UPDATE 10. February 2020: So far 910 deaths - except 2 all deaths in China - (fatal cases higher than the final SARS death-toll of 774 in 2003 and MERS with a final toll of 858 deaths in 2012) are caused by 2019-nCoV, with 40,632 confirmed cases, of which 40,185 are in China and 447 in 28 other countries - reportedly with slightly increased growth factor up from 0.78 to 1.12. By now 3,466 cases have recovered. Quarantined Japanese cruise-ship with infected and healthy passengers on board turns into infection hub and possible death-trap with 60 new cases on the “Diamond Princess”. With declaring the outbreak a global health emergency the WHO has given the green light to the administrations in many countries - like now the UK - to gear up and perpetuate the Orwellian games in their own countries. Like China also African and South-American states should close their wildlife-meat markets to avert that they can be used as "explanations" by those "experts", who are at the core of the viral games.
China – Western China Bashing vs. Western Biowarfare?
By Peter Koenig - 09. February 2020
On 29 January WHO Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that there was no reason to declare the outbreak of the coronavirus 2019-nCoV in China a pandemic risk.
On 30 January, he declared the virus an international emergency, but made clear that there was no reason for countries to issue travel-advisories against travelling to China.
Let me speculate – the ‘international emergency’ was declared at the request of Washington, and the comment against the travel-advisory was an addition by Dr. Tedros himself, as he realized that there was indeed no reason for panic, that China is doing wonders in stemming the virus from spreading and in detecting the virus early on.
In fact, Dr. Tedros has himself, as well as other high-ranking WHO officials, on various occasions praised China for her effort to contain the virus, the speed with which Wuhan (population of 11 million, capital of the center-eastern Province of Hubei) and China as a whole has reacted to the outbreak. The latest achievement – in 8 days China has built in Wuhan a 25,000 m2 special hospital for treatment of the coronavirus 2019-nCoV and possible mutations, with 1,000 beds, and for about 1,400 medical personnel, for a budget of the equivalent of US$ 43 million – equipped with state-of-the-art medical technology. No other country in the world would have been capable of such an achievement.
Nevertheless, and against WHO’s guidance, Washington immediately advised its citizens not to travel to China, and withdrew non-essential staff from US consulates and the Embassy in Beijing, thereby triggering an avalanche of similar reactions among Washington vassals around the globe – i.e. most of the European countries did likewise, many of them canceled their flights to China, as did of course the US.
Russia also closed her 4,200 km long border, working hand-in-hand with China in containing the virus. This also means that no infected Russian citizen may leave China. This is a concerted Chinese-Russian effort – spearheaded by China – to control and contain the epidemic.
The NYT and WashPo are on a vicious daily campaign to slander and vilify China with lies and manipulated information on how badly China is managing the disease, when the complete opposite is the case. Compare this to the common flu epidemic, that hits the US and most of the western countries, despite the fact that the US and Europe have virtually implemented carpet vaccination (in some US States and EU countries even compulsory).
Yet, this 2019 / 2020 flu season which is far from over, has so far claimed more than 8,400 lives alone in the US, more than 140,000 hospitalizations and more than 8 million infected people. The US has about 330 million people. Compare this to China’s 1.4 billion population – with, as of 3 February, an infection rate of less than 21,000, a death toll of 425 in China, and outside of China reported two, one in Hong Kong, another one in the Philippines.
Expand these statistics to Europe and you find similar figures. Of course, nobody talks about it. This is an annual occurrence – a bonanza for the western pharma industry. In the west, disease is business. The more the merrier. Once you are in the “medical mill”, it’s difficult to escape. “Specialists’ find always another reason to send you yet to another “specialist” – for another treatment. The ignorant patient has no option than to obey – after all its his health and life. In China it is the total opposite. The Chinese system does everything for its population’s health and well-being.
Yet, China bashing in one way or another seems to intensify by the day. Yesterday, 3 February, the UN in Geneva has issued an edict that all UN employees returning from China must stay home and work from home for 14 days, i.e. a dictated self-quarantine. And new contracts for Chinese staff will be temporarily suspended. This is all propaganda against China.
Quarantine is absolutely not necessary. Chinese biologists of the Office of Science and Technology of the city of Wuxi (south-eastern Jiangsu province, near Shanghai) have developed a test kit that can detect the 2019-nCoV virus within 8 – 15 minutes, similar to a pregnancy test. This test kit is available to the world. In fact, it has been used to test an airline crew member arriving from New York at the Zurich airport and feeling ill. Within less than an hour, the crew member was sent home – it was the common flu.
In China, where by now scientific evidence is mounting that the disease – like all the coronaviral diseases, including the 2019-nCoV predecessor SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, 2002 / 2003 also in China), and its Middle East equivalent, MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) are not only laboratory fabricated, but also patented. And so are many others, for example, Ebola and HIV. Both, SARS and 2019-nCoV are not only man-made, but they are also focusing on the Chinese race. That’s why you find very few people infected in the 18 countries where the coronavirus has spread.
It sounds like a strange coincidence that in October 2019 a simulation with precisely the coronavirus was carried out at the John Hopkins Institute in the US, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the WEF (World Economic Forum), as well as the Pirbright Institute of the UK, one of the world’s few level 4 (highest security level) bio-warfare laboratories (for more details see “China’s Coronavirus: A Global Health Emergency is Launched. What are the Facts”).
The west’s ‘demolition’ priority seems to have shifted drastically from Russia to China. Why? – Because China is an ever-stronger economic power, soon to surpass the United States in absolute terms. Since mid-2017, China is already number one, measured by the PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) indicator, indeed the most important one, because it demonstrates what people can actually buy with the money.
China’s currency, the Yuan, is also advancing rapidly as a reserve currency, gradually replacing the US-dollar. When that happens, that real money, like the Chinese Yuan, based on a hard economy and covered by gold, against a “fake” fiat currency (based on nothing), like the US-dollar, is taking the lead, then the US-dollar hegemony is broken and the US economy doomed.
To prevent that from happening Washington is doing everything possible to destabilize China – see Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Uyghurs in China’s western Xinjiang Province, Tibet, the infamous Trump-inspired “tariff war” – and now the new coronavirus outbreak. The death toll is at present about 2.1% (of total cases of infection), down from 2.3% weeks ago.
But that and the constant bashing with negative western propaganda, travel bans, border closures, flight bans – and more – plus the disease itself, the medical care, work absenteeism, medication and medical equipment, not to forget the specially-built 1,000-bed emergency hospital in Wuhan – and an 8% average decline at the Shanghai stock exchange, bear a considerable economic cost for China. So much so, that the People’s Bank of China (PBC) has recently injected some 1.2 billion yuan (about US$ 174 million equivalent) into the economy.
This new coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, may just be a trial. Imagine a stronger mutation of a coronavirus would be implanted into the Chinese population, say with a mortality rate of 10% to 20% or higher – it could cause real havoc. However, a stronger version may not be so easily controllable and directable – i.e. towards the Chinese race – and may risk spreading to the Caucasian race as well – meaning the executioner would risk committing mass suicide.
Remember the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918, the deadliest in history, infected an estimated 500 million people worldwide – at that time about one-third of the planet’s population – and killed at least 50 million people (a death rate of 10%), including some 700,000 Americans.
While preparing for the worst, because Washington – with the help of its level 4 bio-war lab – will not let go easily, China’s approach of endless inventive creation, avoiding conflicts, will outlive the aggressor.
Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a water resources and environmental specialist. He worked for over 30 years with the World Bank and the World Health Organization around the world, including in Palestine, in the fields of environment and water. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for Global Research; ICH; RT; Sputnik; PressTV; The 21st Century; Greanville Post; Defend Democracy Press, TeleSUR; The Saker Blog, the New Eastern Outlook (NEO); and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.
This article was originally published on New Eastern Outlook. - Copyright © Peter Koenig
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When a black swan flies over a house of cards:
The Coronavirus & global collapse
By Jerry Kroth - 07. February 2020
It looks like a very rare bird finally landed on our planet.
Moody’s Analytics called the coronavirus “a Black Swan like no other.”  Ditto for Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who says, “It’s very, very transmissible, and it almost certainly is going to be a pandemic.” 
One respected Wall Street analyst said the disease will impact both global supply and demand and ultimately “paralyze China.” 
But Wall Street shrugged off these prognostications and is in such a mania of late, it managed to convince itself—on almost no evidence at all— that the virus is curable. Not only has it discounted the pandemic, but its ditzy moods pushed markets to all time highs as if to show its scorn for any intrusion sanity which might otherwise interrupt the frenzy.
Stephen Roach, former Morgan Stanley chief economist, says Wall Street’s mania is ludicrous: “This is a market where if you declared it was World War III, they would rally on reconstruction!” 
Tesla doubled in value in less than a month. Nothing seems to temper the delirium.
But Frances Collins, NIH Director, says this disease is serious and transmissibility is incredible. One person was infected after only 15 seconds of exposure —and that was at a distance. 
The fact is this disease is only in its incipient stages, its transmissibility is horrific, and frankly we haven’t seen anything yet.
So let us dig down into some of the implications. Take a look for a moment at the house of cards—that is the world economy— over which this black swan is flying. It sits upon a foundation of an unimaginable $253 trillion in debt, something the IMF repeatedly has warned is excessive and egregious. 
The debt is 3 times greater than the entire global gdp.
Yanis Varoufakis, the former Greek finance minister, once said if you borrow $10,000 from a bank and lose your job, you’re in trouble, but if you borrowed a million dollars, the bank is in trouble.  If the coronavirus precipitates a global recession, or worse, what will happen to the $253 trillion in obligations that can’t be paid back?
We’ve heard a lot about “too big to fail,” but far less about “too big to save!” Such gargantuan debt levels, particularly in emerging markets, may simply be too large to be saved by more money printing.
Besides pointing to a market crash, a collapsing dollar, or the repetition of the Great Depression—something forewarned by the IMF’s Kristaline Georgievea —the teetering house of cards has one more problem to consider, the shadowy vicissitudes of the derivatives market.
Derivatives were the primary culprit which caused the Great Recession, but most observers felt that derivatives were roundly chastised with the Volker rules and weren’t going to be a threat anymore.
So we haven’t been paying much attention.
Actually, today the derivatives market has grown to $1.4 quadrillion.  The volume of derivatives trading rocketed to obscene proportions. Believe it or not, derivatives speculation is 3 times greater than it was on the eve of the financial crisis. Over $6.5 trillion per day is being wagered as gamblers flock into this casino like there was no tomorrow. 
(Well, actually, maybe they’re right, and maybe there isn’t!)
But let’s not be too negative. We should try a little optimism, or at least some healthy fantasy: Maybe a real cure has been found for the virus, and Wall Street’s giddiness is fully justified. If so, we can sit back and watch this black swan fly harmlessly off into the distance missing the market mania and the ever-ascending Dow, the impossibly-sized valuations, the ballooning derivatives speculation, and the mountainous levels of corporate, private, and sovereign debt.
The virus is cured. The black swan flew away. Whew! What a relief!
Ah! How sweet to relax into the ersatz world of repos, QE, and all that sumptuous debt and leverage which continues to prop up the pretty house of cards we still can call home . . . . at least for now.
Jerry Kroth, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor Emeritus from Santa Clara University in California and may be reached through his website www.collectivepsych.com
 Varoufakis address to Oxford Union, 2019.
 EU Times, Jan. 2020
By TeleSur - 04. February 2020
The coronavirus epidemic, which the World Health Organization has called a "public health emergency of international concern", could peak this February, a new report claims.
As the coronavirus spreads through China and other countries, and authorities report a record daily jump in deaths from 64 to 426, the Asiatic nation has begun testing the Russian drug Triazavirin, a direct-acting antiviral, in an attempt to cure the illness and stop the epidemic.
At this moment, they have not yet succeeded in directly isolating the virus strain from infected patients in Russia, which would contribute to the development of an effective vaccine, the Russian Health Ministry deputy director, Sergei Krayevoy, said during a conference on Tuesday.
Nevertheless, China is developing its own vaccine to counter the new coronavirus, which has already claimed the lives of 426 people, while the number of people affected worldwide exceeds 20,400.
The coronavirus epidemic, which the World Health Organization has called a "public health emergency of international concern", could peak this February, said Zhong Nanshan, head of a Chinese team of experts set up to control and prevent coronavirus pneumonia.
"The virus knows no borders. The epidemic is temporary, but cooperation lasts. Faced with the public health crisis, countries should work together to tide over the difficulties. It serves the common interests of all," said a spokesperson https://xhne.ws/emLnv
As the virus expands, China readies measures to stabilize its economy
Chinese policymakers are readying measures to support an economy jolted by the virus outbreak that is expected to have a devastating impact on first-quarter growth, policy sources said.
Support measures will be concentrated on the retail, catering, logistics, transportation and tourism sectors, which are likely to be hit hard and are especially vulnerable to job losses, they said.
The government is debating whether to lower the planned 2020 economic growth target of around 6 percent, which many private sector economists see as well beyond China’s reach.
In order to minimize job losses, China’s stability-obsessed leaders are likely to sign-off on more spending, tax relief and subsidies for virus-hit sectors, alongside further monetary easing to spur bank lending and lower borrowing costs for businesses, according to the policy insiders.
This year is symbolically crucial for the ruling Communist Party to fulfill its goal of doubling Gross Domestic Product and incomes in the decade to 2020, turning China into a “moderately prosperous” nation.
How China Is Working to Quarantine the Truth About the Coronavirus
- By Peter W. Singer Strategist, New America Read bio
- Peter Wood Analyst, BluePath Labs Read bio
- Alex Stone Analyst, BluePath Labs Read bio
February 9, 2020
The authoritarian playbook — censor, distract, lie — is on full display.
In its battle to contain the coronavirus, the Chinese government has undertaken a wide range of measures, from shutting down cities to using drones to monitor and compel public compliance with public health edicts. But the regime is also waging a second battle: a campaign to control the world’s discussions of the first.
The weapons in this information war are Beijing’s massive media and online control mechanisms. Its three prevailing tactics—all too common across authoritarian regimes and wider online warfare— are censorship, diversion, and lying. China’s efforts show how an online battle for public security sometimes works in opposition to public health, and it reveals the priorities of an authoritarian regime.
When discussion of the outbreak began to appear online in late December, the Wuhan government moved quickly to suppress the news. Wuhan Public Security went so far as to investigate and detain eight doctors who posted on social media about the virus. Accused of spreading “illegal and false” information, the eight were made to sign a Jan. 3 letter saying that they had “severely disrupted social order.” State media followed this up with reminders from the police that it would pursue anyone else who spread false rumors.
One of the eight — 34-year-old Dr. Li Wenliang — contracted the virus shortly thereafter, was hospitalized, and died on Feb. 7. The subsequent reaction shows the challenges of this control tactic. A selfie of Li lying sick in his hospital bed went viral, stirring widespread outrage in China. “To get an idea of the enormous scale of said outpouring of grief and anger, Dr. Li’s death apparently generated 800 million(!) comments on Weibo by midnight,” wrote David Paulk of the independent news outlet Sixth Tone.
After the Chinese regime formally acknowledged the outbreak on Jan. 9, government and media outlets shifted to a new, yet familiar tack: diversion and “what-aboutism.” A key thread here was downplaying the significance of the outbreak in China by making comparisons to what other nations have faced. One example of a story that appears to have been promoted to muddy the waters focused on deaths in the United States from common flu. The day before the city-wide lockdown went into effect in Wuhan, Chinese state media began reporting that the 2019-20 flu season had already killed 6,600 people in the United States. This story quickly went viral, also being picked up by other news outlets such as Beijing News, Tencent News, and various public Wechat accounts.
Soon, related hashtags like “MostDeadlyFluin40YearBreaksOutinUSA” [original: #美国暴发40年来最致命流感#] and similar “FluBreaksOutinUSA”[美国爆发乙型流感#] began trending on Weibo, with 220 million and 471 million views as of Jan. 27. As the story grew on Chinese social media, it began to reach global audiences. The ironic result was that, just as Coronavirus was surging in China, many Chinese nationals living in the United States began to be worriedly asked by their friends and relatives back in China about the “dire” flu situation gripping North America.
While the number reported is true, the narrative being pushed (“American common flu pandemic!”) is false. The United States is indeed seeing a high number of doctor visits for “influenza-like illness,” as it is called by the federal Centers for Disease Control, which puts this season’s death toll at 10,000 to 25,000. Yet the 2017-18 flu season saw an estimated 61,000 deaths. Moreover, the CDC estimate of influenza-related deaths in the U.S. includes people who die from flu-related complications (“deaths that occur in people for whom influenza infection was likely a contributor to the cause of death, but not necessarily the primary cause of death”). On the other hand, China generally does not report similar cases as influenza deaths, as reported by Caixin in 2019. The result is that while China’s Ministry of Health [卫生部] listed 144 deaths from flu in 2018, the apples-to-apples number is far higher. A 2019 study in The Lancet: Public Health, a peer-reviewed international journal, estimated that China sees an annual average of 88,100 flu-related deaths.
The timing of the posts in China and the way the information was presented illustrates the intent behind the push of the American flu story. If this were not propaganda meant to highlight supposed problems in other countries, Beijing might have noted that Chinese citizens are equally vulnerable to the flu, and emphasized the importance of preventative measures to ward off both the flu and the novel coronavirus.
As the coronavirus spread further, passing 40,000 cases and 900 deaths in China (as of Sunday), users on Chinese social media have begun to push back against these official lines of effort. Some users have urged an end to discussions of flu in the U.S., so to not divert attention from the domestic situation, while others noted that the flu season and the coronavirus outbreak should not be compared in the same breath. The government has responded by trying to steer the brewing anger at the United States: for example, state media has insisted that U.S. officials “created chaos and spread fear” by withdrawing diplomatic staff from the region and restricting travelers.
The final track typically used to shape online discussion and thereby alter real-world beliefs and actions is to push false narratives. To counter anger about the initial slow response to the outbreak, the regime has insisted that the opposite was true, that the government reacted quickly, that hospital facilities were more than adequate. This tactic of inverting the truth is sometimes called gaslighting.
For example, one senior government official — Lijian Zhao, Deputy Director General of the Information Department, Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs — pushed out a claim that a new hospital building at the epicenter of the outbreak had been constructed in just 16 hours.)
Zhao’s claims were then spread wider by regime outlets like People’s Daily, the largest newspaper in China, and Global Times, reaching into news and social media in the West. As media outlets outside China like Buzzfeed soon noticed, the photo was actually of an apartment building on the other side of the country.
In sum, the episode is a good illustration of how pandemics of health and information can both be shaped and get out of control. They also point to a looming new front. In early February, the UN’s World Health Organization and Google announced that they had teamed up to counter disinformation on the coronavirus outbreak. It will be interesting to watch how they handle transmissions from one of the world’s most powerful countries and economies.
- P. W. Singer is Strategist at New America and the author of multiple books including "Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know" and "LikeWar." He is the co-authors of the new report "The Need for C3: A Proposal for a United States Cybersecurity Civilian Corps." Full bio
- Peter Wood is an analyst with BluePath Labs, a DC-based consulting company that focuses on research, analysis, disruptive technologies, and wargaming. Full bio
- Alex Stone is an analyst with BluePath Labs, a DC-based consulting company that focuses on research, analysis, disruptive technologies, and wargaming. Full bio