Illustration: Liu Rui/GT
The US announced on Tuesday its withdrawal from the World Health Organization (WHO), which will take effect on July 6, 2021.
Such an erratic move comes after the WHO refused to “hold China accountable.” US election politics and partisan interests have affected US foreign policy in such a brutal and arbitrary way, which is appalling.
What is whimsical is that this decision, which obviously goes against the need of the US to cooperate with the world to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, is claimed to have a high moral ground. Washington has publicly smeared the WHO as China’s “puppet,” which wasted the money of American taxpayers. It is believed such a show could help the current administration win the election this November. The US political system has become too old, or even suffered from the Alzheimer’s disease.
The coronavirus pandemic has swept across the world for months, and most countries are engaged in the anti-virus fight on their own. But only Washington recklessly blamed China and the WHO for its anti-virus failure, while it boasted of its “excellent performance.”
Such brazenness in confusing right and wrong works well in the US, and many voters buy it, which shows how distorted the US politics and opinions have become.
As the pandemic situation in the US spirals out of control while China sees few or no infected cases each day, Washington will find it harder and harder to sustain its show. Its announcement of withdrawing from the WHO can be seen as its last attempt to pass the buck. There will surely be worse situations, but Washington can hardly justify itself, no matter how harsh its words and deeds might be.
A Chinese proverb describes someone as quenching one’s thirst with poisoned wine, and now the proverb can be used on the hysteric US government.
We condemn Washington’s move to withdraw from the WHO at this critical juncture. Its decision will inevitably split world unity that is much needed in the ongoing virus fight.
Because of the WHO’s coordination role, the global fight has slowed the spread of the virus to some extent. The situation in quite a number of countries has eased. But the US federal government has almost given up its efforts, making the US the worst bruise in the global virus prevention system. Though a superpower, the US has no right to reverse the world’s improving situation.
We also deeply regret that Americans are unable to prevent their government from making such an erroneous decision. US decision-making and self-correction have encountered big problems. The political selfishness of the two parties and the leadership are making publicity in such a blatant way, while US society has become accustomed to it and even cooperated with it, which is degeneration.
The Trump administration is leading the country to “co-exist with the novel coronavirus.” But we must tell Americans that such inaction is terrible. People’s understanding of the virus is insufficient, but it has been proven that it can spread fast and infect humans, and the death rate of COVID-19 is much higher than the common flu. If the US keeps the status quo, its number of deaths will be incalculable, and so will be the lasting of the raging virus and its long-term impact on the economy.
We hope the harm caused by the pandemic on American lives and health can lead them to eventually wake up. The value that lives and people’s health are above everything should become the motto of US politics again.
Washington’s withdrawal from the WHO is the worst among its retreat from various international organizations and treaties. The world should hold Washington accountable for betraying the common interests of humanity.