Medical workers treat a pneumonia patient at an isolation ward of Fuzhou Pulmonary Hospital of Fujian in Fuzhou, southeast China’s Fujian Province, Jan. 31, 2020. The hospital is a designated hospital for the treatment of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus, equipped with two floors of isolation wards as well as 8 doctors and 34 nurses working round the clock. (Photo by Wang Yi/Xinhua)
Starting Sunday, the US barred foreigners who have travelled to China within the past 14 days from entering the country, far beyond the World Health Organization (WHO) declaration that does not recommend travel and trade restrictions for China. The US was the first country to take such an extreme measure, setting a bad example worldwide.
Fully aware of the outside world panic about the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), China has not criticized the defensive measures taken by any country, but this does not mean that the Chinese people do not have their own judgments.
We notice that the US government has so far provided no assistance to Chinese medical staff on the frontlines of combating the virus. Less developed countries such as Pakistan have brought in some masks and protective clothing.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo even called the Communist Party of China (CPC), which is going all out to lead the Chinese people in the fight against the coronavirus, the “central threat of our times” on Thursday. US Senator Tom Cotton also made a series of exaggerated accusations against China regarding this crisis.
Inside China, there has been some criticism of the country’s approach to combating the virus in the early stage. This is a normal discussion within Chinese society. But at the global level, China’s response to the crisis is overall powerful. Under the leadership of the CPC and the government, Chinese society has been mobilized rapidly. Some measures which are unbelievable at ordinary times have been quickly implemented, and the entire society has been cooperating. A large but orderly situation against the epidemic has been formed.
The WHO highly praised various measures taken by China. So far, only one person has died of the virus outside China. It is reasonable for us to ask for more respect from the US for China’s tremendous efforts and sacrifice in fighting this crisis.
In 2009, the H1N1 flu virus battered the world with the US as one of the original sites of the outbreak. The epidemic killed approximately 284,000 people worldwide, and WHO also declared the flu pandemic a public health emergency of international concern. However, the US failed to adopt effective control measures, causing a worldwide spread of the virus.
According to the latest US media reports, the 2019-20 flu season is “on track for one of the worst flu seasons in decades.” The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the flu has affected 19 million people so far this season and at least 10,000 have died, including at least 68 children. In addition, at least 180,000 people have been hospitalized. Some US media outlets said flu remains greater threat than coronavirus in the US.
People’s understanding of the novel coronavirus-related pneumonia is still in its infancy. In a highly responsible attitude toward people’s lives, the Chinese government has adopted extreme measures to curb its spread, which benefits the world. There have only been more than 100 people infected outside the Chinese mainland. The US politicians should refrain from using the pneumonia to attack China. They should know that such an act is disgraceful by any social moral standards.
The novel coronavirus has undoubtedly harmed the Chinese economy. But US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross claimed Thursday that the deadly virus would help accelerate the return of jobs to the US. This is immoral as well. Is this the only way for the world’s only superpower to revive its manufacturing industry and make itself great again?
The pandemic will finally pass. Many people badmouthed China during SARS 17 years ago, but what happened after? Nobody should underestimate China’s ability to fight a public health crisis. Since we can take measures that many countries cannot take, we can also quickly recover vitality after the crisis. Some countries should not be too short-sighted. They should not hurt Chinese people’s feelings when China is in temporary difficulties.