(FreedomBeacon.com)- The Department of Education has found that major universities throughout America failed to disclose a huge sum of money from foreign governments.
According to a months-long investigation the Education Department engaged in, these universities didn’t disclose more than $6.5 billion in donations from countries such as Saudi Arabia, China and Russia.
In a statement released this week that announced the findings of the investigation, Betsy DeVos, the secretary of the Education Department, said:
“The threat of improper foreign influence in higher education is real. Transparency in foreign funding of higher education is not just something I think is a good thing; it’s the law. For too long, enforcement of that law was lax, but not anymore.”
The investigation undertaken by the Education Department was seeking to discover the ways in which foreign governments were peddling influence at various colleges in America. Some of these schools include Stanford, Georgetown, Cornell, Harvard and Yale — some of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the country.
All American schools are required by law to report any and all contributions they get from sources outside the country. But obviously, many of these schools have failed to do just that — and it’s been happening over the last 40 years.
The concern from the Education Department is that colleges that accept money from foreign sources, especially from Russia and China, are often pressured into holding events and programs that portray those two countries in a positive light.
In June, the Education Department launched an online portal that allows schools to report any foreign funding right online. Since it launched that portal, schools have recorded more than 7,000 financial transactions that have totaled almost $4 billion.
The issues uncovered by the Education Department aren’t just related to schools not reporting foreign donations. Some schools have misreported the amount of funding they have received, too.
At least two schools “failed to accurately account” for foreign funding that ended up going to campuses that are located in Doha, Qatar. Both of those campuses in question were partially funded by the Qatari government. This has fostered concerns that the Middle Eastern country “exerted its financial influence to stifle free speech.”
What’s worse, Huawei, a technology company from China that the U.S. government has labeled a national security threat, “had financial ties to nearly all the investigated institutions,” according to the Education Department investigation. This is most likely in an effort to give Huawei a competitive edge over other technology companies.
The Education Department also said there are other Chinese companies that are working with at least one college in the U.S. on a research project that involves predictive artificial intelligence behavior and crowd surveillance, “which the Chinese government could potentially harness for nefarious purposes.”
One final thing the investigation uncovered is that Alwaleed bin Talal, a prince in Saudi Arabia, sent loads of money to Georgetown. That school then turned around and tailored programs to avoid any issues that could potentially paint Saudi Arabia in a negative light.