Second Largest US Foreign Landowner Is Chinese

This land is WHOSE land? Contrary to Woody Guthrie’s song, it wasn’t all made for you and me, unless you are a billionaire from one of America’s most significant adversaries. The second largest foreign landowner in the United States is Chen Tianqiao, a member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

Chen is CEO of an investment firm called the Shanda Group which owns almost 200,000 acres of timberland in Oregon. He also owns urban properties in New York and Los Angeles. He became wealthy from his gaming company Shanda Online which he founded in 1999. It is responsible for popular titles such as “The Word of Legend” and “Dungeons & Dragons Online”.

Chen got his start as a CCP member at age 18, and since then his involvement in all things Communist has been extensive. He has been a member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), a Chinese government agency whose purpose is to provide direction—particularly to academic and business entities— for how CCP messages and agendas are to be promoted to the world.

He is also an admirer of Mao Zedong, the founder of the People’s Republic of China and the first CCP Chairman. Chen’s favorite quote from Mao is: “Strategically we should despise all our enemies, but tactically we should take them all seriously.”

Foreign land ownership by people deeply connected to interests so contrary to the United States is becoming an increasing concern. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said in an interview with the Daily Caller that “One of the Chinese Communist Party’s goals is to undermine and weaken America.”

Chinese land ownership in particular is becoming a major national security concern. There have been numerous attempts at the Federal and state levels to curb land ownership by adversaries of the United States. Currently, no Federal law restricts foreign ownership of U.S. land. Efforts are underway to block farmland ownership from individuals or businesses from China, Russia, Iran and North Korea.

Between January and June 2023 fifteen states have enacted laws that restrict foreign ownership of land in the United States. Twenty other state legislatures have introduced similar bills.