Keep informed about the destiny of the United States: go to the official US government web sites to get information about the debt of the United States and who owns it.
According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of Public Debt, the federal debt is listed as $15,660,736,663,887.96 as of April 18, 2012. Get the latest number here: Today’s Federal Debt.
Who owns the federal debt? See this chart: Ownership of Federal Securities. Notice about one-third of the federal debt (about $5.1 trillion) is owed by foreign entities. According to this chart, the People’s Republic of China owns about $1.18 trillion and Japan owns about $1.1 trillion. No other country comes close.
Examining these charts for long-term trends, you’ll see that in January 2001, foreign ownership of the US debt was about 18 percent (compared to 32 percent now). (This was a time when the federal debt was generally falling!)
It seems based on a quick survey using web searches that newspapers based in other countries are more diligent about reporting on foreign holdings of United States debt than American newspapers. However, there was an Associated Press story from April 16, 2012:
China needs your money! There are two ways for you to make a contribution to reduce the United States debt:
You can make a contribution online either by credit card, checking or savings account at Pay.gov
You can write a check payable to the Bureau of the Public Debt, and in the memo section, notate that it’s a Gift to reduce the Debt Held by the Public. Mail your check to this address:
Attn Dept G
Bureau of the Public Debt
P. O. Box 2188
Parkersburg, WV 26106-2188