What is the brutal truth about China

Conspiracy theory on the virus - "China positions itself as a crisis manager"

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The world actually agrees: The first infection with the corona virus occurred at a fish market in the Chinese city of Wuhan. This theory has been questioned in China for a few days: The Chinese government itself launched the theory that the US Army brought the virus to Wuhan.

Martin Aldrovandi

Northeast Asia Correspondent, SRF

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Martin Aldrovandi has been a correspondent for Radio SRF in Northeast Asia, based in Shanghai, since 2016. Before that, he had reported from the Chinese-speaking world as a freelance journalist for several years.

SRF News: Is China currently trying to rewrite the history of the corona outbreak?

Martin Aldrovandi: Yes, and it does so with some success. These allegations against the US are the culmination so far. But before that, Chinese diplomats and a well-known Chinese researcher had said that the virus didn't necessarily have to come from China.

China is clearly positioning itself away from the origin of the crisis and towards the crisis master.

The Chinese media reported extensively on the failure of Western countries that were overwhelmed by the crisis. The Chinese aid in Italy is also reported. There was also a video of Italians allegedly singing thanks to China. China is clearly positioning itself here away from the origin of the crisis and towards being a crisis manager and helper in other countries.

China wants to present itself well to its own people. Do people believe that too?

Many people now believe that. At the beginning, China was subject to massive international and national criticism. Now Chinese friends say of me that the West, which likes to and often criticizes China, has now slept through the problem itself.

What facts is the government relying on when alleging the US Army brought the virus into China?

The foreign minister's spokesman does not provide any real evidence for his testimony on Twitter. The theory goes that the American army brought the virus to Wuhan, where the Military Games were taking place, back in October. The spokesperson linked an article from Global Research in the tweet. This website is known for conspiracy theories.

What does China get if it casts doubts about the origin of the corona virus?

It may be about creating confusion. The measures against the spread in China were very drastic and also controversial, there was criticism of the local authorities, but also of the government. It is not surprising that the United States is now being attacked. US politicians have criticized China very strongly for the current crisis and have always spoken of the “Wuhan virus” or “China virus”. That didn't go down well in China at all.

The relaxation fits into the picture that the Chinese government wants to spread of itself.

In the meantime one reads that the situation in China is easing again. Do we have to question these reports too?

It is true that things are back to normal, in Shanghai, for example, many shops have reopened. However, the worst-hit regions are not there yet. The case numbers, which are officially declining sharply, are difficult to check independently. What can be said: This relaxation fits into the picture that the Chinese government wants to spread of itself. Namely, that it has mastered the crisis with the drastic measures - much better than the West is doing now.

Interview conducted by Roger Brändlin.

Echo of the time from March 16, 2020; gfem

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  • Comment from Alessandro Guardia (Nismo34)
    It's unbelievable how much crap is commented on here. Take off all of your aluminum hats. There is no culprit in a pandemic. A pandemic is a natural phenomenon like the one that has existed since time immemorial, it just cannot be prevented, even in this day and age. A hundred years ago, more than a third of the world's population was killed. Just be glad that we have tricked the natural balance for the moment and enjoy your health.
    Agree agree to the comment
  • Comment from Urs Stotz (Urs Stotz)
    In China, the help they give Italy is used for propaganda, that may be right.
    But why is there no more help coming from European countries for Italy, where is the solidarity?
    Agree agree to the comment
  • Comment from Matthias Sommer (abcdef)
    We should finally do our jobs and get our wage system under control so that the manufacturing sector doesn't get as much less money as the academics! Then there would not have to be so much to do with this injustice state!
    Agree agree to the comment

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