The Trump administration has faced criticism from the Left for ignoring advice from the World Health Organization (WHO), a decision critics say, has made the impact of the coronavirus pandemic worse than it needed to be. Criticism goes both ways, though, and the WHO itself has faced harsh condemnation for what may be unintentional mistakes – or something much more sinister. Now a GOP senator wants the organization’s controversial chief to face Congress and explain himself.
Senator Todd Young (R-IN) demanded Thursday that the director of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, testify before Congress about his organization’s disastrous mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Dr. Tedros was a controversial appointment as head of WHO. He replaced Dr. Margaret Chan, a Hong Kong-born teacher with deep links to the Chinese regime. Tedros was the favored candidate of the African Union, who pushed for his appointment over a more widely-respected candidate from the UK.
- Tedros himself was a minister in an Ethiopian communist government heavily supported by China. His backers in the African Union included the late Robert Mugabe, another Chinese-backed communist. At the time, there were widespread allegations of corruption and cronyism, which reached a head when Tedros appointed Mugabe as the WHO’s “goodwill ambassador,” then was forced to revoke the appointment after a storm of criticism.
- Early in the coronavirus pandemic, the WHO criticized President Trump for closing US borders to travelers from China, calling the move “unhelpful.” However, as travelers from China spread the disease worldwide, it’s now clear this was a sensible move.
- The WHO also repeated Chinese claims that there was no evidence the virus could spread from human to human. This was in mid-January when the Chinese were well aware it could do this; the WHO uncritically spread the regime’s misinformation. Tedros himself has issued repeated fawning praise of China’s alleged success in suppressing the disease.
- Now, Senator Young is calling for Dr. Tedros to face Congress and answer questions about the agency’s performance during the pandemic. He told Politico, “(The WHO) has given sanction to the ham-fisted response of the Chinese and the misinformation perpetrated by the Chinese. On all fronts, I’ve been not just unimpressed but outraged by the responsiveness and the performance of the World Health Organization.”
- President Trump has indicated he’s reconsidering the US contribution to WHO’s funding. This country is the largest single contributor, but in return, we get an organization that, in Trump’s words, is “very China-centric” and “really blew it” on coronavirus. Tedros reacted furiously to the funding threat, snarling that there’d be plenty of body bags if countries didn’t cooperate.
Thank you to our friends at Right Wing for contributing this piece.