‘The big education for me is that civilisation is fragile and can be destroyed in a heartbeat' - Jeremy Brade, former peacekeeper in Sarajevo.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

A bug’s life (coronavirus)


The death toll from the coronavirus continues to rise in China, and with it the conspiracy theories. Amidst all the horse-pucky in the latter you will often find a seed or two of truth.

For example, we now know that Wuhan, the city where the outbreak started, is also the location of China’s only level 4 biological research facility, or the only one we’re allowed to know about.

Someone connected this with the escorted departure of some Chinese scientists from a similar laboratory in Winnipeg, Canada. Nonono, said CBC: ‘online chatter’… ‘disinformation’ (watch for that word with Google Alerts, there’s an organised official counterattack against social media infospread)… before reminding us of one of their earlier stories that revealed the National Microbiology Lab had sent live Ebola and Henipah viruses to Beijing on an Air Canada flight last March. Good job planes never crash.

The Chinese probably didn’t need shipments of coronavirus, though. After all, their SARS epidemic eighteen years ago was another version of the same class of virus. The earlier one was traced back to cave bats in Yunnan; the latest has also been blamed on bats and a Chinese vlogger has had to apologise for commending them as a delicacy (like almost everything else: if its back is towards Heaven you can eat it, is the old Cantonese saying) – or is that explanation itself official disinformation?

Could it possibly have been an Andromeda Strain-type accidental lab release? The 1975 (effective date) international Biological Weapons Convention prohibits the military development, production etc of germs and viruses, and China signed up in 1984. Yet given the fallen state of mankind and especially governments, I shouldn’t be surprised if it hasn’t continued undercover there, as this writer claims.

Asked where the UK does its bio and chemical research, most of us could only name Porton Down (I remember the Aldermaston marches, but when did the public march against germ warfare?) However, we have another facility in Hertfordshire, three in Surrey and three more in Greater London. I hope it’s all white-hat stuff, though I can imagine Whitehall arguments for developing nasties in order to find defences against them if ‘the other side’ tries to use them.

There’s two in France and another French-supported one in Gabon. They do like to do things their own way, do the French; unlike us, they don’t need US authorisation for their nukes, either. A reason I pick on our Continental cousins here is a story that caught my eye in 2016, about the opening of a level 3 (allegedly) bio-safety laboratory in French Polynesia. Funnily enough, that Tahiti News article has since disappeared. The Institut Louis Malardé (ILM) opened it, not on the main island of Tahiti or in Pape'ete, but on a tiny two-square-mile atoll called Tetiaroa. Supposedly it is for research into mosquito-borne diseases and having it locally would save processing time, according to France.tv. Google flagged up an article on the ILM site with a snippet under the link - ‘Lutte contre les moustiques. Une expérimentation innovante à Tetiaroa’ - that now I can’t find there.

Colour me sceptical, but we have every reason to distrust our rulers and their massive military establishments. Humans aren’t grown-up enough to play with such toys; the trouble is getting them back into the box.

It’s easier to keep us in the dark, I guess. New definition of a British D-notice: ‘dis information must not be released to da public.’


Paddington said...

You don't have to go and get all conspiracy-minded. This appears to have everything to do with the Asian practice of eating anything that moves for 'health', and keeping live exotic animals in food markets.

Paddington said...

If you didn't remember, our father spent 3 weeks at Porton Down in 1969.

Sackerson said...

@P: I don't necessarily but into the conspiracy, but used it to highlight the fund governments have in developing horrible things - and their secret and lies.

I didn't know that last. Tell me more.

Paddington said...

He was trained in nuclear, biological and chemical agents before we went to Cyprus. If there had been an accident from the Mediterranean to the Cape of Good Hope, he would have been sent to deal with it.

Sackerson said...

I remember him talking about the Noddy suit.