Chinese meddling in US elections and coronavirus conspiracy theories - ABDULLAH MURADOĞLU

Chinese meddling in US elections and coronavirus conspiracy theories

China seems to figure prominently in U.S. presidential elections slated to be held in November.

Trump's characterization of the new coronavirus epidemic (Covid 19) as the "Chinese Virus" exacerbates the already tense relationship battered by trade wars between Washington and Beijing.

When the outbreak emerged in China, "Chinese hawks" in the U.S. began to voice conspiracy theories claiming that the virus was produced in a Chinese military laboratory. In fact, Trump's White House former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon described the virus as the "Communist Party Virus."

Let us recall that Bannon rose to fame as one of the ideologists of the new populist radical right movement, dubbed as the "White-Christian West."

In addition to Bannon, Senator Tom Cotton, one of Trump’s most prominent Neocon Republican supporters, does not believe that the virus was transmitted to people from wet wildlife markets in Wuhan.

Cotton claimed in a speech on Fox News that the possibility that the virus was produced in a Chinese bio-weapons facility should not be excluded. Offering no evidence that the virus was produced in a lab, Cotton also said that they would hold China responsible for the outbreak.

China strongly rejected American conspiracy theories and further claimed that the virus may have been planted in China by members of the U.S. army who participated in the "World Military Olympic Games" held in Wuhan in October 2019.

According to experts, we’re experiencing some of the most tumultuous times in the history of Sino-American ties as a result of mutual accusations about the origin of the epidemic.

Steve Bannon's close relationship with billionaire businessman Guo Wengui, who lives in exile in the U.S. and opposes the Chinese regime, is being watched very carefully by Beijing.

"G News", one of the media outlets that alleged that Covid-19 was produced in Chinese laboratories, is part of "Guo Media" funded by businessman Guo Wengui, also known as "Miles Kwok."

According to Wengui, who fled from China to the U.S. due to the lawsuits filed against him, especially with regards to money laundering in 2014, the charges were of a "political nature."

Wengui is in close contact with anti-Chinese Republicans in the States, particularly Bannon. “Guo Media”, meanwhile, regularly publishes sensationalized pieces criticizing the policies of the Chinese Communist Party.

Some Republicans in the U.S. accuse Democrats of cooperating with the Chinese Communist Party in order to eliminate Trump.

According to this group, the virus epidemic is part of a conspiracy hatched in order to influence the presidential elections.

A survey held by the American-based PEW Research Center reveals how divided American voters have been with regards to pandemic conspiracy theories.

According to this poll conducted last month, 23 percent of Americans believe that Covid-19 was developed intentionally in a lab. While 43 percent of the respondents said it most likely came about naturally; 6 percent thought it was most likely accidentally developed in a lab; and 1 percent said they did not think that the virus actually exists.

We should note that Covid-19 conspiracy theories in the U.S. are mostly in demand by Republican voters.

Scientists repeatedly point out that such conspiracy theories weaken the fight against the epidemic.

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden criticized Trump for holding China responsible for the epidemic, which drew outrage from Republicans.

According to some reports circulating in U.S. media, Biden's soft attitude towards China will be one of the fodders of Trump's re-election campaign.

Republicans had already begun to question Hunter Biden’s business ties to China during the time when his father served as U.S. Vice President. Around the same time, Hunter Biden's business ties with a questionable energy company in Ukraine was used by Trump to discredit Joe Biden.

In case anyone has forgotten, Trump had undergone an “impeachment trial” for allegations that he pressured Ukrainian President Vlodymyr Zelenskiy to open a case against Hunter Biden. The “Impeachment Inquiry” was dismissed in the Senate, where the Republicans hold the majority.

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