Covid 19. Manufactured? Probably. Next, the unavoidable question.

Question: Why is Covid 19 so infectious? Answer, because of the so-called ‘furin-like cleavage site’ on the spike. This consists of an amino acid sequence grouped arginine-arginine-alanine-arganine. When this contacts the mucus membrane of the human respiratory system it basically burns a hole in it and the virus is in. This is not present in the naturally evolved version of the virus which killed three shovellers of horseshoe bat guano who died from it but gave it to no-one. You virtually had to be swimming in it for it to infect you. The new, deadly spike was, according to a professor at National Taiwan University, Fang Chi-tai “unlikely to have four amino acids added all at once.” Natural mutations were smaller and more haphazard, he argued. “From an academic point of view, it is indeed possible that the amino acids were added to COVID-19 in the lab by humans.”

When his talk was publicised he recanted and the university removed it from its server for “certain reasons”. Academics who advance the thesis that Covid-19 could have been the result of a ‘gain of function’ experiment in China are likely to see their careers stall and lose grants, in spite of the fact that the Wuhan lab of world-wide fame was involved in gain of function experiments on horseshoe bat coronaviruses.

Consider this: the nearest horseshoe bats to Wuhan are seven hundred miles away. They are not, as we were first given to believe, sold in the Wuhan wet market. So for the natural origin theory to be true, the virus had to mutate in a bat population, infect someone and then instantly die out because no-one else in the vicinity caught it at that point. Then the infected person had to somehow get to Wuhan without spreading it along the way. How likely is that? But Shi Zhengli of the Wuhan Institute, whom Scientific American dubbed ‘the bat woman’, regularly harvests viruses from that distance bat colony and transports them to her Wuhan lab.

Looked at objectively, the human-made hypothesis seems much more probable, but no-one wants to say so, indeed the chorus of denial is loud and global. Why all the academic fear?

Because the world is scared of China. Our politicians bend over backwards to avoid offending The Middle Kingdom, and with good reason. Although China’s fall to the condition of a broken victim state, walked all over first by Western Powers and then Japan in the two hundred years prior to the mid-20th Century had more to do with its inward-looking sclerotic administration than external influences, Chinese global policy is almost openly vengeful. The country lost its face and it wants it back. If a minor South American country, for instance, engaged in world-wide open theft of intellectual property and imprisoned and oppressed whole sectors of its ethnic minorities it would at the very least be ostracised on the world stage and quite likely corrected by force. Not China. No-one wants to step on the dragon’s tail, especially when that dragon produces so much of the manufactured products the rest of the world runs on. Not when it is a huge and growing market for almost every country’s products.

This is changing. Slowly the democratic powers are starting to face the fact that Russia and China are becoming increasingly dangerous and sooner or later we are going to have to do something about it. Preferably later, much later. As our attitude becomes more realistic the so-called ‘lab-leak hypothesis’ is starting to see some air. Note the nomenclature ‘lab-leak’. No-one except those who in the next breath will tell you about Bill Gates’ microchip in the vaccine will suggest that China might, just might, have deliberately released the virus. No scientist or politician who wants to keep their job will say such a thing. I have not seen the possibility mooted at all in any medium. Unfortunately, we have to at least consider it. If they did it, we need to know. Time to wheel in the old Latin tag Cui bono? It means ‘Who won something?’or more literally ‘For the good of whom?’ and is a time-honoured way of looking into a complex or obscure misdeed.

Under Xi Jinping, who is looking more like Mao Zedong every day, China wants grow stronger by weakening the rest. Look at its artificial islands in the South China Sea which it now claims as sovereign territory – military territory. A vast fleet of its factory ships plunder the oceans at the expense of everyone else and the planet. Now imagine how the Central Committee might have reacted to a proposal to release a killer respiratory virus that would cripple democratic economies around the world but inflict only minor damage on a country that did not have to bother with personal freedoms, that was able to track and trace with very high efficiency because of the absence of concern for individual liberties, that could throw a cordon around a whole city and enforce it, that could mass-disinfect whole suburbs. Can you see them nodding and smiling? I certainly can.

Covid-19 has been a body blow to the economies of countries that China smiles at but considers enemies, as well as serving as a demonstration to their own people that their system is inherently stronger and less vulnerable than the effete democracies of the West. If it was an accident, it is one that has served Xi Jinping’s agenda fulsomely. Cui bono? China.

Consider this, for a closer. When the outbreak occurred, Shi Zhengli, lead researcher on horseshoe bat coronaviruses at the Wuhan lab immediately suspected that the outbreak was the result of a leak of something made in her lab. She describes how, terrified, she “checked her records and found no exact matches.” Phew.

Well, no, actually. No ‘exact’ matches, for a start. So one of her colleagues might have given the virus the last tweak, acting under the orders of the most powerful people in the institute, which would not be the head scientist, Zhengli. Not in China. The real head honchos would be the party cadres charged with keeping everyone in line, as in every sensitive organisation in that country. Or, more simply, they told her what to say and she said it.

I believe, for reasons which seem to me obvious, that Covid 19 was produced in the Wuhan Institute. I am not saying and do not necessarily believe that the Chinese government deliberately released the virus. One argument against that is the location – a covert release for the purposes I suppose would have made more sense in the vicinity of the bat population. Deliberate release is simply a possibility we need to keep in mind and we sure as hell need to be prepared for the next one.

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