30 September 2023
COVID-19Fact checkMisleading

Misleading: This discussion on ‘China’s plot to weaken US troops with vaccines’ is not organized by the Communist Party but by US website

Video is from a live broadcast of GTV, an online platform known for its anti-Communist Party stance and push for misinformation and conspiracy theories.

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A widely circulated video on social media claims to show online-conference participants discussing China’s plot to weaken the U.S. troops by getting them vaccinated.

On Twitter and Facebook, the clip was shared by many accounts (for example, here, here, here, here, and here.) Cumulatively, they have amassed tens of thousands of views and hundreds of likes and shares.

Another video on the video-sharing service Bitchute claims that the conference clip was “leaked” from China and that the people speaking are Chinese Communist Party “bosses.” This video has over 5,000 views at the time of writing.

Another video on Rumble also shared a similar claim and has more than 5,000 views.

Screenshot of the misleading tweet.
The video on Twitter claims it reveals the Communist Party’s plan.

However, all these claims are misleading.

The video clip in question is from a live broadcast of GTV, an online media founded by an exiled Chinese tycoon and known anti-Communist Party figure, Guo Wengui (also known as Miles Guo or Miles Kwok).

Annie Lab was able to find the original clip, dated Aug. 23, 2021.

In the video, Guo says everyone who is vaccinated against COVID-19 is “sentenced to death” and China has an “antidote” that they are withholding.

A screenshot of the misleading tweet, to the left, compared to the original video stream, on the right.
Screenshots of the misleading tweet (L) and the original video (R)

Guo has been repeatedly accused of spreading misinformation (here, here, and here) through his GTV and GNews platforms that he launched with Steve Bannon, a one-time advisor to former U.S. President Donald Trump.

He is also known for making claims and conspiracy theories that are hard to independently verify or corroborate.

The COVID-19 pandemic has become a diplomatic flashpoint between China and the United States as of late.

Washington has continued to float the possibility that the virus originated in a Chinese lab, despite the lack of conclusive evidence.

Beijing, in turn, is reportedly pushing their own theory that the virus was brought over by the U.S. military.

Both sides have also been the target of vaccine misinformation campaigns.

This lack of cooperation has been cited by various organizations as damaging to global efforts to combat the virus.

The video clip spreading across social media appears to be a screen recording of a tweet originally posted by Jarome Bell, a candidate for the 2nd Congressional District of Virginia in the 2022 midterm elections in the United States.

A screenshot of Jarome Bell's twitter account, which has been stripped of all content and left with an "account suspended" notice.
Jarome Bell’s Twitter account, which once shared Guo’s video, has been taken down.

However, Jarome Bell’s original post is not accessible, as his Twitter account has since been suspended for violating the platform’s rules.

The suspension arrived shortly after a Newsweek article asked why his account was still active despite his calls for the execution of those involved in auditing the Arizona election results.