China faces a three-pronged attack in the realm of public opinion. The Olympics converge with COVID; the third is three levelings up in Chinese military aggression.
COVID is seen in the public eye as having mainly originated from China. Even with conspiracy theories surrounding Faucci and Gates, no explanation lets China off the hook. That actually works to argue against the conspiracy theories—if they were true, they would seem to give China an alibi, but they don’t. Every noteworthy theory on the COVID origin points to China.
Now, COVID is crashing the Olympics in Japan.
This makes an additional bad connotation against China and the Olympics. So, with China wanting to host the 2022 Olympics, boycotts against China can be expected even from the Japanese. Then, other countries will feel comfortable joining the anti-China Olympic boycott. Such boycotts from across the globe will achieve two things: fueling popular hatred against China and inflaming China’s emotional-shame reaction. The Chinese government will dig in its heels and the world will want the Chinese dead where they stand.
But, adding to both sentiments are China’s military saber rattling. Surprise military drills within 300 miles of Taiwan, a step up in Chinese vessels observing a US-Australia navy drill, threats to nuke Japan if Japan honors a treaty to defend Taiwan from invasion—these also enrage the non-Chinese public against China. China has the control to stop global anti-China sentiment: stop giving excuses. But, that is a course of action that emotionally-driven shame doesn’t understand. And, no one expects this response better than the masterminds of the West.