The severity of the pandemic in China is beyond the world’s imagination, but Chinese media outlets do not acknowledge it. People have spread information and attracted a lot of attention on the internet. Although it is difficult to verify the accuracy of the information, it is one of the unofficial ways to get a hint of the complexity of the pandemic in China.
Recently, a Chinese resident named Yun Guang He from Wuxi city, Jiangsu province, expressed his grief on social media. He said that, within just over a month, 6 members of his family passed away, leaving him alone. “My parents, maternal grandparents, and paternal grandparents were all dead,” Yun confided.
On January 15, Tang Baiqiao, a Chinese democracy activist, retweeted this information with the caption: “If this is true— then it must be true— no one lies to everyone that their whole family is dead. The severity of the pandemic is far beyond our imagination. It is beyond the CCP’s false reports. During the 8 years of the war against Japan, very few families lost their entire family. The severity of this disaster was unprecedented to China. More seriously, this is a man-made disaster! The CCP must be responsible for all deaths! The tyranny must be destroyed as soon as possible!”
A similar tragedy also happened to 40-year-old Guan Yao, a Beijing native living in California, USA.
Sharing on Twitter, Guan Yao said he lost 5 relatives in just 8 days since the government restrictions were lifted. “I think it should give my family an explanation,” Guan said in an interview with VOA. His grandmother was infected with COVID and had a constant fever, but in the end, her death certificate stated that she died of kidney failure.
Of Guan’s five dead relatives, only his grandmother and his wife’s uncle tested positive; the rest died suddenly before being tested. His father-in-law died of shortness of breath in the morning; His father had a heart attack and died in his sleep; His uncle had white lungs when taken to the hospital—but the death report stated that his uncle had Parkinson’s.
On January 14, Bao Jian - daughter of Bao Tong – former secretary of former Premier Zhao Ziyang, expressed on Twitter: “In less than a month, 17 friends and relatives of mine have passed away. This is something that has never happened in my life….” At the same time, she criticized the Chinese government, saying: “Beijing has killed hundreds of thousands of people in a month, the city government even held a meeting to reward ‘achievements’. It’s shameless!”
She added that funeral homes were full, many corpses were in one furnace, and cremation schedules were several times or even ten times longer. Also, the emergency system was paralyzed, people had to line up long, hospital morgues were also out of space, and the supply of coffins, urns, and cemeteries was in serious shortage. At the same time, the number of severe cases, white lung cases, and other data are published limitedly in localities.
In response to Bao Jian’s tweet, some netizens said that the death toll was not only a few hundred thousand people, it was much more.
Despite being the capital of China with the best medical conditions in the country, under the impact of the COVID pandemic wave, numerous high-ranking officials and celebrities in Beijing still could not survive. Aboluowang reported that in rural areas with poorer medical conditions, infected people may be treated less effectively, and the death toll may be higher.
On January 13, RFA cited a report on the pandemic published by the National Development Research Institute of Peking University, according to which, in terms of the difference in infection levels between regions, the highest infection rate is in Gansu province at about 91%, the second highest is in Yunnan province at about 84%, and the third highest is in Qinghai province at about 80%.
Tang Jingyuan, a Chinese news commentator in the U.S., said on “Yuanjian kuai ping” that the pandemic situation in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou is stirring the internet; however, three provinces in the western region, Yunnan, Gansu and Qinghai, still have more cases. The health conditions there are worse, and the death toll may be higher.
On January 16, Lin, a villager in Chisha Town, Chencang District, Baoji City, Shaanxi Province, told Da Ji Yuan that there are many COVID cases in the countryside where she lives. More than ten people had died in her village, all older people. “Each family in here have four or five acres of land, the remains are buried on their land and everywhere,” she said, “The village secretary and village chief said that, due to the impact of the pandemic this year, people in poor health, people in their 70s, 80s, 90s have basically passed away. In our village alone, dozens of people have died. If so, how many people have died in the whole country?”
She also revealed that, after a number of retired officials in the village died, they were all brought back to the village for burial because they couldn’t be cremated at the funeral home in Baoji city. Currently, the shortage of medicine is especially serious in rural areas, and infected villagers have to suffer at home because they cannot buy medicine. Others quickly buy up medication in hospitals and pharmacies. “Young people can bear it, but old people can’t. After the first infection, the doctors in the village started injecting medicine at home, but soon they ran out of medicine. The older people couldn’t resist and died, she said.
Lin added that when migrant workers heard about the outbreak, they all ran back to the village, some young people did not even receive wages and quickly returned to their hometowns but were still infected. After returning, some had positive symptoms, even infecting their family members.”
On January 16, Liu, a resident of Weicheng district, Xianyang city, Shaanxi province, China, told Chinese media after the government’s restrictive orders were lifted in December, there have been a lot of infections in the community, most of them are from the same family. “When I went to take out the trash, I saw that my neighborhood was empty, I was very scared,” he said.
Liu revealed that employees of local authorities were also infected on a large scale. Starting from December 18 or 19, more than 50 police officers were dispatched to the area where Liu lived; only 1 person did not test positive, and the rest were all infected. The government is paralyzed, no one goes to work, the neighborhood committee does not operate, and all of them are closed.
He questioned that every day, every funeral home burns hundreds of bodies, then how many people have died in the whole country? Now that the severe pandemic has not reached its peak, how many people will die when it comes?