Cuba and China Sign Cooperation Plan for Joint Promotion of Belt & Road Initiative

Source: Kawsachun News

December 25 2021

Cuba-China bilateral economic relations have hit an important milestone with the signing of a Cooperation Plan for the joint promotion of the Silk and Road Initiative. The document was signed on Friday, between the governments of Cuba and China, by Cuban Deputy Prime Minister, Ricardo Cabrisas, and President of National Development and Reform Commission, He Lifeng.

This Plan will allow for the effective implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding, signed by President Díaz-Canel during a visit to China in November 2018, which formalized the insertion of Cuba to this important Initiative. That MoU was prepared in correspondence with Cuba’s short, medium and long-term economic and social development objectives, where China participates as a strategic partner, and based on the experiences acquired by China in the implementation of projects and actions in the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.

Cuban Deputy Prime Minister, Ricardo Cabrisas signs the Cooperation Plan for the joint promotion of the Silk and Road Initiative. December 24, 2021.

The Plan promotes bilateral cooperation in priority sectors for Cuba, such as infrastructure development, education, culture, health and biotechnology, communications, science and technology and tourism, among other areas. Projects and actions to be executed jointly will be of mutual benefit, in order to further strengthen and diversify the ties between Cuba and China, as well as with third countries that are members of this Initiative.

The Belt and Road megaproject has been promoted by the Chinese Government since 2013 aimed mainly at the creation of an extensive network of infrastructure that will contribute to the connectivity between its members, promote cultural exchange and strengthen international cooperation.

This week, Cuba and China held the XII Meeting of the Joint Commission for Cooperation in Science and Technology. On Thursday, President Miguel Diaz-Canel visited sites of investments in which Chinese companies are participating. “We will continue to support the business community of China, a nation to which we are united by deep and historical ties. In this Thursday’s tour of several joint investments, we verified the seriousness and rigor with which they work,” stated the Cuban President.

Meanwhile, Nicaragua and China have wasted no time in restoring relations following the Sandinista government’s major announcement to drop Taiwan and recognize only Beijing.

Nicaragua Could Triple Its Exports to China in the Medium Term

Source: TeleSUR

The new ties with China enable the Central American nation new prospects for trade and foreign direct investment. | Photo: Twitter/@KawsachunNews

Nicaragua could triple its exportable volume of traditional products to China in the next ten years if a large-scale investment project is established, said the president of the Nicaraguan Council of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (Conimipyme), Leonardo Torres.

“We have enough land, we have no land limit and we have no water limit, which is key for productivity. What Nicaragua needs are irrigation systems to be able to increase its productive cycle. Nicaragua bases its productive cycle in winter and summer, but we do not have massive irrigation systems and China has those massive irrigation systems, which means a great opportunity for Nicaragua,” Torres explained.

After his arrival from the People’s Republic of China on Sunday December 12, the Minister of Finance and Public Credit, Ivan Acosta, said that the restoration of relations between the governments of Beijing and Managua opens “space for greater investment” and an expansion of the market for Nicaraguan exports, estimated at more than 3.5 billion dollars in 2021.

RELATED: China and Nicaragua Reestablish Diplomatic Relations

“The aspiration is to double that amount in the next 10 years and this is only possible with a large market that demands our product and we can establish all the necessary mechanisms to attract more investments, higher quality investments that energize our country’s exports to the world and to the People’s Republic of China,” Acosta said.

The opportunity for the economic development of the Central American nation could reach US$20 billion in the next decade if one considers Chinese investment in Nicaragua with planting and harvesting technology and communication technology in the existing free trade zone, where annual exports are around US$3 billion.

“Nicaragua could easily become an assembler of communication technology, cell phones, home appliances, we can perfectly assemble televisions, sound equipment and Chinese investment could come to settle in technological free trade zones, there is a great opportunity for us,” he said.

The expectations with the new context of international trade development relations of Nicaragua “excite” the businessmen of this country, because according to the head of Conimipyme, it would allow them a sustained growth of up to 9% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“Here you have another potential for these zones, say $2 billion more in free trade zones tripled for the next 10 years, we would be talking about an exportable development with a jump of the Gross Domestic Product of Nicaragua to 8 to 9% and we would no longer be talking about 4%, for that you have to have the infrastructure of Nicaragua to work on this,” detailed Torres.

The businessman considered that the Government of Nicaragua should rethink the National Plan for the Fight against Poverty and Human Development 2022-2027 to redirect the approaches and development goals for the next five years.

The Nicaraguan government on December 9 recognized China as a single territory and broke off relations with Taiwan, which had been in place since 1990.

The new ties with China enable the Central American nation new prospects for trade and foreign direct investment advanced in conservations between the Government of Nicaragua, the China International Development Cooperation Agency and China Council for the Promotion of International Trade and Investment.

Inflection EP26: US Torches Solomon Islands for Choosing China

December 14 2021

The US wants Solomon Islands to go against the obvious economic and social benefits that comes from having relations with China,

“Solomon Islands depends on just straight up foreign aid … certain times … anywhere between 50% and 60% of the Solomon Islands government budget comes from foreign aid.  This is not a sovereign country if more than half of all the money you spend is coming  from someone else; there’s always strings attached.  

What is China offering the Solomon Islands?  … number one, tourism;  it’s a no-brainer.  There’s so many  people in China, a lot of them are improving in terms of  economics, they have money to travel, they  want to travel and they will come to the  Solomon Islands in huge numbers, and they will lift that  country up. People will make money selling them things, accommodating them, bringing them around – transportation.  There will be infrastructure that you  can invest in and justify the investment  .. then education, training and building up industrial infrastructure so that the  Solomon Islands has more things that  they can trade.”

China is Not Colonizing Africa

Source: Black Agenda Report

December 1 2021

China is Not Colonizing Africa

Narratives are Amplified with Badly Photoshopped Falsehoods

International media cannot be trusted to give accurate information. Skepticism is especially warranted when China is the topic and allegations of colonizing Africa make headlines.

International media are reporting that the Ugandan government has turned over Entebbe airport to a Chinese bank in order to make payment on a loan. “Museveni to surrender Uganda’s only international airport over Chinese loan,” claimed The Guardian . Similar headlines have appeared widely and all repeat as fact an allegation that Uganda will lose its airport to Exim bank.

Uganda has not defaulted on the $200 million loan yet the false bad news continues to be reported. Despite denials from China and Uganda the story continues to circulate and is now accepted as being true.

The bad journalism resonates despite inaccuracies in these accounts because they repeat a now familiar trope, that China offers “debt traps” to African nations and has become the 21st century colonizer of the continent. In reality, Africa is colonized by the same nations which began their exploitation by carving up the continental at the 1884 Berlin Conference.

It is a French billionaire, Vincent Bolloré , who controls 16 West African ports through bribery and influence peddling. France also controls the CFA currency of its former colonies. Canadian companies control gold mining in Burkina Faso, Mali and Democratic Republic of Congo. Decades after the struggle for independence, British soldiers are still stationed in Kenya .

The U.S. and its allies have little to offer except exploitation in the form of extraction and military control through the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM). It is China that pursues development projects with new railroads in Nigeria and Angola, and a highway in Kenya. The only narrative that makes the colonizers look good is a smear against China. The U.S./EU/NATO formation still has a hold on African nations and corporate media continue to act as governmental spokespeople and endlessly repeat whatever they are told.

The terms on Chinese loans are better than those of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). China doesn’t demand austerity in return for project funding, interference is not the goal. The difference is well known and clear and explains why news about China and Africa is so negative and why falsehoods are so readily accepted.

This particular fake news broke just days before the Forum on China-African Cooperation (FOCAC) was scheduled to take place in Dakar, Senegal. Secretary of State Antony Blinken traveled to Senegal just weeks earlier and repeated the usual anti-Chinese screeds. The most basic journalistic standards are not followed with these stories which appear at opportune moments. Allegations of Chinese debt traps should be viewed with great skepticism.

Black/African people are very much interested in the condition of their brothers and sisters all over the world. This dynamic is generally a positive one but it also creates a susceptibility to believe in lies when they are spun well enough. The Chinese as colonizer trope has been repeated too often and information about Africa is too scant for most people to analyze these news stories correctly. We are left with nothing but “China is bad” tales that are accepted because of well meaning but misdirected concerns for Africans.

The story of Uganda is particularly complex. The Ugandan government is a U.S. puppet, a full fledged participant in the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), and a terrorist nation which invaded the Democratic Republic of Congo and killed millions of people. While it is important to dispel myths about China it is also important to do so without covering up for Uganda and nations like it.

That is why the Black radical tradition must be nurtured and revived. Without it the world is viewed through the eyes of imperialism’s lackeys and media manipulators. All the truth about African nations and their relations with the rest of the world must be known and clearly understood. Africa is a key part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The BRI certainly benefits China and its involvement in African countries is obviously a benefit to them. What is needed are impartial journalistic standards free of state run falsehoods and political discernment that reveals useful information.

While the airport story was told and retold, China announced a plan to provide African nations with 1 billion doses of Covid vaccines. The project involves donations and joint ventures which will waive the intellectual property rights that have hampered vaccinations in Africa. Neither the United States or its allies have attempted to do anything similar on behalf of the countries we are told live under Chinese subjugation.

The media do indeed have the power to make the innocent look guilty and the guilty appear innocent. The intricacies of international financing cannot be left to scribes for powerful countries. Events taking place at this juncture in history require far more.

Margaret Kimberley’s is the author of Prejudential: Black America and the Presidents  . Her work can also be found at patreon.com/margaretkimberley    and on Twitter @freedomrideblog. Ms. Kimberley can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com

Xi Asks CELAC To Work With China To Overcome Difficulties

Source: TeleSur

December 3 2021

President Xi Jinping, Beijing, China, Dec. 3, 2021. | Photo: Xinhua

Despite pressure from the United States, economic relations between Latin American nations and China continue to flourish.

On Friday, China’s President Xi Jinping asked the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) to increase its cooperation modalities with China in order to overcome together the difficulties and challenges that contemporary globalization generates.

RELATED: Cuba Participates in III China-CELAC Forum

“China welcomes Latin American and Caribbean countries to actively participate in the Global Development Initiative and work together with China to overcome difficulties, create opportunities and push forward a global community of development with shared future,” he said when addressing the third Ministerial Meeting of the Forum of China and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States via video link.

“Stressing that peaceful development, fairness and justice, and win-win cooperation is the correct path, Xi said that China and CELAC countries are comprehensive cooperative partners following the principle of equality, mutual benefit, and common development,” Chinese outlet CGTN reported.

During the 1st CELAC-China meeting in 2015, Xi announced that his country would increase its investments in LATAM up to US$250 billion and double bilateral trade to US$500 billion before 2025.

Later, at the second CELAC-China meeting that took place in Chile in 2018, the Latin American countries signed the “Declaration of Santiago” committing themselves to innovate the modalities of cooperation with China to achieve sustainable growth and social welfare.

Back then, Xi promoted the New Silk Road, an ambitious project that seeks to improve China’s connection with its main partners on various continents. Despite the fact that the United States is putting pressure on developing countries not to join this proposal, the relations of Latin American nations with China continue to flourish.

In the first three quarters of 2021, China-LATAM trade reached US$331 billion, which represented an increase of 45.5 percent compared to the same period last year. Regarding these achievements, Xi recalled that his nation and the CELAC countries “lent each other a hand” during the pandemic, which allowed trading partners to overcome the economic contraction and resume the path of growth.

The Theft of Bolivia’s Lithium

Source: Youtube.com

July 27 2020

 

Transcript

We covered the military coup that took place in Bolivia back in November 2019 when Evo Morales was ousted, was removed by the military and through support of the United States with their uh cold war organization known as the OAS, the Organization of American States. So essentially, just to give you a very quick brief background of what happened, Morales had been running the country for about 13 years if I’m not mistaken, and there was a referendum on whether presidents should have term limits or not.  Okay, the the people voted that yes you should have term limits.  However, Morales appealed this at the supreme court and the Bolivian supreme court said that, nope, there are no term limits, you can run, so he did and he won.

Related:  Two Million Bolivians out of extreme povety thanks to policies of Evo Morales

And you had people in this um right-wing opposition in Bolivia and the OAS, the organization of American States which is a cold war era institution based in Washington DC, receives most of its funding from Washington DC, they made these false allegations that the election results were rigged.   Okay, because Morales needed a 10% overhead to avoid a runoff and they essentially accused him of fraud and then all of a sudden you had government buildings being burnt down, you had even his sister’s house being burnt down.  He refused to,, to resign because he had won the election legitimately.  In the end, he was forced to flee.

He fled to Mexico and I think now he’s in Argentina and what’s really interesting.  is in December, so this is after the coup, he sat down with Glenn Gruenwald and even back then at the time, he told him straight up, he told him straight up, that the real reason behind this coup was about Bolivia’s resources.  Okay, so Bolivia has extraordinary amounts and reserves of lithium, now let me just show you this this clip very quickly from that interview.

We know we know that there was no election fraud this this report that was issued by the OAS saying that there were inconsistencies with the results and that Morales had rigged the election.  It’s all complete bs, yet at the time as as expected all of the mainstream media news outlets, in the wes,t framed it as oh look the Bolivian people are standing up for their liberation against the corrupt Morales regime and he falsified the results of the election, they’re illegitimate the OAS verified this.  And, oopsie, a few months later, the New York times admits that oh they got it wrong, it turns out that the election wasn’t rigged and you know they made some miscalculations when they crunched the numbers, something I also covered a few months ago, right.

A bitter election accusations of fraud and now second thoughts.  See, same thing, same thing that they did with Iraq ,they kept pushing this propaganda that Iraq had WMDs over and over and over again you know, even Condoleezza Rice writing a piece in there making the case for war, and then, uh, after they’ve already invaded Iraq and destroyed it, the New York times are like, oh oops, yeah you know maybe we should have been a bit more vigilant or something you know and done our jobs.

So it’s very important for you to understand what’s at play here.  These lithium reserves are no joke.  One week, just one week before this coup, turns out Evo Morales had cancelled an agreement that Bolivia had made with a German company.  All right now, this German company is called ACI Systems Alemanya.   Morales, on November 4th, cancelled the December 2018 agreement with Germany’s ACISA after weeks of protests from residents of the Potosi area.  The region has fifty percent to seventy percent of the world’s lithium reserves in the SALADI salt flats and surprise surprise among other clients ACI provides batteries to, Tesla.

 

Bolivia sets high hopes on its lithium industry - MINING.COM

Tesla’s stock rose Monday after the weekend and it didn’t just rise in the immediate aftermath of the coup, oh no, it’s been rising ever since. It’s actually risen 600 percent.  Tesla stock was valued somewhere around 250 dollars a share just before the coup, now it’s around 1 500. and that’s no coincidence, that’s the global markets reacting to the wonderful imperial news that Elan Musk can now plunder Bolivia’s resources.   Now this is a promotional video from Bolivia’s state lithium company one year before the coup.   [Music]  [Music]

I mean this thing is enormous. Okay, you can you can see it from space these, these salt flats are absolutely enormous we’re talking about tremendous wealth and Morales’ plan, which has been his policy throughout his tenure, is to redistribute the wealth to the people. So this is from Common Dreams, “the nationalization policy of the Morales government and the geographical complexity of salarioni chased away several transnational mining firms from France and FMC from the US and Pasco from south Korea could not make deals with Bolivia so now they operate in Argentina.  Morales made it clear that any development of the lithium had to be done with Bolivia’s Comibol, its national mining company, and YLB its national lithium company as equal partners”, meaning you’re not just going to come in here with your multinational transnational companies and screw over Bolivia and the Bolivian people.  Morales’ plan from the beginning has been very clear, transnational multinational companies are not allowed to come into Bolivia rip off Bolivia’s resources, screw over the Bolivian people, and then keep plundering unconditionally.

When corporations realize that they were not going to be able to screw over the country they went to Argentina, they went to Chile; not only did these right-wing oligarchs work with the OAS and the United States to get rid of Morales, but on top of it, the interim president Janine Anies openly has invited Elon Musk to come to Bolivia and essentially help plunder their resources.  The de facto administration of Janine Anies has already announced its plan to invite numerous multinationals into the vast salt flats in Potosi which holds the precious soft metal.  Meanwhile a letter from the coup regime’s foreign minister to Elon Musk dated March 31st says quote, “any cooporation that you or your company can provide to our country will be gratefully welcomed” unquote.

So, this new interim government, this right-wing regime which organized a military coup against Morales, is openly, brazenly inviting these disgusting imperialist multinationals to come into Bolivia and plunder their resources.  You call that liberation, you call that democracy, wow. This entire coup, this fascist right-wing coup, has absolutely zero, nothing to do with quote-unquote democracy, or doing anything positive for the Bolivian people. And one of the people standing to profit from this is none other than Elon Musk who owns Tesla who make electric cars and need a large supply of lithium for their batteries.

I want to show you just something that he posted on twitter.  So he says another government stimulus package is not in the best interests of the people in my opinion.   Which is funny coming from him after he received tons of money from the government in the form of corporate handouts, but okay, and then Armani tells him, you know what wasn’t in the best interest of the people, the US government organizing a coup against Evo Morales in Bolivia so you could obtain the lithium there, and look what it says.  We will coup whoever we want, deal with it.

I mean, if you needed any more proof that this guy is an imperialist, capitalist son of a bitch look no further.  Not only, not only does his family’s wealth come from apartheid, come from these emerald mines in South Africa, but on top of it, he refused to shut down his Tesla factory during the pandemic risking his workers lives, and then he’s openly admitting now that the coup in Bolivia was so that he could get his hands on the lithium needed for batteries and Tesla cars, zero shame, zero shame.

Are we surprised, are we surprised?  This has become part of the norm now, they don’t even bother hiding it, you know Trump also brazenly openly says, look we’re in Syria for the oil, yeah we’re in Syria for the oil.  He just openly admits it and this clown over here, this imperialist pig openly admitting that Morales was removed so they could get their hands on the lithium, not even trying to hide it.  Man absolutely disgusting and it’s not, it’s not the only thing, what do you think is going on in the Congo as well?  You ever heard of koltan?  They use children to mine that stuff.  He has no shame, this guy has absolutely no shame.

What is absolutely staggering is the willful ignorance, the denial by a large swath of people that this is real, like to them this is some kind of joke, like as if the United States has never intervened and illegally bombed other countries and occupied them with their military in order to steal and plunder their resources.  Like the United Fruit Company of Guatemala or going into Iraq for the oil which is now controlled by US multinationals.  I mean this is nothing new, what a shameless piece of shit!

So I want to, I want to show you the response from Evo Morales himself.  Okay, so what he says and this is, this is a loosely translated, so you’ll forgive me, but he says that Elon Musk, the owner of the largest electric car factory says, regarding the coup in Bolivia, that we will coup whoever we want, which is even more proof that the coup was for Bolivia’s lithium and two massacres for payment, we will always defend our resources

I mean, the treatment, what they did to this dude is absolutely unbelievable.  US imperialism knows no bounds, it is absolutely completely shameless and once again it’s not new, right, not just the United Fruit Company or the the oil in Iraq, I mean even uh a Patrice in Congo was assassinated.  Eisenhower ordered him assassinated because he wanted to bring in Soviet troops and, at the time during the arms race during the cold war, getting your hands on uranium getting your hands on the necessary ingredients to make nuclear bombs, you would have had Russia and Congo monopolizing that essentially.

So it’s always about resources, make no mistake, and the same thing when the Egyptian president Abdel Nasser tried to nationalize the Suez Canal.  He was attacked by the UK, by Israel, by France like how dare you control your own resources and distribute the wealth among your own people!  No no no no, we the western powers we gotta come in and take over everything.  Make no mistake, when Israel occupies the Golan heights illegally it’s not just a military strategic point, it’s also to get their hands on the oil, it’s to get their hands on the water even has snow up there, yeah they go skiing they have nice little ski resorts on Syrian land.

It’s always about the resources, but then they want to come and tell you that it’s about democracy and then they want to come and tell you it’s about human rights and then they want to come and tell you it’s about election integrity; it’s got zero to do with that and they’re just not even hiding it anymore it’s right there in plain sight, right there in plain sight man.  That is totally okay for the United States to back right wing armed opposition groups to conduct military coups, overthrow democratically elected presidents and plunder the resources of other countries in the global south because white man said so.  Absolutely shameless, this is why you always got to pay attention. This is why you can’t trust these opposition groups that spring out of nowhere whether we’re talking about Guido or we’re talking about Anies or we’re talking about in Syria.   The end result is US military bases and US corporations coming in, being given cache blanche a blank check to do whatever they like exert a military sphere of influence over the region, plunder the country’s resources and maintain a military occupation.   Sounds a lot like colonization doesn’t it?  And what’s his crime?  Morales’ crime is being the first indigenous president and trying to redistribute the wealth among the people, their wealth; disgusting absolutely disgusting.

What Chinese doctors learned about the prevention and detection of COVID-19 from their experience in Wuhan

Quote

Source:  Tony Seed’s Weblog

We are posting an interview with Wang Zhou, MD by Salon.com. Dr. Wang is one of the authors of the Handbook of Prevention and Control of COVID-19, published in China on their experience dealing with COVID-19. The introduction to the interview explains that frontline doctors in China assembled a comprehensive guide of what they observed about […]

via What Chinese doctors learned about the prevention and detection of COVID-19 from their experience in Wuhan — Tony Seed’s Weblog

Trump hijacks Barbados coronavirus ventilators, other news

Quote

Source:  Dear Kitty. Some Blog.

This 4 April 2020 video from the USA says about itself: Andrew Cuomo thanks China for ventilators as New York prepares for coronavirus peak The New York [governor] has said the Chinese government will facilitate a donation of 1,000 ventilators to arrive into JFK airport on Saturday as the city prepares to hit its coronavirus […]

via Trump hijacks Barbados coronavirus ventilators, other news — Dear Kitty. Some blog

The Response to Coronavirus: A Tale of Two Systems

Source:  Black Agenda Report

March 11 2020

Coronavirus Fearmongering Demonstrates U.S. Imperialism is a Drag on Humanity
The US is the most profit-oriented, business-controlled society on Earth, and therefore the least able to cope with a national health emergency, which requires sacrifice of profit for the greater good.

“U.S. imperialism offers no solutions to address the coronavirus outbreak now that it has reached U.S. shores.”

The coronavirus outbreak in China has made its way across the world, infecting thousands in nations such as Iran and South Korea. While confirmed cases in the United States remain low (likely due to underreporting), a cloud of fear and racist hysteria hangs over the U.S. populace from centuries of imperialist aggression toward China and its people. Racist attacks against Asian Americans are on the rise . The corporate media has predictably used the outbreak to demonize China’s system of economic and political governance. Yet as fear of the coronavirus’ spread increases, it becomes clearer that U.S. imperialism is the true drag on humanity, not China’s market socialist model.

The U.S. corporate media has lamented over its assessment that China’s “authoritarian” government is behind why the country has been able to address the coronavirus outbreak with such strength and vigor. This is a cynical admission that the United States and its imperialist allies are not prepared to effectively address a similar outbreak. One person based in Miami has already reported receiving a bill of over $3,000 to get tested for the coronavirus.  A 2019 survey found that up to half of all participants avoided seeking medical care due to the cost of the for-profit healthcare system. This alone places a large section of the population at risk should the number of coronavirus cases increase as predicted.

“One person based in Miami has already reported receiving a bill of over $3,000 to get tested for the coronavirus.”

The real story of the coronavirus outbreak is not the virus’ lethality but rather the difference between an imperialist world order and the alternative system located in China. U.S. imperialism and its allies across the world had over a month to take preventive measures and learn from China’s containment strategy. Instead, the corporate media and official Washington have provided ordinary Americans with nothing but a steady dose of anti-China fear mongering and non-stop coverage of the virus’ spread.

China, on the other hand, has been praised by the World Health Organization  for its aggressive response to the outbreak. New coronavirus cases have been steadily declining  in mainland China from over 3,247 new cases in mid-February to around 442 new cases at the beginning of March. The number of deaths per capita in South Korea and Italy have already surpassed those in China.

China’s impressive response

Because of U.S. imperial hostility toward China, few people in the U.S. understand just how impressive China’s response to the coronavirus  really is. Over sixty million people in mainland China remain quarantined to their homes. While economic activity has gradually returned, people are being asked to quarantine themselves for fourteen days if they have travelled outside of the country. Security has been administered to all residential areas for regular temperature checks. Television programs across the country are providing around the clock education on measures to prevent the virus’ spread.

“U.S. imperialism and its allies across the world had over a month to take preventive measures and learn from China’s containment strategy.”

Perhaps even more impressive, China’s central government has commanded companies to produce medical supplies  to make up for shortfalls. The mandate to produce medical supplies includes completely unrelated sectors of the economy such as smartphone technology and the automotive industry. Two massive hospitals were built to assist in the treatment of the virus within a three-week span . The hospitals increase the number of hospital beds in China to treat the disease by over two thousand. Over forty-one thousand medics have been sent to Hubei province as part of China’s national patriotic health campaign to contain the virus. Health experts in China estimate that the coronavirus will be under control within the country by the end of April 2020.

U.S. imperialism, on the other hand, offers no solutions to address the coronavirus outbreak now that it has reached U.S. shores. The CDC has discouraged the use of masks  prior to infection even though the novel coronavirus can take up to two weeks before symptoms become evident. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has already warned Congress that there is a massive shortage of surgical masks and other medical supplies  in the U.S. to protect health workers in the case of an outbreak. While around 1,000 people are under a federally enforced quarantine in Washington state, such measures implemented nation-wide would cause serious disruptions to the already stagnating U.S. capitalist economy. Many people are without sick days to cover large absences  from work and the recent stock market dip indicates that financiers on Wall Street are growing increasingly concerned about their profits should the coronavirus prompt the demand for more extensive measures.

“Health experts in China estimate that the coronavirus will be under control within the country by the end of April 2020.”

The U.S. ruling class has been spreading fear about the coronavirus to avoid the reality that its social system is organized to generate massive private profits for the rich at the expense of the oppressed and toiling masses. An emergency response system does not exist in the United States beyond the channels of a security state designed primarily to wage war on the oppressed. That system is not equipped to serve the people and thus cannot be trusted to use its massive resources to address the coronavirus outbreak. U.S. imperialism is the most dangerous disease of all. U.S. imperial aggression toward Iran has already starved the country of the resources necessary to address its own coronavirus cases.

The racist hysteria spread by headlines such as the Wall Street Journal’s “China is the Real Sick Man of Asia”  negate the U.S.’ historic role in spreading disease and death around the world since its inception. Indigenous peoples were poisoned in the millions by diseases such as smallpox which settlers spread intentionally to free land for capitalist exploitation. Tens of millions of Africans died from disease, malnutrition, and colonial violence  after being captured and enslaved by invading European powers, including the United States. In the last half century alone, U.S. imperialism has killed tens of millions more and deployed biological weapons such as Agent Orange  and depleted uranium  that have left generations vulnerable to birth defect and cancer in Vietnam, Iraq, and beyond. The consequences of U.S. imperialism’s regime of austerity and endless war have also been felt on the mainland of Empire. Diseases of despair have eroded the life expectancy of the middle-aged white male population while mass incarceration and racist state terror has destroyed countless Black lives and placed Black life expectancy  well behind that of whites.

“An emergency response system does not exist in the United States beyond the channels of a security state designed primarily to wage war on the oppressed.”

U.S. imperialism is designed to produce such historical and contemporary maladies in the name of profit. All the fearmongering of China’s “authoritarianism” has done is revive the tired white supremacist and anti-communist ideology of the Cold War that serves to justify the existence of U.S. imperial hegemony. This is the same ideology that not only allowed the ruling class to threaten nuclear war on the Soviet Union China, and Korea  after using nuclear weapons on Japan, but also terrorize and demonize radical and progressive Black movement leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr.  It is past time that the left reject the anti-China, new Cold War trap created by the capitalist class. While Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All policy is much needed to address problems such as the coronavirus and the many millions who are suffering without adequate healthcare, Bernie Sanders’ decision to fight the DNC’s attacks with anti-China and anti-Russia talking points is the wrong way to go. China’s so-called “authoritarianism” has successfully mobilized an entire country to contain the outbreak of a deadly disease, eradicated absolute poverty for nearly a billion people, and offered a new model of global economic cooperation through the Belt and Road Initiative that respects international law and the right of nations to self-determination.

“China’s so-called ‘authoritarianism’ has successfully mobilized an entire country to contain the outbreak of a deadly disease.”

The declining conditions of workers and poor people in the U.S. and the West indicate that more “authoritarianism” is needed, not less. Authoritarianism is a racist dog whistle for socialism. Socialism, rather than Bernie Sanders’ New Deal social democracy, requires public ownership of the means of production and the control of the state by the oppressed. Only when masses of people have the power to plan and direct economic activity can their interests and needs be placed in command of society. In order to get here, capitalists must be unseated from their thrones in the corporate boardrooms and political offices that empower them to privately usurp much of the wealth produced by labor.

The most socialist-oriented section of the U.S. population, Black America, knows full well what it is like to be dehumanized and criminalized for seeking the power to control its economic and political destiny. White supremacy is the bedrock of U.S. imperialism and it is being whipped up to reinvigorate the U.S.’ war on China at the expense of Black Americans and the rest of the exploited classes right here in the mainland of Empire. As a larger section of workers are subjected to the economic conditions that have plagued Black life for centuries, U.S. imperialism becomes increasingly exposed as the drag on human progress that it always was. A coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. will just add fuel to a growing fire of hatred toward the conditions of imperial decay. We must fight anti-China demagoguery to ensure that popular anger is channeled where it belongs: at the system of U.S. imperialism itself.

Danny Haiphong is an activist and journalist in the New York City area. He and Roberto Sirvent are co-authors of the book entitled American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News–From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror (Skyhorse Publishing)He can be reached at wakeupriseup1990@gmail.com, on Twitter @spiritofho, and on Youtube at The Left Lens with Danny Haiphong.

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Fidel’s Vision and the Cuban Interferon in China

Source:  La Santa Mambisa

By Ángel Guerra

The selection by the Chinese health authorities of the Cuban interferon alfa 2B (IFRrec) among 30 other drugs to combat the new coronavirus Covid-19 should not be surprising.

In fact, there is a Sino-Cuban mixed company in the Asian giant in the province of Jilin that, with Cuban technology, has produced the drug since 2007, which has been used with good results by the Chinese health system to combat viral diseases, especially hepatitis B and C.

The product can also be used to treat HIV infections, respiratory papillomatosis caused by human papilloma, and condylomata acuminata.

“Interferon alfa 2B has the advantage that in situations like these it is a mechanism to protect oneself, its use prevents patients with the possibility of aggravating and complicating themselves from reaching that stage, and ultimately resulting in death,” said the doctor in Sciences Luis Herrera Martínez, one of the creators of the recombinant INF in Cuba and today a scientific and commercial advisor to the Cuban business group BioCubaFarma, holder of the patent, manufacturer and distributor of this and other Cuban biotechnology products.

The fruits of Fidel’s vision

fidel a2But it is natural that news like this cause strangeness or curiosity in many people, since Cuba is a poor, underdeveloped country, subjected to the merciless blockade of the United States and this may lead to doubts that it has an international biotechnology industry. Furthermore, there is the tremendous difficulty that the largest of the Antilles is one of the countries on which the dominant media machinery is most misinforming.

Many Mexicans can explain it better in these times, when they verify daily the grotesque way in which most of the national and international media deforms the reality of the administration of the government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. They are the same media that also silence the economic, social, humanistic and scientific achievements that Cuba achieves in the midst of the redoubled harassment by Washington because their editorial interest is to disqualify it.

That is why many do not know that in 1965 Fidel Castro inspired the emergence of the National Center for Scientific Research (CNIC), where many young Medicine graduates voluntarily went to his call to train as researchers. Gradually, new research centers emerged from the CNIC harvest.

The Cuban Revolution gave birth to the universal and public health system

By then Fidel had given a huge boost to the development of medical sciences and research in this field and was looking for new scientific findings and technologies to strengthen the universal and public health system created by the Cuban Revolution. So in 1981 he inquired with the American oncologist Randolph Lee Clark, visiting Havana, what was new in the cure for cancer. His interlocutor told him about work that was being done with a new medicine called interferon at the Anderson Hospital and Tumoral Institute, in Texas, which he directed.

The commander was interested in the possibility of sending Cuban professionals to familiarize himself with the novel product, which only existed in a few first-world countries, and Clark agreed to receive two investigators, something possible then because Trump was not in the White House. The Cubans fulfilled the mission but were unable to bring INF back to the island because the American hospital center still received it from Finland, where it was produced under the direction of Professor Kari Kantel, in Helsinki.

The envoys, summoned by Fidel upon arrival in Cuba, explained to him the need for a group of researchers to carry out an internship in Dr. Kantel’s laboratory to learn how to produce the INF of blood cell banks. Between the moment the leader of the Cuban Revolution heard a suggestion like that and the researchers’ departure to Helsinki, not many days could pass.

A trip to Finland

Fidel, concerned like very few heads of state about the health of his compatriots and, it must be said, of humanity, saw in the new product the possibility of saving many lives. This explains not only the trip of five Cubans and one Cuban to the center of Kantel in Finland, but less than four months after their return to Cuba they already had the first amounts of INF from bank globules produced on the island and very soon INF Recombinant, which allows for increased production and is the desirable type in most diseases.

On the island, the appearance of the INF coincided with a great dengue epidemic, which allowed a number of serious cases to be successfully treated with the new product. Thus, in 1981, Cuba became the first third world country to produce INF.

From that initiative emerged the Center for Biological Research and five years later an institution with much more complex and ambitious objectives from a scientific point of view: the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology.

Interferon

Interferon is a substance made by cells of the immune system of vertebrate animals and can be produced in large quantities in the laboratory. Refined from bacteria or yeast is called recombinant and counteracts viral diseases mentioned in the first part of this article. It is also useful to help fight certain types of cancer and other viral diseases such as Covid-19.

When China decided to use interferon alpha 2B (IFRrec) in the fight against Covid-19, there were not enough quantities of the drug in the warehouses of the Chinese-Cuban company Chang Heber. Explaining its executive director Li Wenlan: “Upon learning of the serious outbreak of the new coronavirus in China and the urgent need for the original interferon for the production of antiviral drugs, the Cuban side postponed its previous import requests to China.

Cuba – China cooperation 

In addition, he appointed a group of Cuban experts to help China. ” As Cuba deferred in favor of China the receipt of quantities of IFRrec produced by Chang Heber, it was possible to shorten the time to make a certain amount of the product available to Chinese patients from 50 to 21 days.

The Cuban cooperation was mentioned in a telephone conversation by President Xi Jinping with his Cuban counterpart Miguel Díaz-Canel. Xi said China highly appreciates the understanding that the Cuban side and President Díaz-Canel himself have shown in China’s efforts against the epidemic.

It is very interesting that in this talk, around February 28, the Chinese president already stated that “the positive trend” in the prevention and control of Covid-19 “was gaining strength” and that his country had “full confidence, capacity and certainty ”that he will win the battle against the epidemic. The facts have confirmed XI’s claim, with the constant decrease in the number of infected and deceased in China, lately almost exclusively in Hubei, whose capital Wuhan is the epicenter of the epidemic.

The fact that the 16 provisional hospitals authorized in Hubei for the treatment of the disease have been closed and that on Monday 5 only 19 cases were presented in all of China, including two imported cases, demonstrates the robustness, humanism and ability to efficiently solve very complex problems that characterize the Asian giant’s socio-political system, contrary to what is claimed by the racist, anti-communist and anti-Chinese slander and lies of the Western hegemonic media.

In the telephone talk, Xi added that China is ready to continue cooperation with Cuba in the fields of medicine and the control of epidemics. China and Cuba “are good friends, good comrades and good brothers who can depend on each other in difficult times and are as close as lips and teeth.”

The Chinese leader recalled that this year marks the sixtieth anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations, adding that his country will take the opportunity to raise bilateral exchanges and cooperation in different fields to new levels, starting from a new historical starting point.

The advantages of the socialist system

I do not remember reading warmer words from the Chinese leader to another country. For his part, Díaz-Canel stressed that this experience has fully demonstrated China’s mobilization capacity and the advantages of the socialist system. He added that China’s timely and effective response made outstanding contributions to controlling the spread of the epidemic, which has been highly appreciated by the international community, including the UN and WHO.

Interferon, Dr. Luis Herrera has said, was the inspiration for Cuban biotechnology. The always visionary commander took this product as if it were a lever and around it he developed natural production and created the bases for intensive genetic engineering development. The maturation of a biotech industry on the island is expressed with the emergence of the powerful Biocubafarma Business Group that employs more than 22,000 workers, exports to more than 50 countries, has 1,800 patents outside of Cuba, and its annual income amounts to around 2,000 million dollars, a totally new item in Cuban exports, which, in addition, has made a substantial contribution to the health of the people.

Among the institutions affiliated to the group are the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, the Center for the Production of Laboratory Animals, the National Center for Biopreparations, the Center for Immunoassay and the Center for Molecular Immunology. Cuba has created very prestigious unique medicines :, among others, Heberprot-P, for the cure of diabetic foot; the CIMAvax-EFG C vaccine has opened up hope for the survival of people suffering from lung cancer; PPG is mainly used to lower cholesterol, but it has been shown to have antiplatelet, antiischemic and antithrombotic effects; VA-MENGOC-BC is the only effective vaccine in the world that attacks meningococci B and C.