China says Florida Condo Collapse Proves ‘U.S. Treats Lives with Indifference’

SURFSIDE, FLORIDA - JUNE 24: Search and rescue personnel work in the rubble of the 12-story condo tower that crumbled to the ground after a partial collapse of the building on June 24, 2021 in Surfside, Florida. It is unknown at this time how many people were injured as search-and-rescue …
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Chinese state media wasted no time scoring political points off the horrific collapse of Champlain Towers South in Miami, Florida. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) exploited the 11 confirmed deaths and 150 missing people to claim it “shows how the U.S. treats lives with indifference.”

China’s state-run Global Times quoted “Chinese netizens” — social media users who the regime does not censor because it agrees with their remarks — to portray rescue work in Miami as proceeding more slowly than it would in Communist China, claiming the American disaster response system is riddled with “loopholes” and has improved little since Hurricane Katrina in 2005:

Some netizens compared the rescue pace of China and the US during accidents, urging the US authorities to take effective measures to save lives and conduct an immediate investigation into what caused the tragedy and who is responsible as soon as possible.

For example, in a recent gas explosion accident in Shiyan, Central China’s Hubei Province, more than 2,000 personnel including government workers, soldiers and firefighters, together with large equipment and life detection instruments were quickly deployed to the site. The accident happened around 6:40 am on June 13, and by afternoon on the same day, 12 victims had been found dead with 37 others seriously injured. On June 14 afternoon, 13 more bodies were found in the debris. On June 18, the local government released investigation results — misconduct of a local gas company was the cause of the explosion — and announced that eight people responsible for the tragedy were detained.

One of the Global Times’ “Chinese netizens” claimed the U.S. skimps on disaster response, while China “usually spares no resources in emergency rescue work.”

The Global Times noticed Americans noticing its attempt to squeeze political benefits from the Miami tragedy, so it rounded up some “Chinese netizens” to suggest Americans should “focus on the rescue work and digging into the reasons behind the tragedy, rather than questioning the international community’s concerns.”

The Chinese communist regime, a keen student of left-wing U.S. media narratives, might have picked up on frantic efforts to tie Florida’s popular Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, to the Champlain Towers South collapse — from swiftly debunked allegations that DeSantis responded slowly to the emergency, to sinister insinuations that reckless deregulation under the DeSantis administration allowed the tower to deteriorate without proper oversight.

The communists’ boasts of superior disaster response are debatable, to say the least, especially given the Chinese government’s habit of simply lying about anything that would make it look bad — an impulse that inflicted horrific damage on the entire planet during the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic.

Massive 2015 explosions at a factory complex in Tianjin highlighted China’s dismal industrial safety record, with the blame for such debacles often falling on local officials paid to look the other way. Poorly-designed infrastructure caused a pipeline to explode in Shaanxi province in August 2020, collapsing several major roads.

In September 2020, Chinese villagers complained their government abandoned them to floods that were deliberately released from dams to protect big cities and manufacturing assets. Refutes from discarded villages mourned the loss of their homes, businesses, and life savings. They were furious with the Chinese government for refusing to give them adequate warning and lying about the deliberate release of floodwaters.

Just two weeks ago, another natural gas explosion devastated a residential community in China’s Shiyan city, killing at least 25 people. The explosion occurred at one of China’s notoriously unsafe and poorly regulated “wet markets,” which are also thought to have played a role in the coronavirus pandemic.

Foreign observers noted the Shiyan blast was the latest in a string of deadly industrial accidents, while even Chinese dictator Xi Jinping tacitly admitted his government has persistent problems with corruption undermining safety regulations, urging local officials to “learn the lesson, shoulder all responsibilities earnestly, develop a keen political sense and tighten safety hazard checks thoroughly.”

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