Wuhan and Columbus

Will the Columbus Day controversy rear its ugly head as the Red Pandemic recedes this summer?  If so, will it have to compete with a predicted return of the virus in the fall as well as a very contentious presidential election?

Will Columbus Day parades be cancelled in the name of social distancing?  Will academia and the politically correct crowd be sidetracked from their annual “screw Columbus” campaign?  Hopefully, such tripe will be seen for what it is – a waste of grey matter.

If not, I would propose a new argument to blunt the charge of European genocide as applied to 1492 – that the European invasion wiped out millions of Amerindians with smallpox.  Of course, that’s what ultimately happened but not intentionally.

Were we to use what I call the new Wuhan Standard, charging Columbus with genocide would be racism.  It would be tantamount to labeling Covid-19 the Chinese Virus or the Wuhan Virus.  Such labeling has been universally condemned as racist.  However, the reality of applying such a standard in a balanced manner is remote: Euro-Caucasians are the exception to all politically correct standards.

A quick example is the “Spanish Flu” of 1918.  That catastrophic pandemic is still called by that name, even though Spain had nothing to with it.  Newspapers and history books continue labeling it that, along with the more appropriate name: the 1918 Pandemic.  Spain got tarred with it because it was neutral during the First World War.  Both the Allies and the Central Powers were riddled with the flu but suppressed the truth so as not to reveal military weakness.  But, Spanish news wasn’t censored and the world press assumed that is where the flu originated.  Post-war accounts pointed to an army camp in Kansas as the source.  Even that account has been challenged.  A new hypothesis points to an origin in China in 1917 and its spread through thousands of Chinese laborers employed around the world by the belligerents.

So resistant is Communist China to owning Covid-19 that, early on, its foreign ministry suggested Italian competitors at the 2019 Military World Games held in Wuhan (October 18–27) brought the bug to China.  When the Italians objected, the Chinese blamed the U.S. participants.   These games are held every four years to foster international understanding.  The first games were held in Rome in 1995. At the Wuhan Games, more than 9,000 military athletes from over 100 countries competed in more than 27 sports and challenges.

I’d be surprised if any more games are in the offing after these Chinese accusations.  Moreover, one Chinese team was suspended for “extensive cheating” in land navigation for using local civilians to direct its soldiers to landmarks and shortcuts without the soldiers depending on a compass.  President Xi has a grand vision of Han dominance that must carry through in all fields.

That quest for Han world hegemony would be considered racist were such a goal voiced by any Euro-Caucasian country.  But, Chinese leaders claim they are making up for the humiliation China suffered over the millennia.  There was the Mongol invasion of China by Genghis Khan.  There were the Manchurian Manchu emperors who required their Chinese subjects to wear pigtails.  Then came the British and Europeans who carved out commercial zones, and later punished China for resisting during the Boxer Rebellion of 1900.  Even the Italians had an enclave, and the Germans founded the now-famous Tsingtao brewery in 1903.

The fear of humiliation is especially acute in the matter of pandemics.  Despite all political correctness, China has a well-deserved reputation for incubating and transmitting viruses.

Was China still allowing international flights from Wuhan even though it halted domestic flights?  In other words, knowing Wuhan was the epicenter of the virus, did the Chinese seek to protect themselves but not the world?  This bears deeper investigation.

Was the virus first spread by the Chinese participants at the Military World Games at the end of October?  This would add two months to any timeline, and explain how the virus escaped.  We can assume that it further spread through overseas Chinese traveling to and from New Year celebrations in Wuhan in February. And, how many of them worked on cruise ships?

If applying 21st Century morality is justified in condemning Christopher Columbus, then using that same morality against President Xi’s indifference to world health is even more appropriate. – JLM

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