SpyCast 12.19.23
Ep 616 | 12.19.23

“Making Sense of China, Taiwan, & America” – Pacific Intelligence with Bonny Lin

Show Notes


Bonny Lin (Biography) joins Andrew (TwitterLinkedIn) to discuss the current state of China and intelligence. Bonny is the Director of the ChinaPower Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. 

What You’ll Learn


  • China’s economic power and status 
  • The current landscape of Chinese intelligence 
  • China’s relationship with Taiwan
  • The ChinaPower Project


  • Power and prominence 
  • The global community as a complicated ecosystem 

And much, much more …

Episode Notes

This week on SpyCast, Andew was joined by Bonny Lin to discuss China’s rise to power and their current status and relationships around the world. Bonny is a senior fellow for Asian security and the Director of the China Power Project at CSIS, a project that seeks that investigate China’s global influence within the categories of military, economic, technological, social, and international image. Previously, Bonny has served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, as a political scientist at the RAND Corporation, and as the acting associate director of the Strategy and Doctrine Program of RAND Project AIR FORCE. 

How has China, the most populous country in the world, risen to be the #2 economy, and what implications does this have on the rest of the global community? What is the current relationship between China and Taiwan, and what can expect moving forward from China? Tune in to learn more. 


How many people do you know that have testified before Congress? Bonny has! If you ever find yourself speaking in front of our policymakers, here are some tips and tricks for giving your best argument on Capitol Hill. 

Quotes of the Week

“In the last couple of years, we've seen really a securitization of how China views intelligence and national security in general. And just this July, we saw China pass a revised counter espionage law. So with the whole host of laws of China's past since 2014 … it basically has made collection of intelligence and protecting Chinese national security the responsibility of every Chinese citizen.” - Bonny Lin.




*Beginner Resources*



  • Spies and Lies: How China's Greatest Covert Operations Fooled the World, A. Joske (Hardie Grant, 2022) 
  • The Chinese Invasion Threat: Taiwan’s Defense and American Strategy in Asia, I. Easton (Eastbridge Books, 2019)
  • The Hundred-Year Marathon: China's Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower, M. Pillsbury (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2016) 



Primary Sources 

*Wildcard Resource*

  • Need a good cookie recipe for the holidays? Try this recipe adapted from the 1300-year old cookies found during the 1915 excavation of the Astana Cemetery in Xinjiang, China. 
  • The petrified cookies are currently part of the collection of the British Museum, and still look quite tasty!