The political and media class in the United States is doing all it can to inculcate the public with the idea that China is to blame for Covid-19. With over forty thousand Americans dead from the virus, this narrative has tremendous propaganda power. But the more information is revealed about the details surrounding the origins of the virus, the more vulnerable Washington’s narrative becomes. And the more the U.S. itself becomes in danger of a worldwide backlash in response to its increasingly apparent role in the virus’ spread.
The initial evidence that the virus was transported from the U.S. to China
Last month, former international journalist Thomas Hong Wing Polin wrote that “It is now virtually certain that COVID-19 was brought to Wuhan by American troops taking part in the city’s World Military Games last October.” The reasons he listed for this were that the U.S. contingent had stayed less than 300 meters away from the seafood market where the virus supposedly began, that five of the U.S. troops developed a fever during their visit to China, that 42 employees of the Oriental Hotel were ultimately diagnosed with Covid-19, and that these troops had trained at Fort Detrick (which is the U.S. military viral lab that got closed down by the CDC last July for deficiencies).
This string of coincidences caused enough raised eyebrows that when Mike Pompeo called Chinese State Councillor for Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi about Covid-19, reportedly to ask that the Chinese not publicize what they had found about the virus, Yang’s reply was: “We await your solemn explanation, especially about Patient Zero.” While the Chinese government has tried to stay away from bioweapons accusations, this suspicion that U.S. troops had brought the contagion to China has been articulated by other Chinese officials.
As I’ve discussed, there’s also scientific evidence that the virus originated outside of China; the strains of the virus from Italy and Iran which have been genetically sequenced show that they couldn’t have come from China. The U.S. is therefore the only place where these strains could have originated, since the U.S. is known to hold the “tree trunk” of all of the varieties.
This conclusion is agreed upon by a top Taiwanese virologist, who observed in a televised presentation from February that the strains of the virus infecting Taiwan are only matched by the strains from Australia and the U.S.-and that since Taiwan wasn’t infected by Australians, it could have only come there from the U.S. This passage from a February Taiwan research paper also doesn’t conflict with the hypothesis that the U.S. military brought Covid-19 to China:
It is possible that SARS-CoV-2 in the Hua Nan market had been transmitted from other places, or at least, that Hua Nan market did not host the original source of SARS-CoV-2. As the first identified infected patients had no link to the market, it is possible that infected humans transmitted SARS-CoV-2 to workers or sellers in the market, after which it rapidly circulated there.
Growing worldwide openness towards the possibility that Washington is to blame
All of these details have been decried as “misinformation” by the U.S. media, tellingly without any real attempts to address the information that goes behind the arguments for the virus having originated in the U.S.; the very idea of it is categorized as fake news, and China, Russia, and Iran, are accused of spreading falsehoods when they say anything that contradicts Washington’s narratives. These reflexive responses to China’s statements about the issue, as well as the bipartisan campaign to scapegoat China for Covid-19, show how desperate the American ruling class is to control the discussion about where the virus came from.
While the aspects of this discussion that the Western media covers will only get as far as “did it come from a Chinese biolab or not,” there continues to be an effort to investigate how this clearly U.S.-tied virus spread around the globe. Part of what’s making the “yankee virus” idea more believable is that the accusations about China being responsible for the outbreak keep falling apart. Despite hysterical recent claims from the U.S. media about the virus having escaped from a Wuhan laboratory, it’s obvious that evidence for this is lacking, and the World Health Organization agrees with China’s statement that there’s no evidence.
Trump’s defunding of the WHO due to its refusal to appease Washington has made it harder for the international community to stand behind the anti-Chinese narratives that the U.S. keeps spinning about Covid-19. Added to Washington’s recently increased sanctions against populations that are suffering from the pandemic, ongoing warfare operations within impoverished regions, and unparalleled mismanagement of the virus, Trump’s WHO move isn’t the only reason why the U.S. is being discredited on the world stage. Naturally, more countries are coming to align with China due to its humanitarian efforts.
With this shift in geopolitical allegiances taking place, every new hint that the U.S. is the real culprit has the potential to create blowback for Washington. Last month, it was revealed that the U.S. Center for Disease Control knew about Covid-19 in September of last year, which was enough to prompt more online speculation that the virus was indeed brought to China during the war games. This was followed by the revelation from earlier this month that a U.S. intelligence report had warned about the pandemic as early as November, which the Trump administration has responded to with claims about China having initially covered up the virus. It’s now clear that this same accusation is applicable to the U.S. government.
Additionally, Israel said this month that it was warned about Covid-19 by U.S. intelligence in November. As Kevin Barret of Press TV has written about the deeply suspicious implications of this news:
This confirms what ABC News reported earlier this week [about Israel’s foreknowledge] and, of course, the Trump administration denied it. You’re not supposed to believe anything until it’s been denied maybe twice or three times. So we’ll have to wait for a couple more denials before we can be sure that this is true. But assuming it is — and we’ve got these different sources now telling us that this is true — this is quite mind-blowing, because China did not become aware of this problem until December 31st. So if US intelligence knew that there was a potentially catastrophic pandemic developing in Wuhan, China, in November, it means US intelligence knows what’s happening in Wuhan, China, better than the Chinese do. And the only reason that that would be the case would be if the US had planted the virus there.
Just in this last week, yet another one of these suspicious stories has appeared: Cambridge University scientists have found that there’s no way Covid-19’s origins lie within the city of Wuhan. This finding was initially reported on by Russia’s state media network RT, showing that Washington’s largest adversaries in the current information war are eager to expose any inconsistencies which will appear in U.S. narratives about the virus. And in the coming months and years, plenty more of these inconsistencies are no doubt going to surface.
A struggle over the narrative amid ever-escalating cold war tensions
The U.S. campaign to scapegoat China is about leveraging the narrative so that Washington’s global hegemony can be defended. China’s rise threatens to irreversibly shrink the power of American imperialism, so China must be attacked at every opportunity.
For the last ten years, since Obama’s “pivot to Asia” ramped up tensions with China, the U.S. has tried to take down the PRC by waging hybrid asymmetrical warfare. Washington has used sanctions, manufactured terrorism within China, U.S.-funded reactionary protests in Hong Kong, and all the necessary propaganda campaigns to weaken the country’s position. But this effort to exploit Covid-19 for hybrid warfare purposes is backfiring. Trump’s international belligerence is making the U.S. more isolated, and honest investigations into the virus are fostering the (very plausible) hypothesis that Washington spread Covid-19 as a means for biological warfare.
The U.S., finding itself increasingly cornered, is looking to resort to more drastic measures. Washington has been carrying out war provocations in the South China Sea throughout the last month, and this week the U.S. sent warships into disputed parts of the sea. Cold war tensions are heating up, and the U.S. has no intentions of de-escalating. It’s even made clear that it views open war with China as inevitable.
How Washington plans to respond to the fallout from future Covid-19 revelations is clear: increased censorship, intense campaigns of war propaganda, and efforts to disempower anti-imperialists by consolidating the control of the corporate/intelligence/military complex. In a 2018 Pentagon report titled “Assessing and Strengthening the Manufacturing and Defense Industrial Base and Supply Chain Resiliency of the United States,” this was stated to be the goal of the American ruling class.
The report said that to prepare for a total war scenario amid the rising tensions with Russia and China, there will need to be a restructuring of “America’s manufacturing and defense industrial base,” which the report says creates the “platform and systems” upon which “our Warfighter depends.” It said the same about the country’s “R&D organizations” and “academic institutions.” The solution, it said, is to carry out “the seamless integration of multiple elements of national power — diplomacy, information, economics, finance, intelligence, law enforcement and military.”
Such a shift has happened in the last two months as the Trump White House has been coordinating a media campaign to demonize China, as the government has been shielding large corporations from the financial losses of Covid-19, as the military and the intelligence agencies have been heading the U.S. government’s overall response to the pandemic, and as the White House has used the pandemic to transfer more resources to the Pentagon and the border patrol.
The American capitalist class has been preparing for a situation like this one for a long time, and they’re mobilizing all of their available tools in order to maintain internal control and move forward with their war operations. But will this be enough to counter the blowback from America’s role in spreading the virus? Or to maintain business as usual amid an accelerating collapse for U.S. imperialism? We’ll have to see.
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