The “Obama-3” administration has just begun. Most of the senior officials who served under its previous two terms are back on the saddle. Among their challenging tasks, the revival of the agonizing UN corps is a top priority.
Cornered by President Trump for their politicization and scandalous inefficiency, America’s disengagement severely hit the WHO, UNESCO and the UN as a whole. With the target to dismantle Trump’s legacy in a week’s time, the Biden team will carry out opposite measures. Democrats will show obstinacy to keep up the UN instead of phasing it out. Rebuilding a viable international system is put on hold.
By adopting this approach, the U.S. government is bound to deal with a number of unflattering truths about the United Nations. Instead of engaging in clearing its Augean stables from nepotism and fraud, the UN will be allowed to keep doing business as usual. Rotten by stagnation, corruption and incompetent leadership, after 75 years of existence even strong UN supporters question its effectiveness and relevance.
In recent times, several heads of UN agencies have resigned after their mismanagement, corruption and abuse of power files landed in the media. The former Executive Director of UNAIDS, Michel Sidibe, stepped down six months before the expiration of his term because of “defective leadership” that tolerated “a culture of harassment, including sexual harassment, bullying, and abuse of power”.
The head of the UN Palestinian refugee agency, Pierre Krähenbühl, resigned after a scandal involving accusations of nepotism and abuses of authority. The investigation, leaked to the press, depicted an “inner circle” around Krähenbühl, accused of “engag[ing] in misconduct, nepotism, retaliation … and other abuses of authority.”
The UN’s environment chief, Erik Solheim, got sacked following severe criticism of his internal rule-breaking. The audit revealed that Solheim had “no regard for abiding by the set regulations and rules”.
The UN biodiversity Chief, Cristiana Pasça Palmer, had to resign after leaked internal audit documents described a chaotic work environment at the Secretariat and allegations that Pasça Palmer discriminated African staff members on the basis of their race.
For decades, the UN proved incapable of fulfilling its mandate to prevent wars and secure peace. Even worse, the UN leadership fraudulently embezzled public funding provided by taxpayers money. In its somber hours, the UN helplessly monitored mass killings in Srebrenica, Darfur or Sri Lanka, and eased the spread of cholera in Haiti, which resulted in killing some 10,000 people.
Still, the scandals of sexual violence and child exploitation by UN peacekeepers in situations of armed conflict was and will remain one of the most heinous, nasty and repulsive transgressions of the UN. Sufficient evidence has been gathered that the arrival of the United Nations peacekeepers in a particular country is linked to the rapid increase in child rape and forced prostitution.
No organization in the Western world could survive the proven accusations of mismanagement, scandals and corruption that have permeated the United Nations for years and the Obama/Biden team will have to invent serious arguments justifying their reengagement with the UN.
Before the US presidential elections, the World Health Organization (WHO) was desperately hoping for democrats and neo-socialists to win and clean up its tarnished reputation and put it back on track by recouping the halted US funding and support.
Joe Biden’s immediate decision to recommit with the WHO is not only wrong, it’s a strategic mistake. It is not just about undoing on his first day President’s Trump legacy. It shows political preference to leave unsanctioned the documented epidemiological disaster enflamed by Communist China and its WHO accomplices. To date, the coronavirus pandemic resulted in a reported death toll of some 2 million lives and 7000 billion dollars lost by economy.
The nominee for Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, told the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations last Tuesday that the WHO is an “imperfect” institution in need of reform. Without beating around the bush, one would expect much more than the usual empty UN reform rhetoric. The Biden administration, like the 2 Obama ones, will obviously keep speaking about the UN hypothetical reforms without ever offering specifics.
The executive orders signed by Joe Biden to reverse Trump’s policy towards the WHO, will please globalists and neosocialists at large. But will that advance US interests? Certainly not. Here’s why:
The China power over the WHO
The WHO was founded at the end of World War II. The aspiration for a global collaboration in fighting diseases was not new. In the 19th century, at periodic International Sanitary Conferences, countries had standardized quarantine procedures for cholera and yellow fever. The WHO Constitution, adopted in 1948, projected a far grander mission – “the attainment by all people of the highest possible levels of health”.
One of the WHO’s success stories is the role it played in eliminating smallpox, a disease that was still killing millions each year in the 50s, despite the existence of a vaccine and in 1979, the WHO declared smallpox eradicated. If the story of smallpox eradication shows the WHO acting, ever since, the UN Agency was on the decline. The diseases it was created to address (smallpox, yellow fever and the plague) had either been eradicated or were in decrease, and it was slow to identify new threats such as HIV/AIDS. Under the directorship of Dr Hiroshi Nakajima, from 1988 to 1998, the organization utterly stagnated. WHO’s legendary inefficiency led to the creation in December 1995 of another UN body dealing specifically with HIV/AIDS – the UNAIDS. Subsequently, member states complained regularly about poor management and corruption at the WHO.
Until recently, the WHO was seen as a relatively neutral arena for China to extend its power. The Chinese domination of the UN agency set off with the election Margaret Chan Fung Fu-chun, a Chinese physician, who served as the Director-General of the WHO for 2006–2017.
Right after her two terms, and in order to preserve their full control over the organization, China supported the election in July 2017 of the Ethiopian Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. During the campaign, Tedros was criticized for having served in a repressive government with a poor human rights record, and was even accused of covering up a cholera epidemic during his time as health minister. In spite of the EU opposition, with China’s benediction, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus became the first Director General from a developing country since the Brazilian Dr Marcolino Gomes Candau, in 1953.
It is clear now that in the early days of the pandemic outbreak, Chinese officials actively withheld information. Unable or unwilling to press for more details, the WHO repeated false claims from the Chinese government about the COVID-19 transmissibility. In the weeks that followed the first announcement about the virus, WHO high officials even continued to lavish China with praise, eroding what remained of the agency’s credibility. With a Director General owing his career to China, the world was duped.
Under China’s pressure, the WHO waited until the third week of January 2020 to hold an emergency session. It also delayed the declaration of a Public Health Emergency of International Concern and was desperately slow to use the word “pandemic.” The WHO therefore is rightfully the target of critics over “confusing” and “contradictory” decisions during the coronavirus outbreak.
On January 14, the WHO said on Twitter: “Preliminary investigations conducted by the Chinese authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel #coronavirus (2019-nCoV) identified in Wuhan, China.” On January 20, it said: “An animal source seems the most likely primary source of this novel #coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak, with some limited human-to-human transmission occurring between close contacts.”
This, we now know, was catastrophically untrue and while the WHO and the Chinese authorities were criminally downplaying the extent of the virus, doctors at the epicenter of the outbreak in Wuhan reportedly observed in January human-to-human transmission, not least by contracting the disease themselves. In the most notable example, Dr. Li Wenliang was jailed for “spreading rumors” after trying to alert other doctors of the new respiratory ailment; he later died of the virus himself at the age of 33.
China could have limited its own infections had the government acted in that early period when doctors were first raising the alarm and the Chinese Communist Party was vehemently denying the extent of the problem. The WHO at that time definitely didn’t do their job properly. Quite the opposite. They actually compounded Chinese authorities’ intentional misinformation for a few critical weeks which is unpardonable.
On Mach 11, the WHO finally declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic. The international public health experts criticized the organization for the late decision. The WHO also continued to call on countries not to close borders to China but many countries, including the US, did not comply with the call.
The WHO misled countries over the use of masks and took late steps on most of the urgent issues. On April 1, Tedros said the UN health agency recommends that only patients and their caregivers should wear medical masks. However, on June 5, the WHO chief announced the change and advised general public to wear masks. His wobbly stance caused backlash with many governments stating the WHO was late in making the recommendation and misled the public for months.
Again, under the pressure by Beijing, the WHO has been assuring public the virus has an animal origin and was not constructed in a lab. On April 21, the WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib said: “All available evidence suggests the virus has an animal origin and it was not manipulated or constructed in a lab, or somewhere else.”
On May 1, President Donald Trump said he has seen evidence that the novel coronavirus originated in a laboratory in Wuhan, China. Trump accused the UN health agency of mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus. He said the WHO is “China-centric,” maintaining it had been the source of poor information for governments worldwide.
When looking at the chronology of statements from the WHO, the strong criticism towards the organization is fully justified.
For the last twelve months, the sanitary crisis has tested the WHO and it perfectly failed. The UN organization proved to be unfit to deal with the global health emergency and got engulfed in the geopolitical storm provoked by its dependence and political closeness with China.
The WHO has also been accused of being unduly influenced by Beijing over the status of Taiwan. It had raised the alarm about the possible human-to-human spread of the virus at the end of December 2019 after some of its scientists had visited Wuhan and Taiwan later added that its warnings were ignored or not taken seriously by the WHO.
The plain and simple truth is that China, with the calculated help of the WHO, concealed the truth about the emergence of the virus and its gravity, that it is still concealing the truth about the actual spread of the virus on its territory with the real death toll, and that China will keep concealing the truth about both the origins and the consequences of COVID-19. Typical of all communist regimes, China will keep fibbing, since avoiding reparations is the priority at stake.
In reality, as in the past, most global pandemics originated from China:
The Spanish Flu (1918-1920) killed some 50 million people 1918-1920. The Spanish influenza did not originate from Spain. New research is placing the deadly flu’s emergence in a forgotten episode of World War I: the shipment of Chinese laborers across Canada in sealed train cars. The unearthed records confirm that the mobilization of 96,000 Chinese laborers to work behind the British and French lines on World War I’s Western Front has been the source of the deadly pandemic.
The Third Plague that killed 12 million people 1855 and 1960, begun in Yunnan (China) and then this bubonic plague spread to every continent. In 1957, the Asian Flu again from China killed some 2 million people and ten years later, it was followed by the Hong Kong flu pandemic whose outbreak in 1968 and 1969 killed an estimated 4 million people globally. In 1997 then 2003 and 2018, the Avian Influenza erupted in China yet again as did in 2002 the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
Aware of the implacable outcome, if proven that China is accountable for the coronavirus pandemic, the Chinese communist government asserts forcefully that the “origin of the virus is outside the country”. The country’s state media has developed theories and selectively reported international research to argue that the virus had begun elsewhere and arrived only later in Wuhan. In a Muppet Show style media performance, Wang Yi, the Chinese foreign minister, declared that “more and more research suggests that the pandemic was likely to have been caused by separate outbreaks in multiple places in the world”.
Realistically, China must be held accountable and pay reparations to the world. Quite unfortunately to such expectations, the EU and US governments will play their real-politics game towards China in a totally different way; instead of adopting joint bold restrictive measures against communist China, they will rather mildly scold Beijing, and Beijing will blink with a smile in return, while continuing to strangle the world with its “silk ropes” on China’s “silk roads” towards domination.
The personal responsibility of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
House Foreign Affairs Lead Republican and China Task Force Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), wrote in June 2020: “Those who followed Tedros’ election at the WHO weren’t surprised at his actions. After all, it was the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), among others, who strongly advocated for him – after they invested $13.3 billion into Tedros’ home country of Ethiopia during his time as foreign minister. To put this in perspective, during the 2003 SARS outbreak, then-WHO Director General Gro Harlem Brundtland spoke publicly against the CCP for withholding information and lying to the world. Compare that to Tedros’ consistent glowing praise of the CCP during the COVID-19 outbreak – even though, as the AP reports, the WHO knew the CCP was withholding vital information. While there are some who want to give Tedros the benefit of the doubt regarding the CCP’s influence over his decisions, his incompetent management of the COVID-19 response should be enough for a swift dismissal.
This statement summarizes well the grim picture. Tedros never explained why his UN agency waited until the third week of January 2020 to hold an emergency session, delayed the declaration of a Public Health Emergency of International Concern and was desperately slow to use the word “pandemic.” Tedros is therefore rightfully the target of critics over “confusing” and “contradictory” decisions during the coronavirus outbreak.
His background in national politics in Ethiopia, perfectly suited China, since his political party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front was mostly comprised of ex-revolutionaries. Later on, China’s active diplomatic credentials helped in covering up Tedros’ suspicious past and blurred the fact lines that his main backer was a Communist dictatorship.
A petition that collected more than 1,000,000 signatures, called for his resignation from his position as Director General of the WHO. In the United States, it was notably demanded by several Republican senators, including Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, as well as by the former national security adviser John Bolton.
Smelling the danger, Tedros calculated that he could sacrifice WHO’s credibility and his own reputation by pleasing China in exchange for its unreserved support. His plan worked out. The criticism against China’s dominance over the WHO has been raging for months with absolutely no effect. Tedros is still the Director General of the WHO, and President Biden is calling him “my friend” instead of working on his removal and prosecution.
Aware of the new US complacency, even one year later, in January 2021, Beijing showed total unwillingness to cooperate with the WHO for unveiling the truth about the origins of the virus. China has barred the entry of the ten-member WHO team investigating the origins of the coronavirus pandemic after their visas were not approved. China’s move blocking the arrival of the virologists, has caused some raising of eyebrows and finally, visas were granted but the slow progress of the WHO probe and its lack of motivation to access into the origins of the pandemic proved once again its allegiance to China.
For all those reasons, Biden’s decision on his first day in office to return to the WHO is a threefold huge political mistake: First, he indicated his intention to bow to China in general. Second, Biden sent a powerful message saying that whatever politically and financially corrupt person may be at the head of the UN, the US government will still back him/her. Third, Joe Biden confirmed that China will never be held accountable nor requested to pay any reparations for the crash of world’s economy or for the millions coronavirus victims. That mistake will not be forgotten nor forgiven!