Want to go to China? Do you have
to travel to China for business reasons? So sorry! If you found the
thought of an anal-swab COVID test unpleasant, you aren’t going to like the
latest news from the Middle Kingdom. China will allow foreigners to enter the
country, but apparently only if they have gotten a COVID-19 vaccine that was
made in China. China has directed its embassies around the world to issue
visas only to travelers who comply with that mandate.
Nicholas Thomas, an associate professor in health security at the City University of Hong Kong, told CNN that the policy is “Very much at the sharp end of vaccine diplomacy.” (Very punny.) This is especially unfortunate since no Chinese-made vaccine has yet been approved for human use in the U.S., and likely will not be in the near future. Nor have any of the five different Chinese vaccines been approved by the WHO, partially due to the fact that the Chinese government steadfastly refuses to release the results of Stage 3 trials — a necessary requirement for vaccine approval in the United States and other western nations.
Sinovac, one of the Chinese vaccines, was touted as having an effectiveness rate of 78 percent, but a stage 3 trial conducted in Brazil found it to be only 50.39 percent effective, a rate lower than any other vaccine on the market. As even CNN noted, this means China can’t realistically claim its desire to have all visitors agree to be injected with a Chinese vaccine is due to its effectiveness.
City University’s Thomas is among those that see China’s new visa rules as a “power move” designed to pressure individuals-- and nations-- to accept the vaccines. Sarah Chan, a reader in bioethics at the University of Edinburgh’s College of Medicine, states the obvious: if someone’s livelihood depends on traveling to China for work, they will almost certainly feel that they must take one of the vaccines, despite their limited and unimpressive track record.
But, hey, what could go wrong? Queue up travelers! Present arms! Take that Chinese vaccine deep into your bloodstreams. So what if China loosed the virus on the world, the same virus for which it is now ostensibly vaccinating you. So what if China is our biggest adversary?
Would Americans in World War II have agreed to receive “vaccinations” from the Japanese military or the Nazis? I am not accusing the Chinese Communist government of anything here. I’m just saying this is an odd and unreasonable request.
But forget the vaccines. China could send out a new and deadly virus every other year or so in perpetuity…and likely be cheered on by the Democratic Party, which will continue to see its power enhanced by keeping “deplorables” locked down until the sun expires.