There is a lot that scientists still do not know about the coronavirus. What is the incubation period? Are people contagious before they become symptomatic? What is the fatality rate? What are the transmission routes? Where did it originate? Do masks really work?
With all these questions up in the air, transparency is important, especially since the virus is spreading so rapidly. But in the face of the emergency, the Chinese government reverted to form and prevaricated. The bodies of some victims may even have been cremated to keep the tally of fatalities down. The crisis is rapdily becoming a test of the real strength and resilience of President Xi's authoritarian style.
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