(TibetanReview.net, Jun27’21) – World-renowned medical journal The Lancet is accused of kowtowing to China while acting fearless against Western democracies, according to a special investigation carried by the dailymail.co.uk Jun 27.
The Lancet did not shy away from political controversy when it signed a statement published by the journal last year, calling on Britain to end the “torture and medical neglect” of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, held in prison over US extradition demands.
But earlier this year, when prominent German psychiatrist Thomas Schulze sent a proposal to Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of The Lancet, suggesting they start a debate over the complicity of Chinese scientists in the persecution of Uighurs, it was flatly rejected.
Horton was reported to have responded by saying he did not “wish to do anything that might imperil” his editor in China.
“Publishing a call for a boycott might well make her situation untenable,” he was quoted as having written.
To Schulze this was “clear admission of kowtowing” to Beijing.
Schulze’s idea arose amid alarm over repressive surveillance, garnering of genetic data, enforced sterilisation and organ harvesting of prisoners locked away in brutally repressive concentration camps.
“We believe that the human rights situation in China has become unbearable and of unprecedented scope that we cannot stay silent any longer and at least need to have an open discussion in the best academic tradition,” Prof Schulze was quoted as having written.
To Schulze, “scientific independence and freedom of speech are integral to Western society and influential journals should not be in situations that compromise their integrity.”
But this was clearly not the case to The Lancet.
This 198-year-old journal is now at the centre of growing global questions over the role of supposedly authoritative scientific media in appeasing China’s Communist regime and stifling debate on suggestions that Covid could have leaked from a Wuhan lab, the investigative report said.