BRANDON J. WEICHERT | THE WEICHERT REPORT
I’m sitting here in quarantine, watching the economy die; listening to my neighbors tell me horror stories of how their once prosperous businesses are basically on life support or to my friends fret about how they are going to pay their bills in the coming months, all because of the novel coronavirus which emanated from Wuhan, China. We are told that the disease occurred because the COVID-19 strain leapt from bats (or maybe a Pangolin) into the human population when some Chinese citizen decided to eat undercooked bat. The whole thing sounds preposterous, but that’s the story.
As I reported back in January, the presence of China’s Level 4 virology lab in Wuhan is no mere coincidence. I submitted this theory to the Department of Defense during a recent talk at the start of February. I argued that the Chinese were likely conducting a gain-of-function test on bats at their Level 4 lab and, given that Chinese safety standards are usually not so great, they probably lost containment of an infected bat and that bat may have ended up in the nearby “wet market” where bats and other exotic animals are sold for consumption. Once the disease got out–much earlier, by the way, than what the official story is–the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) worked assiduously to cover up the outbreak so as to protect itself both from embarrassment and blame.
But actual evidence proving that the disease came from the lab rather than the wet market remains elusive.
What we do know is that the Chinese have maneuvered themselves with great alacrity. Perhaps China is really just so “lucky” and deft at geopolitics that they are moving with the skills needed to capitalize on the United States being otherwise engaged with the pandemic. Then again, perhaps this really is all part of some coordinated movement. Release a novel coronavirus on the world, shutting the United States down, all the while China orchestrates the greatest geopolitical change since 1945.
Up until six or seven weeks ago, many of us on the Right were calling the outbreak of COVID-19 and the evisceration it caused in China’s economy as Beijing’s “Chernobyl Moment.” And perhaps it will all end up being that way. Yet, after Chernobyl, the Soviets really reassessed their view of nuclear technology and ultimately became more conciliatory with the West. If anything, in the midst of the outbreak, China became more aggressive and assertive with their Western interlocutors.
And it makes sense why they would have become so aggravated in China. Some of us on the Right were arguing from the start the possibility that a) the “Wuhan Flu” was bio-engineered and b) many more of us were warning US authorities not to take China at their word about when the disease broke out. As it turned out, those of us warning about China’s obfuscation about the timeline were correct. I further cautioned that world health authorities should not take the Chinese data sets at face-value.
The World Health Organization (WHO) not only unquestioningly took Beijing’s official line that the disease became an epidemic in China in January after having randomly appeared in Wuhan the month before but the WHO also accepted Chinese data on the exponential growth of the disease. Meanwhile Chinese authorities happily sat atop the information flow coming out of China regarding the outbreak and basically cherrypicked which bits of data the West could be allowed to see. We created comprehensive forecasts based on fudged numbers from the Chinese. Now, everyone in the West is up-in-arms about the flawed models (they’re not entirely flawed but they are incomplete).
And as the United States retracts from the world in the face of the disease, China has since reopened their economy (even while the disease still torments its own people). Beijing has launched a sustained campaign of intimidation against Taiwan, an island they claim to be their territory but which most certainly does not seek to become a Chinese province (anymore than Hong Kong wants to be). Conveniently also, as a forthcoming article of mine at American Greatness assesses, one of two US aircraft carriers deployed to the Pacific, the USS Theodore Roosevelt, has been completely immobilized by an outbreak of COVID-19 aboard the ship. Now there are significant gaps in America’s deterrence in the Pacific at a time when China is ramping up their naval and air force operations against Taiwan.
Then there was the recent decision by the members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a Chinese and Russian led alliance (of which Iran is an observing member of) that was envisaged in 2001 as being a mixture of NATO and the European Union for Eurasia, voted in principle to discontinue the use of the US dollar. Instead, the SCO countries will use their own currencies for transactions. While other currencies have been rising in prominence on the world market since 2001, the US dollar still retains its dominant status. Both Moscow and Beijing have long desired to displace the US dollar and to diversify the world financial markets with currencies outside of the dollar. This is as much of a shield against what they view as unfair and onerous economic sanctions that Washington tends to impose upon countries with whom it disagrees as it is meant to fundamentally undermine America’s hegemonic position in the world system (which has been under assault for decades).
Meanwhile, China has continued spreading its influence throughout much of Africa. For more than a decade, China has been viewed as the “new colonialists” in Africa. They have propped top the flailing regime in Zimbabwe, Beijing has built extensive infrastructure projects throughout Eastern Africa so as to link the continent with China’s ongoing Belt-and-Road Initiative (BRI) meant to unite together Eurasia and Africa. China is also endeavoring to become the dominant foreign military power in Africa.
Right now, the United States has a network of military bases in Africa that it uses to conduct drone operations and counterterrorism operations. The Chinese have been building their own military presence in Africa up. This is as much to displace the Americans from a land they believe falls within their sphere of interest as it is to threaten India. China’s obsession with Africa’s eastern coast is largely because Beijing seeks to use that part of Africa as a place from where it can launch submarines into the Indian Ocean. With India’s rise, China’s expansion is threatened. India and China have already fought a major war for control over the mountainous border which separates their territory in 1962. Again, in 2017, the two nuclear powers over went to war over water rights in Doklam. India desires to be the dominant naval power in the Indian Ocean, a body of water that China believes it should control. Beijing is acting boldly to ensure this becomes a reality and Africa plays heavily into their plans.
Oh, and this has happened, China has absurdly blamed the United States for the outbreak of the disease. Laudatory stories in our press have spoken of the rise of a new generation of Chinese foreign policy leaders who are more belligerent and “confident” than their predecessors–and decidedly more anti-American.
At the same time, China has used its dominant position in the area of 5G internet as a way of expanding its soft power into places like Europe. It is also arguing that its use of artificial intelligence helped to stem the outbreak of COVID-19 and has offered European governments access to those same methods. All of this is a feint for greater Chinese influence and a means of rolling back American world influence.
Perhaps the COVID-19 outbreak was entirely natural. Maybe it was not. One thing is certain, though, China has thus far benefited most from the chaos which followed the outbreak. In six weeks, the discussions about China in the West have shifted from “this could be the end” of that terrible regime into being “how do we counter Chinese expansion during a pandemic?”
And should it be proven (which I hope to as my group continues its research into the matter) that the COVID-19 disease is actually from a lab, this will then have shown the world yet another asymmetrical form of combat that Beijing has deployed in its decades-long quasi-war against the United States. This bioattack will have been just the latest in a long line of unconventional attacks against the United States since China was “integrated” into the American-led economic order.
Think about it: first, China raids our country of economic capabilities under the imprimatur of “free” trade. Then Beijing spends years waging cyberwarfare upon the United States. All the meanwhile China rises in international power and prestige. Beijing meanwhile expands its presence beyond its own borders and increasingly threatens tiny Taiwan. From there, China begins wooing Western high-tech firms to conduct sensitive research in China rather than the United States.
When a leader, like Donald Trump, rises to power and actually challenges China in a way that it has not been challenged by the United States in decades, China gets its rear end beaten in the “trade war.” In response, this disease conveniently comes about, not only killing the American economy but also threatening the political future of Trump while affording Beijing the greatest set of geopolitical opportunities in decades.
So, again, I ask you to consider the possibility that we may have just been bioattacked.