Features Australia

Nothing to Xi here

Who’s been a naughty dictator then?

30 May 2020

9:00 AM

30 May 2020

9:00 AM

The Chinese Communist Party’s defence against charges that it was responsible for the Covid-19 pandemic goes something like this.  The virus didn’t originate in China; or if it did it didn’t come from Wuhan; or if it did it wasn’t from the laboratories of the Wuhan Institute of Virology; or if it was it had nothing to do with military research into biological warfare; or if it had it was never China’s intention to ‘weaponise’ it; or if it was they had, as soon as the first human became infected, taken immediate action to prevent it spreading globally by isolating Wuhan, principally by a complete travel ban to or from anywhere in the rest of China; or if they hadn’t  their actions in allowing hundreds of international flights to continue from Wuhan to major cities throughout North America, Europe and the rest of the world, full of Chinese and expats many of whom must have been exposed to the virus and thus carriers, should in no way be construed as indicating an ‘evil intent’ by China but merely an innocent oversight.

Is there anyone gullible enough to believe that defence? Apart that is from Daniel Andrews and ‘Twiggy’ Forrest who are only in it for the money. If there is, quite a few characters around Circular Quay with a Bridge to sell would just love to meet you.

Whilst it’s almost unthinkable that any nation, even a totalitarian dictatorship with a total disregard for human rights like China, could possibly be so evil as to deliberately unleash the Covid-19 virus on the world, the possibility — and its consequences — must be considered. That is why Scott Morrison deserves enormous credit for initiating the free world’s demand for a full independent inquiry; a demand that won overwhelming support at the recent World Health Assembly. It is also why he must now take a leading role in resisting attempts by the World Health Organisation leadership, discredited by multiple examples of pro-China bias, to delay or stall or hijack the inquiry or to produce a ‘whitewash’ of China’s actions.

Above all he must make it clear that if there is any obstruction Australia will — and that every other country affected by the pandemic should — hold their own judicial public inquiry. We owe that at least to the memory of those 350,000 victims worldwide who have already died from this virus and for the pain and grief inflicted on their families and loved ones.

If China’s release of the virus was found to be deliberate it would of course be a heinous crime against humanity. It would rank as being one of the worst and most significant acts of aggression in recent world history, surpassing Hitler’s invasion of Poland that triggered the second world war in September, 1939 and Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor that brought the US into that war in December, 1941. The problem for China is that even if its release of the virus was found to be not deliberate but merely an accident, her culpability remains the same, for she has from the very beginning sought to benefit from the dreadful damage Covid-19 has inflicted on the lives and livelihoods of others in the same way as if the damage was deliberate. It made no difference whether it was the initial denials of the existence of the virus, the lies that it could not be transmitted from human to human, the propaganda against the barring of flights from China, the promotion of ‘Hug a Chinese’ campaigns, the buying up of other countries’ personal protective equipment and then selling them sub-standard equipment in return, or just the general weakening of the free world’s economies making it cheaper to snap-up overseas assets, and the resultant lowering of their defence capabilities. The only conclusion one can draw from all this is that as long as China is controlled by the Chinese communist regime, it can never be trusted.

If there is one great positive to come out of this pandemic it is that it has opened the eyes of the vast majority of ordinary Australians as to just how dependent on China our leaders have allowed us to become. It is now widely accepted that we must wean ourselves of that dependency, but how? It’s a classic case of ‘If you want to get to Bourke, I wouldn’t start from here’. But we have to start from here, and now. We know that politicians in power have a responsibility to maintain as good a relationship with China as is possible under the circumstances and so cannot subscribe to any boycott of Chinese goods. But as private citizens we can always exercise a right to choose what we spend our money on and from now on I will be choosing, as a contribution to reducing our dependency on China, not to buy any clothes or electrical goods, just to name two classes of imports, that carry a Made in China tag. Why not join me?

We’ll have to be ready for flak because there are an awful lot of Australian fat cats who stand to lose a lot of money if their lucrative contracts to keep importing cheap and shoddy goods from China to feed the habits of us Aussie junkies are in any way interfered with. But we can handle that. We may have to consider inviting certain politicians and business moguls to attend a series of public meetings at which their roles in our growing dependency on China would be questioned. If their actions were found to be contrary to the national interest they would, of course, be tarred and feathered in the traditional manner of dealing with such miscreants.

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