There has been considerable controversy of late regarding expatriate Chinese virologist Dr. Li-Meng Yan who claimed that China used a secretive virological process called gain-of-function to modify the SARS-CoV-2 virus genome and hide its origin prior to facilitating its release. Yan, a virologist working on a vaccine study formerly at the Hong Kong School of Public Health, told Spicer & Co. that the process made “this not harmful virus into the human, highly contagious and dangerous virus” and that the Chinese government meant “to make it harmful.”
Her appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight generated the predictable backlash. Facebook suppressed the video, “presumably on behalf of the Chinese government,” Carlson said. Instagram followed suit and Twitter suspended Dr. Yan’s account. But Dr. Yan’s credentials, Carlson points out, are impeccable. “She’s authored peer-reviewed papers on coronavirus transmission in both Nature Magazine and The Lancet…two of the most respected publications in all of science. Her paper on the origin of COVID-19, which she has published online, is not frivolous.” Her contention that China deliberately created a “Frankenstein bioweapon” should not be taken lightly.
I never believed that the virus originated in a Wuhan wet market. Bat soup was never on the table for me. Though I am leery of conspiracy theories, I have always suspected that the release of the virus may have been intended as a weapon, not against the United States, a divided nation, but against China’s most formidable enemy, Donald Trump.
Trump’s taking issue with unfair trade deals that favored China at the expense of the American economy, and the president’s implacable stance against the fiscal, market, espionage, and political activities of the regime, which intensified after COVID, placed Trump squarely in the CCP’s crosshairs. It did not seem implausible to me that China would be willing to put the world at risk in order to eliminate Trump from the political equation by damaging the American economy at catastrophic levels—and in the process, with the help of the American left—the Democratic Party, the legacy media, the corrupted academy, BLM, antifa, social media and the Big Tech platforms—render Trump’s re-election problematic.
The Diplomat, a current affairs magazine not particularly enamored of Trump, writes that “until very recently, the general impression shared by many former officials under Democratic administrations was that China is a rising autocracy with increasingly aggressive behaviors, but not necessarily an enemy to the United States.” The editorial refers to an open letter titled “China is Not an Enemy” published on July 3, 2019, in which “around 100 former officials and scholars argued that Beijing is not an economic enemy or an existential national security threat to the United States that must be confronted in every sphere.” The magazine points out that a Biden administration would be heavily influenced by a number of policy experts from the Obama administration, including Susan Rice, Samantha Power, and the Donilon brothers.
This should not come as a surprise. It is the reflex of a leftist culture and had to be expected. The mainstream media, as was to be anticipated, is almost uniformly on board the Biden express and is enthusiastic about his ability to hold a strong yet diplomatic hand regarding China. To take just one from innumerable instances, Forbes expects and seemingly approves a Biden victory, arguing that “we should see an improvement in tone in our relations with China.” Biden, for his part, has accused Trump of being “soft on China.”
Yet it is common knowledge that Joe Biden’s son has extensive and lucrative business dealings with China, and that Biden himself seems all over the map when it comes to relations with China. The Diplomat correctly reminds its readers that “Biden has long been featured as a champion of the U.S. engagement policy with China and strategic ambiguity on Taiwan,” asserting that China is not going to “eat our lunch” and is “not competition for us.” Suddenly, “Biden’s position on China has undergone a tectonic shift as he takes a tougher stance on China’s human rights violation and strategic competition with the United States.” Things can change pretty quickly in the political theater. Indeed, it now appears that Biden’s rhetoric of strength is belied by an evident sympathy with the regime.
China has been profiting at the expense of the United States via trade, technology, education, infiltration, and surveillance, regardless of which party happened to be in power, since Nixon’s “opening” with China in 1971—a national scandal to which Trump is now determined to put an end. There can be little doubt that Xi is pulling the realpolitik lever for a Biden victory in November—and he may be doing so in the most effective way he can.
This is a fantastical claim or assumption. Yet we can accept the plausibility, despite the horror, of the German army introducing the use of chlorine, phosgene, and mustard gas on the battlefield or Syrian dictator Bashar Assad gassing his own civilian population. But that a nation should sponsor the spread of a deadly pathogen globally to prevent a single individual, however powerful, from being re-elected boggles the imagination. Surely this is an unbelievable proposition. Or is it?
I, for one, would not put it past a demonstrably evil rogue government to carry out so reprehensible and inhuman a political strategy. To my mind, this is no less inconceivable than recognizing that a considerable swath of the American electorate and its political class can hold a generally permissive and forgiving sentiment vis à vis China, occasionally amounting to accusations of racism and xenophobia against those who condemn China for the spread of the disease. Robert Spalding’s scorching 2019 book, Stealth War: How China Took Over While America’s Elite Slept, clearly reveals an epidemic of negligence and complicity resulting in a studied campaign against the welfare and integrity of the U.S.
Democrat governors and mayors intent on maintaining the lockdowns, punishing their citizens, and allowing the economy to collapse are evidence of deliberate destabilization and anti-Trump collusion, plainly what China also wishes. China would be the obvious benefactor of a Democrat victory at the polls, which it is to its advantage to secure. “The end result,” writes Spalding, “if China succeeds in all its goals, will be a United States devoid of the principles that shaped our nation.”
The greatest threat to the left today, whether it is called “democratic socialism” or outright Communism, is Donald Trump. And for the left, domestically or globally, nothing is too vile or outrageous to ensure his political demise. China clearly does not want to contend with Trump for the next four years and neither does the American left. There is an unholy alliance in the making and, according to this maleficent coalition, Trump must go, whatever it takes.
To cite Dr. Yan, the genetically modified biomarkers that obscured the true nature of the virus “definitely comes from the lab, and it’s not by accident.” Make of it what you will.
David Solway’s latest book is Notes from a Derelict Culture, Black House, London, 2019.