Critical China Scholars statement on the “lab-leak” investigation (1)

This statement is truly unfortunate, not least since this group has made a few sensible interventions in the past. But this one is just plain wrong.

Above all, it suffers from the kind of myopic, US-only worldview that is sometimes found on the left. Everything is about the USA: Never mind all the other countries and all the other people around the world, who are demanding an investigation of Covid’s origins — because millions of people died around the world and we do not know why. The world needs to know.

Yet the Chinese government now says the investigation is “complete” even before it has even begun, just because they have set their Party line narrative and are imposing strict censorship, as usual, allowing no-one to ask all the unanswered questions.

Peter Ben Embarek, the leader of the recent WHO delegation, emphatically said their Wuhan visit was no investigation. Lots of scientists around the world have pointed out what remains to be done in the search for how Covid began. Even the WHO top director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, apparently tired of the earlier strategy of flattering the Chinese regime for its ‘transparency’, now stated clearly and seriously that it is necessary to find this out, and as part of that, the lab leak hypothesis is still on.

Actually, while most politically-correct media failed to report it, the WHO’s official Beijing representative, Dr. Gauden Galea, revealed already way back in April 2020 that the WHO has been denied access by the Chinese government, even though the WHO should have been included from the beginning (as the WHO was during SARS, and the SARS lab leaks, in 2003-2004), and, he added, when a real investigation does take place it must, as a matter of course, have access to the Wuhan labs and all their log books. Yet all of that continue to be placed off limits by the paranoid Chinese regime, which clearly has many things to hide — it’s a case of 此地无银三百两.

The fact that they are, at the very same time, lying so extravagantly and obsessively about their Xinjiang genocide is also not enhancing the credibility of the Chinese regime on Covid, either. The issue is not most certainly not “trust” between “the powers.”

Faced with their obfuscation, the first point of order must be for all the world to demand the Chinese government reverse the secrecy in Wuhan, and allow a real investigation on every one of the many specific points that non-political real scientists have identified and laid out in great detail.

Nothing less is acceptable. And if the WHO, the legitimate international framework for this, continues to be so horribly disrespected and shut out by China, like now, then all other nations that lost huge numbers of people to this disease of course all have “good reason” to investigate as best they can.

That’s certainly no “narrow pursuit” (!) — and it is most certainly not motivated by anti-Asian racism. Come on — by far the biggest perpetrator of racist violence today is the Chinese regime. It’s incumbent upon everyone to make that clear, and yes, while we are at it, clearly distinguish between decent and innocent Chinese and Asian people — including those who have fled the regime abroad — and the genocidal Chinese regime.

The cohort of concerned scholars who launched the appeal in Science Vol. 372, Issue 6543, pp. 694 (14 May 2021, DOI: 10.1126/science.abj0016) made this distinction in a particularly exemplary fashion, by paying homage to those Chinese scientists and doctors who heroically, often facing the regime’s brutal clampdown, helped sound the alarm and helped publish the virus genome. We should all support these concerned scholars and their just demands.

Magnus Fiskesjö <>

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