(Minghui.org) Chinese diplomats and agents have been given secret orders to try to persuade people to believe that the coronavirus originated outside of China, wrote Italian sociologist Massimo Introvigne in an article titled “De-Sinicizing the Virus: How CCP Propaganda Is Rewriting History,” published in Bitter Winter on March 9, 2020.

Italian Virus and Japanese Virus

Mr. Introvigne's article was motivated by an email he received from a Chinese colleague asking whether he was safe from the “Italian virus.” He found out later that his Japanese friends also received similar emails asking if they were affected by the “Japanese virus.”

Introvigne did not understand the new names for the coronavirus until he read a report from La Croix International that investigated confidential instructions sent to Chinese embassies and travelers one week earlier. The instructions asked people not to mention the Chinese origin of the virus by insisting that, “While the virus severely hit Wuhan, where it really originally came from is unknown. We are conducting new studies to locate the virus’ true origin.” 

“The CCP [Chinese Communist Party] wants to ‘sinicize’ everything, including all religions. Only one thing is being ‘de-sinicized,’ the virus,” Introvigne wrote. Chinese embassies had been instructed to “raise doubts” about the origin of the virus in public and to claim that perhaps the virus originally came from another country. The Chinese Embassy in Tokyo, for example, had started promoting the term “Japanese virus,” only to be rebuked by the Japanese media.

A Textbook Example of CCP Fake News

Introvigne wrote, “The CCP-controlled media keep explaining that democratic countries could not have taken such decisive measures against measures [in combating the disease] as China did, because Western-style democracy limits the powers of the governments. This should prove, once again, the superiority of the Chinese non-democratic system.”

Introvigne mentioned the publication of a book aimed to cast China as the global leader in fighting the coronavirus. Titled A Battle Against the Epidemic: China Combating COVID-19 in 2020, the book is to be translated into six languages and is full of praise for communist leader Xi Jinping for his “centralized and unified leadership of the CCP Central Committee” in “defeating the virus.” 

“This is a textbook example of CCP fake news,” Introvigne wrote. “In fact, the CCP’s lies and delays in acknowledging the crisis made the epidemics worse.”

London-based Sinologist Steve Tsang agrees. “The CCP always had a monopoly on truth and history in China, and now tries to deny that it originally hid the truth on the virus,” said Tsang. “CCP officers claim they are right even when it is obvious they are wrong.” Tsang commented on the report from La Croix International, “They have their ‘truth’ in China, but we should question it in the West. Expose the CCP propaganda for what it is, is a task for us who live in democratic countries.”

Carrot and Stick from the CCP

“In recent days, all Italian parliamentarians have received a bilingual magazine, Cinitalia, a product of China Media Group, the information and propaganda giant of the Chinese government beyond the borders of the Dragon Country,” reported formiche.net on March 20, in an article titled “Bastone (in Gasparri) and carrot (to everyone else). China to attack Parliament.”

The report said that both China Central Television (CCTV) and CGTN (which was declared by the US administration a “foreign agent”) are part of the China Media Group. The first few pages of the magazine Cinitalia were devoted to a story about China’s performance in 2019, followed by several pages of China's “friends” in Italy such as the mayor of Florence.

In addition to such carrots as seduction, there were also sticks that “attack those who criticize China,” such as Member of Parliament Maurizio Gasparri. As the CCP claimed it had provided aid to Italy, Gasparri explained that “China has not given us anything; What has arrived has been paid [for].”

Because of unfair competition, environmental pollution, and responsibility for the coronavirus from the CCP, Gasparri has referred to China as “the worst country on the planet.”

Despite its large geographic distance from China, Italy has the highest reported coronavirus deaths in the world, which could be related to its close ties to the CCP—Italy is the only G7 country that joined China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to extend its power in Europe. “China is a cancer of the planet” and “China is a danger to the planet, it is not a resource,” concluded Gasparri.

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