China Won’t Bury Us, Either– NYT

July 5, 2021

Bret Stephens

By Bret Stephens

Opinion Columnist阅读简体中文版閱讀繁體中文版

Garry Kasparov has a pithy way of summing up the past 18 months of tribulation. “China gave us the virus,” the chess and human-rights champion told me over a recent breakfast. “And the free world gave us the vaccines.”

You don’t have to subscribe to the lab-leak theory of the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic to acknowledge this: Had it not been for the cover-up that Chinese officials tried to orchestrate in the critical early days of the crisis, there might have been a chance for the virus to be contained. Instead, China’s government began with lies and has kept lying ever since, at the expense of public health everywhere. They’ve also sold the world’s poorer countries on a vaccine that doesn’t work too well.

The facts are worth bearing in mind as the Chinese Communist Party celebrates its 100th anniversary with a show of pageantry and power. Xi Jinping, the most militant and repressive Chinese leader since Mao Zedong, delivered a speech trumpeting “the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation” while extolling the party’s total control over the country’s politics. He warned that those who tried to “bully, oppress or enslave” China would “crack their heads” on a “Great Wall of steel.”