OPINION / VIEWPOINT
The US is the super spreader of coronavirus and political virus
Published: Jul 29, 2021 06:27 PM
Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

When coronavirus hits the US, some politicians choose to surrender and collude with it. While working haltingly on containment, some people in the US, mostly without any scientific background, have been hyping up the "China lab accident" hypothesis. But in the China Part of the global study of origins of the coronavirus convened by the WHO, this pathway of emergence has been rated "extremely unlikely" after thorough review on data and evidence. 

This is not the first time the US has insisted on going down a misguided path at the wrong time. Back in 2003, the US invaded Iraq with a tube of detergent as the proof for weapons of mass destruction held by the Middle East country. The 18 years since only made the US more unscrupulous. From using counter-terrorism as the pretext for raking in resources and geopolitical interests, it is now engaged in a terror-making campaign. 

Muzzle voices of reason

Many Americans have been either muzzled, investigated or dismissed from their posts just because they told the truth about COVID-19 that the authorities don't like. Dr. Helen Y. Chu, a whistle-blower, sounded the alarm on the epidemic in the US, but was ordered to "cease and desist" and "stop testing". Adam Witt, a nurse, was barred from the medical center he worked for after going public with workplace concerns about coronavirus precautions. Captain Brett Crozier of aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt wrote to Navy leaders to evacuate and quarantine most of the sailors on board after three crew members were tested positive, only to be relieved of duty for losing the "trust and confidence" of their superiors. 

Even Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top medical expert in the US, was lambasted by the previous administration and is still under attacks by some US politicians trying to force through conspiracy theories. The only way to evade the violent acts is to clam up about the truth. Indeed, some in the WHO and world scientists are adjusting themselves to the new reality.

Attack China with a whole-of-government approach

The Chinese Foreign Ministry said that the new US administration has generally continued its predecessor's extreme and erroneous China policy. This seems to be proved by the US stand on origin tracing of COVID-19. Despite the partisan gulf on most policies, Democrats keep with them the anti-China playbook compiled by some Republicans and have been going "tough" on China, including hyping up the lab leak theory pushed by former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Following the line of the "presumption of guilt", the new US administration has entrusted its intelligence community to rummage through for evidence that shows the virus was leaked from or manufactured by China. 

The US also went so far as to spread lies at different levels in its government about China's lack of "transparency and openness" by fabricating infections at the Wuhan Institute of Virology or in a mine in Southwest Yunnan Province without providing the names or any other supportive details. When unfounded claims from the US are debunked one after another with facts, the state-sponsored machine is working against the clock to churn out new disinformation. The aim is clear: to glorify the US by defaming China.

Super spreader of virus

The US has long been the country with the most confirmed COVID-19 cases. On top of the 35 million confirmed cases at home, the country has registered the highest number of over 611,000 deaths.

But it is not just the Americans that are suffering from the inadequate response by the US government. The lack of effective border control has led to international spread through cross-border travels. An Israeli study by Tel Aviv University in May 2020 showed 70 percent of the local virus strains originated from the US. Similarly, 35 percent of the imported cases in the Republic of Korea came from the US, according to reports in February this year.

Countries in the Americas bear the brunt of transmissions in another way. From March to September, the US deported 160,000 illegal immigrants, many of whom had lived in shabby shelters that could have undetected cluster cases and crossed the U.S. border without any testing or quarantine. Guatemala, for example, saw 50 percent to 7 percent of its deported citizens from the US confirmed with COVID-19. 

Considering the mysteries shrouding Fort Detrick, the hundreds of lab mistakes, safety violations and near-miss incidents occurred in bio-labs coast to coast in recent years and more than 200 labs run overseas, the US is deeply involved in furtive operations posing significant health and security risks. 

The US COVID-19 response has made it the super coronavirus spreader poisoning the whole world, be its scientific research, international cooperation or the protection of people's fundamental rights to survival. Out of self-interests driven by politics, the US has also become the super spreader of political virus, spreading stigmatization such as "China virus". Moreover, some US politicians have made personal attacks and verbal threats against some outspoken scientists. Some media outlets commented that the above practices of the US are tantamount to origin-tracing terrorism. All this makes the US unqualified to talk of "responsibility" and ashamed to make human rights lectures.

The author is a commentator on international affairs, writing regularly for Global Times, China Daily, etc. He can be reached at xinping604@gmail.com
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