One of the major concerns regarding the UK Government’s response to COVID is how divisive it has been.
Over the course of the argument between lockdown sceptics and lockdown enthusiasts, we are in real danger of forgetting why this crisis arose and, most importantly, who was responsible for it.
Indeed, I have gone on record over the past few weeks, saying that those who deny that COVID exists at all are merely playing into China’s hands.
That is because the pandemic really is China’s fault and in this piece, we’re going to examine how and why. Moreover, I am going to make the case for why we need to isolate China and stop relying on them to be the global growth engine.
Firstly, the virus most certainly did originate in China (much like most other pandemic viruses have come from China). There should be no doubt about this, because the US National Library of Medicine / National Institute of Health contains papers written in March of this year, which reference virus samples collected between December 2019 and February 2020 from within China itself. In fact, the library also contains references within another article to the earliest known cases of COVID-19, which originated from studies within the province of Wuhan.
This in itself shouldn’t be controversial. There most certainly is a virus (despite the cynical attempts of anarchists to deny that there is one) and the virus itself most definitely did come from China. However, what certainly should raise eyebrows is that it has since come to light that China were involved in a cover-up operation from as early as January.
According to Professor Yuen Kwok-Yung, who was one of the leading scientists who helped identify the original SARS virus in 2003, he alerted the Chinese authorities to human-to-human COVID-19 transmission as early as January 2020.
There are currently two possible origin stories to COVID-19.
The first is that China’s cruel and inhuman food practices ultimately led to COVID-19 evolving within a wet market in Wuhan and simple viral propagation led to it escaping from China, much like other viruses before it have done.
The second and more interesting story is that it ultimately escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
If this sounds unlikely, we must remember that there is form for SARS-type viruses escaping from Eastern laboratories. In fact, a SARS outbreak in Singapore was linked to a hospital laboratory, which unknowingly allowed a 27-year-old medical student to become infected, who subsequently carried the virus into the outside world.
Whatever the truth of this pandemic, China really is to blame and no amount of conspiracy theories or even legitimate criticism of how the governments of the West handled the pandemic can ever detract from that.
Thus, going forward (and especially with China’s growing military ambitions), we in the West need to overcome our differences on this issue and work to isolate China at the level of trade and commerce.
This should be done by continuing Trump’s line of using trade barriers to isolate China (for instance, tariffs and sanctions) and by fostering co-operation through the rest of the Anglosphere on the issue of key supply chains, industry and trade.
Only a reconfiguration of our trade practices and political outlook on China can ensure that this does not happen again. In fact, the relationship as it stands with China is fundamentally self-destructive, as it has fuelled the rise of China as an ambitious competitor state, which has designs on the West, our culture and our way of life.
The political elites who fundamentally promised us that China would liberalise within 40 years if we opened up trade and political cooperation with them were wrong. China has moved in the other direction, fostering an ever-more-oppressive internal social policy and an ever-more-aggressive relationship with the rest of the world.
As such, we should move to bring this relationship to an end as soon as humanly possible and not allow ourselves to be divided against each other in the process.