The Chinese pandemic fable — that the disease broke out in a seafood market in Wuhan — fell apart months ago and Beijing has resisted any and all attempts to solve the riddle of where and how the coronavirus spread.
It’s almost incomprehensible that any nation would withhold and cover up vital information that could help the world deal with the current pandemic and prevent future ones. Then you remember that China is a communist country that bases its actions on a rigid, unyielding ideology that brooks no opposition and is incapable of error. If you keep that in mind, the Chinese’s actions are completely rational and easily understood.
The recent foray into China by a team of experts who had been charged by the World Health Organization (WHO) to solve the riddle of the coronavirus’s origins met with stonewalls at every turn. They were delayed in entering the country when the Chinese government slow-walked their visa applications. They weren’t given access to medical records of some of the first known cases of COVID-19. They were prevented from interviewing some of the scientists involved in the research on bat viruses and were refused access to some of their records.
At every turn, China has lied, obfuscated, obstructed, and misled investigators into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic. They’ve even gone so far as to launch a bogus campaign to have the WHO team “investigate” their pet theory that the coronavirus was spread via shipments of frozen food from other countries.
In the last days of the Trump administration, the U.S. State Department issued a statement making the shocking claim that several scientists at the Wuhan lab that’s under investigation for being a point of origin for the virus were sick with COVID-like symptoms in the autumn of 2019. Since it was Donald Trump’s State Department, the charges were largely ignored. But now evidence has emerged that diplomats were warning as far back as 2017 that the coronavirus research done at that same Wuhan lab was dangerous and that the possibility of an accident was higher than it should have been.
To some inside the government, the name of the laboratory was familiar. Its research on bat viruses had already drawn the attention of U.S. diplomats and officials at the Beijing Embassy in late 2017, prompting them to alert Washington that the lab’s own scientists had reported “a serious shortage of appropriately trained technicians and investigators needed to safely operate this high-containment laboratory.”
But their cables to Washington were ignored.
The warnings echo similar warnings before the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Untrained technicians and operators directly led to that disaster and may have had something to do with the outbreak of the pandemic.
The U.S. government knows a lot more about what happened in Wuhan than it is letting on.
As the pandemic set in worldwide, the origin story was largely set aside in the public coverage of the crisis. But the internal government debate continued, now over whether the United States should release more information about what it knew about the lab and its possible connection to the outbreak. The January 15 statement was cleared by the intelligence community, but the underlying data was still held secret. Likely changing no minds, it was meant as a signal—showing that circumstantial evidence did exist, and that the theory deserved further investigation.
That theory — that the coronavirus accidentally leaked out of a Wuhan lab that just happened to be conducting experiments on bat coronaviruses for the military at that time — was buried by the WHO, which ordered that no more research be done on the lab leak theory. This set off an uproar in the scientific community. Scientists questioned why a perfectly legitimate line of inquiry into the origins of the worst pandemic in 100 years should be shut off.
As long as Communists are in charge in China, the truth will be hidden. It’s a national imperative that the Communists will never allow the truth to come out.