Leaked Chinese government health documents showing the Communist Party lied about the original coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan provide further confirmation of something we have been warning about since the start of the pandemic — that there is no reason to take any information coming out of China at face value.
China’s gross deception here is a symptom of the much greater virus that infects the Chinese Communist Party — a virus of absolute disinterest for the interests of its own people, let alone those of the rest of the world. President-elect Joe Biden must be astute to this reality. If not, China will use its mixing of favorable words and veiled truths to undermine American interests.
Still, the measure of China’s deceit in Hubei is something to behold. The leaked documents prove that even as the coronavirus crisis became critical, Xi Jinping’s minions were still lying without hesitation. One line from the CNN story exposing the documents best tells the tale: “The leaked documents show the daily confirmed death toll in Hubei rose to 196 on February 17. That same day, Hubei publicly reported just 93 virus deaths.” Such deception was the statistical rule.
It was a rule with great costs. Disguising the seriousness of what was happening in Hubei, China furnished the belief abroad that the situation was under control. Had we known the truth, earlier, we might have saved lives by introducing more rapid guidance on the wearing of masks and social distancing. As the Washington Examiner documented earlier this year, there will be further revelations as to the terrible measure of China’s falsehoods.
This saga testifies to the foul nature of the Chinese Communist system. It is a system in which the service of the people always comes second to the protection of the party’s reputation, a system in which its reputation is to be guarded by any action, however foul the lies or aggression required might be.
The need for Biden to appreciate this reality is an instrumentally serious one.
Far more is at stake than simply holding China to account for the chaos that its viral deception has inflicted on us. If Biden’s secretary of state nominee, Antony Blinken, and his national security adviser-designate Jake Sullivan fail to grasp that truth, it will be a disaster.
Take China’s coronavirus deceit and compare it to Xi’s policy in the international waters of the South China Sea. Here, Xi claims that he is simply defending China’s sovereignty and seeking dialogue with regional states. In reality, he is seizing the near entirety of the South China Sea, bullying and even attacking anyone who stands in his way. It says much about China’s respect for the world that it is willing to murder Indonesian fishermen, simply for fishing in their own waters.
Or how about China’s business practices?
While the Communist Party promises it seeks only “win-win” cooperation to make all nations wealthier, it actually pursues a strategy of domination. Beijing leverages market access in return for intellectual property transfers and steals that which it cannot leverage. Beijing also offers multibillion-dollar investments, but only in return for political submission. Submission, that is, of a not-so-thinly veiled kind. China’s diplomatic corps is always extremely quick to launch into rather undiplomatic Twitter tirades against any and all who are seen to be criticizing the regime, however mild that criticism might be.
When it comes to the Biden administration, we are particularly concerned that China will use the dangle of carbon emission commitments to extract American reduction of pressure in other areas. Xi is astute to the political importance that carbon emissions targets have within the Democratic Party. And he learned from his 2015 carbon emissions commitment to President Barack Obama that any pledge need not actually be carried out in order to win global praise and American gratitude, just stated earnestly. He’s banking that China’s annual construction of hundreds of dirty coal-fired power plants will be left out of sight, out of mind.
Biden should resist that understanding. Biden has an opportunity to build an economic and political architecture that offers China the opportunity of prosperity, but only if it conforms to international norms. We implore the incoming president to look closely at both the public and privileged evidence of China’s coronavirus deception. That deception is defining, and thus a warning for his presidency and America’s future.
Author: Washington Examiner
Source: Washington Examiner: China’s coronavirus lies offer warning to Biden