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Top 10 Creepy Things Happening Inside China

by Jana Louise Smit
fact checked by Jamie Frater

China is ancient and beautiful. But cherry blossoms and the Great Wall aside, the country’s freakiest issues could harm its own population, the international community, and even unborn sacred leaders.

SEE ALSO: 10 Ways You Are Ruled By Communist China

There is a terrifying reason why China is never short of organ donors. Its social point system is also straight out of a dystopian novel. Some mysteries are equally creepy. Nobody knows why the government remains quiet about a deadly virus, or what happened that day when American diplomats experienced a bizarre attack on Chinese soil. If you think those things are weird, you won’t believe these strange occurrences:

10. The J-20 Fighter Jet

China gave one look at an American fighter plane, the F-22 Raptor, and decided to counter it. Enter the J-20. For a long time, the stealth aircraft was designed and tested in secret. In 2018, it rolled out onto the tarmac for everyone to see. The answer to the Raptor was finally combat-ready.

The sinister aura fostered during its secretive beginnings was missing. More correctly, a little bit delayed. A set of WS-15 engines was supposed to make it equal or better than the F-22. Instead, after an explosion during a ground test in 2015, the engines were excluded from the plane’s design. This means that while China’s latest jet is operational and capable, it cannot yet growl at the F-22.

For the time being, the J-20 flies with weaker engines until the WS-15 problem is sorted out. This could take a few years but the aircraft remains special. An array of weaponry arms this beast, making it China’s best defense against the stealth planes of the U.S.

9. Most New Pharmaceuticals Are Fake

In 2016, the Chinese government investigated the latest pharmaceutical drugs. The study focused on products waiting for approval. The analysis included 1,622 clinical trials and additional data like application paperwork, ingredients, and the creation timelines of the drugs. The results were disturbing.

Over 80 percent of the data was fraudulent. Records about side effects had been deleted. Information was twisted until it “proved” that the drugs worked. Other information was incomplete or missing. Many products were not even new. Instead, somebody just mixed existing medicines. The investigators also found that several trial results were written before any experiments were performed.

The dishonesty ran deep. Scientists, pharma companies, laboratories, and even other investigators were implicated. This seedy network was not purely motivated by greed. Pharmaceutical employees are under enormous pressure to produce groundbreaking work or risk getting fired. Add the cut-throat competition among companies and the rampant corner-cutting starts to make sense.

8. Presidential Enemy – Winnie The Pooh

A lot of things we take for granted are blocked in China. In 2017, Winnie-the-Pooh joined the censored club. The reason was not that the lovable character made remarks about the government. Or disagreed with Chinese law. Or refuse to wear pants. His terrible crime? Chinese citizens started to compare President Xi Jinping to the iconic bear.

Revenge was swift. Pooh was banned from Chinese social media and his stickers were removed from chat apps. China’s upper crust famously lacks humor. They cannot stand civilians with clown genes. For example, those individuals who first started the trend in 2013 after they compared Xi and President Obama with a picture of the tubby bear walking next to the fit-looking Tigger. A year later, Xi fumbled a handshake with Japan’s Prime Minister and the internet struck with a meeting between Pooh and Eeyore. In 2015, China’s most censored image was that of Pooh popping up through a toy car’s roof. It was a composite that also showed Xi standing up through the opening of his parade car’s roof.

7. Mysterious “BreedReady” List

In 2019, a Dutch researcher stumbled upon a database in China and anyone could read it. This was more than a little disturbing. The cache held the private information of 1.8 million Chinese women. Not only did the database reveal their phone numbers and home addresses (a stalker’s dream) but it also gave each person a “BreedReady” status.

Some speculated that poor translation caused the bizarre word. The database was written in English. A language-challenged individual from China could easily have mangled the word without any sinister intentions. The original Chinese phrase could have referred to women of child-bearing age or whether they had children. Indeed, the average age was 32.

Alternatively, the creepy options were legion. The government could be identifying women who can “breed,” since birthrates are falling too fast. It might not even be a government registry. Another company, dating app, or hacker could have compiled the list which also included details about the women’s education levels and political views. We might never know who gazed at those ovaries. The database was taken down soon after the Dutch researcher spilled the beans.

6. The Electromagnetic Railgun

One of China’s latest naval toys is an electromagnetic railgun. Spotted for the first time in 2011, it uses electromagnetic energy instead of conventional gunpowder to fire. Incredibly, the force shoots projectiles at 2.6 kilometers per second (1.6 miles per second).

In 2019, photos showed the first Chinese warship mounted with the gun. The Haiyangshan was a Type 072II Yuting-class tank landing ship. It was first noticed on the Yangtze River where the vessel was docked near a shipyard. A few months later, more photos appeared on social media and they apparently showed Haiyangshan sailing the open ocean. It was still armed with what looked like the electromagnetic railgun. This raised suspicions that the weapon was being tested under sea conditions.

This kind of firepower is enough to give other nations the willies. But China is not satisfied. US defense sources claim that the country wants, by 2025, a warship with electromagnetic railguns that can hit a target at 200 kilometers (124 mi.) away.

SEE ALSO: Top 10 Utterly Bizarre Things Banned In China

5. Reincarnation Must Obey Chinese Laws

For the first time in history, the world might see two Dalai Lamas living at the same time. This remark came from the current Buddhist leader during a 2019 interview. The 83-year-old man was chosen for this exalted position when he was two years old. For the past 60 years, the Dalai Lama lived in India after he fled the Chinese in his native Tibet.

Recently, Beijing said that his reincarnation must comply with their laws. It’s called the “New Regulations on Religious Affairs and the Rules on the Management of the Reincarnation of Tibetan Living Buddhas.” According to this mouthful, China reserves the right to approve the selection of the child destined to be the next Dalai Lama.

The present leader knows how dangerous this is. His successor would be under the control of China’s Communist Party, which persecutes most religions. Additionally, in 1995, the Dalai Lama identified a child as the reincarnation of the Panchen Lama. This position is the second-highest rank after himself. The Chinese government took the 6-year-old Tibetan boy into “protective custody.” Beijing provided a Panchen Lama of their choice and nobody ever saw the Tibetan kid again. Due to this, the current leader implored people to only trust a Dalai Lama reborn in a free country and not the one chosen by China.

4. Dystopian Credit System


China ranks ‘good’ and ‘bad’ citizens with ‘social credit’ system

Imagine not being able to ride a train or get quick treatment at a hospital. The reason? You lack enough government points. In 2018, China implemented a surveillance and population control project unlike anything the world had ever seen.

Called the Social Credit System, a score is given to every citizen and business. A positive score is bolstered by things like paying the bills on time, sorting recycling items properly, and doing charity. Perks include cheaper travel rates, better credit opportunities, and shorter waiting periods at a hospital. A chilling statement provided the other side of the coin, saying that the system was designed to “make it hard for the discredited to take a single step.” This epic public coercion is made possible by the country’s 200 million CCTV cameras. They are hooked up to facial recognition software and once a person is identified, the system can riffle through their private records and watch for disobedience.

A point deduction is frighteningly easy. People can lose points for smoking in forbidden zones, jaywalking, or struggling to pay their bills. One journalist, Liu Hu, reported government corruption and was scored as “dishonest.” He was denied access to public transport, his social media accounts were closed down and his career was destroyed.

3. Sonic Attacks

In 2017, American diplomats stationed in Cuba fell ill. The mysterious circumstances surrounding the event, which many suspect was a sonic attack, soured relations between Cuba and the US. At one point, all Cuban diplomats were kicked out of the States. This episode is well-known to those who follow the news. A fact that received less attention was that during the same year, and a few months into 2018, the same thing happened in China.

American diplomats stationed in Guangzhou started hearing funny noises. This was followed by splitting headaches and insomnia. One consulate, who also reported abnormal feelings of pressure, ended up with brain trauma. Highly alarmed, the American government withdrew several staff members and their families. The consequences between the two countries did not reflect the Cuban kaboodle. Chinese diplomats were not expelled, but officials from China expressed their concern when the US refused to play open cards with them. A local investigation found no wrongdoing but said it would remain open-minded to any information the Americans might share, which was not forthcoming.

2. China Is Hogging A Lethal Virus

The United States and China had an understanding: Ever since the H7N9 bird flu was first detected in China in 2013, samples would be provided to the US on a regular basis. Initially, things went swell. China shared the new flu strains and all related data. Over time, communication deteriorated until the samples stopped. No amount of asking could produce a single vial.

The implications are not immediately obvious. However, China’s refusal is a disaster waiting in the wings. H7N9 has a 40 percent fatality rate. If that is not terrifying enough, the strain keeps evolving. American scientists need to follow and understand this shapeshifting to protect people from a pandemic. But since the silence fell, there came with it the chance that the world might experience an outbreak nobody is prepared for. Indeed, there is no way to develop a vaccine without the latest samples.

Worse, China experienced two bumper infections in the meantime, in 2016 and 2017. Scientists outside of the country know nothing about the type of H7N9 that felled hundreds. No samples or patient information were ever released. Should this virus hogging continue, many scientists fear that it could lead to an international crisis and countless deaths.

1. A Terrifying Organ Trade

China is known for its efficiency. However, some fields cannot produce zippy results without causing suspicion. For instance, every country struggles with the number of patients needing organ transplants. There are not enough donors. Most people wait for years to replace a defective organ. In China, the period is more like weeks.

In 2016, around 640 organs were transplanted. This sounds normal until you check the facts. All 640 operations occurred over a period of 10 days. The official donors were listed as 30 individuals, which runs to an impossible 21 body parts harvested per person. In the past, China plucked organs from prisoners without their permission. The country claimed to have abandoned this practice. But in 2019, a tribunal interviewed witnesses and combed through records. They found that the forced harvesting was still very much alive.

One doctor testified that he was ordered to remove the kidneys from a prisoner who had been shot in the head. He performed the operation while the man was still alive and struggling. Criminals are not the only targets. The so-called dissidents, or people arrested because they catch the government’s dislike, are also slaughtered like cattle. Among them are ethnic minorities and especially hard-hit are the members of a spiritual movement called Falun Gong.

fact checked by Jamie Frater
Jana Louise Smit

Jana earns her beans as a freelance writer and author. She wrote one book on a dare and hundreds of articles. Jana loves hunting down bizarre facts of science, nature and the human mind.

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