Posted by: maboulette | March 22, 2020

Intelligence Warnings About Coronavirus Pandemic

“The system was blinking red,” an intelligence official told The Washington Post, but no one could get Trump to “do anything about it.”


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Once China reported they were having an outbreak of this new coronavirus in December, US intelligence agencies warned the Trump administration numerous times in classified messages on the potential shocking threat, reported The Washington Post reported on Friday.  But President Trump largely ignored these warnings and took no action that could have slowed this spread of the COVID-10 disease, said the newspaper.


These reports warned that China originally appeared to be minimizing the danger of this virus but that the US would be wise to start preparing for a likely pandemic. Still Trump shrugged off the intelligence as well as repeatedly assured citizens that this coronavirus was nothing to be worried about.


As the cases of the illness with its death rising in the US, Trump is now insisting that he though the problem was “urgent” right from the beginning and that he “felt it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic.”


A US official who had access to reports given to Congress and Trump officials told the Post that intelligence agencies “have been warning on this since January.”

 “Donald Trump may not have been expecting this, but a lot of other people in the government were — they just couldn’t get him to do anything about it,” the official said. “The system was blinking red.”


White House spokesperson Hogan Gidley denied this account, insisting to the Post the President has “taken historic, aggressive measures to protect the health, wealth and safety of the American people – and did so while the media and Democrats chose to only focus on the stupid politics of a sham illegitimate impeachment.”


But it is clear by the President’s own public statements, however, that he did not believe coronavirus was a concern.  Rather he called criticisms of the White House to the outbreak a “new hoax” from the Democrats.  He also said last month that the 15 domestic cases in the US would go down “close to zero” and that this disease would vanish “like a miracle” or disappear by April when the weather begins to warm.


As warnings of intelligence increased in urgency, Trump administration officials repeatedly try to persuade Trump to focus on the issue – without success, according to the Post. Sec of Health and Human Services Alex Azar and former acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney tried to encourage Trump to participate in a response to this growing threat.  But he was “dismissive,” the Post reported.


Concerns on a dearth of testing for coronavirus was raised in early days of February by Joe Grogan, the head of the White House Domestic Policy Council, according to the Post.


The Post assigned part of Trump’s hesitancy to take this threat seriously was his relationship with China’s President Xi Jingping, who Trump believed initially believed was providing information that was accurate, according to the newspaper.  He has praised Xi’s efforts and “transparency.”


Now the President is starting to refer to coronavirus as the “Chinese virus” and has in some ways suggested China did not alert the US soon enough. 

In the meantime, this outbreak has exploded all across America, with more than 25,896 cases confirmed as of now Saturday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


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