President Donald Trump has repeatedly criticized the World Health Organization (WHO) for being too slow in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as being "China-centric."
On May 29,
he announced his decision to leave the WHO, claiming that the organization caved to pressure from China "to mislead the world when the virus was first discovered by Chinese ities," and is under the "total control" of China.
Sen. Robert Menendez, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee tweeted the news Tuesday. "Congress received notification that POTUS officially withdrew the U.S. from the @WHOin the midst of a pandemic. To call Trump's response to COVID chaotic & incoherent doesn't do it justice. This won't protect American lives or interests—it leaves Americans sick & America alone," he wrote, according to CNN.
The short letter addressed to the UN has triggered a one-year withdrawal timeline. The US is currently around $200 million behind on its dues to the WHO and officials say that under the terms of the withdrawal agreement, the US must pay any dues owed.
Trump is not being backed by Congress
This is actually another Trump mess that even the Republicans in Congress can't go along with. The GOP China task force urged Trump last month to reconsider his decision to terminate relations with the international body, arguing that the US can do more to affect change as a member.
There is also a serious question on the legality of Trump pulling the U.S. out of WHO without Congressional approval. But, more than that, Trump's continuing withdrawal of the U.S. from its global allies is going to result in some disastrous consequences, both economically and in the healthcare field.
And a withdrawal now - in the current environment could also interfere with clinical trials essential for developing vaccines, as well as efforts to trace the spread of the virus globally. The withdrawal also calls into question the WHO's financial viability and the future of its many programs promoting healthcare and tackling disease around the globe.
"The United States can cease all communications, can seek to throw up a wall between the United States and the rest of the world, and yet we've seen time and again that walls do not hold back diseases," says Benjamin Mason Meier, associate professor of global health policy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, according to NPR.org.
"And our efforts to pretend otherwise are crippling the United States in this pandemic, and leading the United States to suffer unprecedented mortality far above any faced by high-income countries."
Without a doubt, Trump's actions these past four months have indeed, crippled the United States. Trump will go down in history as the president that let over 131,000 people die on his watch simply because of his ineptitude in handling a health crisis. Every time I think about what has been going on in this nation, it makes me sick.
How far will our lawmakers and others with some sort of power let this narcissistic, irrational man-child go before someone has the guts to stand up and say NO. Sorry to say this, but Trump is leading this country to its doom.