Close to 2000 people have died from COVID-19 in the United States in the past 24 hours, lifting total toll to nearly 13,000, as President Trump began blaming the World Health Organization on Tuesday for his own squandered opportunities.
According to statistics site Worldometers, at least 12,857 people have died from the coronavirus in the United States as of Wednesday morning.
Officials have warned that hospitals and staff in New York and elsewhere were on the brink of being overwhelmed from the over 367,000 infections in the United States , the highest anywhere else in the world.
Trump on Tuesday attacked the World Health Organization (WHO) a day after its black Director General, Ethiopian Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, condemned extremely racist comments made by two French doctors.
“The W.H.O. really blew it. For some reason, funded largely by the United States, yet very China centric. We will be giving that a good look. Fortunately I rejected their advice on keeping our borders open to China early on. Why did they give us such a faulty recommendation?” Mr. Trump tweeted, in an attempt to blame WHO for his failures at home.
However, the New York Times reported on Monday how Mr. Trump ignored warnings from his top senior official as far back as January, warning that there could be a full blown coronavirus pandemic in the United States should nothing be done.
“The warning, written in a memo by Peter Navarro, President Trump’s trade adviser, is the highest-level alert known to have circulated inside the West Wing as the administration was taking its first substantive steps to confront a crisis that had already consumed China’s leaders and would go on to upend life in Europe and the United States,” The New York Times said.
“The lack of immune protection or an existing cure or vaccine would leave Americans defenseless in the case of a full-blown coronavirus outbreak on U.S. soil,” Mr. Navarro’s memo said. “This lack of protection elevates the risk of the coronavirus evolving into a full-blown pandemic, imperiling the lives of millions of Americans.”
That was exactly what happened. In massive rallies, President Trump, the former entertainer turned politician, described the coronavirus as a hoax, downplayed it many times and encouraged people to go about their daily lives, claiming repeatedly the government had the virus under control.
Mr. Trump was making these comments even as his own scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) were warning that valuable time was being wasted.
By the time the American President finally woke up, two months had been wasted and the virus had already taken root in the United States.
President Donald Trump speaking at a White House press briefing on Sunday repeated what he said last week that the coming days and weeks would be deadly.
Although more than a thousand people are dying every day, the worst is yet to come, according to U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams.
Speaking on “Fox News Sunday”, Adams said the next week will be “the hardest and the saddest week of most Americans’ lives”. He called it our “our Pearl Harbor moment, our 9/11 moment”
The number of coronavirus deaths in the United States has already eclipsed the total deaths from the 9/11 terror attacks in New York where the World Trade Center towers collapsed more than 18 years ago.
At a press briefing at the White House last Tuesday, President Donald Trump said the next two weeks in the U.S. will be “very painful”. The President said he wants “every American to be prepared for the days that lie ahead”.
Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, said at the briefing estimates showed between 1 million to 2 million in the U.S. could die from the virus if the current mitigation efforts, including social distancing are not maintained.
However, even with social distancing, between 100,000 and 240,000 deaths could be recorded, Birx said.
“As sobering a number as that is, we should be prepared for it,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “Is it going to be that much? I hope not, and I think the more we push on the mitigation, the less likelihood it will be that number.”
At a press briefing at the White House on Saturday, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the leading U.S. infectious disease expert insisted that social distancing should be implemented all over the country while President Trump at the same briefing said the country should be re-opened.
“You can take it to the bank,” Dr.Fauci, who is seen as speaking honestly to the American people said. “Mitigation works.”.
President Trump promptly reacted with “But we cannot destroy our economy”.
Recent polls have said that with the coronavirus pandemic still wreaking havoc and killing close to or above a thousand people in recent days, most people would not go back to work as long as they can be infected and die.