China Stands Firm On The Theory That U.S. Labs Leaked the Coronavirus

Source: Quartz

The shadows of biological warfare which made the world suffer still have some unresolved mysteries, one of it being the whereabouts of the place where the virus truly originated from. 

While the entire globe was suspecting China, surprisingly China has been linking an American military lab to the pandemic and it has been trending on Chinese social media for quite some time now.

Two major theories have been spreading in the West and China, one pinning the United States and the former a highest-level biocontainment laboratory in Wuhan, the initial headquarters of the pandemic.

The attention was drawn by a Chinese official just ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden on January 20 as president. This could show that the new organization will confront a difficult task with regards to the US-China relationship, and a continuation of the blame game between the two nations over the pandemic.

A spokesperson for the Chinese foreign ministry, on the 18th of January, demanded that Washington open its Fort Detrick bio lab for inspection, implying a conspiracy theory that she pushed in May stating that Maryland facility was linked to COVID. 

The point to be noted here is that neither of the nations has a shred of strong scientific evidence and instead they have been feeding on half-truths that more than often are reborn on their own among conspiracy theorists.

The entire situation according to Titus Chen, a professor of Chinese propaganda at National Sun Yat-sen University in Taiwan has turned into a ball game where they try and divert the world’s attention by blaming each other for baseless claims.


Why Was China Being Blamed?

Recently, China has been spending in important sectors in technology, science and biomedicine. A plan was jotted down to establish the highest level of biocontainment biosafety level-4 (BSL-4) or pathogen or protection level-4 (P-4), in many cities. The first lab was set up at Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in 2017, and it became fully operational in 2018.

Soon after many questions were raised about the necessity and safety of such labs all around the world. Their major concern consisted of possible pathogen leakage as well as probable development of biological weapons. 

A couple of days after the lockdown of Wuhan in January 2020, a United States-based paper inclined towards spreading conspiracy theories connected the origins of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-Cov-2, then called 2019-nCoV) to China’s secret biological weapons program, citing an Israeli biological warfare expert.

Even more shockingly, researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology presented a preprint scientific paper where they announced their discoveries on four novel supplements of key primary proteins of HIV-1 out of 2019-nCoV, an outcome which was "probably not going to be random in nature".

As such, the novel coronavirus had been genetically designed. Before long, the analysts pulled out their paper, referring to a requirement for "re-dissecting of the information."


Why is China Blaming the US?

Soon after the epidemic, several posts containing the same details and similar vocabulary started spreading like wildfire, more evidently on Chinese social media WeChat. 

They looped the origins of the virus to the first Chinese hosted international multi-sport event which involved the participation of several thousand athletes from over a hundred countries.

It stated that the US has long attempted to hold biological warfare against China, and it succeeded in doing so by sending athletes to the tournament. It further mentions the outbreak coincides with the place, concerning the timeline and the gathering of people. 

It further mentioned that the athletes had several personal interactions with Chinese, all the while hiding the virus in a container with the sole aim of causing harm to the people of Wuhan. 

No available logical or other dependable proof supports the cases made by this hypothesis. It is quite evident that the authorities have been arranging this progression of disinformation.

As WeChat is controlled and firmly checked by the government, the wide dissemination of the above post and its versions from the web-based media stage could not have ever been possible without true support or endorsement.


What Does All This Mean To the World?

Be that as it may, similar to the scenes of biological warfare during the mid-20th century, the spread of these present-day paranoid ideas mirrors a progression of longstanding and damaging patterns in the international arena which incorporate deepening mistrusts, enmities, the force of philosophies, for example, nationalism, and the power of truth in publicity campaigns.

The overwhelming outcomes of the Coronavirus pandemic for people, families, nations, and the world in general offers striking evidence that organisms could be comparably dangerous and frightening—if not more so—than the utilization of atomic weapons.

Along these lines, building up a superior worldwide administration of biosafety and biosecurity than that which exists at present is a dire need for the global community in the extensive setting of an approaching Virus War.

Written by – Bhavana N

Edited by – Christeena George

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