The publisher of an anonymous diary written at the height of the Chinese coronavirus pandemic in its hometown of Wuhan told Radio Free Asia (RFA) in an interview on Tuesday that dictator Xi Jinping “personally directed” the disastrous lockdown in that city, leading to needless deaths.
Experts believe the Chinese coronavirus pandemic began in Wuhan, a regional capital of 11 million people, in late 2019. No legitimate evidence suggests the virus came from anywhere else. The Chinese Communist Party began insisting in early 2020 that the virus actually originated at a U.S. Army base in Maryland, despite no evidence of a single coronavirus case occurring there prior to the outbreak in Wuhan.
The Communist Party initially refused to acknowledge the emergence of a novel disease in Wuhan, then falsely insisted the virus was not contagious. In early 2020, as a result, the Wuhan government allowed 5 million people to leave the city and spread the virus. Wuhan officials also attempted to stage the world’s largest banquet, hosting an indoor gathering of 130,000 mostly elderly people.
To prevent the reality of Wuhan from making international headlines, Communist Party officials conducted widespread arrests of doctors and other health workers who publicly warned of any evidence of contagious disease.
The censorship did not stop anonymous whistleblowers from using the internet to share the truth. Among those whistleblowers was the anonymous person behind a diary known as “Gourd in the Wind,” which U.S.-based publisher Zhang Jie has prepared for national publication under the title “The Diary of a Community Worker in the COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] Pandemic.” Speaking to RFA, Zhang said the anonymous author worked in a residential complex and spent much of the pandemic scrambling to find food for families the government had trapped in their homes without recourse.
“This is actually a disaster that came suddenly, and was imposed on the people of Wuhan. There was actually no need to adopt such a harsh approach,” Zhang explained, citing the many examples of government abuses chronicled by the anonymous writer. “There was no need to shut down all transportation or the supermarkets. They could have let life go on as normal with added restrictions including mask-wearing and disinfecting.”
Zhang blamed Xi “personally” for a large number of needless deaths caused by lockdowns, hospitals rejecting patients with illnesses unrelated to the pandemic, and censorship of critical information.
“Xi Jinping holds the highest level of power, and he personally directed and led [the initial pandemic response]. It could never have happened otherwise,” Zhang said. “But everything happened too late, so lockdown was the only option. That’s what happens under a totalitarian system. There is no democracy and no judicial process.”
“There was no plan for the lockdown of Wuhan, and it didn’t go through any kind of legislative process. So it made no provision for problems faced by ordinary people, such as how to get fed and clothed,” Zhang lamented.
The publisher added that China had successfully buried much of the true history of the pandemic in Wuhan and advised those who admired China’s approach to pandemic response to rethink their approach:
Some people seem to think that not very many people died in China, and that the country has been successful in fighting the pandemic, but they have no idea how many innocent people died, including a friend of mine who had to go for weekly dialysis. But that was suddenly stopped [during lockdown] and he wound up dying at home. His wife wrote me begging for help, but in the end she just watched him die.
China, the world’s most populous nation, claims that only 4,849 people died of Chinese coronavirus in the country since the pandemic began in that country last year, a paltry sum that many – including Wuhan residents – do not believe.
“Nobody in Wuhan believes the official numbers. The real one, only they know,” a city resident told Spanish news service EFE in April 2020, pointing at the sky to refer to the dead when saying “they know.”
“There are suspicions that many people died in their homes without being diagnosed and, at first, there were no kits to do the test,” another resident said. “Many people would die, officially, of a cold or some other disease. But there are stories going around of citizens who were made to sign death certificates of relatives without any other explanation.”
China reportedly documented high numbers of “pneumonia” deaths in late 2019 and early 2020 that did not make it into official coronavirus statistics. Residents also anonymously reported government officials preventing hospitals from taking in patients with respiratory disease symptoms like coughing and fevers, resulting in many potential coronavirus patients never being tested. In March 2020, the Communist Party openly admitted that it had simply stopped counting “mild” coronavirus cases, without explaining how it classified an individual case as “mild.”
China prevented Wuhan residents who had experienced regime abuse from meeting with World Health Organization (WHO) officials investigating the pandemic in the city early this year, marring the results of the agency’s study.