“… On board we have a daily connection with the terrestrial realities; we also have access to the internet; we can communicate with the control centers and as early as November, we had started following the first infections, initially only in Asian countries, then on my return the first infections in Europe ... " (April 25, 2020 - transmission Oil, Rai 1)
"... on the station we followed what was happening on Earth: even before I returned from November we were aware of this probable pandemic infection and above all gravity which was spreading like wildfire right in Europe shortly before my return " (May 9, 2020 - TG2 stories)
This is what Luca Parmitano said twice in the last month. Indeed, Colonel Luca Parmitano, Air Force officer with 25 years of service and the beauty of six space missions behind him. We are not talking about an emotional recruit, nor about a man chasing media visibility (he would have used other means ...), let alone one with fragile nerves: we are facing one of the reasons for pride in this country, a soldier who is he was the first Italian to carry out an extravehicular activity on 9 July 2013, with 6 hours and 7 minutes of spacewalk, and the first Italian (and the third European) to command the International Space Station (ISS) during Expedition 61. So let's not talk about someone who confuses November with January twice.
Well, he said something big, or rather huge, in the almost total silence of the Italian media.
First of all, Colonel Parmitano was the first in Italy and with the authority of his person and rank, he confirmed what abroad even mainstream media reported1,2i.e. that American intelligence warned allies and other governments, including Israel, as early as November 2019, while Communist China still did not officially report any coronavirus epidemic.
That same report, certainly already available to all leaders before November 28, according to all sources warned that the spread of such a pandemic would cause "a catastrophic event". He did so with evidence, many weeks before the late martyr for freedom assassinated by communist officials (in Rolls Royce) of mainland China, announced the imminent danger to the world.
It would be interesting to ask Parmitano who kept him informed: if directly the USA or the Italian authorities or even a plurality of governments, as it seems more probable (as commander of the ISS). In the interviews he makes it clear that this information circulated normally among all the members of the mission, also consisting of Russian cosmonauts: it therefore seems obvious to deduce that Moscow also knew or had been informed.
At the time, South Korea and Japan had received the same communications - and perhaps more - and had adapted because they had the terrible experiences of SARS and MERS very closely and, for historical and geopolitical reasons, they trust the People's Republic of China very little.
In the West, the warnings were not deemed worthy of reaction, apart from having circulated them as it seems to understand, among the same rulers who then, more or less clumsily, managed the crisis.
Then, Parmitano talks about a serious phenomenon that, before February 6, in our continent "It was spreading like wildfire". Note well: he did not use the expression "leopard spot", that is, with so many modest locations separated from each other as it appeared to any observer in that period, but to "wildfire”, That is, with the dynamics that the phenomenon really had, but that the news and ministries of health discovered only in the second half of March.
There are one or more reports or studies from the American services - or from another country that participated in the Expedition 61 mission - on the probable progress of the COVID-19 infection that have not been made public but have circulated among people in top positions, including precisely the ISS commander? If yes, was this taken into account when the first pandemic management strategies were set up? Frankly, it seems obvious that the same services that had prepared the first report have remained, so to speak, even when the People's Republic has admitted the existence of the epidemic and that it has put it under control.
One would ask the Italian government (the delegation to the services is in the hands of the prime minister) if once informed - we refuse to believe that Prime Minister Conte knew less than the ISS commander in November - he took precautionary measures, such as subjecting to medical examination of the soldiers who participated in the Wuhan games on 18-27 October (v.articolo), precisely the territory from which a potentially catastrophic epidemic was spreading. If so, with what results? If not, why?
Many questions, many deaths and incalculable economic damage. For now, no answer. But a light came on at the end of the tunnel ...
Images: RAI / Ministry of National Defense of the People's Republic of China / government (Italian)