World Health Assembly slaps US hooliganism: Global Times editorial

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/5/19 17:12:30

Logo of World Health Organization

The 73rd World Health Assembly (WHA) held on Monday and Tuesday has clearly reflected the different visions of China and the US. Chinese President Xi Jinping attended the virtual event personally. Xi announced that China will provide $2 billion over two years to help with COVID-19 response, and that COVID-19 vaccine being developed in China will be made a global public good when available. 

But the US only sent Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar to the meeting. Azar's speech was full of complaints about the World Health Organization (WHO) and implied complaints about China. US President Donald Trump on Tuesday released a letter he sent to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, in which he fiercely attacked the WHO and China. This is the US government's attitude toward the global COVID-19 fight.

The COVID-19 death toll in the US had exceeded 90,000 by Tuesday morning (Beijing time). The Trump administration does not have even a little bit of self-reflection. Passing the buck to China and the WHO has been their only strategy. Most of the American people who died of COVID-19 were poor people who did not have a say. The US administration's only purpose is to continue in power. To this end, they adopted dirty tricks, including misleading public opinion. They do not care how many more people will die.

But manipulating the international community is not as easy as Washington thought. Washington wants to bring Taiwan into the WHA, but this issue was not even included in the agenda. Under the US' instigation, Australia promoted an independent inquiry of China's handling of COVID-19. But when the assembly started, the draft resolution was about the WHO-led tracing of the origin of the virus, and did not specifically target any country. The final resolution will certainly be far from what the US expects.

It is obvious to the world that the US has one of the worst performances in the COVID-19 fight, and it has the worst attitude. The WHO so far is only an advisory organization on global public health, and every sovereign country should be responsible for its own public health security. The US blames its own failure in the COVID-19 fight on another country and on the WHO, and the world had never seen such a scene.

This is pure international hooliganism. The bad example set by the US, the only superpower in the world, has seriously threatened the global established practices in the 21st century, and has shadowed justice.

Trump said on Monday that he is taking the unproven drug hydroxychloroquine to ward off coronavirus, which caused public uproar. He also suggested injecting disinfectants to kill the virus and once declared that the virus would "disappear." These make people think he is out of control. It seems he is using witchcraft to lead the COVID-19 fight, and then he declares that all of the US' losses were caused by China and the WHO.

To be reelected, will the Trump administration do more outrageous things, posing more serious threats to the world? We suspect there is nothing Washington dare not do right now. After all, what will it care if it doesn't care about tens of thousands, and even hundreds of thousands of lives? We sincerely hope the US political system can restrain the Trump administration's recklessness and prevent it from throwing the US and the world - which are suffering a catastrophe - into a deeper abyss. 

We also hope the world can keep vigilant of Washington and avoid being misled or taken advantage by it. The world should hold the bottom line where humanity should jointly fight the virus which is our common enemy. We must never waste resources meant to combat the virus on fighting each other.

Posted in: EDITORIAL

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