“At the root of this epidemic, regardless of the origin of the virus, there is a fundamental problem: the lack of trust between China and the West. The epidemic arises from this. It stems from a very difficult political situation. we are in an extremely complicated situation “. This is how sinologist Francesco Sisci speaks to Adnkronos after the revelations of the Wall Street Journal on the contents of an American intelligence report according to which in November two years ago three researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology fell ill and ended up in hospital with “symptoms compatible with both Covid-19 and a common seasonal infection”. “It is a bacteriological warfare laboratory – he remembers – The doubt is that, given that the safety protocols do not seem to be extremely rigorous, there might have been an escape from the laboratory”. And Sisci, professor of geopolitics at Luiss, underlines the great differences with what happened in 2003 with Sars and how the “fundamental problem” today is precisely “the lack of trust between China and the West”. “I was in China at the time of Sars – he says – After a few first weeks of confusion and indecision, the Chinese opened everything and, indeed, they were praised by the international press. Now, however, there has not been this opening and there has not been for this. distrust “. Covid-19, he points out, came” at a time of great tension, of maximum tension between China and the US “, with Donald Trump having started a” trade war with Beijing “and with the Asian giant that” does not he trusts the United States “, while” SARS arrived perhaps at the best moment of relations between the two countries since at that time there was a collaboration on Afghanistan, in the fight against terrorism “. At the time, he continues, “America thought that its strategic objective was to fight Islamic terrorism and therefore in 2003 China was almost an ally”. ‘Extremely complicated situation, tracing them is also the sword of Damocles for Beijing’. Today instead ” the problems are various “. “An animal with Covid has not been found – he says – The origins of the epidemic are, it seems in the first cases, to be traced in some fish and meat markets in China. And we have a bacteriological warfare laboratory where in the past we they were suspicious about the management of the structure, which seems to have not been in line with the standards and on which the Chinese keep a certain secret “. Why? “There may be two reasons – he replies – One because the Chinese know that behind there is the origin of the virus. The second, much more trivial but also reasonable, is that the Chinese do not trust an international investigation and fear that the Americans, the West use this openness to the laboratory to find elements that justify suspicions of all kinds “. All this, he insists, because “there is a fundamental problem: the lack of trust between China and the West”. To ascertain the origin of the virus, Sisci continues, “yes, we need to identify the best treatments, the ways to deal with the epidemic. , but it is also a sword of Damocles for the question of the damage “of a pandemic that” has shocked the global economy, society, which is causing millions and millions of deaths “. “Already there are subpoenas in international courts asking for damages to China – he observes – If one day it emerges that there has actually been a leak of this virus from a laboratory, of course everything would take greater force”. “We are – he says – in an extremely complicated situation”. ‘The time of the party game between Beijing and Washington is over, the problem of the problems is the political question’ All after, he observes, at the beginning of the epidemic “the West he made two wrong choices because the United States, Europe and the whole world did not realize what was happening and thought it could be a localized accident “. An approach to which was added “the lack of information, transparency, closure” on the part of China. “The epidemic – he notes – stems from a very difficult political situation. If there had been trust between China and the United States and if China had been much more open and if the US had trusted it is possible that in the end this epidemic would have been contained as happened with Sars, when there was a great opening on the part of China and total alarm in the West “. What can the Asian giant do now? “The Chinese must improve political and social conditions – he concludes – They must open up to a real political dialogue with the United States. The management model of China that was created with Nixon is over. The time of the party game is over. . We must face the problems for what they are and the problem of the problems is the political question “.