Brennan: Wipe out germ warfare
By Tom Brennan |
If the worldwide virus outbreak originated in a Chinese laboratory, that suggests the country is experimenting with germ warfare.
And if that proves to be the case, China should be held to account as much as possible by the international community. It is unclear what the other countries could do, but germ warfare and experiments to make it possible should be condemned and the perpetrators required to help support the impacted survivors.
The coronavirus already has taken approximately 3.5 million lives worldwide and is now spreading widely in some less developed countries with very large populations. That number already is more than half the 6 million Jews slain in the Holocaust, Nazi Germany’s horrific extermination campaign. What the death total will look like when the epidemic is over is anybody’s guess.
So far, there have been almost 170 million cases of the virus throughout the world and apparently the spread is just getting started. The evidence is mounting that the virus originated in what appears to be a bioweapons laboratory in Wuhan, a city in southwestern China. If that proves to be the case, it would be an outrageous breach of acceptable international behavior.
Bioweapons are a terrible approach to warfare. The United States did experiments in germ warfare after World War II, but in 1969 President Richard Nixon ordered them ended and their products destroyed. In 1975, the United States ratified two international measures outlawing both the experiments and any deployment of such weapons, the 1925 Geneva Protocol and the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention.
The obvious problem with bioweapons is that they cannot be controlled. Once turned loose they can infect almost anyone who has not been vaccinated against the specific diseases they spread.
When the often deadly disease began to spread two years ago, the Chinese claimed that it was a natural disaster being spread by bats that just happened to live near their laboratory in Wuhan. As time went on it became increasingly clear that the virus originated in the laboratory itself. And that suggested that the Chinese are experimenting with germ warfare.
Many world leaders and political organizations are calling for studies of the origin of the virus. That is obviously because the likelihood seems so strong that the Chinese are indeed doing germ warfare experiments.
It is unclear what sanctions could be brought to bear either to stop China from such experiments or to require it to destroy existing germ warfare materials and to compensate those who have lost loved ones to the disease or been personally harmed by it.
Germ warfare is absolutely unacceptable in today’s world. It needs to be stamped out wherever it is found and measures taken to alleviate the impact on those affected.
Whatever was going on at the lab in Wuhan needs to be investigated and measures taken to rid the world of the disease or diseases that originated there. One obvious measure would be making billions more vaccine doses available and getting them into the arms of people everywhere.
And serious attempts would be appropriate to do right by the millions who have already been affected. Given the numbers involved and their locations around the world that might not be possible.
But the international community should make a serious effort to do just that.