Opinion by CHUCK DEVORE, The Federalist, 3/28/23
The experts could hide behind international law as they advocate economy-crushing lockdowns and forced vaccinations.
Elon Musk tweeted that “Countries should not cede authority to WHO,” and conservatives have joined him in sounding the alarm about proposed legal changes to the World Health Organization and its International Health Regulations (IHR).
The basic question is whether America should remain an integral part of the United Nations’ international health agency, given the new rules being proposed as well as a new WHO treaty. There are two main fears about the IHR’s new rules and the WHO treaty.
First, proposed changes to the International Health Regulations would convert recommendations into requirements. In May of 2024, 196 U.N. member nations will vote on the changes to the IHRs, with a simple majority required to approve them. At that point, each nation has 10 months to reject compliance with the changes. If a nation rejects the changes, it will still abide by the old rules.
Some conservatives who care about protecting national sovereignty see a danger in these updated IHRs, as they impose mandatory health and pandemic reporting, vaccinations, tracking, and more. These requirements would override national laws as well as state public health statutes.
Second, the new WHO pandemic treaty, also up for a vote in the U.N. in May 2024, would represent another assault on U.S. sovereignty and thus the self-governance of the American people.
Despite a false “fact-check” by The Associated Press that dismissed these concerns, page 23 of the proposed U.N. treaty says, “The Parties commit to … tackle false, misleading, misinformation or disinformation, including through promotion of international cooperation. In that regard, each Party is encouraged to … [manage] infodemics … including social media; [and] identify the prevalence and profiles of misinformation…”
What is an “infodemic”? The WHO defines it as “…too much information including false or misleading information in digital and physical environments during a disease outbreak.” The IHRs contain these concerning provisions, and the new WHO treaty operationalizes the mechanisms with funding and governance.
Now, with the “Twitter Files” revelations — the admission that the State Department used taxpayer funds to pay a British firm to suppress conservative news sites, including The Federalist, and a new California law (now blocked by the courts) that subjects doctors who spread “misinformation or disinformation” about Covid-19 to malpractice lawsuits and discipline — we can see how the experts intend to suppress infodemics.
These actions by themselves would be violations of the First Amendment, even if the experts were 100 percent correct. That time and emerging information have shown so many experts’ claims to be false make the unconstitutional enforcement that much worse.
Before these proposed changes, there have been concerns about the WHO. In late May 2020, four months after the WHO declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern over the Covid-19 virus, the Trump administration announced its intention to end America’s 65-year relationship with the U.N. body, accusing it of being a puppet of the People’s Republic of China.
Speaking from the White House Rose Garden, Trump said Chinese officials did not properly report Covid-19’s existence to the WHO, and then they subsequently pressured it to “mislead the world.”
Then in July, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo notified the U.N. that the U.S. was invoking its right to withdraw from the WHO treaty with one year’s notice.
The U.S. decision to cut ties with the WHO came as evidence mounted against China. As China restricted domestic travel by the end of January 2020 purportedly to slow the spread of the new virus, it worked to open international travel out of China for another two months. These actions effectively spread Covid-19 internationally while attempting to slow its spread at home.
Significantly, China used its influence at the WHO to delay a warning to the world about the virus’ severity on Jan. 22, 2020 — even as China began to enforce draconian quarantines in 15 cities with a total population of about 50 million people.
Two weeks later, China continued to claim, with support from WHO Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, that international travel was safe. These contradictory actions suggest the WHO was complicit in China’s deception. Australia and other nations then formally called for an international investigation into the global spread of Covid-19.
Yet, despite the evidence, President Joe Biden reversed Trump’s decision to pull out of the WHO on his first full day in office.
To better understand the concerns about the proposed WHO treaty and the amended IHRs, I turned to David Bell, an Australian M.D. and Ph.D. who worked as a scientist and doctor for the WHO for almost nine years, until he left in 2011. He now works at the Brownstone Institute.
Bell thinks these proposals seek to establish international control of public health for the benefit of large multinational pharmaceutical companies, Big Tech, and powerful individuals. He noted large nations with strong militaries and police can afford to ignore the WHO and its mandates, should they choose to do so, but smaller nations, dependent on financial assistance from the developed world, will have to comply with the WHO’s mandates about surveillance, infectious diseases tracking, vaccination status, travel, and more.
“Small countries won’t have a choice,” Bell said. “The U.S. sees itself as an enforcer. Large corporations see the opportunity to make vast sums of money.”
“This is part of a whole movement, with the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund also pushing the agenda, which includes an effort to build a very large international industry to enforce surveillance and a commodity-based vaccine response,” he continued.
Bell, who worked in the Philippines battling malaria, sees this surveillance effort as an attempt to “surveil nature itself,” with unelected experts “deciding whether a pathogen is a potential threat to health and the same people issuing orders to lock down travel, determining emergency measures, and deciding on mass vaccinations.”
These experts will not care if the vaccines were rushed to market with fewer safety checks and a higher risk of adverse reactions.
“All of this is mostly funded with taxpayer money, with all the profits going to private corporations,” Bell said. “These interests are hijacking these causes for their own benefit. It’s akin to an international fascist movement.”
I asked Bell if America will have to comply like the less powerful nations. He responded that these agreements would buttress claims from U.S. health officials in the event of another U.N.-declared health emergency.
The agreements would give them the right to say that “international law compels us to comply — our hands are tied.” The experts could hide behind international law as they advocate for economy-crushing lockdowns and forced vaccinations.
Lastly, recall that this is a cabal of highly trained scientists, such as EcoHealth Alliance President Dr. Peter Daszak, who bypassed restrictions on taxpayer funds being used for dangerous gain-of-function research by outsourcing the research to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the poorly run lab now admitted to be the likely source of Covid-19.
Reservations about this scientific arrogance and the pharmaceutical industry’s drive for profit have inspired a group of 17 U.S. senators, led by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., to draft a resolution urging the Biden administration to submit the new WHO agreement as a treaty for the Senate’s consent or rejection.
With what we know today, the U.S. should stay away from the WHO — not because the Chinese control it, but because We the People do not.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of Citizens Journal
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