China: The Two-Hundred Pound Panda in the Room

If COVID-19 has taught us anything in 2020, it’s that we have to address the two-hundred-pound gorilla (er panda) in the room. Namely, that the CCP is an expansionist regime which is totalitarian, corrupt and never to be trusted by the international community. This is because by falsifying information on a massive scale China ultimately…

If COVID-19 has taught us anything in 2020, it’s that we have to address the two-hundred-pound gorilla (er panda) in the room. Namely, that the CCP is an expansionist regime which is totalitarian, corrupt and never to be trusted by the international community. This is because by falsifying information on a massive scale China ultimately facilitated the global spread of the virus.

Putting aside Kevin Rudd’s defence of the WHO—Chinese Communism’s (aka Lenin’s) ‘useful idiot’—in also failing to prevent the spread of the disease, we have now been given an authentic, picture-perfect vision of the CCP’s insidious self-protectionism.

I realise that’s a big call, so let me back it up with four examples:

First, is the recent news from US intelligence agencies that China may have resumed nuclear testing. The South China Morning Post, Reuters and The Daily Telegraph are all reporting that China may have set off low-level underground nuclear blasts secretly despite claiming to observe an international pact banning such tests. The Wall Street Journal was the first to report:

China might be secretly conducting nuclear tests with very low explosive power despite Beijing’s assertions that it is strictly adhering to an international accord banning all nuclear tests, according to a new arms-control report to be made public by the State Department.

The coming report doesn’t present proof that China is violating its promise to uphold the agreement, but it cites an array of activities that “raise concerns” that Beijing might not be complying with the “zero-yield” nuclear-weapons testing ban.

The concerns stem from the high tempo of activity at China’s Lop Nur test site, extensive excavations at the site, and Beijing’s purported use of special chambers to contain explosions.

Another factor feeding U.S. suspicions is the interruption in past years of data transmissions from monitoring stations on Chinese territory that are designed to detect radioactive emissions and seismic tremors.

As to why China might want to bolster its nuclear weapon program, The South China Morning Post has produced a concise summary:

Second, is China’s continued suppression of free speech. People who disagree with this regime are mysteriously disappearing in China. However, even more disturbing is China’s global influence in places such as Australia.

For instance, The Washington Post and The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Drew Pavlou, a twenty-year-old philosophy student at the University of Queensland, is currently facing expulsion  for damaging “…the university’s reputation by condemning police attacks on student protesters in Hong Kong in November” as well as “…him putting a sign on the university’s Chinese government-funded Confucius Institute in March, declaring it was a COVID-19 “biohazard” and posting a photo of the act on Facebook.”

In his defence, Pavlou posted on Twitter:

The fact that this censorship of free speech is occurring in a tertiary institution in Australia should be cause for deep concern. But for anyone even remotely familiar with the relationship between the media and the Chinese Communist Party this will come as no surprise. Just take a look at this 1980 BBC interview with Wang Chang Yun, the then director of the New China News Agency:

Third, is the CCP’s oppression of religious minorities. In an exclusive article for Mercatornet, William Huang details how a “demographic holocaust” is presently occurring in Xinjiang. In particular, the Chinese Communist Party has decided to crush the Muslim Uyghurs with ferocious campaigns of mass sterilization and forced abortions. As Huang explains:

A very sharp intervention by the authorities must have occurred in heavily Uyghur southern Xinjiang. Based on previous experience of such interventions elsewhere in China, ferocious campaigns of mass sterilization and forced abortions must have taken place.

There are only two precedents for this, even in China: mass sterilisations in 1983 and the “Hundred Days Without Births” campaign in the eastern province of Shandong in 1991.

One doesn’t have to be a Muslim sympathiser to realise that this is travesty of human rights. And yet the international community to largely silent, while the United Nations and WHO continues to do nothing.

The fourth—but by no means final reason—is the origin of COVID-19. The UN organisation, WHO, quickly wielded their power to see that the Wuhan virus—as it was initially called—had no connection with China. And instead, it has now been replaced with the more generic COVID-19, or according to The Medical Journal of Australia, SARS-CoV-2.

It must not be overlooked that Lijian Zhao, the official Spokesperson and Deputy Director General, Information Department, Foreign Ministry (but also one of the CCP’s great propagandists) has consistently tried to blame the United States for the origin of the pandemic.

But while some have—not without reason—suggested that COVID-19 might have been a weapon, it seems more likely that is a virus that has escaped from the virology lab in Wuhan not far from the infamous Wet Markets. Just take a look at the following promotional video purportedly produced by the Wuhan Institute of Virology last year regarding its research into bats and coronaviruses. In fact, The Daily Mail has recently reported that:

U.S. government gave $3.7million grant to Wuhan lab at centre of coronavirus leak scrutiny that was performing experiments on bats from the caves where the disease is believed to have originated

What’s more, Josh Rogin persuasively argues in The Washington Post that there was a clear laboratory connection to COVID-19, rather than the seafood market in Wuhan.

As my colleague David Ignatius noted, the Chinese government’s original story — that the virus emerged from a seafood market in Wuhan — is shaky. Research by Chinese experts published in the Lancet in January showed the first known patient, identified on Dec. 1, had no connection to the market, nor did more than one-third of the cases in the first large cluster. Also, the market didn’t sell bats.

It was the Indiana poet James Whitcomb Riley (1849–1916) who coined the phrase:

When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.

But a common variation of the wording of the phrase may have originated much later with Emil Mazey, secretary-treasurer of the United Auto Workers, at a labour meeting in 1946 accusing a person of being a communist. Mazey is reported to have said:

I can’t prove you are a Communist. But when I see a bird that quacks like a duck, walks like a duck, has feathers and webbed feet and associates with ducks—I’m certainly going to assume that he is a duck.

A similar thing could easily be said today. Because the CCP talks, walks and acts like a ‘duck’ in every way. And rather than continue to act as if it isn’t there, we need to contain the influence of the two-hundred-pound panda in the room.

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