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Holding China Accountable for COVID-19

Posted on Tuesday, March 14, 2023
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by AMAC, Robert B. Charles
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29 Comments
China

Creating accountability for offenses, legal and moral, by individuals and nations against humanity – is hard. Whether committed with intent, recklessness, or negligence, establishing legal liability and enforcing consequences in international relations is doubly hard. Still, accountability matters. If China is responsible for the release of Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19), as the US government – and global science – now believe “likely,” what can be done?

The answer begins with what cannot be done. The first – understandably angry and justified – response is to look President Xi in the eye and demand answers, which unfortunately, with a deceptive, untruthful, immoral communist leader, is like trying to nail Jell-O to the wall.

China – Xi in particular – has already denied, deflected, blocked international inquiries, and said “nothing to see” at Wuhan, denying all responsibility for COVID-19’s devastating spread.

Never mind the world is coming to a consensus, that China is not only responsible for the release of the engineered virus – an admission even Mr. Fauci made in private emails in early 2020, despite public denunciation of the theory – but allowed the biological forest fire to rage, pretending it knew nothing, silencing those inside China who tried to contain the virus.

All this leads to a natural question, the answer to which is “no, we cannot go there.” Was this a sort of biological warfare? Is it possible the release was intentional? If so, under existing conventions, does that constitute a war crime? Is that a route for establishing accountability?

Unfortunately, no. The topic is politically and legally radioactive, not least because war crimes requires a wartime predicate, which is missing here. This also targets one of the most important countries – for better and worse – on the planet, our top adversary. If the idea of intentional release is worth discussing, and was by a 2020 NIH study, it is hard to fathom, harder to prove.

That study, incidentally, did admit it remained vital to “lay bare the true cause of this devastation,” including possible release as “a viral bioweapon” or “laboratory leak.” Bluntly, it said “one microbe has just devastated our world … shattered economies, upended patterns of life globally, and already killed 3.5 million people,” with “more than 85 million cases … documented worldwide in less than one year.”

Unfortunately, contrary to the current consensus and based on minimal data in 2020 – since China blocked World Health Organization inquiries – that study concluded a bioweapon or leak was unlikely – ironic, since they noted China’s bioresearch labs are notorious for leaks.

But now we are in a new world, with the leak from Wuhan – intentional, reckless, or negligent – deemed by most to be “likely,” the question thus, who pays? How will China pay?

The notion of going after Xi for a war crime or some similar legal offense under international law is appealing, particularly as China fanned that fire and continues to lie – about everything. But that avenue is virtually closed. While biological warfare has a long history, could easily occur on a mass scale, and China has already been accused of “genocide” – a war crime – against the Uighurs, international conventions are ill-fitted to bring China and Xi to heal.

Even as the world contemplates war crimes by Russia’s President Putin against Ukraine, going after Xi would be hard. Equally hard would be calling Xi out personally since evidence is required to create personal liability, and China has not been forthcoming.

While a circumstantial case for Xi’s immoral leadership is strong, and for China’s endemic carelessness, negligence, even recklessness with human life, tying Xi to the leak personally is hard, as is tying Putin directly to specific actions in the field in Ukraine.

So what is left? The real answer is this: China and President Xi should be publicly held to account, made the object of international condemnation and rebuke, a case made with data and clarity that shames and holds them responsible for this de facto massacre in the public square.

At a time when there is a global contest of ideas, one in which communism’s immoral, deceitful and oppressive culture wishes to overtake or “dominate” the Western cultures focus on freedom, individual liberty, and government’s accountability to the people, this is “Exhibit One.

A major push should be undertaken – in a bipartisan way in the US, then multi-nationally by all the devastated nations – to hold China to account by demonstrating that Communism’s approach to humanity, dodging, weaving, lying, oppressing, and defying truth is immoral and illegitimate.

If the international criminal courts, human rights conventions, and international sanctions are hard to apply to China, which slips like Jell-O on the wall, the court of public opinion should be brought to life.

All the world knows that China did this, refuses responsibility for what they did, and should pay – so let them pay by massive loss of reputation, and let us “deep six” the notion that Chinese Communism has any legitimacy. It does not. China’s culpability for COVID-19, and deceit in denying that culpability, proves it.

Robert Charles is a former Assistant Secretary of State under Colin Powell, former Reagan and Bush 41 White House staffer, attorney, and naval intelligence officer (USNR). He wrote “Narcotics and Terrorism” (2003), “Eagles and Evergreens” (2018), and is National Spokesman for AMAC.

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Gabe Hanzeli
Gabe Hanzeli
1 year ago

Obama.Biden contracted the Wuhan lab to build covid 19. they assigned fauci as the program manager. Daszak was the project manager and taught the Wuhan lab how to do gain of function research. Soros/ Obama paid the lab employees to release the virus.
China knows all of this. If america does anything China is going to publish all of it.
This is why Biden is so cautious about hassling china.

PaulE
PaulE
1 year ago

While no one seriously expects President Xi or China to actually be tried in any sort of international court (that may be a fantasy for some, but honestly it will never happen given China’s current standing and power in the world), we should hope for a bit more than a ineffectual public rebuke from the world to 7 million people killed by China in its quest to add to its bio-weapons arsenal. Besides, given the breath of reach of China around the world today, I think you would find that any so-called “global rebuke” wouldn’t materialize as you envision.

More than 42 countries are already beholden to China via China’s Belt and Road initiative. So, should any of those countries choose to participate, they would face significant financial risk to their country’s futures. Then you can add in China’s growing influence in the Middle East, South America and Africa due to the last 2 horrendous years of the Biden administration. There has been much damage done to the United States’ reputation in all these areas, with China being the chief beneficiary all along the way.

I don’t think I have to even mention the huge amount of sway China is already exerting throughout the major western European countries. I think any talk of a trying to shame China by some public declaration involving the EU would get bogged down quite quickly in the EU Parliament. Infinite debate and discussion that just goes round and round in circles comes to mind. So, the net result would be maybe a dozen or so countries out of the 194 countries outside of China. To be honest, with Team Biden in the White House, I can’t even see the United States issuing anything other than such a watered down, weak condemnation of China as to be almost a joke.

If you want to seriously punish China for Covid, the answer is to hit them where it hurts. That means economically, as the West built up China over the last 40 years to the global threat they have become today. We dismantled whole industries in the United States and elsewhere around the world and transferred it ALL to China, as past administrations hailed it as some great achievement. Today China is the world’s manufacturer or supplier for about 80 to 90 of ALL goods and materials the West consumes. If we continue to go this road of Climate Change nonsense, China will end up controlling nearly 100 percent of everything the world consumes. We fund China’s ability to threaten us around the world. So if the world is truly serious about hitting China where it hurts, we need to realize China is NEVER going to become the pro-democracy, pro-human rights, pro-western values nation that so many foolish politicians in the world wished for. If the United States was smart, it would offer every U.S. company currently operating in China a ZERO TAX RATE for the next 50 years, if they relocated all their facilities and operations out of China and back to the United States within the next 5 years. Money talks and incentives matter. China is only attractive to most companies because of its incredibly cheap labor, lax regulations and favorable tax environment. So, cut the legs out from under the Chinese economy. Unfortunately, with Team Biden in the White House, an intelligent plan to address China simply isn’t going to happen. Biden doesn’t even want to admit publicly that China is a threat.

We can’t reverse China back the starving, backwater country that it was when Nixon first went courting, but we certainly can stop feeding the beast the seeks to devour us whole in the next decade.

Rob citizenship
Rob citizenship
1 year ago

Very well written, well researched, and well presented article Mr. Charles. It could be that the time factor will be a significant influence in dealing with the communists responsible for all of the coronavirus wrongdoing. What is clear at this point is that China is boxed in when it comes to the truth of what developed . And as you described the more denials made about the Chinese responsibility for the devastation caused by the coronavirus the more clear it becomes that the communists have a contempt for truth in this matter. So, that is how those responsible for the coronavirus trouble will box themselves in even more. I am leading up to an analogy about nailing Jell-o to the wall , it looks like the Chinese Communists have no place to go with this matter, so that is like nailing a box of Jell-O to a wall ,which is not difficult to do. There are many indications that this situation presents something new in the realm of international law , I think
that the field of Legal Epidemiology is very important and this matter will probably provide some new ideas to consider in that connection. All things point to a victory for truth in this covid-19 / coronavirus situation and that is very good for the world and everyone who respects truth, values freedom and respects life and the will of God. There is great strength in truth.

Todd Hewey
Todd Hewey
1 year ago

The CCP’s release of this virus should be met with international rebuke.  as well as the international rebuke of the islands, made in the south, trying to see illegally and the further militarization for defense of Taiwan.

Hal-
Hal-
1 year ago

When is the mainstream of American citizenry going to realize that this Nation is being “ruled”, not governed by the DemocRat Party … with considerable accomplice from the New Media in the majority? Rigged elections and such results kills democracy!!!

CoNMTX
CoNMTX
1 year ago

Hold China accountable?? Who’s going to do the holding? Our great hero and political savior Joe “Brain Dead Biden”? China doesn’t care. They hold the power militarily and own the Biden crime family. They’ll just laugh like Xi in the picture of him. Loopy Joe and all of congress are afraid of China. No one will do anything except keep on bowing to China.

Patriot Will
Patriot Will
1 year ago

Trying to “nail Jell-O to the wall” is a perfect analogy when describing Xi’s total lack of transparency and honesty. Even though he is extremely corrupt, there are no valid excuses for Biden’s feckless foreign policy toward Communist China. Biden has a history of trying to make nice with bullies and criminals. It’s amazing how Biden is labeling the MAGA patriots as terrorists, yet Xi and his thugs are treated as if they are honored dignitaries. Biden is only tough with those Americans who question his words and policies. With the Communist Chinese, Biden is horribly weak.

Wayne
Wayne
1 year ago

If a Dictator or a Country Dropped an Massive and Destructive Bomb that killed upwards of 7 Million people Worldwide, How long would it take for the World Governments to respond. CHINA unleashed COVID-19 (INTENTIONALLY OR NOT) on the World which has Killed 7 Million + People Worldwide and the Worldwide Governments have NOT yet Responded, WHY ???? IS CHINA TOO IMPORTANT or have they bought off the many World LEADERS like BIDEN ????

Jeri
Jeri
1 year ago

If the world would unite and stop ALL trade with China…problem solved.

D. Gremillon
D. Gremillon
1 year ago

Mr. Charles, Not everybody believes that Covid originated from a lab in Chinese. In fact, most trained virologists, public health officials, and epidemiologist say they do not know or that the preponderance of evidence points to origin from a wet market. Maybe you should look further into this.

Gabe Hanzeli
Gabe Hanzeli
1 year ago

That is goign to be tough to do.

Obama.Biden contracted the Wuhan lab to build covid 19. they assigned fauci as the program manager. Daszak was the project manager and taught the Wuhan lab how to do gain of function research. Soros/ Obama paid the lab employees to release the virus.

China knows all of this. If america does anything China is going to publish all of it.

This is why Biden is so cautious about hassling china.

anna hubert
anna hubert
1 year ago

This article added salt to the gaping wound Is it a joke? We have not dealt with our own politicians involved in unlawful activities and all corrupted government agencies We have no idea how far the tentacles that China spread across the world reach We are the enablers

Michael J
Michael J
1 year ago

Nobody holds China accountable, especially that senile excuse for a president. Taiwan will be the next regime to fall and Biden will let it happen.

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