[zype_video id='6182d83a2d32b200015a2c0c']

Opinion: Biden letting China off the hook on COVID is a shameful mistake

ben weingarten
Conservative Opinion

Ben Weingarten

Federalist Senior Contributor; Claremont Institute Fellow
Archive |

Despite mounting evidence indicating that China was behind the coronavirus, President Biden has refused to hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable. Instead, he’s pushing it off to the U.S. intelligence community. Sitting back and letting China get away with weaponizing a virus that has killed 750,000 Americans is disgraceful.

The Chinese are our greatest international adversary, growing their nuclear arsenal at a much faster rate than the Pentagon expected. It’s also growing bolder by the day, quashing opposing voices within its borders and even imposing its censorship tactics on American industries chained to China’s economic power. Yet, the Biden Administration continues to do nothing about it.

 

The intelligence community assessment—or non-assessment—on the origins of the Chinese coronavirus released this August should be seen as part of one of the most cynical and shameful efforts our elites have ever engaged in to in effect protect Communist China, and themselves too.

On top of the Afghanistan calamity, the excuse that it will provide the Biden administration to justify not confronting China will be seen by the Chinese, and all of our adversaries, as demonstrating weakness and appeasement, and inviting aggression.

Here’s what our intelligence community declared more than a year and a half after the coronavirus began spreading:

–quote–

the IC remains divided on the most likely origin of COVID-19. All agencies assess that two hypotheses are plausible: natural exposure to an infected animal and a laboratory-associated incident

–Unquote–

Guess what: In a May 27 statement from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, just after the 90-day review was announced, the IC declared the same thing. Quote: “The U.S. Intelligence Community does not know exactly where, when, or how the COVID-19 virus was transmitted initially but has coalesced around two likely scenarios: either it emerged naturally from human contact with infected animals or it was a laboratory accident.”

As then, in the final assessment, different agencies gave different weights to these hypotheses.

They claim they can’t provide a more definitive conclusion without better clinical samples and the like.

They claim “China’s cooperation most likely would be needed to reach a conclusive assessment.”

But they’re confident the coronavirus wasn’t a bioweapon, and that Chinese officials didn’t have “foreknowledge of the virus before the initial outbreak…emerged.”

There are a few natural responses we should have to this:

  • First, should anyone have been surprised that well over a year and a half after the coronavirus first broke out that we wouldn’t find proverbial smoking guns, given that if they existed, they would’ve been long ago literally dead and buried by the Chinese Communist Party?
  • Second, isn’t it amazing how definitive our national security apparatus was about Trump being a Russian collusion-ista, or MAGA representing the pre-eminent threat of domestic violent extremism, yet this apparatus for which we spend billions and billions of dollars each year couldn’t gather the intelligence necessary to get an answer on COVID’s origin?
  • Third, as Trump administration Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe assessed, the intelligence community has in the past gone soft in its assessments of China’s malign efforts, while going harder on countries like Russia. And that follows a broader trend we already knew about, given bombshell disclosures in Vanity Fair and elsewhere about the lengths to which officials across the U.S. government went to pooh pooh the lab leak thesis for months during the Trump administration, and thereafter when the Biden administration quashed a Pompeo State Department-led inquiry into its origin.

The only thing that would have been surprising about the intelligence community’s assessment of the origin of the coronavirus would’ve been if it did provide us with something concrete about China’s villainy beyond noting Beijing’s non-cooperation. 

But really, the intelligence community non-assessment is a sideshow.

We know there’s a mass of circumstantial evidence catalogued by the Trump State Department in a fact sheet it put out on the Wuhan Institute Virology just prior to the end of the Trump administration, the writings of prominent scientists and science journalist Nicholas Wade’s exceptional expose, a House Republican-led report on the origins of the coronavirus, and a ton of corroborating reporting that suggests the lab leak thesis is not only plausible, but likely–even after that view had been banned by social media and dismissed by the medical community, political class, and media for months.

We know about the dangerous gain-of-function research that took place at the Wuhan Institute of Virology—one of the only places in the world where that work is conducted. 

We know China silenced whistleblowers. 

We know it lied about human-to-human transmission. 

We know it shut down internal travel but let its citizens go all over the world and encouraged other nations not to halt Chinese travel. 

We know it hoarded PPE and then sold shoddy versions of it to peoples around the world. 

We know of the way it pushed the WHO to push its favored, deceptive narratives—and cast anyone who dared question China as racist and bigoted. 

We know of its campaign to ensure Taiwan would be excluded from WHO deliberations when Taiwan handled the coronavirus more effectively than almost any place on Earth, etc. etc.

These are just a handful of points off the top of my head—there are infinite other ones that show it lied, deceived, and in effect weaponized the coronavirus that began on its soil because it did everything possible to conceal what was transpiring, stop us from doing what was necessary to combat it given its knowledge (except suggesting we shut down human life for months on end), and encourage in effect its spread globally, which it has tried to exploit and leverage at every point to increase its power and influence.

And at the end of the day, that’s what matters.

*How* the coronavirus came about is of secondary importance to what China did once it was literally or figuratively out of the bottle.

And because the Biden administration has never made that very point clear—that China weaponized the virus, and it must pay—it speaks to the fact that the Biden administration’s punting of the question of the origin of the coronavirus to the intelligence community was part of a charade. 

It could claim it was looking into the origins and seeking transparency—being “tough on China” —knowing it almost assuredly would never getting a definitive answer, while allowing it to admit that the lab leak the entire political establishment dismissed when it was politically useful BECAUSE TRUMP SAID IT, AND POINTING THE FINGER AT CHINA WAS RACIST, only because the evidence was becoming so overwhelming, was plausible.

This is the best of all worlds if you want to create the impression of holding China to account out of political necessity, without actually doing anything.

Remember, there’s a whole bunch of people interested in not fingering China for perhaps the crime of the century. 

As discussed in a prior episode, there’s egg on the American health establishment’s face by way of the gain-of-function research at the WIV we indirectly funded with taxpayer dollars. 

There’s the medical establishment which itself appears to have been influenced by China into ignoring or dismissing the lab leak thesis—that Big Tech even banned talked of. 

There’s the business community that as noted in another op-ed is wedded to trading with China forever no matter the Communist Party’s evils.

And then there is the effort, among some, to continue the craven kowtow to Communist China when the Party has been at war with us for years. 

Joe Biden has spent his life at the highest levels of government aiding, abetting, and enabling China’s rise, and he may well be compromised by the business activities relating to China of his son.

At the end of the day, again, how the virus arose is of secondary importance to what China did after it arose. The best one could argue is that the nature of the outbreak—whether a product of malice, or incompetence—ought to determine the extent and type of the punishment.

But the Biden administration isn’t even talking about punishment, and hasn’t been talking about punishment.

It’s unconscionable, and it’s the Biden administration and all who have in effect run interference on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party, ought to pay with their jobs.


Get unbiased straight facts, context, and perspective!