US president Joe Biden's call for a 90-day sprint to find out the origins of the coronavirus pandemic immediately caused strong protest and condemnation from China. It certainly implies more complications and further deteriorations in the US - China bilateral relations.
|WHO experts investigate the origin of Covid-19 in Hubei province, China. Source: AFP/VNA|
It is a game in which Biden could only win and win much while having nothing to lose but which might be internationally very risky, even dangerous for China. The question about the origins of the coronavirus pandemic has been since the outbreak of the pandemic very sensible for both China and the US and the whole world.
Biden's push is officially aiming at finding the ultimate truth about the origins and outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic but the final result of the new search is the answer to the extremely sensitive question of whether the Chinese government covered up an accidental leak.
To understand this move of Biden, it is very useful to refer to three facts or circumstances.
First, Biden's predecessor, former US President Donald Trump, believed that the pandemic didn't have occurred naturally but was the consequence of lacking out from a Chinese laboratory. Therefore, he called this virus the Chinese virus or the Wuhan virus. The question about the origins of the pandemic was put in the air in the US.
Second, China's government vehemently denied the theory that the virus was leaking from China's Wuhan laboratory. The more fiercely the Chinese side denied this theory the more consolidated in the US the belief becomes that China could have had some things related to being hidden. Third, the World Health Organization (WHO) has already examined in China but came to the conclusion that there weren't enough proves of all kinds to be sure that the lab-leak theory was right.
In this context, Biden's order to US intelligence agencies to determine the truth would help him gaining many goals at the same time. However, the final results of the new try it would be, Biden would meet the domestic demands on finding out the truth and could make some plus-points by the Republicans thus contributing to establishing a domestically favorable environment for his present presidency.
He could also put and increase pressures on the US's allies and partners around the world and the WHO to engage more in finding the origins of this pandemic in order to better prevent further pandemics in the future.
Furthermore, he also could keep political pressures on China directly and would have a maybe very useful triumph in the game he is now playing with China. If it would finally prove that China was absolutely innocent in this case, he could claim from himself that he would have made the decisive contribution to help China restoring and increasing its international credibility and that would be something China would surely have to pay back to him at some time in the near future. Now, Biden tries to make profits from what his predecessor had initiated.
Disclaimer: The views expressed by Ambassador Tran Duc Mau are of his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Hanoitimes.