Washington’s hysterical COVID-19 claims will fail

By Hu Xijin Source:Global Times Published: 2020/4/13 23:43:40

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci as US President Donald Trump dismisses a question during an unscheduled briefing after a Coronavirus Task Force meeting at the White House on Sunday, in Washington, DC. Photo: AFP

We are being confronted by real international hooliganism.

Washington is now attacking Beijing from three directions. First, it is accusing the Chinese government of initially "concealing the epidemic" which allowed the crisis to get out of control and "harm the US and the world." 

Second, Washington has blackened China's reputation saying it is hiding the "actual number of deaths," claiming it's somehow higher than the official account. This is an obvious attempt to deflect attention from the shocking number of deaths in the US. It's an attempt to deceive people into think that the US is more honest than China, rather than reflecting on the dereliction of duty or even malfeasance that has occurred in the US. 

Third, the US has encouraged a few lawyers to initiate lawsuits against the Chinese government, making farcical claims and instigating anti-Chinese sentiment in the US. Washington has turned to extreme nationalism in the hope of saving itself.

China is being forced into needless and pointless war of refuting US' hysterical claims against us. We need not worry about this as there are two reasons Washington's travesty will fail.

First, China's performance in the fight against the epidemic is well-organized and achievements have been huge. All the world knows this obvious fact. Considering the serious global spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world will fairly judge the city of Wuhan's overall performance in overcoming the virus. 

Wuhan was the first to report the epidemic and the first to have to make difficult choices on implementing anti-epidemic mobilization. When European countries and the US started to deal with the epidemic, they already knew much about its virulence and how it spread. Pre-warned, they only needed to weigh the risks between all-out containment and weathering the damage that would do to the economy. If all countries have failed to make all the right choices, how can they focus blame on Wuhan? 

As early as January 3, China began to inform the World Health Organization (WHO) and relevant countries and regions of the pneumonia outbreak. Chinese medical experts and administrative authorities have been collecting and accumulating knowledge on the virus ever since. On January 20, China formally confirmed human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus and made this knowledge public. Completing this evidence-based process was no easy task.

Chinese scientists have maintained close contact with WHO and the international medical community. They have published several papers on the coronavirus outbreak in the world's most prestigious medical journals, sharing information with the international community without reservation. 

Wuhan issued a notice locking down the city in the early hours of January 23, a decision so shocking it woke the entire world. For the first time in human history, a mega-city with a population of more than ten million shut down all its outbound channels. 

This was a deafening siren warning the entire world. 

China has worked hard to annihilate the virus through unprecedented suspension of economic activity at the national level. 

The ruling powers in Washington clearly knew what was coming their way. The virus had broken out in several Asian countries and regions and European countries were hit hard by the virus one after another. How much information do US decision makers need before they sober up and place the epidemic at the top of all matters? Are they deaf or blind?

We see US political circles projecting incredible impetuousness and stupidity. Some senior officials, US senators and influential media workers publicly claimed that the COVID-19 was a mere influenza that would pose very little risk to the American people. Super Tuesday, the climax of the primary elections, was still held on March 3 with great fanfare. Who can tell today that how many Americans were infected during those election rallies? Some US politicians and famous TV pundits were still playing down the epidemic and in early March were still telling people not to worry. How dare they blame their ridiculous response to the contagion on China? Where is their shame?

The second reason is that lies will eventually be fully exposed. US partisanship is one of the angles where the US lies will wear out. There is plenty of evidence that the US Democratic Party wants to prove the weakness and inability of the Trump administration's epidemic fight. The mainstream media supportive of the Democrats will also lend a helping hand. With the approaching presidential election, the Democrats will not allow the Republican-led government to duck its responsibility.

The outbreak in the US is still brewing. In recent days, some 2,000 people a day are dying from the deadly virus. Public anger will generate more and more pressure on US politicians. It is becoming more difficult for the US political elites and their supporters to make up lies to deceive the public and override international law. They cannot justify themselves in face of such heavy casualties.

Of course, since the anti-China atmosphere has been formed in US society, and the political elite take the initiative in attempting to suppress China, they are certain to receive support. China should prudently cope with the Washington-launched propaganda war and display facts to the world as best as it can. No matter how powerful US soft power may be, it cannot beat facts and morality. The ruling elites in Washington are living in a fantasy where they think blurring the facts and spreading their slander allows them to call white for black.

The author is editor-in-chief of the Global Times. opinion@globaltimes.com.cn

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