Sen. Joni Ernst, R- Iowa (Photo: Getty Images)
A human cause of covid-19 is possible, but anti-China rhetoric is war propaganda, not scientific evidence.
“I was the first governor to take action to ban Tik Tok here in our state and we saw over two dozen different states take action and congress after that. So we’re thankful that other people are waking up to how China is using all of its assets to conduct surveillance on the American people.
They have a 2,000 year plan to destroy this country. They are very determined to do it and use all the tools in their tool box and that’s why it’s important that we wake up now and we stop their infiltration into our way of life.”
Kristi Noem, Governor of South Dakota
It was three years ago, in March 2020 that the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a worldwide covid-19 pandemic. Cities around the world began to shut down, travel ended, jobs were lost, economies were decimated, and to date an estimated 6.8 million people have died from covid around the world. Here in the United States, for-profit health care consigned people to a system which has the highest covid death rate in the supposedly advanced world, with more than 1 million fatalities.
When reports of this illness first appeared, the obvious question was where did it come from. The first cases were reported in Wuhan, China. Wuhan is the site of the Wuhan Institute of Virology and it isn’t surprising that theories of a human created origin, commonly referred to as a lab leak, took hold almost immediately. Unfortunately the ability to investigate was always obscured by political considerations. China was blamed for causing the disease or for not doing enough to stop it. The lab leak theory waxed and waned over the last three years but is now back in full force at the very moment that most news stories about China are little more than war propaganda screeds.
This columnist was extremely skeptical about the lab leak theory and always considered it an effort to demonize China. However, in the ensuing years it has turned out that the Wuhan Institute of Virology may have engaged in experiments involving “gain of function” research that might have caused covid. However, all of the projects in question were conducted jointly with organizations funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Professor Jeffrey Sachs was chosen to head the Lancet Covid-19 Commission but he disbanded the effort when some of the individuals and organizations working on these projects were less than forthcoming about providing information. He and others with no discernible ax to grind against China began to raise the possibility of covid originating from human activity. Sachs testified before congress, “First, the virus may have emerged from dangerous laboratory research. Second, this dangerous research was partly funded by the U.S. government. Third, NIH leadership and a group of scientists associated with NIH hid the possibility of a laboratory origin from the congress and the public.”
Last month the U.S. Department of Energy declared that covid likely emerged as a result of a lab leak, but they also added they had “low confidence” in this finding. In other words, they don’t really have evidence, but they do want to turn up the war propaganda against China. Congress is now holding hearings on covid origins and the Senate and House unanimously passed the Covid Origins Act of 2023, which calls for declassifying any information gathered regarding the Wuhan Institute of Virology. There is a glaring and most probably intentional omission in the text of the bill. It only calls for investigation into the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and not the NIH or any of the groups which received funding for virology research. If the institute in Wuhan is to blame for creating covid, it did so with the help of U.S. entities.
China is firmly in U.S. crosshairs, as Joe Biden continues Donald Trump’s policies but with even greater threats of economic sanctions or even military action. Biden has allowed the former Speaker of the House to represent him in Taiwan, he is threatening to end the availability of the Tik Tok platform altogether, and is considering revoking export licenses of U.S. companies that do business with Huawei. He even bragged about shooting down a wayward Chinese weather balloon.
In all likelihood it is too late to know if covid was caused by human activity. The Chinese government is disinclined to give any information to the U.S. How can a nation accused of having a 2,000 year plan to destroy the U.S. have any confidence in fair treatment? What should be an unbiased investigation is now a witch hunt run by a country determined to “contain” China, even if the futile effort involves starting a hot war using Taiwan as a proxy, just as Ukraine is used against Russia.
The fanaticism directed at China is not directed at the NIH or against people like Dr. Anthony Fauci, who was involved in the research that may have been dangerous. For the past three years the political class shielded Americans who may have played a role in covid’s origin and they are even more determined now to blame China as yet another means of expanding influence.
Of course, U.S. actions have resulted in a loss of influence, as the Ukraine proxy war has brought China and Russia closer together, and China has emerged as a world leader in its own right. While the U.S. publicly berated ally Saudi Arabia for refusing to pump more oil and harm itself in the process, China succeeded in bringing the Saudis and Iranians, traditionally enemies, together. Under Xi Jinping’s efforts, the two antagonists have agreed to resume diplomatic relations. The U.S. is left with semi-deranged politicians babbling about Tik Tok because it is the latest means of demonizing a country labeled an adversary.
No one in U.S. political leadership was ever interested in finding out if covid’s origins resulted from human activity. In 2020 Republicans sought to defend Trump and blame China. Democrats wanted to blame Trump, but not touch the government scientific establishment. The cover up benefits both wings of the duopoly. Revealing a possible U.S. role was never on anyone’s agenda in Washington.
But escalating fear and hatred of China is on everyone’s agenda in congress. That’s why their covid origins bill doesn’t mention the people who may have helped cause the pandemic. Any evidence claiming to point to China’s involvement is tainted and should be rejected out of hand. Unfortunately, the answers to covid origins will probably remain unknown, but American bellicosity is and always will be an established fact. Millions of people fear weather balloons and Huawei because that is what they have been told to think.
Margaret Kimberley is the author of Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents. You can support her work on Patreon and also find it on the Twitter and Telegram platforms. She can be reached via email at margaret.kimberley(at)blackagendareport.com.