Conspiracy theorists burn down 5G towers
It sounds so absurd that the neck hairs of every reasonably clear-minded person stand up: Cell phone towers for the new 5G standard weaken the immune system of the population and thus contribute specifically to the spread of the coronavirus. This is the assertion that conspiracy theorists are currently spreading on the Internet. And although there is not the slightest clue that there is even a hint of truth in this thesis, it is very well received by some. In England, a group of advocates of this theory have now taken the Corona pandemic solution into their own hands – setting fire to cell towers.
Corona Panic: Three 5G transmitters burnt down
According to a media report , there were arson attacks on three transmitters in Birmingham, Liverpool and Melling. At least one of them was not even equipped with 5G technology. Nevertheless, there is little doubt that the fires can be traced back to the conspiracy theory circulating on the Internet. This is also supported by a video of one of the fires published on YouTube and Facebook. The author of the clip explicitly establishes a connection to the 5G corona virus theory. Their supporters had previously insulted employees of British Internet providers and accused them of actively supporting the spread of the corona virus. The British government described the attacks as dangerous nonsense.
Corona panic: Government condemns attacks
Representatives of the Ministry of Health also drew attention to the fact that the radio towers were urgently needed in times of the pandemic so that affected people could make emergency calls. The UK’s Department of Culture and Digital Media , for its part, points out that there is no scientific evidence to suggest a link between 5G technology and the spread of the coronavirus. The best evidence for this is that the virus is spreading to regions where there are no 5G towers yet. In all cases of arson, the investigation continues.
Below is part of an article from Time Magazine that sums up the conspiracy well.
The unfounded conspiracy theories reportedly began when a Belgian doctor speculated to a national newspaper about 5G masts in Wuhan, China, where the new coronavirus originated. Despite the article being removed after a few hours because the comments were baseless, the narrative was picked up by conspiratorial Internet personalities and has spread across the Internet as the coronavirus fans anxieties around the world. Contrary to the conspiracy theories, which say 5G’s high-frequency waves are harmful, the scientific community agrees they are beneath the wavelength that can damage human cells.
Conspiracy experts say that it’s understandable that misinformation like the baseless 5G theories would spread in such an uncertain time. “When there are periods of great anxiety about unknown events and unknown threats, people become more conspiracy minded,” says Quassim Cassam, a professor of philosophy at the University of Warwick and author of the book Conspiracy Theories. The original 5G conspiracies, which existed in fringe areas of the Internet before the COVID-19 outbreak, focused on the idea that the new phone masts required by the technology are somehow causing health problems that are being concealed by governments.
When the coronavirus began to spread around the world in January, Cassam says, conspiracy theorists seized on the uncertainties surrounding the virus to spread the baseless theory to wider audiences searching for information about COVID-19. “The classic form of a conspiracy theory is that there’s a small group of a small group of powerful individuals who are doing stuff behind the backs of the people and endangering our futures,” he says. “If you take that as a template, you see this 5G theory is basically the same theory being recycled. People were saying the same about 4G, just without coronavirus.”