As is well known, Shanghai has been under complete lockdown for weeks. Millions of people have been locked in their apartments with very little food. There is talk that Beijing may be next.
It has all been well publicised; videos of locked in residents screaming and wailing and berating police are all over the internet.
What is this all about? Why has the Chinese government done such a thing, and why has it done it so publicly?
It obviously has nothing to do with Covid-19.
Sometimes, in order to understand an action, it is best to look at what effect the action causes.
One of the effects is that every single household in China has had the realization that a lockdown could happen to them. Most would be frantically stocking as much food and needed pharmaceuticals as they can get their hands on.
Why would the Chinese government want that?
The only thing that I can think of which makes sense is that if you were about to begin a military action which you knew would result in sanctions, i.e. massive trade dislocations, then you would want that.
The previously unlikely (to me) scenario of China invading Taiwan could be imminent. The feeble current leadership of the U.S. and its preoccupation with Russia means that the Chinese may have calculated that there will never be a better time.
The U.S., U.K., Japan and Australia have all mouthed-off about defending Taiwan.
Hopefully, that is just the usual vacuous political posturing.
It might be time for you to stock your pantry. P.B.