Many of our readers have no doubt come across my speculative pieces stating the (possibly crazy) proposition that COVID-19 was bioengineered specifically not to afflict Oriental Asiatic people, such as those from China, Japan, North and South Korea and the like. In other words, COVID-19 is possibly a bioweapon, released perhaps by accident, but deployed after the fact in a very practical and deliberate manner.
Naturally, such an assertion would welcome shrill screams of “crazy racist!” from American liberals. It is probably for this reason that what you are about to read may not have been seen before in the efforts to bury such “crazy ideas.”
However, DW did publish a piece by Martin Fritz, a newswriter in Tokyo, Japan. We are very grateful to him for providing a very well reasoned investigative piece on this statistical phenomenon and we offer his entire piece here for your consideration. This piece was published on June 12, 2020.
As the US enters a third wave of COVID perpetuation and as Europe endures new lockdowns in a second wave, one of the things we have to consider is the endemic nature of the virus and its unusual (and I still point at the strong possibility of a bioengineered) endurance. While political figures in the US desperately spin this against President Trump, the reality is that the American president’s present posture – to deal with the virus through the use of therapeutics pending the public release of vaccines – is the most realistic and pragmatic path forward. Nothing else will work, because we simply cannot make everything stop and hold it in place in hopes that this will make the virus disappear. That is fantasy. So, onto something a bit more realistic, and I think this piece by Martin Fritz will actually lend itself to proving the practicality of our own policies concerning the virus.
Why does coronavirus kill fewer people in East Asia?
People in East Asia seem to be less likely than those in many other parts of the world to die of the coronavirus. But the explanations that have been put forward do not all hold water, as Martin Fritz reports from Tokyo.
Higher “mindo” is Japanese’s Finance Minister Taro Aso’s explanation for why Japan has witnessed relatively few deaths from COVID-19. This term describes “cultural standards” and is often used in reference to nationalism and ethnic superiority. The TV station TBS, in its turn, said that because Japanese had fewer plosives than many other languages, fewer virus-laden droplets were transmitted by air when people spoke. Many Japanese have also attributed the low number of cases to Japan’s culture of eating traditional and healthy food.
However, such theories do not explain why the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths has been relatively low not only in Japan but also in much of the rest of Asia. China has reported three deaths per million inhabitants, South Korea and Indonesia five, Pakistan six and Japan seven. Vietnam, Cambodia and Mongolia have reported not any confirmed COVID-19 deaths. Germany, on the other hand, has had 100 deaths per million inhabitants, the US almost 300 and Britain, Italy and Spain more than 500.
Differences in how numbers are counted and in the amount of testing do not explain these large divergences. In South Korea, there was mass testing of the population on parking lots, while in Japan, only people who had had a fever for four days and the people they were in contact with were tested.
The fact that people do not shake hands or kiss to greet each other in much of Asia cannot really explain them, either, considering that COVID-19 seems to be transmitted mainly by air and not contact. So researchers are looking at other reasons that could explain the wide differences in the number of cases and deaths between East Asia and much of the rest of the world.
Did mutation make COVID-19 more contagious?
Scientists at Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases have discovered that the genetic makeup of SARS-CoV-2 changed as it spread from region to region. They found that the first cases in Japan and on the cruise ship Diamond Princess that was docked in the port of Yokohama clearly originated in Wuhan, but that the second outbreak in April could be traced back to people who had entered Japan from Europe. These findings were corroborated by research being conducted at Cambridge University in Britain. A team of researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the US postulated that the virus might have become more contagious in Europe and America through a mutation.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.