Feb 09, 2023
Feb 09, 2023
Notwithstanding remarkable developments and achievements of the mankind to revolutionized medical sciences and information technology, one tiny virus has proved in a short span how frangible is the life and economy of the world for a comfortable modern living of the human race. Stunned by the Covid-19 disease, the world fraternity is still debating whether the coronavirus strain SARS-CoV-2 is manmade or natural. The only emerging broad consensus is that the virus originated in Wuhan city of Hubei province, and China could have saved a lot of corona carnage in other countries by timely alerting other countries as also implementing strict travel restrictions to and fro from the affected region. This is, however, a position that China is still sternly denying through aggressive propaganda and allegations on other countries and increased flexing of muscles in South China Sea with neighbours and India sharing a long land border perhaps to divert attention. The cases in points are recent Chinese Navy face offs with Vietnam, Malaysia and US ships in South China Sea as also PLA’s skirmishes with Indian Army forward areas of Ladakh and Sikkim.
Undoubtedly, the world is going through the first major crisis of the century. Earlier the economic recession of 2008, which lasted nearly two years, did impact the US and many Western countries but other parts of the world including major countries like India and China were not much affected. But the current crisis has not only shattered the world economy sans China but also posed a serious question of survival of the human race. The world’s most powerful country US and its five NATO allies UK, Italy, Spain, France and Germany in Western Europe together account for nearly 2.7 million coronavirus positive cases and over 228 thousand deaths on date, which by no means is an ordinary loss of mankind and economy too is in shambles. Coronavirus cases in countries like India, Brazil and Russia are on upsurge with no signs of disease in control anywhere, except China which is actually responsible for it. The growing anger and mistrust worldwide against China is evident from the fact that the world fraternity has now forced an investigation into the coronavirus pandemic under the aegis of WHO despite Chinese reservations and efforts to stall it.
Bid to Investigate Chinese Connection of Coronavirus
It is pretty well known how certain narratives are intently built by planting lies and fake news as truth by certain individuals and even the government machinery in certain countries in the modern age. For instance, a mention exists on Wikipedia that a man was admitted in a particular hospital in France on 2 December 2019 and he was later confirmed as positive for COVID-19 while the first documented admission to a Wuhan hospital refers to somewhat middle of December. One doesn't be sure if it is another narrative to suggest that it started in France like in the past China blamed US Military and African people for it. The fact is even after nearly five months when this mayhem first started in Wuhan, China has not explicitly and officially divulged with the details about the “patient zero” and its source of infection. Therefore, it will be sheer waste as of now trying to into chronology of the disease but the fact is the world has a staggering figure of over 5.4 millions of corona positive cases and nearly 350 thousand deaths across some 200 countries.
However much, China may aggressively claim its innocence but it is widely perceived as the perpetrator globally and affected countries are increasingly expressing resentment and anger due to disruption and losses of life and economy. It is not surprising that many experts and strategists globally see the pandemic as the next world war inflicted by an over ambitious communist regime. They see it as a most probable sinister plot under an elaborate cover plan of initially unleashing the virus on itself in a controlled environment to give credence to its theory of innocence as well as victim card. Hence it is not surprising that amid mounting global pressure, the WHO has consented to facilitate an independent review into the global response to the coronavirus pandemic as soon as possible. The aforesaid decision was taken in the WHO’s Annual World Health Meeting virtually held on 18 May 2020 to chart out the future course of the global coronavirus response.
Considering the sensitivity and to avoid split opinion, the European Union-drafted resolution, driven by calls for an inquiry from Australia, did not specifically find mention of China but called for an "impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation" of the WHO-coordinated international health response to Covid-19. In the past, China has neither shared virus samples nor allowed any request for visit of the scientists and experts from the international community to Wuhan to make independent assessment of the origin and source of the disease. A call for an investigation from the Australian government last month had received an angry reaction from China, which accused the former of a "highly irresponsible" move with a potential to disrupt international cooperation in fighting the pandemic. The spokesmen of the Chinese External Affairs Ministry have similarly responded to any attempt by US to link the coronavirus with China during the last 2-3 months.
Chinese President Xi Jinping chose to personally address the assembly. Three main highlights of his address are: 1) Beijing had acted transparently about the origin of the virus, which was first detected late last year in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, 2) he pledged $2 billion over two years to the WHO in support of the COVID-19 response and economic fallout, and 3) any inquiry should wait until the virus is contained. Earlier more than hundred countries including US, EU, UK and India had backed the resolution calling for an independent inquiry into the pandemic. The head of the most afflicted country, President Donald Trump preferred to stay away, but the combative mood of the US was clearly reflected in the videotaped remarks of Secretary of Health and Human Services “…In an apparent attempt to conceal this outbreak, at least one-member state made a mockery of their transparency obligations, with tremendous costs for the entire world…”; an obvious reference to China.
Though US President’s disdain about the China’s delayed and murky response as also WHO’s alleged biased role during the pandemic can be understood, but his avoidance to address the world leaders’ meeting and direct threat to cut US funding to the latter may ultimately prove counterproductive to its own global influence and interests. It is true that the US is currently the biggest donor of funds to the WHO but such coercive measure on their part may only alienate the world body giving an enormous political opportunity and prize to belligerent China, which is looking for opportunities to shine and assume leadership on the global stage. It has already made its intention clear, and during the current Covid-19 disease crisis, it could shape outcomes to its favour by putting off the WHO investigation or dominating it due to lackadaisical approach of US and its other influential allies.
Has Beijing Really Conceded Any Grounds?
Although some political analysts and experts hold that it was a big victory for the international community to corner and force China to agree for an impartial and objective investigation during the recent World Health Meeting. However, there is a catch between the impartial and independent inquiry. Though the US President has been very vocal about the partisan role of WHO during the current coronavirus crisis, many other countries too have similar feelings and are not comfortable with the approach of this world body. In such case, the critics may not feel comfortable with the WHO led investigation into the origin and source ab initio as well as with the outcome of it. The main complaint has been against the role of top official(s) of WHO, being biased in favour of China; hence it is likely that some member states might reject the findings of inquiry, if it is not in line with their expectations.
As such China has favoured the proposal of investigation with the rider that it should be held after the current pandemic is contained. It is a very uncertain and precarious Covid-19 situation across the globe as of now because almost every single country is threatened and struggling with it sans China, which has already declared victory over the virus, and North Korea, about whom none has any inkling what is happening there. The US and most of Western Europe already devastated by the corona carnage are consistently reporting fresh cases while Russia and Brazil, or entire Latin America for that matter, have become new corona hotspot. The number of Covid-19 patients is consistently on increase in India after relaxation provided for certain economic activities and the return of migrant labour to their home states. In such a situation, if the proposed investigation is postponed as intended by Chinese leadership, the very purpose of the world meet will be defeated. Waiting until the pandemic is contained could indeed be a long repeat long wait.
Theoretically, the WHO-led investigation appears an ideal situation with members of the team free of any political pressures or considerations but the Chinese President’s conditions for a coronavirus probe itself could work in Beijing's favour. The recent conduct of the Director General, WHO working in tandem with the Chinese interests, was seriously questioned and criticized by the US; many other countries did not precisely do this but they too for sure were not comfortable with the approach of the world body during the pandemic. If US choose to continue with its current partisan approach, China may even succeed in influencing who gets a role on the investigation team, through nominations of those likely to be sympathetic to Beijing or by pressuring allies to do so. The Chinese President’s emphasis on providing assistance to African and Latin American countries to fight coronavirus war and pledging $2 billion (as peanuts!) over next two years to the WHO (against China’s FOREX reserves $3061 billion) can at best be seen as a political debt with eyes set on “dividend” in future.
While Western political hawks may be fascinated by calling it a victory, Beijing does not appear to have practically lost any ground. The Chinese government has already imposed new trade tariffs on Australian goods in retaliation for the country's last month questioning of the Chinese transparency and demanding an international investigation into the origins of the coronavirus and how it spread. It is also flexing its muscle power in South China Sea, threatening Taiwan and opening new border disputes with India possibly to divert or weaken the current focus on China about its possible role in escalation of the corona disease. There are plenty of ways of supposedly independent members in an investigation team working under the influence or political pressure, and many organizations under the UN forum have generated more controversies than viable solution or result to issues during the recent decades.
Wuhan Virus is Indeed a War on World
In an earlier write-up, this author had deduced that the current Covid-19 disease gripping the entire globe potentially encompasses all elements of a global war sans use of gunpowder and other military infrastructure. Though the worst affected countries like US and some of its NATO allies have expressed similar apprehensions maintaining political and diplomatic finesse, many independent analysts and military strategists have said it without mincing words. Now the Communist China is in the centre of controversy on account of the coronavirus crisis across the globe and countries losing precious human lives and economy are increasingly expressing their resentment and anger. Some analysts have even insinuated a reference to the book "Unrestricted Warfare" authored by two senior officers of PLA in February 1999 to vindicate their opinion, which underlines the tactics of China using money power to prepare loyal people worldwide to work in its favour, waging an economic war, targeting communication networks, using terrorism, and so on to compensate for their military inferiority vis-à-vis powerful adversaries like United States.
Undoubtedly, US has been worst hit by the Covid-19 disease with over 1.6 million coronavirus positive cases and nearly 99 thousand deaths so far rendering its economy in shambles with estimated 45 million or so Americans likely to lose their jobs. Recently, US President Donald Trump described the coronavirus pandemic as the "worst attack" ever on the United States, pointing the finger at China. He said the outbreak had hit them harder than the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in World War II, or the 9/11 attacks two decades ago. Though refused to divulge with details, he said the evidence ties China lab to virus. Recently, a famous anchor of an Indian news channel had suggested that the virus which first emerged in China in December 2019 could be the start of World War 3 and the world would not even know about it. There are many compelling reasons why many people believe that the virus is not natural and was purportedly leaked in Wuhan in November/December 2019 with intent to wage a war on world. Some more relevant reasons why people think it is intentional are analyzed in the following paragraphs.
1. No Means to Independently Verify Chinese Version on Virus
With electronic and print media under strict control of the communist party and regime, people in outside world will know only what the state machinery in China will permit; even the Chinese nationals have limited freedom of speech and expression, which is tightly watched and controlled. The Chinese Doctor Li Wenliang, the whistle-blower who had warned about the human-to-human transmission was punished by the government. According to Chinese official version, he later lost his life to the same infection while according to a conspiracy theory in a report published in Ufospotlight E-magazine, he lost his life owing to a poison given through an injection. As per an account available on Wikipedia, in fact a group of eight medical personnel, including Doctor Li Wenliang, an ophthalmologist from Wuhan Central Hospital, were warned by Wuhan police for "spreading rumours" for likening it to SARS. In short, in the absence of independent media, multiple versions of the same event are floated making it difficult to fathom what is true.
In fact, nobody really knows what has actually happened or is happening now in China in the context of coronavirus pandemic. Due to inherent secrecy and rigid government control, the external world would have to rely on what the Chinese state media or spokesperson periodically reveal on the subject. The global search engine Google doesn’t work there along with the thousands other foreign websites; the universal social media like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are not allowed and so is the case with popular messaging applications such as WhatsApp, Snapchat, Telegram, Line, and so on. According to leaked reports, the whistle-blower doctor and at least another 3-4 persons from other walks of life who dared to talk about the disease, were publicly reprimanded or simply vanished. Hence the world knows only what the Chinese government has officially shared with WHO and other global agencies despite several allegedly leaked videos and reports depicting position to the contrary.
The truth becomes the biggest causality where the system is ridden through secrecy and opacity. While the Chinese official data on the outbreak caused in Wuhan by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 portray their meticulous fight to control the disease, celebrations over their victory on disease and resumption of life to the normal, several leaked videos apparently from the Chinese mainland and reports published in the Western media show a different picture. One such report published by Robert Morningstar, an investigative journalist of Ufospotlight E-magazine, in February 2020 quoting an anonymous Chinese intelligence officer suggested secret development of a potent biological agent and its accidental release in Wuhan had gone haywire with disastrous implications. Even the extent of disease and number of casualties in China are questionable. The frivolous explanation given the Chinese sources for addition of 1290 deaths after Wuhan resumed business as usual is beyond comprehension. Yet another report based on the numbers of mobiles and landlines missing or officially closed in China since December 2019, suggests and astronomically higher number of casualties but the world has no means to vet any of such reports.
2. Wuhan Epidemic Looks Like a Controlled Experiment
If someone decides to speak without mincing words, it may appear harsh but the entire coronavirus crisis in China looks like a sinister plot executed by vested interests under an elaborate cover plan. After all, some worst affected countries like US and others have already started visualizing foul play behind the entire tragedy. Imagine a situation if such state interests unleashed the virus on itself in a controlled environment only to wind up quickly; and at the same time subjecting the world to its enormous invasion and assault. We experience a situation today when all major economies of the world are crumbling with enormous loss of human lives and jobs but there is one country which is celebrating almost fully recovered from the ill effects of virus. Yes, as claimed by the country itself, China is fast returning to normal life with all economic and manufacturing activities resuming its right course.
Though always talk about international cooperation but they seldom do it in real experience; one may not be surprised if on a later date it is revealed that Chinese government already has a wonder drug or vaccine for the cure of coronavirus disease, else how could it be explained that the world is reeling under the pandemic with nearly 5.4 million patients and over 344 thousand deaths while the region in the country where it originated had about 68,000 cases but only four other provinces recording Covid-19 disease cases over a thousand. Among other countries, India was one which started taking necessary precautions and preventive measures domestically and in international travel from mid-February 2020 itself and enforced strict lockdown and social distancing across the country from 24 March onwards. Notwithstanding the fact that the country had recorded only 5 localized cases on 2 March and 519 cases on 25 March, it has over 130 thousand cases as of now across the country. China and India have a comparable population and the position of top five states in both the countries is displayed in the table.
Population in Million (Estd)
|Total cases||Deaths||Deaths||Total cases||Population in Million (Estd)||China (State)|
It can be derived from the above table and disease data in general of the two countries that while in China infection remained more or less localized in Hubei Province till it was contained but in India it has spread across the country despite a strict lockdown, rigorous social distancing and curfew like prolonged situation in many affected states. China has 16 megacities with over 10 to 30 million population but only Wuhan became hotspot while in India almost all megacities such as Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Chennai as also medium sized cities became hotspots of coronavirus positive cases. Only essential services and supplies were allowed in India during the period and arguably China too must have done the same. According to the South China Morning Post, about 5 million people left Wuhan to celebrate Lunar New Year before the lockdown within country and abroad. No concrete information is available but it is likely that their inland travel might have been severely controlled being aware of its ‘Human to Human’ transmission but international travel was not restricted until late March 2020. Consequently, the virus did not spread in China with same ruthlessness as in other parts of the world yet it left sufficient alibi that China too suffered in Wuhan, Hubei.
3. Intentional Delay in Sharing Information
There is enough evidence that China in tandem with WHO delayed divulging the information of the human-to-human transmission to world community. According to available information now, the first case of coronavirus was reported in Wuhan as back as 17 November 2019 and China did not inform the world community till 30 December 2019 despite thousands people being infected. It was on 31 December that the WHO was officially informed of the disease by China but even after this the international travel was not restricted and thousands of Chinese people kept traveling from Wuhan to other countries across the globe. Flights to and fro Wuhan were suspended only on 31 January 2020 and it was too late by that time as coronavirus cases had already started showing up in countries like Italy, Iran and South Korea. The role of WHO has also been under cloud and its head was criticized world over for delaying declaration of Covid-19 as pandemic presumably under the pressure from China.
According to South China Morning Post, Chinese authorities had identified many as 266 coronavirus cases before the onset of 2020. The first international case was reported in Thailand on 13 January. Subsequent such cases reported in some other South-east Asian countries were as follows: Japan, 16 January; Taiwan, 21 January; and Hong Kong, 22 January. By the end of January, coronavirus cases appeared in a host of other countries like UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Canada, Russia, India, and so on so forth. WHO gave a statement on 14 January that limited human-to-human transmission of this virus was possible but necessary advisory on travel was not issued. Further, it took almost another one and a-half month to declare it a pandemic on 11 March 2020. The official lockdown in Wuhan was implemented on 23 Jan 2020 extending it to entire Hubei Province on the following day at the start of Chinese New Year.
4. Travel Restriction Implemented Belatedly
The South China Morning Post published from Hong Kong had reported that the first case of Chinese Virus was detected as early as on 17 Nov 2019. As per guidelines of WHO, the incubation period of the coronavirus could be from 1 to 14 days with an average time of showing around 5 days. Also about 4-5 per cent of the infected persons do not show any symptoms of disease and by remaining asymptomatic they might continue to infect other people unintentionally. This implies that the epidemic in Wuhan was seeded around the beginning of November itself but the travel restrictions were imposed towards the end of January 2020 i.e. nearly three months after the onset of infection and some 75 days after the symptoms appeared in the form of first corona patient. Assuming the Chinese account as true, at least 266 patients of the corona epidemic with suspected transmission from human-to-human were known before the onset of the New Year but Chinese authorities did not consider it necessary to impose international travel restrictions, which smacks of a criminal negligence or deliberate exercise. While domestic flights from Wuhan were suspended but no such restrictions were imposed on the international flights, which were done nearly two months after the lockdown.
During the period, hundreds of thousand people from Wuhan flew to other countries globally. Surprisingly, while the entire globe is so heavily infected, even the major megacities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong remained largely unaffected despite Wuhan being the epicenter of the outbreak. Relying on the Chinese account itself, people had freedom of movement from November 2019 to 23 January 2020 across the country yet the virus only thinly spread in other provinces of China. If Chinese authorities were indeed ignorant about the human-to-human transmission of the virus then practically the entire population of the country should have been under the grip of the pandemic. Once again the Chinese population outside Wuhan, Hubei Province remaining free from the disease despite enough opportunity for the spread of virus is only indicative of a sinister plot in the absence of any other logical explanation or viable reasoning put forth by the communist regime. Possibly data of Wuhan are there only to provide an alibi that China has also suffered along with the world.
5. Wuhan Virology Institute Cannot Be Mere Coincidence
Wuhan Virology Institute is a 3,000-square-metre P4 lab, located in a square building, adjacent to a pond at the foot of a forested hill in Wuhan's outskirts. The institute was completed in 2015, opened for work only in 2018 and now it is considered to be the largest virus bank in Asia that preserves more than 1,500 viral strains. Presumably, the lab is equipped to handle Class 4 pathogens (P4), considered dangerous viruses posing high risk of person-to-person transmission although some apprehensions were expressed by a visiting team some time back. There are unofficial reports of closure and some internal investigation around the breakout in Wuhan but the Chinese administration has not allowed the world's scientists to visit into the laboratory to evaluate what took place there, or what's happening there now. The distance between the Wuhan Virology Lab and Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market (the Wet Market) is little over 8 miles but another branch office of the lab is just about 600 meters from the Wet Market. Some Chinese authorities now suggest that animal-to-human jump probably occurred at a Wet Market in the city, but a growing body of research suggests the outbreak's origin may be unrelated to the market.
A virology lab exited in Wuhan from around middle if the twentieth century but the modern institute came in existence now and even US is associated with its initial funding. The Fox News reported on 15 April that US administration has “increasing confidence” that the outbreak was caused by an experiment in a Wuhan laboratory. The sources who spoke to Fox News had reportedly informed there was likely a “patient zero” who worked in the laboratory, got infected there only to leave and spread it in the city’s population, and that the Chinese officials are making all efforts to cover up any suggestion the virus has anything to do with the virology lab. The Chinese version has changed many times with speculations during the same period. Some Chinese officials have pointed to the wet market as the supposed ground zero of the outbreak but some other sources apparently told Fox that the said market never sold bats. In short, Chinese sources themselves have added to the prevailing confusion and ambiguity rather than giving clarity about the “ground zero patient”. It will keep on bothering every sane mind till facts don’t come out if the existence of a P4 Virology Lab is merely a coincidence or it has anything to do with virus release.
6. Early Virus Samples Were Destroyed
Ever since the coronavirus started its carnage, the Secretary of State and others have constantly blamed China for sharing samples for study and destruction of early vial samples of the virus before testing. It is alleged that China refused to give virus samples taken from the patients of Covid-19 disease in late December 2019 and subsequently and its early samples were destroyed. The US President and his administration have time and again expressed fears that the virus was deliberately started and the Secretary of State opined that the destruction of samples was deliberately done to cover up or hide the information on virus from other countries of the world, a charge the country has constantly denied.
Now China has acknowledged that it had instructed unauthorized laboratories to destroy samples of the novel coronavirus but for the biosafety reasons. Recently, an official of the Chinese National Health Commission stated that the samples were destroyed in line with the public health laws and to prevent the risk to laboratory biological safety. On one hand China talks of cooperation with other countries to tackle the virus menace and then destroys evidence and refuses to share critical information with the rest of the world. Only China or its stooges can bite the aforesaid argument but no other independent country would accept Chinese theory. The point is if you have nothing to hide or no evil design why should you destroy or refuse to share scientific information of common cause with rest of the world.
7. Stalling Independent Investigations of Origin of Virus
So far China has stalled every effort of the international community for an independent investigation of the origin and source of the virus by the scientists and experts as also any access have not been allowed to Wuhan Virology Lab. Under the tremendous pressure, they have now conceded demand of such investigation but with considerable dilution of the agenda and nature of inquiry without making a reference to China. Further, an emphatic personal request of the Chinese President that such evaluation (diluted investigation!) may be carried out after the pandemic is effectively contained has also added some amount of uncertainty and ambiguity to the very proposal. The moot point is why China is so cryptic about the origin and nature of the virus if they are not hiding anything; it is neither coming out with truth nor is willing to cooperate with other nations to jointly work to unravel truth.
Reportedly, the Chinese central government has domestically imposed restrictions on the publication of any academic research regarding the origin of the coronavirus. The directive of the Ministry of Education's science and technology department in this regard provide that "academic papers about tracing the origin of the virus must be strictly and tightly managed", meaning thereby that such papers would need scrutiny and vetting by the State Council so tasked. It could be of anybody’s surmise that such a directive is nothing but to control the narrative and the stand already taken that the outbreak did not originate in China. It may be recalled that Chinese spokesmen have earlier tried to blame it to US military and African black people. Yanzhong Huang, a senior fellow for global health at the Washington-based Council on Foreign Relations, reportedly said "it is no surprise that the government seeks to control related scientific research so that the findings do not challenge its own narrative on the origin of the virus and the government response to the crisis".
8. Intimidation Tactics with Neighbours
While the world is seized with the impact of rampaging virus on the human health, economy and employment, China is focusing at the opportunity of staking claims on territories of neighbours and international oceanic trade zones. The recent flexing of its muscles in Taiwan Straits, establishment of administrative districts in some disputed islands, and even giving a new name to Mount Everest, intrusion in Japanese waters near Senkaku Islands and border incursions along Sino-Indian Borders are few classical examples of Chinese expansionist agenda. In fact, its recent aggressive posturing and intrusions in South as well as East China Sea has caused a lot of concern to regional and global powers, prompting Japan, Vietnam and Philippine to lodge protests with China and a reported face-off between US and Chinese warships. The recent Chinese state media release of an animated propaganda video mocking US of its efforts to fight the coronavirus only adds fuel to the fire, which they did with India too during the Doklam stand-off in 2017.
During the first week of May 2020, in two separate incidents of the Chinese PLA incursions in the Indian State of Sikkim and Union Territory of Ladakh, serious clashes between the two armies were reported in which troops on both sides were injured. Now details have emerged that the stated hostilities in Eastern Ladakh were bigger in scale compared to earlier face-off in North Sikkim. With China determined to escalate tension with a large build up and deployment of troops along the Line of Control (LAC), Indian troops are compelled to fortify its defence along the vulnerable areas. Similar threatening gestures have been made to Taiwan too and isolated violations with neighbours like Japan, Vietnam and Philippine. Thus besides triggering a global economic war through unsolicited investment to capture or enhance its influence in foreign companies, China is also engaged in ugly muscle flexing with neighbours to assert its military might during the pandemic times.
It is not only the question of the number of Covid-19 disease and consequent deaths globally and in individual countries, simultaneously the global economy has been ruined with millions of people rendered jobless equally in rich and poor countries due to pandemic with no sight to end this mayhem anywhere near in time. Equally unethical and shameful has been the Chinese efforts to convert the tragedy in opportunity by simply buying or acquiring shareholding in vulnerable foreign companies and supplying so often defective and unreliable equipment and kits to the affected countries in the name of help and cooperation in fighting the disease. China was presiding over the UN Security Council in March 2020 and it did not allow a discussion to chalk out a strategy to jointly fight the pandemic. Also reeling under the Chinese debt trap due to their Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the current pandemic has brought many countries at the brink of political and economic collapse.
Till few days back, US and its European allies were worst hit by the virus but now Russia and Latin America too have become new hotspot of the pandemic. Unable to sustain prolonged lockdown, India has relaxed it to certain extent to revive economy and manufacturing activity to a sustainable level; disastrous result has already shown in terms of astronomical increase in coronavirus positive cases. Owing to somewhat similar political system and traditional rivalry with US and NATO Block, Russia has traditionally sided with China in post-cold war decades. Now that Russia is already next to US almost neck-to-neck with Brazil in terms of the total number of coronavirus positive cases, the world will be curious to watch how long Russians sustain status quo with Chinese virus.
This is high time that the world fraternity makes sure that China pays for its indiscretion. This is a country that shares border with 14 countries and is nearly of the size of Canada; yet it is also a country with ambitious expansionist agenda and territorial disputes nearly with all neighbours, and constantly playing a victim’s card. Earlier action taken by some countries of the European Union and India to amend their FDI rules was basically a defensive measure to protect their domestic companies from Chinese takeover. But the countries like Japan and US have now also turned some heat on China; the former by announcing big financial assistance and incentives to Japanese companies to relocate their manufacturing base from China to Japan or any other country and the latter by passing a bill in Senate to delist Chinese companies from American stock exchanges subject to certain conditions. Clearly it’s not an easy war for China and there are many more weapons that coronavirus hit countries would be willing to unleash in time.
More by : Dr. Jaipal Singh