While Trump Accused China Of Not Warning The World About COVID-19, Report Suggests He Actually Eliminated CDC Position In China Months Before Virus Outbreak

He probably would have ignored this warning, too.

651 points

President Donald Trump and members of his administration continue to blame China for the coronavirus pandemic by claiming the Chinese failed to warn the world, but it turns out Trump had eliminated a CDC position in China just a few months earlier that had been held by someone who could have done the same.

Since becoming president, Trump has failed to properly staff the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and even disbanded the Pandemic Response team put in place by former President Barack Obama.

He has since desperately tried to rebrand the coronavirus the “Chinese virus” to shift the blame to distract from his failed response to protect and prepare our country even though he was calling the pandemic a “hoax” just weeks ago.

But it looks like Trump did more than just disband the Pandemic Response team and fail to staff the CDC.

It turns out that he also eliminated the CDC position in China that would have been most properly situated to warn the United States about the virus just months before the first cases there occurred.

According to a bombshell Reuters report:

Several months before the coronavirus pandemic began, the Trump administration eliminated a key American public health position in Beijing intended to help detect disease outbreaks in China, Reuters has learned.

The American disease expert, a medical epidemiologist embedded in China’s disease control agency, left her post in July, according to four sources with knowledge of the issue.”

Dr. Linda Quick had been embedded in China’s equivalent of the CDC and was training the very same epidemiologists who were deployed to the Wuhan region where the virus started the spread.

Quick could have been in the field with them and her professional and personal relationships with her Chinese colleagues could have helped her receive vital information to pass on to her American colleagues in the United States.

‘It was heartbreaking to watch,’ said Bao-Ping Zhu, a Chinese American who served in that role, which was funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, between 2007 and 2011. ‘If someone had been there, public health officials and governments across the world could have moved much faster.’

Zhu and the other sources said Quick could have provided real-time information to U.S. and other officials around the world during the first weeks of the outbreak, when they said the Chinese government tamped down on the release of information and provided erroneous assessments.”

Apparently, Trump eliminated Quick’s job in retaliation against China over trade.

Quick left amid a bitter U.S. trade dispute with China when she learned her federally funded post, officially known as resident adviser to the U.S. Field Epidemiology Training Program in China, would be discontinued as of September, the sources said. The U.S. CDC said it first learned of a ‘cluster of 27 cases of pneumonia’ of unexplained origin in Wuhan, China, on Dec. 31.”

Again, had Quick been allowed to continue on in her post, she may have been able to warn our country and the world even earlier. However, it should still be pointed out that Trump ignored American intelligence warnings of the pandemic back in January. He’s had every opportunity to get ahead of the pandemic and has failed every single time. Now Americans are dying and the economy is in free fall.

The only one to blame here is not China, but Trump and his incompetence.

Featured image via screen capture

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651 points