Coronavirus - Eye of the Darkness cover

Coronavirus: is it possible that a man already knew everything in 1981?

You can call them coincidences if you like (or if you prefer conspiracies and conspiracies). Already in 1981 there were those who spoke of a deadly virus which would have been created in Wuhan which reminds many people of the coronavirus.

While the coronavirus epidemic is also spreading in Italy, causing the suspension of public events including Serie A football matches and Venice carnival(here the updated outbreak count), on the internet it turns out that in a novel the story had already been predicted, almost 40 years ago.

Does The Eyes of Darkness talks about coronavirus?

It is a thriller novel, “The Eyes of Darkness”, by successful American writer Dean Koontz who to date has written over 105 novels as well as some collections of short stories, with over 450 million copies sold overall.

In the novel Koontz imagines that in a Wuhan military biological laboratory a lethal virus that affects humans is created, called “Whuan-400”, which incidentally ends up hitting an American boy, then transferred to a secret military facility to avoid the possible pandemic.

Is the existence of the Wuhan laboratory just a coincidence?

In one passage of the novel we read: “It was around then that a Chinese scientist named Li Chen defected to the United States, carrying a diskette record of China's most important and dangerous new biological weapon in a decade. They call the stuff "Wuhan-400" because it was developed at their RDNS labs outside the city of Wuhan”.

Is the existence of the Wuhan laboratory just a coincidence? Although officially the Wuhan biological laboratory, the only BSL-4 in China, opened in 2014, Wuhan has historically been home to numerous scientific research facilities, including those dealing with microbiology and virology. All this is not accidental.


Mix of factual information and narrative hypotheses

Wuhan is located along the Yangtze River that crosses China from east to west and at the same time is along the high-speed railway line that connects the north and south of the country. It is essentially a nerve center of the freight and people transport network in China, located in the center of the country.

An intelligent writer like Koontz was aware of all this and they could have used this factual information to create a story that appeared both convincing and disturbing.

Beijing tries to keep its distance

As it did, many Chinese media close to the Beijing regime were quick to point out. A regime that in all ways wants to avoid, in addition to the spread of panic, from being even just by hypothesis alongside the possibility of having really started, involuntarily or not, to what someone starts to describe as the plague of the 21st century, even if it is only a flu form, even if severe, which seems to have both a high transmissibility and a relatively low mortality.

To be true, it was pointed out that Koontz's original idea was to set the story, not in China but in Russia. In the first edition of the novel, published precisely in 1981 under the pseudonym of Leigh Nichols, Koontz spoke of a virus called "Gorki-400" because it was developed “outside of Gorki”, in Russia.

Gorki 400 vs Wuhan 400

The laboratory was originally not in Wuhan but in Gorki

It was only when the novel was republished in 1989, this time crediting it to Koontz, that it was preferred to change the name of the virus and the location where to locate the laboratory in which it had been created, as can be seen in the photo (above) which shows the two different texts. Why this rethinking?

Because in full Perestroika and with Mikhail Gorbachev committed to transforming Russia from a historic opponent to a friendly country of the United States, there was no longer any need to make similar combinations. As instead it could still be done with China, which remained anchored to communism and not exactly a friendly country of the USA.

Tags: Conspiracy theory, Health