European unity has become another victim of the coronavirus. The Schengen agreement is not valid. The free movement of people, goods and services will no longer resume. Coronavirus killed the Schengen area.
Many Western leaders believe their political survival is delicately poised in such a poisoned atmosphere and hence delayed taking preventive actions to stem community transmission of the coronavirus out of nervousness about their approval ratings and re-election chances.
Unlike Western democracies, whose political culture is shaped by asserting individualism, human rights and treating the state as an enemy of liberty, Asians mostly do not worry about violation of privacy or government abuses.
Baseless speculation and conspiracy theory; no evidence given to support the claim that Western leaders have delayed taking precautions against the coronavirus due to nervousness about their approval rating and re-election chances. This case is also part of the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign about the coronavirus crisis, one aim of which is to suggest that Western democracies and open societies are incapable of coping with the pandemic, as opposed to authoritarian or closed societies.
The article’s claim that societies which aren't concerned about government abuses are better at preventing and controlling epidemics do not reflect reality. Authoritarian regimes or closed societies, which tend to control and manipulate information and limit the freedom of doctors and scientists to engage in international cooperation, are often an obstacle to the timely detection and containment of epidemic outbreaks.
A clear example is China’s deliberate cover-up in the early days of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan. The regime suppressed information about the virus and allowed it to spread unchecked in the crucial early days and weeks. The Chinese government censored and detained those doctors and whistleblowers who attempted to sound the alarm and warn their fellow citizens when they understood the gravity of the coronavirus threat.
Furthermore, the real antidote to the COVID-19 pandemic (and to future epidemic outbreaks) is not to revert to nationalist isolationism and “closed societies” but to develop a global response. A coordinated, cross-border effort of the scientific and medical community to understand the virus, create cures and treatments, and speedily disseminate a vaccine across national borders, will bring the global pandemic under control.