By A. Sivapathasundaram –
Tentacles of Corona Virus
The “Corona Virus” – name initially given to the virus when it started and then re-named “Covid-19”— first striking in Wuhan, capital of Hubei province in China, in December last year, has now brought the whole world to its knees.
The virus has spread its poisonous and destructive tentacles around 209 countries and regions around the world. It is reported that as at April 18, 2020, around the world, 1, 527, 486 people have become infected, 579,190 recovered, 154,726 died, and 57,086 in critical condition. The numbers continue to rise at a terrifying speed. We have an unprecedented situation where countries and cities have closed their borders; people have been ordered to stay at home. Economies are floundering catastrophically and the livelihoods of many millions are being destroyed.
Questions in the Minds of People
It is but natural, and in fact inevitable, that ordinary people all over the world are confused and angry too. They want to know what has happened and who or what really is the cause of it all. Many theories are being floated on them. It is said by certain quarters that it is not the time to discuss about this, everyone should focus on how to contain the virus , the priority is to save lives, and that discussions about it would only detract from the issues of solving the crisis.
True, the States, the Governments and the Authorities should primarily concentrate on how to face this contagion and contain it, while also mitigate the sufferings of the people for whose welfare they have the ultimate responsibility. No doubt, all citizens and individuals should necessarily follow and obey the various restrictions imposed on them by their respective governments and ensure compliance.
However, it cannot be helped, if the minds of the individuals thrown into isolation from their families, kith and kin, neighbours and the community, livelihoods destroyed and many with an uncertain economic future, while also unreservedly falling in line with the restrictions placed by their respective governments would inevitably ask the questions: How did all this happen?; What is its origin, source?; How did it spread? –Individuals cannot help thinking about it or questioning about it. –I am one of those individuals.
All of us are searching for answers except those who wants to bury the truth or detract it. Some of those who sanctimoniously suggest that all should focus on facing the issues and getting out of it are surreptitiously planting stories to distort the actual origin, source and spread of this horrible virus.
China’s Diplomatic Offensive
China and its President Xi Jinpeng have launched a pre-emptive diplomatic offensive to ward off any accusations or blames on them by asking people, organisations and governments to desist from using the term “ China virus” and that it is wrong and defamatory. As long as there is no racial overtones or racism, one would ask why it should not be called “China Virus” —because it is simply and logically that: a product with origin and source in China. Why cannot one call “a spade, a spade” and be afraid to call “a spade, a spade” and asked not to call “a spade, a spade”
By China’s own admission, the source is a meat market in Wuhan, which also sells wild animals that include snakes, bats, pangolins etc , from where it spread to other countries. Now, because of its enormous afflictions and adverse intensity world-wide, China, its authorities and the media under the control and influence of China are, directly and indirectly, trying to detract and divert even implying that it was unleashed by the USA military. It should not be misconstrued by this that I condone USA or “hold candles” for it. because I consider them too as “villains” — but not in this episode. If we had called some of the early viruses as “Spanish flu” and “Middle East flu”, why not now “Chinese virus” or “China virus”? Should China be allowed to put up sanctimonious face and act, unquestioned with no accountability?
China is now also acting like a country of generosity and concern for the people of the world by exporting face masks, test kits, ventilators etc, thus camouflaging their failure and misinformation. Its motives in its aid offer are driven by what is dubbed the “face mask diplomacy”. The very party which caused to inflict severe, grievous, bleeding wounds is generously offering bandages to cover them.
Wuhan Institute of Virology
One may venture to state that the origin and source cannot be just from the wild animals since the Chinese have been eating them for many years. Not many people may know, in China’s Wuhan province, there is what is known as “Wuhan Institute of Virology”. It is an Institute purportedly for research on various viruses that affect human beings. I tend to believe that in that Institute (there are such Institutes in other major countries too) they have been also developing and testing viruses for use as biological warfare weapons. Something has gone wrong there—either accidentally or because of some unintended negligence in the safety protocols adopted or even some errant employees walking out of the Institute and spreading the virus unknowingly. It is confirmed that the Chinese government was aware of the existence of the virus in December 2019 because we know that Li Wenliang, a doctor in Wuhan, has sounded an early alarm on the novel coronavirus and had warned about it. He was accused of “spreading rumours online”, suppressed, arrested, and silenced; and now China says he had died of the virus. Knowing the system in China, he may have even been killed. It is reported that the Chinese government has recently honoured him as “a martyr”. Covid-19 is a bio-chemical weapon leaked from laboratories in Wuhan—and as such it is a virus “made in China”.
I would also say that intentionally China did not inform the world in time—with perhaps a calculated purpose: “ it’s going to bring China down; it might as well bring other countries down too, so that we will be at the same playing field levels; and, with the our system of autocratic governance we can gear up to get up first before others and have a control of the playing fields to ourselves”.
The people cannot but suspect that China has intentionally allowed the virus to spread to other countries by pitting up a front that everything is normal and allowing millions of Chinese people to move in and out of China to various countries, which is adduced to be the single most reason for the virus to spread world-wide. People from China continued to travel in and out of many countries in large numbers from November/ December 2019—for which those countries are paying an exorbitant human and economic price.
We now hear of a race to acquire protective gear, ventilators and other much needed goods from China, where factories are churning out these supplies. Among the help that China has supplied are said to be medical resources that include personnel.
China should apologise to the rest of the world. On the contrary, it is reported that China’s President Xi Jinpeng in a phone call to the British Prime Minister had offered to “enhance coordination with Britain to help to minimise the risk of the epidemic’s spread while ensuring necessary flow of people and trade”. He had called on all nations to “push forward cooperation to enhance the sharing of information and experience, boost collaboration in scientific research” and, lo and behold, not surprisingly, to “safeguard and keep global supply chain open, stable and safe” This clearly shows what has China has always been aiming for:–a flow of people (read people from China) and trade (favourable to them) and supply chain (read China’s supply chain). It is with the “flow of people” that China managed to bring down not only Britain but all the other countries too! Until a few months ago, the US was halting trade with China, imposing barriers and tariffs, adversely denting China’s economy. US also kicked out US- based Chinese scientists. Right on cue and according to its agenda, China had got up first and is in a position with relatively no significant damage to make use of and control the shattered economy and share market of the world.
Happy Ending for China
The politicians and journalists of the democratic countries affected by the virus are accusing their own of “idiotic bureaucratism, indifferent leadership and endless blunders”; but no accusing finger is raised on China or demand accountability from China. No blame whatsoever is placed on China but only heaps of praise.
No remorse, no apologies, no accountability by China; and the world continues to suffer with economic repercussions that is shaking the global economy, life and livelihoods—effects of which will in all probability, last for a very long time.
It is China who will probably have a happy ending and gains resulting from this global pandemic.