The Chinese are reportedly building a gigantic new wall to supposedly keep Covid away. Yes as ridiculous as it sounds, the Chinese seem to want to make Covid pay for it.
Reports have circulated that the Chinese government is constructing a 2,000-kilometer armored fence along its Myanmar border, mainly due to the rise in COVID-19 cases in the latter country. According to the Radio Free Asia (RFA) report, 659 kilometers of the barricade have already been completed. The reports have been confirmed by images on social media that show armor-plated steel fences topped with barbed wire. This massive project has been named the “Southern Great Wall” and the construction began in 2020 after the outbreak of the virus.
Some newspapers referred to it as the “Anti Covid Great Wall’’ but experts believe that there could be some hidden agenda behind this new border situation. The Chinese government has always struggled to retain control of Yunnan’s border with Myanmar which is nearly 2,200-kilometers. Since the 1980s this border has worked as a channel for illegal trades like drug trafficking, stolen vehicles, and illegitimate capital flow. It also allowed the undocumented flow of people into China that included day traders, migrant workers, and smuggled women.
Due to its loosely policed and mostly unmonitored borders, the south west province of Yunnan has been known to provide asylum to ethnic Uyghurs and others that used it as an outlet as per their convenience. Previously, the authorities and Chinese police have taken several actions to shut down border casinos in Laos and Myanmar that have been set up to enchant Chinese gamblers. Chinese authorities also mount periodic crackdowns on the flow of cross-boundary illegal imports. This longstanding concern has likely only been reinforced by the risk of Corona Virus recurring in China through the backdoor
The construction of a new Great Wall to curb the spread of Covid-19 might seem like overkill, however, China seems to achieve multiple goals through its new border. The West however claims that the Chinese government has ulterior motives and they are trying to achieve the status of ‘super power’ at the expense of its less fortunate neighbors.
The pandemic has provided the Chinese government with a solid reason to resolve its long-established border issues. It may sound simple but in reality, the Chinese government wants to control everything including illicit trade across its borders. Certainly, they don’t want to put an end to any of it but only want to make sure everything happens on their terms.