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Lately the President and Secretary Pompeo are arguing in the media that China purposely created the COVID19 as a weapon. There are no formal statements at the Whitehouse or State Department websites. The DNI has issued a statement at its website, and GPO has agreed to catalog the news release for its historical value. Times’ journalists reported that the Administration’s strategy is to blame China as a political strategy to divert the public’s attention from its handling of COVID19 outbreak in the U.S.
Recently the Trump Says China May Be ‘Knowingly Responsible’ for Virus By Mario Parker April 18, 2020, 4:10 PM PDT Updated on April 20, 2020, 1:15 AM PDT
‘President Donald Trump raised the prospect that China deliberately caused the Covid-19 outbreak that’s killed over 39,000 Americans and said there should be consequences if the country is found to be “knowingly responsible.”‘
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, ODNI News Release No. 11-20, April 30, 2020 Intelligence Community Statement on Origins of COVID-19 WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Office of the Director of National Intelligence today issued the following Intelligence Community (IC) statement:
“The entire Intelligence Community has been consistently providing critical support to U.S. policymakers and those responding to the COVID-19 virus, which originated in China. The Intelligence Community also concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the COVID-19 virus was not manmade or genetically modified. As we do in all crises, the Community’s experts respond by surging resources and producing critical intelligence on issues vital to U.S. national security. The IC will continue to rigorously examine emerging information and intelligence to determine whether the outbreak began through contact with infected animals or if it was the result of an accident at a laboratory in Wuhan.”
G.O.P. Aiming To Make China The Scapegoat: [Foreign Desk] Martin, Jonathan; Haberman, Maggie. New York Times, Late Edition (East Coast); New York, N.Y. [New York, N.Y]19 Apr 2020: A.1.
“The strategy could not be clearer: From the Republican lawmakers blanketing Fox News to new ads from President Trump’s super PAC to the biting criticism on Donald Trump Jr.’s Twitter feed, the G.O.P. is attempting to divert attention from the administration’s heavily criticized response to the coronavirus by pinning the blame on China. With the death toll from the pandemic already surpassing 34,000 Americans and unemployment soaring to levels not seen since the Great Depression, Republicans increasingly believe that elevating China as an archenemy culpable for the spread of the virus, and harnessing America’s growing animosity toward Beijing, may be the best way to salvage a difficult election” https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/18/us/politics/trump-china-virus.html
Trump to replace Health Inspector General who criticized coronavirus response, BY GRACE SEGERS, MAY 2, 2020 / 4:47 PM / CBS NEWS
‘President Trump announced his intent to nominate a new inspector general for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), weeks after acting inspector general Christi Grimm released a report detailing shortages of testing and personal protective equipment (PPE) in hospitals responding to the coronavirus pandemic… Mr. Trump criticized Grimm in early April, calling the findings in her report “wrong.”‘
Hospital Experiences Responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Results of a National Pulse Survey March 23-27, 2020 WHAT WE FOUND Hospitals reported that their most significant challenges centered on testing and caring for patients with COVID-19 and keeping staff safe. Hospitals said that severe shortages of testing supplies and extended waits for test results limited hospitals’ ability to monitor the health of patients and staff. They also reported that widespread shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) put staff and patients at risk. In addition, hospitals said that they were not always able to maintain adequate staffing levels or to offer staff adequate support.
The U.S Government Offices has cataloged and made available to the public. https://permanent.fdlp.gov/gpo135372/oei-06-20-00300.pdf
co-published on govdoc-l and freegovinfo.info.
One of the things that most scares me about the current administration is the terrible — and possibly long-term — erosive effect it is having on the entire executive branch. One of the best books to document this systemic tragedy is Michael Lewis’ Fifth Risk: Undoing Democracy (many libraries have access to it via Overdrive so check your local public library. They’re still working hard even during the pandemic!)
If you can’t get your hands on Lewis’ book, then check out the American Prospect, which has done a massive investigation into the Trump administration’s dodgy practices.
In three years as president, he has transformed the executive branch into a giant favor factory, populated with the agents or willing partners of virtually every special interest. Add up all the routine, daily outrages—the quasi-bribery and quasi-extortion, the private raids on public funds, the handouts to the undeserving, the massive flow of cash, jobs, and freebies back in return—and Trump’s attempt to squeeze a little re-election help out of the fragile government of a desperate Eastern European country does not loom particularly large in the reckoning … The Trump administration has brought its brand of corruption and self-dealing to every agency in the federal government, and it’s hard for anyone to keep on top of it all. We’ve mapped it out for you. Click on any agency building below, and unlock an extensive dossier of the activities happening inside.
via Mapping Corruption.
President Donald J. Trump Is Demanding Accountability From the World Health Organization. April 15, 2020. Whitehouse Factsheet “I will never hesitate to take any necessary steps to protect the lives, health, and safety of the American people. I will always put the well-being of America first. President Donald J. Trump.”
Trump Administration Officials Warned Against Halting Funding to WHO, Leaked Memo Shows. By Yeganeh Torbati, ProPublica. 16 April 20 “A draft State Department memo says the move would “cede ground” to China and hobble the global response to the coronavirus pandemic. ”
‘An internal memorandum written by U.S. officials and addressed to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warns that cutting funding to the World Health Organization, as President Donald Trump said he would do Tuesday, would erode America’s global standing, threaten U.S. lives and hobble global efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. The memo, which was prepared before Trump’s Rose Garden announcement, was written by officials within the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs and includes a detailed list of how U.S. funding to the WHO helps countries in the Middle East control the pandemic. A draft version of the memo, which was labeled “Sensitive But Unclassified” and was titled “Information Memo for the Secretary,” was seen by ProPublica.’
co-published on govdoc-l and freegovinfo.info.
Trump says he didn’t know of, still hasn’t seen Navarro memos on possible pandemic. By CAITLIN OPRYSKO, 04/07/2020
“President Donald Trump on Monday denied that he’d ever seen a handful of memos, written and circulated through the White House by his top trade adviser beginning in January, that warned the coronavirus could cost the country trillions of dollars and imperil the lives of millions of Americans. At the White House during a coronavirus task force news briefing, the president said he’d learned of Peter Navarro’s memos, the contents of which were first disclosed on Monday night, only a few days ago, but he asserted that the documents lined up with his travel restrictions for foreigners coming from China.”
He Could Have Seen What Was Coming: Behind Trump’s Failure on the Virus. Lipton, Eric; Sanger, David E; Haberman, Maggie; Shear, Michael D; Mazzetti, Mark; Barnes, Julian E. New York Times, Apr 11, 2020. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/11/us/politics/coronavirus-trump-response.html
‘An examination reveals the president was warned about the potential for a pandemic but that internal divisions, lack of planning and his faith in his own instincts led to a halting response…A memo dated Feb. 14, prepared in coordination with the National Security Council and titled “U.S. Government Response to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus,” documented what more drastic measures would look like, including: “significantly limiting public gatherings and cancellation of almost all sporting events, performances, and public and private meetings that cannot be convened by phone. Consider school closures. Widespread ‘stay at home’ directives from public and private organizations with nearly 100% telework for some.” The memo did not advocate an immediate national shutdown, but said the targeted use of “quarantine and isolation measures” could be used to slow the spread in places where “sustained human-to-human transmission” is evident.’
A librarian is seeking the National Security Council memo to make it available to the public.