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Silent Invasion: China's influence in Australia

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  432 ratings  ·  74 reviews
In 2008 Clive Hamilton was at Parliament House in Canberra when the Beijing Olympic torch relay passed through. He watched in bewilderment as a small pro-Tibet protest was overrun by thousands of angry Chinese students. Where did they come from? Why were they so aggressive? And what gave them the right to shut down others exercising their democratic right to protest? The a ...more
Paperback, First Edition , 376 pages
Published February 26th 2018 by Hardie Grant Books
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Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018
When I was in primary school and aged about 11 (circa 2000), we would travel to Melbourne for school excursions to places like the zoo and the Holocaust museum (gotta gettem while they're young, right?). A game we used to play on the bus through parts of Melbourne as innocent kids was called 'spot the Aussie' - all you had to do was spot the Caucasian amongst the sea of Asians. There was no malice in the game, just kids being kids. As the years have rolled on, the subject of immigration to Austr ...more
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is probably the best book I have ever read on contemporary China and its mission against our civilisation. Indisputably principled in political economy theories, it is unbiased, balanced, and comprehensive, demonstrating an unusual entirety of coverage of the issues Australia has to face against CCP China's aggression. It is a book of hope for those who love Australia and its values. It is also a book of fear for China and for those whom it is gracing. It may seem a tiny ripple at the momen ...more
Marie Belcredi
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Having met Clive Hamilton, read his books and having a great respect for The Australia Institute, I was curious why he would stick his neck out and write a book so controversial that would make him open to being labelled a racist or anti-Chinese. Hamilton is a brave person who will speak out and he has in this well researched book. There is nothing in this book that is not supported by ample evidence. I read this book with one marker in the Notes and one book mark to my current page.
Tom Evans
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
An alarming look at Beijing’s influence in Australia, particularly of geoeconomics, how any nation angering the Chinese government has been responded by swift and damaging sanctions. Most importantly it presents researched, factual findings, and is not a book riddled with sensationalism as I thought before reading it.
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was drawn to this book because of its author, Clive Hamilton, who had impressed me as the founder of the left-wing think tank, The Australia Institute. Knowing Hamilton's political persuasion made wanting to read this book all the more compelling. This book is no apology for China's poor record on human rights, or its positions on Taiwan and Tibet, but is an excoriating critique of this country's involvement and influence in every sector of Australian life: science and technology, defence, edu ...more
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I cannot recommend this book enough. A damming portrait of how the Chinese government is employing soft power to erode Australia’s sovereignty and make Australia a virtual tribute state to the new modern China. It is clear the CCP is determined to move heaven and earth to do this. Methods include intimidation, buying access to politicians, silencing critics in universities and schools, and buying up real estate and agricultural resources. I ultimately worry about the future of Australia in 20 ye ...more
Sep 24, 2018 added it
This is a very frustrating book. Clive Hamilton discusses some very serious issues about China's relationship with Australia, issues that need to be discussed and addressed. But he undercuts his argument with rather tiresome name-calling (anyone who would take a different view to him is a member of the "China lobby", a "dupe", an "apologist" and so on) and other tropes that reek of the harangue, including the unsourced ascription of motivation to people who do or say things with which he disagre ...more
Simon Robinson
Jun 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Essential reading for any Australian wishing to be politically aware, especially considering that the Chinese Communist Party repeatedly attempted to thwart its publication for the truth contained therein. After witnessing thousands of Chinese students aggressively overtake a small protest by Tibetans in front our Canberra Parliament during the 2008 Olympic torch relay, and the complete lack of media coverage of same, Hamilton was left gobsmacked, and subsequently driven to investigate how and w ...more
Stephen Torsi
Oct 31, 2018 rated it liked it
If you were going to write about China's political and economic influence on another country, you would want to get your facts straight and that is what Hamilton sets out to do. Every claim is meticulously referenced so much so that the book becomes a list of well documented facts and as such is not a particularly satisfying read. What it does do well is offers a deeply unsettling and detailed train of evidence of China's 'One hundred year' strategy and Australia's part in ensuring global superi ...more
Benjamin Farr
Jun 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, australia
A phenomenal, well-researched account of the rising influence of the Peoples Republic of China upon Australia. The book explores the entangled web that the Communist Party has spun across Australia's cultural institutions, former and current leaders, universities, media and the CSIRO.

Excellent book - 5 stars.
Jaanus Tamm
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It gives good overview and lots of examples how communist party runs china foreign policy and foreign investments to other countries. Handbook of behaviour what to expect in Europe soon (or already happenening). Shows how much China influence has been increased in Asia and how countries consider to hedge declining US power there.
Peter Franklin
A very interesting book that raises many worrying things that are happening in Australia. Several of the episodes are publicly known but much more is not and politicians and the media are mostly quiet about the situation.
Ryan Woo
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is a hair-raiser. The author did a good job investigating and reporting the infiltration from China to Australia. The original publishing company withdrew to publish this book is very telling that the influence of China is very strong. The freedom of speech in Australia is being sabotaged.
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book is a Must Read for all Australians. Well researched, well written, if this isn't a wake up call for politicians, universities, the Defence Force and media then I don't know what is.
Must read. Australian elites have let the country down - either greed or denial/ignorance.
Sarah King
Apr 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very interesting insight into the influence that the CCP has over its citizens and how it is trying to influence the two nations that are weakened (Australia and New Zealand) by geography. It is also interesting the narrative the CCP is trying to force onto the Australian population.

There was an interesting comment made about that Chinese students take the slightest offence at something and think its an attack on the motherland and it can whip up a 'jingoistic fervour' in them. As well as how
Diana Reynolds
Jun 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an absolute gobsmacker of a book and one every Australian should read. It lifts the lid on so much that has been going on with the elites of Australia - polititians, leaders of industry, the education sector and beyond. We mere mortals, the general public have been conned with slogans and moral imperatives, given snippets and edited truths about what is really going on and has been for the last 50 years! Meanwhile our country's sovereignty continues to be bartered under our noses to fore ...more
Ian Macintosh
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a fact-heavy book (with detailed source references), which sets out an argument for why Australia should be more vigilant with regards the potential for China to influence Australia.

It is a compelling read, though a little repetitive at times. The structure is neither chronological nor clearly aligned to chapter headings.

Recommended for those who are interested in this topic, as well as those who have not yet studied the topic.
Pip Snort
May 31, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clive Hamilton has takled a sensitive subject. One that he knew would provoke a reaction, and did, when his book was published in 2018. But it is a timely word. We in Australia are naive. We assume that others have the sort of benign motives we ourselves carry. We assume that such motives are communicated in actions and words. And to some extent we are right. But the problem that Hamilton has identified is that we are not listening. Beijing is telling us how to think about China. It is wanting u ...more
Joe Callingham
Aug 25, 2018 rated it liked it
I was driven to read this novel on the back of the reports that various publishers were refusing to publish the novel out of (alleged) fear of a back lash from Beijing. It is definitely one of the most politically contentious novels I have read but it covers an area that many Australians are afraid to explore due to the threat of being called a racist.

Clive Hamilton does a comprehensive job in analysing the reach of the Chinese state into Australian domestic matters. While some of the revelatio
Aug 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
For a long time, many people have always viewed China as part of "economic cooperation" or business. The government and the public are optimistic about the China government's investment in Australia, but the contents are usually packaged in the economy and are not understood! These are packed with Chinese economic dividends but full of dangerous communist ideas! Because the CCP uses the economic dividend to attract Australians to the CCP’s communist socialism. However, what many Australians do n ...more
Ding Lingwei
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
CCP uses trade as the lure to Australia, while 100% Chines corporations dont have any right or courage to violate government, and most of the big corporation have governmental background, for example, the grandfather of Meng Wanzhou is a vice-governor of Sichuan province, Xi Jinping is the brother in law of Li Shufu, the chairman of Geely. What's more, sometimes the oversea Chinese have to obey the command from Beijing such as argue for the fame of CCP, monitor the abroad Chinese. Of course, the ...more
Duncan Smith
Aug 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very disturbing book. Australia is being duped thanks to a combination of chronic naivety and poor decisions driven by short term financial gain. As a former fan of Hawke and Keating, I was taken aback to hear of their part in enabling this, along with several other prominent public figures.

This book is almost mind blowing at times, and the long term implications are not good. Unbelievable.
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics, australia, china
Good insight into how China's soft power and diplomacy is being deployed into Australian institutions and power structures. A controversial book as some publishers refused to publish it which was why it was interesting to read.
Ray MikamiHero
Apr 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great insight into how some of the apparent benign actions of big Chinese powerhouses **can** have some more sinister side effects on the Australian lifestyle and culture. Some political bias but definitely worth a read.
Jonathan Mayweather
Well researched and important work, but often appears to jump on the "Has a Chinese name, could work for China" angle a little too easily.
I have plenty of Chinese friends, with very Chinese names, who would never work for the Communist Party no matter their threats.
Read with a grain of salt.
Zhang Tao
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
An interesting book about how China uses its money to influence Australia which covers students, Chinese community, and politicians.
James Edward Hansen
This is a very disturbing book. Aussies are far too naive and complacent for their own good, and are very poorly led. Wake up, lest you lose your country and not even know what happened.
Aug 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This thoroughly researched examination of China and its expansion into all areas of Australia shocked me and at times I thought I was reading a horror story. I am no longer naive and complacent. Yes, our economic prosperity is important, but at what cost? Looking forward to Hamilton's new book, Hidden Hand: exposing how the CCP is reshaping the world.
Jul 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must-read for anyone even tangentially involved in foreign policy or international business.
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Clive Hamilton AM FRSA is an Australian public intellectual and Professor of Public Ethics at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics and the Vice-Chancellor's Chair in Public Ethics at Charles Sturt University. He is a member of the Board of the Climate Change Authority of the Australian Government, and is the Founder and former Executive Director of The Australia Institute. He regula ...more

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Rumaan Alam began writing Leave the World Behind with a series of tweets on a secret Twitter account he started two years ago.   The book that...
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“The accusation can be made only by conflating the CCP with Chinese people so that being anti-CCP must mean being anti-Chinese. (It’s exactly what the CCP wants us to think.) It’s a cheap accusation, but it serves as an effective silencing device in this country because of the widespread, and quite proper, sensitivity to inflaming racial tensions.” 0 likes
“Controlling people’s thoughts obviates the need to control their behaviour and the party has striven constantly to implant patriotic thoughts into the minds of the people.” 0 likes
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