It took a while, but US intelligence finally became suspicious of a generous offer by the Chinese Communist Party to spend $100 million to build an “‘ornate Chinese garden’ at the National Arboretum in Washington, D.C.,” The Blaze reports.
The Blaze explains what was obvious to everyone, but US intelligence, apparently:
While anyone with an ounce of common sense could have guessed that there was something sketchy about China’s generous offer, it apparently took a deep dive by U.S. counterintelligence officials to raise “numerous red flags.”
The FBI “quietly killed the project” after realizing that the park’s pagoda would have been strategically placed in the perfect spot for gathering sensitive military and government intelligence. There was also a little problem with the fact that Chinese officials planned to ship project materials in “diplomatic pouches,” meaning U.S. Customs officials could not check what was inside.