The incident sparked heated conversations amid Chinese and American scholars. Rao, the incumbent president of Capital Health care University who renounced his US citizenship in 2009 right after returning to China from the US, launched his open letter on Friday.
“Some US departments really should show professionalism when working with situations prevent political manipulation and defaming China’s skills strategies,” Chinese International Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian claimed in reaction to Chen’s arrest.
Rao wrote in his letter that Chen is a very respected scientist at MIT and his associations with China are “extremely normal in academia.”
Rao wrote that Chen’s associations with the Southern University of Science and Technological innovation (SUSTech) have been recognised to the MIT President and Vice President. Officials of Shenzhen, South China’s Guangdong Province, where by SUSTech is located, visited MIT and met with MIT leaders, and Chen signed an settlement with the Chinese university on behalf of MIT. Chen did not characterize himself and there are no secrets on this issue.
The FBI’s charges involve Chen failing to disclose to the Department of Strength his connections with China, like his identification as an advisor to SUSTech, assessment skilled for the National Organic Science Basis of China, qualified for the Zhongguanchun Enhancement Team, advisor to the China Scholar Councilor and a “4th Overseas Professional Guide” to the Chinese federal government.
“This is a ridiculous charge…. if Dr. Chen had a venture funded by both of those a US company and a different US or Chinese agency, he should really have disclosed it. But none of the 5 associations are connected to Dr. Chen’s study cash, so of program he really should not listing them on his grant proposals,” Rao wrote.
Reviewing grants from other nations around the world is a common action. If failure to report the examining for the Chinese association is a crime, then virtually all MIT professors could be charged with examining for funding agencies of Israeli, Italian, or British governments. Singling out a science foundation of China as a govt agency is merely racism as all important governments have science foundations, Rao wrote.
“The root of the issue is, of study course, acknowledged to all of us: Trumpism has basically eroded morality in the US. A lot has to be completed for the US to get well from Trumpism. The whole planet has witnessed how handful of US politicians have spines, in entrance of Trump and his lies,” the scientist wrote.
“We certainly hope that MIT, a beacon of tutorial excellence and independence, will keep its head higher and present its backbone in entrance of a racist Boston FBI and its agents in defending Dr. Chen. This is for Dr. Chen, but it is also, if not far more, for MIT.”
MIT verified Chen’s arrest on Thursday and claimed, “for all of us who know Gang, this news is stunning, deeply distressing and challenging to understand.”