China says it's an "opportunity to showcase great achievements and diverse cultures," but the World's Expo, which opens in Shanghai on Friday night, is also an opportunity for China to spy on Americans and even recruit new intelligence sources, according to current and former U.S. officials.
"Are people who go to the Expo potential targets for espionage? I think you'd be a fool to think otherwise," said one U.S. official, who asked not to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the topic.
More than 70 million people from China and abroad, including some of the world's most powerful businessmen, are expected to visit the Expo before it closes in six months. Nearly 200 countries have set up pavilions, displays and food stands representing their singular cultures and history, according to event organizers.
"The event will be the first registered world exhibition held in a developing country, demonstrating the international community's trust in China and its anticipation of the country's future development," said a video released by event organizers. "Expo Shanghai provides an opportunity for China to see the world, and the world to see China."
But for years U.S. officials have worried that China might be able to see too much during the World’s Expo and similar global events.More...