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Coronavirus looks as if tailor-made to achieve US objectives: Scholar

While charges that the Coronavirus outbreak in China was bioengineered by the United States are unsubstantiated, “it looks as if it was tailor-made to achieve Washington’ objectives,” according to Dennis Etler, an American political analyst who has a decades-long interest in international affairs.

Etler, a former professor of Anthropology at Cabrillo College in Aptos, California, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Friday while commenting on the virus outbreak that has resulted in 213 deaths in China and more than 130 cases have been reported in at least 25 other countries and regions.

The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak a global emergency; and the United States has issued a “do not travel” advisory for China.

“The US media, which is the handmaiden of the economic and political elite, have been playing a game of good cop, bad cop when it comes to reporting on the Wuhan coronavirus epidemic,” Professor Etler said.

“There are articles praising China’s rapid response to containing the outbreak, but there are also alarmist articles spreading false narratives and fake news about it, drumming up fears of the viruses spread and its potentially dire consequences. The effect is to cast doubt on China’s efforts and further stigmatize the Chinese nation and its people,” he stated.

“On the other hand, many people are suspicious of the viruses’ origins and attribute it to US sabotage. Charges that it is a biowarfare attack are, however, unsubstantiated. Until there is a smoking gun that shows there was a human-engineered component to the virus it is pure speculation,” he said.

“Nonetheless, there is good reason to be suspicious of a US role in the origin of the Wuhan coronavirus. The US is a bad actor, its word cannot be trusted and it has a history of engaging in illegal and immoral clandestine actions, both at home and abroad. The US also has the motive to engineer and spread a virus of this sort in China. It has used every stratagem it can think of to try and destabilize China and disrupt its economy. It has also launched an incessant propaganda campaign to demonize and ostracize China. Whether or not it engineered the outbreak it is taking advantage of it to advance its anti-China agenda,” he noted.

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“US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross has gone so far as to say the virus could help bring jobs back home to the US, which is a disgraceful and callous statement that shows his disdain for the lives, health, and safety of the Chinese people,” Etler said.

“The virus outbreak thus looks as if it was tailor-made to achieve Washington’s objectives. The virus is mild enough not to have apocalyptic consequences but severe enough to warrant extreme and aggressive measures to contain it. China is especially vulnerable at this time, during the annual Spring Festival celebrating the Chinese New Year,” the analyst noted.

“Whether or not the virus is a mutant strain of a naturally occurring coronavirus or a genetically engineered biological weapon is a moot question. China has to focus on one thing and one thing only, containing the outbreak to protect not only its own people but the people of the world. Its valiant efforts to do so, at great cost and sacrifice, should be welcomed and appreciated the world over,” he concluded.

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