The United States is currently embroiled in the horrific “second wave” of COVID-19, as the deadly virus reverberates back onto the national scene.
The reasons for the resurgence are many: The unwillingness of some Americans to take the threat of the virus seriously, the eagerness to reopen businesses and borders to stimulate the economy, and the simple reality that this is how viruses work.
But that isn’t to say that we weren’t put at a disadvantage, particularly by China, who has long stood accused of manipulating their coronavirus data to allow for the rest of the world to get caught off-guard.
Now, there is new evidence to support that allegation.
On January 12, Professor Kwok Yung Yuen diagnosed a family with the coronavirus in Shenzhen, 700 miles from Wuhan. Only some of the family members had been to the city where the COVID-19 outbreak originated, so Yuen knew immediately that he was seeing evidence of human-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus.
He immediately alerted the authorities in Beijing.
Here is where it gets interesting.
But it took eight days for Beijing to warn the world that the coronavirus, which has now killed almost 650,000 people and infected over 16 million, could be spread through human-to-human transmission.
Yuen, who spoke to the BBC show Panorama for an episode due to be broadcast later on Monday, was helping to investigate the outbreak in Wuhan in early January after other whistleblower doctors had attempted to raise the alarm in late December.
Yuen told the BBC he believes local officials covered up the scale of the initial outbreak by destroying physical evidence and delaying the response to clinical findings.
Several US lawmakers have already expressed their desire to force China to pay reparations to the United States and the world over their poor handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, believing that they were either negligent or nefarious in their coverup.
Yuen’s latest assertions could strengthen those calls for economic justice.
Become an insider!
Sign up for our free email newsletter, and we'll make sure to keep you in the loop.