Jonathan Tobin writes for the Federalist about communist China’s disturbing response to the persistence of COVID-19.

In most of the United States, post-covid normalcy is asserting itself. But in deep blue enclaves, mask virtue signalers illustrate continued commitment in some quarters to unnecessary precautions originating from early pandemic hysteria.

What must follow next is a reckoning for the politicians, health officials, bureaucrats, education officials, and unions who advocated for and imposed more than two years of lockdowns, school closures, and mask and vaccine mandates on the country. …

… Indeed, we now know what happens when Americans exchange liberty for the perception of safety. To see this transaction taken to its extreme, one need look no further than China’s continuation of extreme covid restrictions. 

As The New York Times reported, Chinese President Xi Jinping says the country must achieve “zero covid,” a feckless and increasingly delusional quest to eradicate the mutating virus that is almost certainly doomed to failure.

The result of this obsession is that China is still enduring widespread lockdowns, according to reports from the propaganda-heavy country. It is estimated that in the last week, as many as 291 million Chinese — approximately 21 percent of the country’s 1.4 billion people — are trapped in their homes, often with limited access to supplies.

In much of the country, people are required to be tested daily by rapid methods that may be far more inaccurate than the ones used in the United States. Furthermore, information about China’s containment strategy is clearly manipulated by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its propaganda apparatus. 

China’s leaders learned the lessons of Mikhail Gorbachev’s failure to manage the transition of the Soviet Union from totalitarianism to a slightly more benign version of Communism. They didn’t make the mistake of not crushing the freedom protesters in Tiananmen Square as Gorbachev did when the Berlin Wall fell and the Soviet empire collapsed.