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Why Trump cut funding for World Health Organization

US President Donald Trump speaks during the daily briefing on the coronavirus pandemic at the White House on April 14, 2020. (AFP photo)

US President Donald Trump views all international organizations like the World Health Organization (WHO) with suspicion and he does all what he can to withhold funding or support, according to Myles Hoenig, an American political analyst and activist. 

Hoenig, a former Green Party candidate for Congress, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Thursday Trump announced in a news briefing in Washington on Tuesday that the US would halt its financial support of the WHO.

“Today I’m instructing my administration to halt funding of the World Health Organization while a review is conducted to assess the World Health Organization’s role in severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus,” Trump said.

He added that review of the Geneva-based agency would take somewhere between “60 to 90 days.”

Former US President Jimmy Carter said in a statement on Wednesday that was "distressed" by the decision to withhold "critically needed" US funding for the organization during an international pandemic that has killed more than 135,000 and infected over two million people across the world.

"WHO is the only international organization capable of leading the effort to control this virus," Carter said in the statement.

Trump has repeatedly accused the WHO of siding with China and reliance on Chinese data, blaming it for “all sorts of false information about transmission and mortality” that was circulated amid initial reports.

The US contributed $400 million to the WHO last year, roughly 15% of its budget.

“Even for the most cynical of us who see the dysfunction of the US presidency everyday and the deterioration of US global respect, it is hard to fathom why Trump is attacking the World Health Organization (WHO) at this time. In every action that Trump has taken it was always due to how he personally felt connected to the situation and if it either made him look bad or irrelevant, he would lash out,” Hoenig said.

“Probably what’s going on now is that with so much criticism of how poorly he has handled the situation here at home, any group that is trying to get a handle on the situation outside of his direct involvement is a target,” he stated.

“Trump has gone after governors who run their state, contrary to his view on who is in charge. If they are Democrats, although not always, and they lodge any criticism against how their state is being supported by the federal government, Trump doubles down on punishing them. Because Dr. Fauci is trying to be professional and indirectly contradicts Trump on medical advice, the hashtag #FireFauci is trending among Trump supporters. Since WHO is international, like many international organizations it is viewed with suspicion by Trump and he does all that he can to withhold funding or support, regardless of its purpose. That goes for UN agencies, NATO, the Paris Agreement, and the Iran Nuclear Deal. If Trump can’t be in control, then it doesn’t deserve US support, according to his way of thinking,” he noted.

“Of everything that can be criticized regarding Trump’s tenure, it has looked like he would be sailing through a re-election, and especially with Hillary Clinton, Part 2 (Joe Biden) being his Democratic opponent. Yet it is this pandemic which has affected every American in one way or another that could be his Waterloo. How he’s now dealing with WHO only digs him deeper into the hole that he has finally dug,” he concluded.

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