Social media footage out of Shanghai is drawing comparisons to an Orwellian nightmare.
The entire city of 25 million is under lockdown after authorities announced a fresh surge in COVID-19 cases. At first, officials attempted to divide China’s financial hub into western and eastern halves with different restrictions.
Now residents of Shanghai find themselves under indefinite lockdown, all in the name of perceived security.
To cope with the emotional strain, citizens began singing and protesting from their apartment windows in scenes reminiscent of New York and London’s impromptu balcony concerts from spring 2020.
But for the Chinese Communist Party, any form of self-expression that could be construed as a cry for freedom is a threat. A threat that must be stomped out — either by force or the threat of force.
That has led to drones and jerry-rigged robot dogs (yes, you read that right) telling residents to comply with the widening lockdowns.
BBC News adds:
Reported cases have risen to more than 13,000 a day, although the numbers are not high by some international standards.
Residents in some areas of the city said the strict policy meant no-one was allowed to leave their housing compounds, not even to collect essential provisions.
Instead, authorities have forced locals to rely on the government for their well-being.
How’s it going so far? A shortage of supplies and staff has already led to a backlog in food and water orders.
Amid the sudden quarantine, office workers find themselves shut in for days with their colleagues in the city’s hundreds of skyscrapers. Countless employees find themselves camping out in sleeping bags next to their cubicles.
Sleep at work has become the new work from home, notes The Wall Street Journal:
Yan Yuejin, a property analyst in Shanghai, found himself unexpectedly sequestered with his colleagues in the office early last month after authorities found positive cases in the vicinity. More than 2,000 staff working in three buildings in the area were shut indoors for seven days and tested frequently, he said.
Whatever frustration has arisen seems less pronounced than it almost certainly is, as the government has gone to extraordinary lengths to censor public outcry on state-sponsored social networks.
Americans have experienced the trials and tribulations of lockdowns, but nothing like this.
At least not yet.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the positions of American Liberty News.