Much has been written about how the World Health Organisation colluded with the Chinese Communist Party and blinded the world over the impending disaster. There is no doubt that scores of lives could have been saved if the WHO had performed its duties honestly and not reduce itself as a mere lapdog of the Chinese government. US President Donald Trump initially temporarily freezes its funding and last week sent shockwaves across the world as he severed all ties with the WHO.
The WHO lost its top funder and perhaps that has prompted it to change its tunes. In a bombshell development, Associated Press reports that the WHO lauded the Chinese government so as to extract the virus-related data as the organisation was increasingly frustrated with China’s constant delays to share the data with it.
In what can be seen as an attempt to whitewash its collusion with the CCP, The Associated Press reports that the WHO publicly postured itself as the CCP’s lackey so as to obtain data critical to combating the virus. In January, on one hand, the WHO was praising China for its “transparency” which according to the WHO was “very impressive, and beyond words,” on the other hand at the same time, the Chinese government delayed the release of genome sequencing for more than a week after the Chinese government labs were successfully able to decode the genome sequencing.
The government labs were forced to release the genome sequencing after another lab went against the authorities and published it online on January 11. According to recordings obtained by the AP, the WHO lauded the CCP in a desperate attempt to get more information out of China.
In an internal meeting, WHO’s technical lead for COVID-19, Maria Van Kerkhove said, “We’re going on very minimal information. It’s clearly not enough for you to do proper planning.”
WHO’s top official in China, Dr. Gauden Galea in another internal meeting said, “We’re currently at the stage where yes, they’re giving it to us 15 minutes before it appears on CCTV.”
According to the report, the WHO officials feared that pushing for gene sequences and patient data will anger the Chinese authorities, and put the lives of Chinese scientists in peril while also increase the risk of being kicked out from China.
“This is exactly the same scenario, endlessly trying to get updates from China about what was going on. WHO barely got out of that one with its neck intact given the issues that arose around transparency in southern China,” said WHO’s chief of emergencies, Dr. Michael Ryan. Referring to the Ebola outbreak Dr Ryan further added, “This would not happen in Congo and did not happen in Congo and other places. We need to see the data…..It’s absolutely important at this point.”
The reason why the release of genome sequencing data was so crucial because of the fact that genome sequencing was the only way to ascertain the spread of the virus in other countries and also the first step of the development of tests, vaccines and drugs to combat the virus. The fact that the CCP knowingly delayed the release of the data directly makes Xi Jinping culpable and can be tried as a war criminal. The fact that the delay in the release of genome sequencing increased the spread of the virus by a factor of 100 to 200 times doesn’t bode well for China.
In what reveals the extent of WHO’s collusion or the alleged helplessness, the Shanghai Public Clinical Health Center, led by famed virologist Zhang Yongzhen after successfully able to sequence the virus warned that, “It should be contagious through respiratory passages. We recommend taking preventative measures in public areas.” It was totally expected of China to stifle this important bit of information but why did the WHO not act on this information and at least warned the world is a question that is still unanswered.
Recordings of internal meetings show that emergencies chief Ryan remarked in disdain, “We have to be consistent. The danger now is that despite our good intent…especially if something does happen, there will be a lot of finger-pointing at WHO.”
However, the fact that this report came out just after POTUS Trump decided to sever ties with the WHO signals that the organisation is trying to play down its blatant collusion with China. Last week, Trump announced that the US will be severing its ties with the WHO. The USA is the organisation’s top donor as it contributed $893 million to the organisation in 2018-19. It is not far-fetched to say that the WHO is coming up with a lame excuse to save whatever little remains of its tattered reputation after Trump pulled the plug on US funding.
It seems difficult to buy the excuse of trying to get data from China to shower praises on the CCP. Taiwan had alerted the organisation about the possible human-to-human transmission as early as December. Dr Tedros was busy singing endless praises of Xi Jinping and even castigated countries like the US and India who issued a blanket travel ban on China and even didn’t recommend airport screening. The WHO openly denied the possibility of human-to-human transmission on January 14. It was not praising China, it was following the CCP’s narrative and acting as its lackey. If data solicitation was indeed the aim, what was the need to make false assertions like the absence of human-to-human transmission and castigating countries which tried to safeguard themselves from the virus?
The WHO’s assistant director-general Dr Aylward led a WHO joint mission to China during the peak of the virus’ outbreak in the country. The Aylward led mission came out with a shocking report that sang endless praises of Xi Jinping and the CCP.
After the mission, Aylward was quoted, “It’s the unanimous assessment of the team that they(China) have changed the course of this outbreak. What was a rapidly escalating outbreak has plateaued and then come down faster than one would have expected,” and he further added that hundreds of thousands of people in China did not get this because of this response.
If there were any doubts about the neutrality of the report, a line in the report reads that: “In the face of a previously unknown virus, China has rolled out perhaps the most ambitious, agile and aggressive disease containment effort in history.”
There is so much murk between the WHO and China that it warrants for an international investigation. The WHO is cleverly trying to portray itself as a “responsible organisation” who was caught in the middle despite its “good intentions” after Trump froze American funding to the organisation.