“Reds under the Beds” was a term used by the US in the early 1950’s to create panic that the Soviets were everywhere in the US. It inspired fear and loathing and was part of the Cold War. McCarthyism followed when many US citizens were hounded by Senate investigations into links between “Reds” and Hollywood. Today this period is widely regarded as the low point of US democracy.
But today it is returning. Now every Chinese citizen working or studying in the US is a spy working for Xi Jinping. It is part of the new Cold War initiated by Trump.
Even Germany is affected. In recent days a former EU ambassador to Seoul, Oslo and Berlin, Gerhard Sabathil, who had been alleged to be a China spy is now demanding seven figure compensation after German prosecutors dropped their investigation. His reputation, network and circle of friends “have all been destroyed”.
This affair highlights deepening tensions between China and the West and we can expect more “Reds Under the Beds” stories as the West tries to put China in its place.
Sabathil said of his investigators “They have watched too many crime thrillers, had nightmares and fantasies and then made stuff up”