The president’s decision unilaterally to withdraw from the World Health Organization, without announcing an alternative body, against the advice of medical experts and the GOP’s own House Foreign Affairs Committee’s recent report into the origins of COVID-19, does nothing to reassure voters that we will be prepared for the next pandemic.
We know the Chinese Communist Party is to blame for unleashing the virus and the WHO helped cover up, but what are we going to do, apart from take our bat and ball and go home?
We need to make sure the same mistakes don’t happen the next time a bat virus mutates somewhere in China.
First up, officials all over the world should stop lying.
After so many lies it’s no wonder that, after obeying orders for three months, Americans are starting to behave irrationally, and case numbers are rising again.
White House health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci admits he lied about the effectiveness of masks in order to safeguard stockpiles for health workers.
No excuse. It was an arrogant vote of no confidence in the good sense of Americans to self-regulate if given accurate information.
When officials lie, we lose faith in authority, get our information elsewhere and throw caution to the wind.
The result is that too many Americans think masks don’t work when, in fact, they’re probably the best tool we have to ward off infection.
According to a review last month in the Lancet of 172 studies across 16 countries, wearing a face mask reduces your chance of COVID-19 infection from 17 percent to 3 percent, with best results from N95 respirator-type masks.
But Fauci’s lie gave masks a bad name and caused outbreaks of hostility between skeptics and believers.
Of course, the deadliest lies are from China. The CCP keeps changing its story about the outbreak. First, it came from the Wuhan wet market, and then it didn’t.
They swore blind it didn’t come from the Wuhan virology lab which just happened to be testing coronaviruses, has a track record of sloppy safety and staff who have gone missing.
They blamed the US military, and now are pointing the finger at Spain, after an unverified University of Barcelona study found virus traces in wastewater samples dated March 2019.
As soon as the WHO belatedly bowed to international pressure to investigate the origins of the virus, China leapt on the Spanish news to say all countries should be investigated, a time-wasting charade.
This weekend, an advance team of WHO investigators will fly to China, eight months after the first confirmed case in Hubei province of the new coronavirus which has killed more than 500,000 people.
“We can fight the virus better when we know . . . how it started,” WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus said last week.
It’s pathetic. No wonder the Trump administration has run out of patience.
But the GOP’s June report, “The origins of the COVID-19 global pandemic”, recommends a more constructive path.
The author, Texas Rep. Michael McCaul, says the US should dump Tedros but remain in the WHO and leverage international pressure to stop the “CCP’s malfeasance from giving rise to a third pandemic during the 21st century.”
“We do not believe the withdrawal of the US or the establishment of a competing international organization is the correct path forward.”
McCaul blames the CCP for “allowing a local outbreak to become a global pandemic [due to] its efforts to conceal the spread and novel nature of the virus, failures to share accurate information as required by international law and the suppression of voices seeking to warn the world.”
Tedros, “actively engaged in an effort to defend the CCP’s leadership from criticism, negatively impacting the world’s understanding of the virus and hampering the global response effort.”
McCaul wants the US and “likeminded WHO Member States” to investigate how and where the virus mutated into its lethal form.
He points out the WHO only found out about the outbreak on Dec. 31, from a US early warning site, not the CCP.
But there is evidence from open source intelligence that at least six weeks earlier, the CCP was preparing for a dangerous respiratory disease epidemic.
On Nov. 13, China’s national health authority issued new influenza guidance instructing hospitals to check blood-oxygen levels of pneumonia patients and look for what we now know are COVID-19 symptoms such as pneumothorax and mediastinal emphysema and multifocal brain damage.
The virus may have been circulating in September, when satellite images showed Wuhan hospitals to be unusually crowded.
An African Ph.D. student trapped in Wuhan during the lockdown told Korean Arirang News in February of a pneumonia outbreak “somewhere in September.”
By November, it was “an epidemic but [it] was concealed,” he said. “There are more than ten hospitals in Wuhan, and they are overwhelmed.”
That was at least a month before the WHO knew anything.
Then there is the mystery of the disappearing database at the Wuhan Institute of Virology which contained records of 15,000 viral samples from bats, birds, mosquitoes, rodents and ticks.
Among the samples was the bat coronavirus RaTG13, which is closely related to SARS-CoV-2, and was collected from a mineshaft in Yunnan Province where an outbreak of unexplained pneumonia in 2012 killed three workers who had been clearing mounds of bat feces.
But every trace of that invaluable WIV database has been deleted at a time when the world needs it most.
It can’t happen again.
A terrible thing happened Tuesday night in the close-knit Hudson Valley town of Washingtonville.
Some worthless vandal sawed off the flagpole and toppled the American flag that stood over the memorial built for five local firefighters killed on 9/11.
The Washingtonville 5 World Trade Center Memorial, which commemorates the ultimate sacrifice of Lt. Glenn Perry, Mark Whitford, Bobby Hamilton, Gerry Nevins and Battalion Chief Dennis Devlin, has been desecrated.
Perry’s brother Frank, 63, can’t bring himself to tell his 88-year-old mother.
“Enough is enough with the anarchistic activities,” he says.
“Law-abiding citizens in this country had better wake up and speak up. Our country is being torn apart.”
The mayor assures him the culprit will be caught and he draws comfort from the kindness of the locals, who already have offered money for a reward and will repair the flagpole.
But it’s a crying shame to see our 9/11 heroes dishonored.
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