Death tolls do not lie. The most striking disparity in Covid-19 fatalities to date is between East Asian countries, where the total number of deaths per million inhabitants is consistently below 10, and much of the West, where the numbers are in the hundreds. For example, Japan has so far reported 7.8 deaths per million, followed by South Korea (5.8), Singapore (4.6), China (3.2) — and most remarkably of all — Vietnam, with zero deaths.

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