Yesterday the number of confirmed cases from the Covid-19 Wuhan virus exceeded 2,000,000 for the first time and so I’ve decided to do a quick review of what is going on around the world today just to see what the jump in confirmed cases looks like. Using my preferred data source – remembering that this data source is updated in real time GMT with the data for new cases and new deaths being reset at GMT+0 – I’m giving figures reported at 10.15 PM AEST which makes it 1.15 PM GMT.
Chinese Virus Figures from Around the World
Right now, the number of confirmed cases worldwide stands at 2,102,816. The number of deaths stands at 136,119. The United States has an incredible 644,806 confirmed cases along with 28,572 deaths. Given the significant number of new cases confirmed in the United States each day, it is fair to conjecture that the United States will reach 1,000,000 cases within 10-15 days. Spain continues to report huge daily increases of confirmed cases with an additional 2,157 cases today bringing the total number of cases to 182,116. There have been 19,130 deaths in Spain.
Italy is also suffering with 165,155 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 21,645 deaths. France has reported 147,863 cases with 17,167 deaths. Germany has 135,383 confirmed cases with 3,850 deaths. The United Kingdom has 98,476 cases with 12,868 deaths and so will obviously reach a landmark figure of 100,000 cases within the next week. China, with figures that no one believes, has reported 82,341 cases with 3,342 deaths. Iran has 77,995 cases and so will soon surpass China in terms of the total number of confirmed cases. There have been 4,869 deaths in Iran. Turkey is also set to surpass China for Covid-19 cases with the total number of cases currently standing at 69,392. There have been 1,518 deaths in Turkey.
The Testing Rate in Australia Remains Low to the Point of Being Ridiculous
Australia, the country where I currently reside, continues to report figures for confirmed cases and deaths that make Australia appear to be one of the most successful countries in the world in combatting the Covid-19 virus. Australia has reported 21 new cases today bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 6,468. Australia has reported no new deaths today and so the total number of deaths remains at 63. I have mentioned time and time again that the reason that Australia is reporting such a low number of confirmed cases is because Australia is carrying out so few tests such that we have only tested around 1.4% of the population.
I have seen nothing in the news reporting on Australia’s low testing rates. However, this news story does, very briefly, raise the point that given the asymptomatic strain of the virus, many of us could be carriers without ever knowing it. The first interviewee, Dr Kári Stefansson, also explains that in Iceland, which has extremely high testing rates of around 10% of the population, being proactive in testing broadly in society – something Australia does not do – means actually being able to identify the real spread of the virus which means being able to isolate individuals from the broader society in order to stop the spread of the virus.
The second interviewee, Infectious Diseases Prof Sanjaya Senanayake, points out that when Iceland tested the wider population, only 1% of those tested had the Covid-19 virus. The important point here is not the infection rate per se but the fact that Iceland with its 10% testing rate of the general population has more of a basis than Australia for claiming to know the real spread of the virus in Iceland. However, that said, 90% of Iceland’s population has not been tested. Iceland has a population of roughly 340,000 people and so Iceland likely has thousands of unconfirmed cases of the virus. Australia has a population of around 25,000,000 and so we likely have hundreds of thousands of unconfirmed cases of the virus.
The Conspiracy Theorist’s Guide to the Chinese Virus
Stories are Emerging that Suggest that China Engaged in an Act of Bio-Terrorism in Releasing their Virus Upon the World
A while ago a I wrote a journal entry entitled “The Conspiracy Theorists Guide to the Covid-19 Virus”. As I sat in my garden this morning, drinking my coffee and smoking cigarettes, I reviewed today’s Covid-19 stories and was struck by the fact that my “Conspiracy Theorists Guide” now has far more of a ring of truth about it than I had ever imagined possible. For example, in this story the claim is made – as it has been in other stories – that the Covid-19 Wuhan virus may actually have originated in and escaped “by accident” from a laboratory. The idea here would be that the Chinese were researching the virus in a laboratory in Wuhan and, perhaps through lax safety protocols, the virus escaped the laboratory and spread in the community.
So, we have seen a shift from stories about the virus originating in a wet market to a story about the virus possibly originating in a laboratory from which it escaped by accident. The next step in the conspiracy theory is to move beyond the claim that the virus escaped by accident from a laboratory to claim that the Chinese may have engaged in an act of bio-terrorism by deliberately releasing the virus upon the world to further their own interests by, for example, undermining Trump’s presidential campaign. Ultimately the story concludes that the virus was likely not man made. Rather the Chinese may have been studying the virus in a laboratory and, as with the previous story, there is conjecture that the virus may have escaped from the laboratory.
The bio-terrorism story presents absolutely no facts to support the idea of Covid-19 being an act of bio-terrorism but for now that is not the point. The point is that talk of bio-terrorism has become a part of the Chinese virus discourse. There are further examples of Chinese virus discourse now including questions about whether the virus was man made and whether China engaged in an act of bio-terrorism in deliberately releasing the virus upon the world. A PhD student has provided a scientific analysis of whether or not the virus was man made and comes to the conclusion that the virus occurred naturally. However, this does not rule out an act of bio-terrorism. There is another story that takes an extended look at whether or not China has a biological warfare program.
A Comprehensive Report on how China Deliberately Exported the Virus Around the World
WION reports that China deliberately hid the truth of the virus from the world and did not lock down Wuhan until January 23rd, 2020 when they had known about the virus in November 2019. By the time that they locked down Wuhan, around 5,000,000 people had travelled in and out of Wuhan during the Chinese Luna New Year. These travellers travelled both within China and overseas thereby ensuring that the virus spread around the world. Having spread the virus around the world China has now imposed travel restrictions into China to try to ensure that the virus does not come back to them. Finally, China learned nothing from the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) which they exported to 37 countries around the world.
The Only Logical Conclusion is that China Knowingly Unleashed the Virus Upon the World
Continuing with conspiracy theory turning into fact, we will now accept that the World Health Organization did China’s bidding in the early stages of the virus by uncritically accepting China’s claim that there was no human-to-human transmission of the virus and advising countries around the world that they did not need to close their borders. These facts need to be put in the context of the WION report above. China knew about the virus for around 6 weeks before locking down Wuhan. Millions of Chinese, many likely infected with the virus, were allowed to travel around the world to spread the virus to other countries at the same time that China was telling the WHO to advise that countries did not need to close their borders.
Ultimately, whether the virus originated in a wet market or a live animal market or whether it escaped from a laboratory or whether China produced the virus and released it into Wuhan does not matter because whatever the case, China has succeeded with its deliberate intention to spread the virus around the world. This means that China engaged in an act of biological warfare because they deliberately allowed infected Chinese citizens to travel overseas whilst knowing full well that there had been human to human transmissions of the deadly virus. This fact gets a lot of press time. For example, “According to Sky News host Rowan Dean,
China wilfully inflicted” the coronavirus upon the world . . . a spectacular display of “communism” at its very worst.
China is Shipping Millions of Dollars Worth of Defective Medical Equipment Around the World
Now to the next stage of the conspiracy theory turned reality. I suggested that having brought the world to its knees, China is now seeking to become the dominant world power and that one way of furthering this aim would be to seek economic advantage from the Wuhan Covid-19 virus. This strategy was outlined in a book was published in the late 1990’s in China which was written by two Chinese Generals and called “Unrestricted Warfare: China’s Masterplan to Destroy America“. A central tenet of the book is that China could not win a military confrontation with America but that it could use its economic prowess to supplant America on the world stage.
Now, take a look at this report – from Palki Sharma on WION.
The story examines whether China is going to profit from the Covid-19 Wuhan virus. Well, foreign owned businesses are up and running in China although it should be noted that some countries, Japan for example, are looking to move their businesses out of China. Chinese business are also up and running and producing, amongst other things, medical supplies and ventilators needed by countries around the world. However, China is engaging in loathsome, ugly and unconscionable behaviour by shipping defective medical supplies to countries around the world. The list of countries includes India, Spain, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Turkey, Finland, Britain, the Netherlands and now Australia which received 800,000 defective masks from China at an estimated cost of $1,200,000.
This obviously speaks to a quality control problem in China which is evidenced by China itself seizing 80 million counterfeit and inferior masks along with 370,000 defective or fake disinfectant products. Even though I understand the quality control issue in China, it still seems difficult to comprehend that China is shipping tons of faulty medical supplies around the world because China is trying to wage a propaganda war by appearing to help the world through sending out medical supplies that will position China as a “good Samaritan”. The fact of sending faulty equipment is having exactly the opposite effect from the one that Beijing wants to see. The simplest explanation here is that the Chinese Communist Party just does not have control of the means of production in China. However, this fact leaves China with pubic image problem.
The Chinese Are Waging a Propaganda War to Cover Up Their Covid-19 Lies
Palki Sharma reports on China’s public image problem saying that China’s pro-development image has “taken a beating” and that China’s donation diplomacy – the faulty medical supplies mentioned above – has backfired. According to Palki Sharma, China’s response has been to use a tactic that was used in Nazi Germany viz. to try to perpetuate a “big lie”.
The logic of the “big lie” is simple. If you tell a big lie often enough – in this case China’s lie is that it is valiantly trying to save its people from the Covid-19 virus whilst offering help to the rest of the world – then that lie becomes the truth. China has a two pronged approach to achieving its aims. First, China is using State run media outlets to push positive stories about the regime. Secondly, China is using social media to tell the story that China wants to be told by, for example, pushing posts and advertisements on to FaceBook.
You can, as Palki Sharma notes, verify the facts about China pushing advertisements on FaceBook by going to FaceBook’s advertisement library page. Consider also the propaganda war that Chinese diplomats have been waging on Twitter along with China’s attempt to elicit praise for its handling of the Covid-19 virus from different countries around the world including America. Then there is China’s censorship of its own social media platforms with China imprisoning people who posted on social media about the virus. China also uses incredibly sophisticated methods to censor what Chinese citizens can access in China. The bottom line is that China is manipulating its own social media and social media abroad to try to ensure that its own version of the truth wins the day.
A concrete example of China manipulating the truth can be also found in the story about Li Wenliang, one of the first doctors to try to tell the world about Covid-19. China’s first lie in the wake of Li Wenliang’s death was to make no mention of the fact they had condemned and denounced Li Wenliang for trying to tell the world bout the Coronavirus. Then, in their second lie, China’s “People’s Daily” reported that he had died from Covid-19 after “an all out effort” to save him. The new story from the “People’s Daily” also said,
We deeply mourn the death of Li Wenliang who unfortunately got infected with the novel coronavirus.
As another example of China’s propaganda machine in action, take this video, released by Chinese State Media, which has a Chinese woman speaking in Arabic in a story that is targeting Middle Eastern audiences. The Chinese “reporter” tells audiences that America was responsible for the Wuhan Covid-19 virus. This lie has been debunked many times over and yet China is still trying to peddle the lie around the world.
First Published April 16th, 2020