The World Health Organization (WHO) is being haunted by a tweet it sent in January touting a Chinese study that claimed there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission of COVID-19.
The tweet raises many questions, including… why did WHO blindly share information that could have been Chinese propoganda?
Not even two full months later, the world is now gripped by a pandemic at a scale we haven't seen in our lifetimes.
In the span of just a few weeks, the world's largest economies were shut down as people wait at home for the virus to subside.
See the original tweet from WHO below:
Despite the fact that WHO claimed there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission, President Trump still acted quickly in January to shut the U.S. border to slow down the spread of the virus.
As Democrats and the media attempt to slam the president's response, he's been ahead of WHO (as evidenced by this tweet) and has shown visionary leadership that has unified the public and private sectors.
Fox News has more on the blowback that WHO is receiving:
The World Health Organization (WHO) is now haunted by a tweet it sent earlier this year when it cited Chinese health officials who claimed there had been no human transmissions of the novel coronavirus within the country yet.
The Jan. 14 tweet came less than two months before WHO declared COVID-19 to be a global pandemic.
"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," the organization had said.
It also relied on information from Chinese health authorities who have been accused of obscuring facts and figures during the course of the outbreak.
The Chinese government reportedly knew the disease was spreading before the tweet was sent, according to the South China Morning Post.
The New York Times' China correspondent, Amy Quin, said Tuesday on Twitter that the country had begun expelling American journalists.
Axios reporter Jonathan Swan drew attention to Quin's story on social media the next day and went on to criticize the Chinese government for instituting a cover-up, and failing to deliver life-saving information to the public.
The communist Chinese government has claimed virtually no new transmissions of the virus in the last few days.
However, there are many doubts as to the validity or honesty of Chinas's numbers.
Why did WHO spread information from the Chinese government without validating it first?
See some of the fiery responses now that the January-tweet has re-surfaced:
It's not just Americans.
Taiwanese health officials are now openly criticizing WHO for the spread of alleged misinformation.
There have been widespread reports of Chinese authorities covering up true COVID-19 facts and statistics in an effort to save face during the crisis.
The National Review has more on Taiwan's response:
Taiwanese health officials have accused the World Health Organization of failing to communicate the country’s warning in December regarding possible human-to-human transmission of the Wuhan coronavirus, the Financial Times reported Friday.
The officials said doctors in Taiwan had learned from their colleagues in mainland China that medical staff were falling ill from the as-yet unnamed coronavirus, a sign of human-to-human transmission that Taiwan says it passed on to the WHO and Chinese authorities on December 31. However, the WHO did not communicate the information with other nations.
China forbids international organizations of which it is a member, such as the WHO, from recognizing Taiwan as a member in its own right. Chinese health authorities confirmed human-t0-human transmission of the coronavirus on January 20.
“While the [WHO] provides a platform for all countries to share information on the epidemic and their response, none of the information shared by our country’s [Centers for Disease Control] is being put up there,” said Taiwan’s vice president Chen Chien-jen. Chen is an epidemiologist who was Taiwan’s health minister during the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak.
“The WHO could not obtain first-hand information to study and judge whether there was human-to-human transmission of Covid-19,” Chen said. “This led it to announce human-to-human transmission with a delay, and an opportunity to raise the alert level both in China and the wider world was lost.”
The Chinese government has banned many foreign reporters including some American media companies from entering the country.
While China has become more secretive, the Trump administration has become more transparent.
The president and his coronavirus task force now hold daily press briefings to provide evidence-based hope and updates to the public.