We are all aware of the Russian objectives in the Ukraine, that of denazification and demilitarization. The real objective is toward security stability in the area, and to do that, Russia must deal a healthy blow to NATO.
There is a concomitant process. Let’s call it de-westernization. We described the current woes of the WTO here: 127 countries file WTO protest against the US. Maria Zakharova made a comment just after the previous G20 meeting ended, saying that the G20 has lost its western influence. A year or so ago, in one of his many speeches, President Putin noticed clearly and said that Russia is not subjecting itself to these international organizations. At that time, he was speaking about the WHO.
I’m convinced that we will see in this new year, de-westernization of many of the international organizations that want to rule the world. Here is the first hint that the WHO is up for reform, and this comes in the form of a high level meeting by the WHO with the Chinese public health authority. It is clear from the read-outs that the WHO had a specific objective, but China took it away. Let’s take a look at the press from the WHO.
WHO meets with Chinese officials on current COVID-19 situation
30 December 2022 Statement
A high-level meeting took place on 30 December between WHO and China about the current surge in COVID-19 cases, to seek further information on the situation, and to offer WHO’s expertise and further support.
High-level officials from China’s National Health Commission and the National Disease Control and Prevention Administration briefed WHO on China’s evolving strategy and actions in the areas of epidemiology, monitoring of variants, vaccination, clinical care, communication and R&D.
WHO again asked for regular sharing of specific and real-time data on the epidemiological situation — including more genetic sequencing data, data on disease impact including hospitalisations, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and deaths — and data on vaccinations delivered and vaccination status, especially in vulnerable people and those over 60 years old. WHO reiterated the importance of vaccination and boosters to protect against severe disease and death for people at higher risk.
WHO called on China to strengthen viral sequencing, clinical management, and impact assessment, and expressed willingness to provide support on these areas, as well as on risk communications on vaccination to counter hesitancy. Chinese scientists are invited to engage more closely in WHO-led COVID-19 expert networks including the COVID-19 clinical management network. WHO has invited Chinese scientists to present detailed data on viral sequencing at a meeting of the Technical Advisory Group on SARS-CoV-2 Virus Evolution on 3 January.
WHO stressed the importance of monitoring and the timely publication of data to help China and the global community to formulate accurate risk assessments and to inform effective responses.
Now we turn to China and we pick up the nuances.
Chine describes this meeting as a technical meeting, where the Chinese informed the WHO as to their current status, but there was no request for the WHO’s expertise and further support. In fact, the Chinese Health Authority (see the difference in descriptions where the WHO calls out Chinese Officials, without stating who these officials are) agreed to technical exchanges only. “The two sides agreed to maintain technical exchanges to facilitate early end of the pandemic. ”
Referring to a comment by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning, this last paragraph is quite a beauty. Let’s take a look at it.
China has always shared its information responsibly with the WHO and the international community
and stands ready to work with the international community in solidarity, tackle the COVID challenge more effectively, better protect people’s lives and health and jointly restore steady economic growth and build a global community of health for all, Mao said.
Do you get the sense that China is putting the WHO in its place? In the place where they were originally supposed to be. China is willing to maintain technical exchanges, i.e., medical information and numbers and they will let the WHO know what China is doing. They do not need them, except for taking data to use for the Global Community, i,e, do your jobs and add up the numbers.
We will have to be quick to pick up these types of nuances as we go forward. But I’ll call it. By the end of this year, the WHO will be doing what the organization is supposed to do, which is quick and effective dissemination of global health information, and certainly not as the arbiter of health in the world. Neither do they have the agency to pull off a globalized health control system, nor do they have the agency to demand certain actions, or make certain demands on the rest of the world. China has just started to tell them so. What expertise, I ask you?
Update: a devastating list.