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Saturday, March 14, 2020

Latest World News, World News, Current Affairs, Daily Current Affairs

Latest World News, World News, Current Affairs, Daily Current Affairs

The First Cases Of The Covid-19 Coronavirus Have Been Confirmed In Venezuela

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 10:25 PM PDT

People wearing protective face masks crossing the border between Colombia and Venezuela at the Simon Bolivar international bridge in Cucuta, Colombia [Ferley Ospina/Reuters]

Sputnik: Venezuela confirms two coronavirus cases, suspends school

Venezuela is in poor condition to confront cases of the coronavirus that is spreading rapidly worldwide.

Venezuela has confirmed two cases of coronavirus, Vice President Delcy Rodriguez said on Friday, adding that the country is suspending classes at public and private schools starting on Monday.

President Nicolas Maduro on Thursday said that all flights from Europe and Colombia would be suspended for a month over coronavirus concerns during a live televised news conference on Thursday.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Venezuela's health/medical system collapsed 2-3 years ago. The confirmation of this disease tells me that within a month or two it will be present throughout the country.

Picture Of The Day

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 10:14 PM PDT

Greek actress Xanthi Georgiou, playing the role of High Priestess lights the flame during the dress rehearsal for the Olympic flame lighting ceremony for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics on 11 March 2020. © REUTERS / Alkis Konstantinidis

WNU Editor: The above picture came form this photo-gallery .... This Week in Pictures: 7 March - 13 March (Sputnik).

China Warns It Could Impose Pharmaceutical Export Controls To The U.S.

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 10:09 PM PDT

FOX News: China hints at denying Americans life-saving coronavirus drugs

Now that the number of new people infected with the coronavirus in China is slowing down, the country's Communist Party is ratcheting up threats against the West, with a particularly nasty warning about access to life-saving drugs aimed at the United States.

In an article in Xinhua, the state-run media agency that's largely considered the mouthpiece of the party, Beijing bragged about its handling of COVID-19, a virus that originated in the city of Wuhan and has spread quickly around the world, killing nearly 5,000 people and infecting thousands more. The article also claimed that China could impose pharmaceutical export controls which would plunge America into "the mighty sea of coronavirus."

Read more ....

WNU Editor: How the U.S., and the rest of the world, got themselves in this situation is beyond me.

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic Medical News And Information -- March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 09:55 PM PDT

Daily Mail: How the coronavirus is deadliest for the over-80s and how patients with underlying health problems from heart disease, diabetes and asthma are most vulnerable

* Scientists in China have crunched coronavirus numbers to reveal the fatality rate
* Data shows 10.5% of heart disease patients with COVID-19 died
* 7.3% of diabetics and 6.3% of people with chronic respiratory diseases died
* It comes after Boris Johnson warned 'many' more will become victims

Scientists have crunched coronavirus statistics to reveal the fatality rate for infected patients with underlying health problems.

Data shows patients with pre-existing conditions are more likely to suffer severe illness and die because their immune systems are weaker.

Researchers in China, who studied more than 72,000 patients, found 10.5 per cent of heart disease sufferers who became ill with COVID-19 died.

The fatality rate was 7.3 per cent for diabetics and 6.3 per cent among people with chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma.

Read more ....

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic Medical News And Information -- March 13, 2020

High blood pressure and diabetes medication taken by 13 million Americans could raise the risk of serious coronavirus symptoms, scientists say -- Daily Mail
Worst-case coronavirus models show massive US toll -- The Hill
Woman who survived coronavirus shares her early symptoms -- NYPost
Coronavirus patients who recover can be left with damaged lungs and may struggle to breathe when they walk, researchers claim -- Daily Mail
China And South Korea Models Seem Like Only Way To Contain COVID-19 -- Kenneth Rapoza, Forbes
Leaked government records reveal 'the first coronavirus case emerged in Hubei in NOVEMBER' - two months before the province went into lockdown -- Daily Mail
Italy and South Korea's coronavirus outbreaks show the disparity between deaths and tactics, with lockdown and 1,000 deaths compared to high-tech testing and 67 fatalities -- Daily Mail
Lessons for the world: How South Korea is tackling coronavirus -- UPI
Coronavirus in South Korea: How 'trace, test and treat' may be saving lives -- Laura Bicker, BBC
Coronavirus COVID-19 has been aggressively contained in China. So can Australia learn from Xi Jinping's tactics? -- ABC News Online
Coronavirus: with a pandemic confirmed, the race is now on to develop a vaccine -- SCMP
Sepsis — a common cause of death from coronavirus -- DW

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic In Europe -- News Updates March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 09:29 PM PDT

Daily Mail: Europe is now the EPICENTRE of coronavirus: WHO issues stark warning the continent has more daily cases than China did at the HEIGHT of its outbreak as countries rush to build emergency wards

* WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Europe was reporting more cases than China at its height
* Medics have been working from makeshift tents in Italy and Poland with patients placed on temporary beds
* In Russia, diggers were working into the night on a new infectious diseases clinic intended to serve Moscow
* France, Luxembourg, Portugal, Malta and Belgium are among the latest countries to shut down their schools
* France's Emmanuel Macron proposed tougher EU border control while Denmark warned against foreign trips
* Spain has declared emergency with case toll rising to 4,200 and four towns in lockdown near Barcelona

Europe is now the 'epicentre' of coronavirus with more daily cases on the continent than China was suffering at the height of its outbreak, the World Health Organisation said today.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus made the stark assessment today as he lamented the 'tragic milestone' of 5,000 global deaths from Covid-19.

He added that Europe now has 'more reported virus cases and deaths than the rest of the world combined, apart from China'.

The claim that Europe is now outpacing China at its peak is particularly striking because the continent's population, at around 740million, is well below China's population of nearly 1.4billion.

Read more ....

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic In Europe -- News Updates March 13, 2020

Coronavirus: Europe now epicentre of the pandemic, says WHO -- BBC
WHO warns Europe is coronavirus 'epicentre' as cases, deaths rise -- Al Jazeera
Coronavirus: Italy hits single-day record with 250 deaths -- DPA
Italy's coronavirus death toll surges as Lombardy seeks tougher curbs -- France 24
Italian doctor says overwhelmed hospitals are at 'complete saturation' and receiving new coronavirus patients every five minutes as death toll climbs 250 in a day to 1,266 -- Daily Mail
Italy on pace to run out of beds for critically ill coronavirus patients -- UPI
Dramatic satellite footage shows 'notable drop' in air pollution over Italy after coronavirus lockdown restricts transport and industrial activity -- Daily Mail
Spain declares state of emergency, with military brought in to contain coronavirus as Ibiza, Majorca and Costa Blanca region close all pubs and clubs -- Daily Mail
Coronavirus: Spain to declare state of emergency as Covid-19 cases soar to 4,209 -- AFP
Switzerland, Luxembourg and Germany become the latest European countries to close their schools -- Daily Mail
Coronavirus begins shutting down public life across Germany -- DW
Coronavirus is France's 'greatest health crisis in a century', says Macron -- France 24
Czechs close borders from March 16 over coronavirus spread -- Al Jazeera
Russia rushes to copy China and build a new hospital to deal with coronavirus, despite seeing just 34 cases so far -- Daily Mail
Coronavirus: Europe ramps up support for ailing firms -- BBC
Escape from Europe: Americans scramble to board the last flights out of coronavirus epicenter and return to empty airports before Trump's travel ban kicks in at midnight - with some paying more than $6,000 for a one-way ticket -- Daily Mail
How many will die of coronavirus in the UK? A closer look at the numbers -- The Guardian
Coronavirus: Queen postpones trips to Cheshire and Camden -- BBC

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic In The U.S. -- News Updates March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 06:00 PM PDT

BREAKING NEWS: Donald Trump declares a national emergency on coronavirus to access $50 billion of funds to fight the virus and orders every state to set up emergency operations centers - and says he DOESN'T want everyone taking tests

* President holds White House Rose Garden press conference
* Press conference came as Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive Friday for coronavirus, according to local reports, but then his son said a second test was negative
* Trump shook hands with Bolsonaro last week at an event at Mar-a-Lago which has sparked fears of his exposure to the virus
* Trump has not addressed if he has been tested but the White House earlier said he had not
* The White House also said the first family will not go into quarantine despite their closeness to several confirmed cases of the virus in the past week
* Ivanka Trump stayed home from White House on Friday after meeting on March 5 with an Australian official who later tested positive for coronavirus
* States of emergency have been declared in New York City and in various other cities around the country
* There is continued criticism of how slow the government has been to respond to the virus with testing
* As of Friday afternoon, 1,800 people in the US had tested positive for coronavirus and 42 had died

Donald Trump declared a national emergency on coronavirus at a hastily-organized press conference in the White House Rose Garden - allowing him to access $50 billion in emergency funds.

'The action I am taking will open up access to up to $50 billion of very important and a large amount of money for states and territories, localities in our shared fight against this disease. Furtherance of the order, I'm asking every state to set up emergency operations centers immediately,' he said.

But he opened the press conference by repeating claims which have repeatedly come under fire that the federal response has been a success.

Read more ....

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic In The U.S. -- News Updates March 13, 2020

Trump declares coronavirus national emergency -- France 24
Trump declares national emergency over coronavirus -- The Hill
Donald Trump declares US national emergency to deal with coronavirus response -- SCMP
Trump declares national emergency over coronavirus -- BBC
White House coronavirus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci says complete US shutdown is 'on the table' and warns the crisis could last TWO MONTHS -- Daily Mail
Top health official Fauci: Coronavirus crisis could last 8 weeks -- The Hill
California Governor Gavin Newsom says the CDC sent coronavirus test kits that were missing parts - as senator says it will be TWO WEEKS before tests are widely available -- Daily Mail
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says coronavirus crisis could last up to NINE MONTHS as he opens drive-thru testing in contained town New Rochelle which will serve 200 cars per day -- Daily Mail
NYC declares state of emergency, de Blasio says coronavirus 'could easily be a 6-month crisis' -- CNBC
NY begins to empty: One million fewer take the subway - but de Blasio says there are NO plans to close the city down as 95 remain infected from coronavirus -- Daily Mail
New Yorkers say they have been LAID OFF and restaurants fear they could lose up to 80% of business because of the ban on gatherings of more than 500 people and orders for large venues to be only half full -- Daily Mail
Ivanka Trump self-isolates at home after she and Attorney General Bill Barr posed with Australian government minister days before he tested positive for coronavirus and 48 hours before she had dinner with her father at Mar-a-Lago -- Daily Mail
Pandemic? What pandemic? Thousands of spring break revelers defy coronavirus fears as they party in Miami Beach - hours after the city issued a state of emergency -- Daily Mail
Coronavirus: Why systemic problems leave the US at risk -- BBC

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic Live Updates And WHO Announcements -- March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 05:00 PM PDT

Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic Live Updates

Live: Borders shut as coronavirus cases rise -- BBC
Live: WHO warns Europe is coronavirus 'epicentre' as outbreak continues to spread -- France 24
Coronavirus latest: Donald Trump declares national emergency -- DW
Coronavirus live news: Trump says UK may be included in travel ban as WHO calls Europe 'centre of pandemic' -- The Guardian
Coronavirus update: Europe is new 'epicentre' of the pandemic, Spain declares state of emergency, Canada shuts parliament -- ABC News Online
Coronavirus pandemic: All the latest updates -- Al Jazeera
Coronavirus: Which countries have confirmed cases? -- Al Jazeera

WHO Announcements -- March 13, 2020

WHO urges countries to 'track and trace' every Covid-19 case -- The Guardian
Coronavirus: WHO urges governments to act and not be 'paralysed by the fear of failure' -- SCMP
Coronavirus epicenter has shifted from China to Europe, WHO says -- UPI
Coronavirus: WHO urges governments to act and not be 'paralysed by the fear of failure' -- SCMP
'Do not let this fire burn': WHO warns Europe over coronavirus -- The Guardian

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 04:00 PM PDT

Jason Beaubien, NPR: Singapore Wins Praise For Its COVID-19 Strategy. The U.S. Does Not

Hong Kong and Singapore were hit early with the coronavirus. But each now has fewer than 200 cases, while France, Germany and Spain, which were hit late, all have more than 10 times that number.

Three weeks ago, Italy had only three cases. Now it has more than 10,000.

These dramatic differences show that how governments respond to this virus matters, says Mike Ryan, the World Health Organization's head of emergencies.

"Hope is not a strategy," says Ryan, who is an epidemiologist. "We are still very much in the up cycle of this epidemic."

Read more ....

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- March 13, 2020

Brave new world: Wartime tactics against coronavirus foe -- Andrew Taylor, Tim Sullivan and Lori Hinnant, AP

Coronavirus: Why did China's multimillion-dollar early warning system fail? -- Guo Rui, SCMP

Is Africa, with its low rates so far, ready to face the coronavirus pandemic? -- France 24

Coronavirus takes hold in America, upending lives -- AFP

Will Russia accept Turkey's proposal to split Syria's oil? -- Anton Mardasov, Al-Monitor

Syria: Is the End Game Approaching? -- John McLaughlin, OZY

Intel: Despite new Idlib deal, Russia, Turkey look to strengthen leverage in Syria -- Maxim A. Suchkov, Al-Monitor

Hounded by war, can Idlib's desperate civilians outrun final assault? -- Martin Chulov, The Guardian

Having Retaken Parliament, Iran's Hard-Liners Are Poised for Political Dominance -- Mohsen Milani, WPR

Iraq after Soleimani: What is the future for US troops? -- Nafiseh Kohnavard, BBC

Saudi royal arrests: Why top princes have been silenced -- Michael Stephens, BBC

A New Russia Is Taking Shape and There Is No Turning Back -- Alexander Baunov, Moscow Times

Putin Saw a World in Turmoil and Decided It Needs More Putin -- Bloomberg

Putin will go before 2036 -- Leonid Ragozin, Al Jazeera

Could Kenya annex chunks of Somalia? -- Abu-Bakarr Jalloh and Mohamed Odowa, DW

World News Briefs -- March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 03:35 PM PDT

Daily Mail: Coronavirus pandemic has now killed more 5,000 people as Europe continues to battle escalating crisis

* A total of 3,176 people have died in mainland China, where the outbreak started
* Two other countries with the highest death tolls are Italy (1,016) and Iran (514)
* More than 134,300 have been infected since COVID-19 appeared in December
* Europe has rapidly become the new epicentre of the killer coronavirus
* Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

The death toll from the coronavirus pandemic today soared past 5,000 as Europe continues to battle its escalating crisis.

A total of 3,176 people have died in mainland China, followed by 1,016 in Italy, and 514 in Iran – the three countries with the highest number of deaths.

Since COVID-19 was first detected in December, more than 134,300 people have been infected in 121 countries and territories.

Cases have also soared past 600 in the UK, after Wales confirmed 13 people had been diagnosed today.

Read more ....


US conducts airstrikes against multiple Iranian-backed militia sites in Iraq. Iraq base attack: US in retaliatory strikes on Iran-backed fighters.

'Repeated violations': Iraqi president condemns US air strikes.

US keeping two carriers in Gulf to deter Iran proxy attacks.

Iran imposes nationwide lockdown within 24 hours so EVERY citizen can be checked for coronavirus as regime struggles to contain outbreak.

Iran asks for billions in loans as virus death toll climbs.

Syria bans shisha, closes schools over virus fears.

Starved of dollars and drowning in debt, Lebanon's economy sinks fast.

Netanyahu, Gantz at odds with emergency gov't to fight coronavirus in Israel.


In role reversal, Asia seeks to stop virus from coming in.

No mask, no mistake for North Korea's Kim.

US general: 'fairly certain' North Korea has COVID-19 cases.

Japan's Olympic minister 'absolutely' rules out cancelling or postponing Tokyo 2020 even after Donald Trump's call for Games to be held in 2021 because of coronavirus.

Nepal closes access to Mount Everest due to coronavirus outbreak.

Ten killed, including children, after gunmen open fire in PNG's highlands.

Farooq Abdullah: Kashmir leader released from seven-month detention.

New Zealand leader says nation changed after mosque attacks.


Coronavirus spreads to more African countries.

In Africa, coronavirus cases rise as experts voice concern about health systems.

Ghana and Gabon confirm their first coronavirus cases.

East Africa sees its first coronavirus case as woman is confirmed in Kenya after travelling back from US via London. Ethiopia, Kenya confirm first virus cases in East Africa.

Coronavirus: Sudan confirms first case.

UN too scared to stop breaches of arms ban, says Libyan minister.

Sudan economy in crisis almost year after Bashir ouster.

Russian-led troll network based in west Africa uncovered.


Coronavirus: Europe now epicentre of the pandemic, says WHO.

Italy's coronavirus death toll surges as Lombardy seeks tougher curbs.

Spain declares state of emergency over coronavirus.

Hungary's Orban blames foreigners, migration for coronavirus spread.

Coronavirus: EU condemns Trump travel ban on 26 European countries.

Russian regions OK changes to allow Putin 2 more terms as president.

Putin may extend term over 'threats to Russia', coronavirus.

Brexit: EU drafts trade deal ahead of talks with UK.

Brexit will not be delayed by coronavirus, says Johnson .

Local elections and London mayoral race postponed for a year .

Greece's first female president sworn in.


Trump declares virus emergency; Pelosi announces aid deal.

US hospitals brace for 'tremendous strain' from new virus.

Trump says government will buy crude oil to help industry.

U.S. Treasury blacklists Rosneft subsidiary over Venezuela.

US State Department summons Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai amid anger over Beijing coronavirus comments.

US House speaker says vote is set on emergency coronavirus legislation.

Louisiana to postpone Democratic primary over coronavirus.

Canadian PM Justin Trudeau becomes the first world leader to go into coronavirus ISOLATION as his wife tests positive following visit to the UK. Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, wife of Canada PM Justin Trudeau, tests positive for coronavirus.

'We have to do this': PM Justin Trudeau warns Canadians not to travel abroad and tells of isolation after wife's coronavirus diagnosis.

Canada faces 'danger' from China and Russia, intelligence chief warns.

Guyana election: Top court orders partial recount of votes.

Venezuela confirms two coronavirus cases, suspends school.


ISIS issues advice to terrorists on how to tackle coronavirus – including a travel ban, washing hands, and 'putting your faith in God'.

How Europe deals with terror offenders when they are freed from jail.


Stocks roar back from big losses after emergency declaration.

Coronavirus: China joins US and Europe in moves to calm markets as economic anxiety grows.

British Airways in battle for 'survival' over coronavirus: BA boss tells his 45,000 staff the economic impact will be 'more serious than the financial crisis, SARS or 9/11' and warns of job losses.

The coronavirus pandemic is putting up to 50 MILLION travel and tourism jobs at risk, with BA warning it will lay off staff and ground aircraft.

Coronavirus and sports: World sport's schedule comes to grinding halt.

Bill Gates steps down from Microsoft board.

Military And Intelligence News Briefs -- March 13, 2020

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 01:52 PM PDT

RUDAW: US 'will not tolerate' direct attacks on US or coalition forces: CENTCOM Commander

ERBIL,Kurdistan Region – US officials have said they will "not tolerate" direct attacks on US or coalition forces following Friday morning airstrikes against weapon storage facilities across Iraq, prompting Iraq's Foreign Ministry to summon the UK and US ambassadors to Baghdad.

US warplanes launched retaliatory strikes against the Iran-backed Kataib Hezbollah militia in the early hours of Friday in response to Wednesday's rocket attack on Iraq's Taji military base which killed two Americans and one Briton.

The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) released a statement on Friday calling for "immediate deescalation" from all sides.

Read more ....

Military And Intelligence News Briefs -- March 13, 2020

Top general: Iran threat 'remains very high' after US strikes on proxy militia in Iraq -- The Hill

General Takes Blame for 'No Injuries' Declaration After Jan. 8 Iran Strike -- Defense One

CENTCOM adding travel restrictions amid COVID-19 outbreak in Iran -- Military Times

DoD restricts travel for military personnel, families over COVID-19 -- UPI

Chinese spokesman accuses the US military of bringing coronavirus to Wuhan as war of words escalates after Trump's national security adviser accused Beijing of cover up -- Daily Mail

Troops in Europe Face Limbo Following Canceled Exercise, Travel Ban --

Some Military Travel Restrictions Now Global with New CDC Guidance --

How is Coronavirus Outbreak Affecting US Naval Base in Spain? -- Sputnik

American commandos to hold down the fort in Afghanistan as US troops withdraw -- Defense News

Fluor nabs $1.8B for nuclear propulsion work -- UPI

The Coast Guard Has Billions in Overdue Maintenance, and Lawmakers Are Concerned --

SOUTHCOM commander: DoD to 'right-size' staffing at Guantanamo Bay -- UPI

Navy may cancel plans to extend lives of Burke-class destroyers -- UPI

Government lawyers ask DoD to reconsider decision to give Microsoft $10 billion contract over Amazon -- CNBC

Pentagon 'wishes to reconsider' $10 billion contract given to Microsoft over Amazon -- CNN

America's bomber force is too small and getting smaller -- Gen. John Michael Loh (ret.), Defense News

Against Russia and China? US Mulls Producing Decoy Missiles to Confuse Enemy Air Defences – Report -- Sputnik

Could a commercial drone replace the MQ-9 Reaper? The Air Force is considering it. -- Defense News

Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell initiates hiring freeze -- CNN

Judge orders Chelsea Manning's release from jail -- The Hill

Germany plans to send a warship to the Indian Ocean -- Defense News

UK Military is on stand-by to help fight coronavirus as MoD officials are deployed to draw up emergency contingency plans -- Daily Mail

Canadian military bans international travel in response to COVID-19 -- CBC

Canadian military says its intelligence operations aren't bound by privacy law -- CBC

Watch Russian Tu-160s Strategic Bombers Flying Over Atlantic - Video -- Sputnik

How a Lack of Resources Has Made Russia's Military Even More Cunning -- Sebastien Roblin, National Interest

Photos: China's Next Amphibious Assault Ship Nearing Completion -- Sputnik

Cambodia to host war games with China amid coronavirus outbreak -- Al Jazeera

North Korea had military forces on lockdown for 30 days over coronavirus - U.S. general -- Reuters

Pentagon 'fairly certain' North Korea has coronavirus cases -- The Hill

Kim Jong Un oversees artillery drills, state media says -- UPI

Japan unveils its hypersonic weapons plans -- Defense News

President Trump To Hold A News Conference On The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic At 15:00 EST

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 11:59 AM PDT

US State Department Summons Chinese Ambassador Over 'Blatant' Disinformation Campaign On The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 12:12 PM PDT

CNN News: US summons Chinese ambassador over coronavirus conspiracy theory

US Assistant Secretary of State David Stilwell summoned China's ambassador in Washington to the State Department Friday morning, hours after a prominent Chinese official suggested that the US military may have been responsible for bringing the coronavirus to Wuhan, the epicenter of the global pandemic.

That claim was publicly promoted by China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian on Thursday, who pointed to remarks made by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention l director Robert Redfield as proof of a growing conspiracy theory that the coronavirus did not originate in central China, as previously thought, and may have been brought there by the US Army.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Statements from China blaming the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic have been outrageous and incredibly dangerous .... China Accuses The U.S. For Starting The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic.

More News On The US State Department Summoning The Chinese Ambassador Over Beijing's 'Blatant' Disinformation Campaign On The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic

State Department summons Chinese ambassador over 'blatant' disinformation campaign on coronavirus -- FOX News
U.S. summoning Chinese ambassador over Beijing coronavirus comments, U.S. official says -- Reuters
US Summons Chinese Envoy Over Claims That American Military Brought Coronavirus to Wuhan – Report -- Sputnik

U.S. To Maintain Two Aircraft Carriers In The Middle East

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 11:43 AM PDT

The aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) transits the Arabian Sea Jan. 31, 2020 U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Scott Swofford

Business Insider: The US is wielding 2 aircraft carriers in the Middle East for the first time in years as a warning to Iran

* The US military is currently dual wielding two aircraft carriers in the US Central Command area of responsibility, CENTCOM commander Gen. Frank McKenzie said Friday.
* "The carriers are very important to us, and we know the Iranians watch them very closely too," he explained.
* The decision to position two carriers in the Middle East for extended operations, something that hasn't happened since 2012, comes amid heightened tensions between the US and Iran-backed proxy forces.

The US military has two aircraft carriers operating in the Middle East, marking the first extended dual use of carriers in the region in years, a US combatant commander said in a statement Friday.

Gen. Frank McKenzie, head of US Central Command said that he "would caution Iran and its proxies from attempting a response that would endanger US and coalition forces or our partners."

He stressed that his command is "well postured to defend our forces around the region and to respond to any further aggression against our forces," noting that the secretary of defense has given him two aircraft carriers to support CENTCOM missions.

Read more ....

Update: Two US Aircraft Carriers to Continue Operating in Middle East Amid Escalation With Iran - Pentagon (Spuntik)

WNU Editor: The US is sending the message to everyone in the Middle East that now is not the time to mess around with them.

Iraq Condemns U.S. Air Strikes Targeting Iranian-Backed Militias

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 11:15 AM PDT

Iraqi soldiers stand guard at a Karbala airport, which was hit by US strikes, March 13, 2020 © AFP / Mohammed Sawaf

Reuters: Iraq condemns U.S. air strikes, warns of consequence

KERBALA, Iraq/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iraq condemned overnight U.S. air strikes on Friday, saying they killed six people and warning of dangerous consequences for what it called a violation of sovereignty and targeted aggression against the nation's regular armed forces.

President Barham Salih said repeated such violations could cause Iraq to unravel into a failed state and revive the Islamic State militant group. Iraq's foreign ministry announced plans to bring a complaint to the United Nations.

The United States defended the air strikes, saying all five targets were legitimate and stored Iranian-supplied weapons used by the Kataib Hezbollah militia to attack the U.S.-led coalition. Washington launched the strikes in retaliation for a rocket attack on Wednesday on a base north of Baghdad that killed U.S. and British troops.

Read more ....

More News On Iraq Condemning U.S. Air Strikes Targeting Iranian-Backed Militias

Six killed after US strikes Iraqi targets in retaliation for deadly rocket attack -- SCMP/AFP
Iraq Says U.S. Strikes Killed Soldiers, Police and One Civilian, Wounded Iran Allies -- Newsweek
Iraq army says US strikes kill 5 security forces, 1 civilian -- AP
Baghdad summons US & British envoys after condemning their strikes on Iraqi targets as 'violation of sovereignty' -- RT
Iran-Backed Fighters 'Killed' In Syria Air Strikes After Iraq Base Attack -- RFE
US strikes back after attack kills American and British troops in Iraq -- Washington Examiner
'Repeated violations': Iraqi president condemns US air strikes -- Al Jazeera

President Trump To Declare A National Emergency Over The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 10:14 AM PDT

Daily Mail: Donald Trump will declare a national state of emergency over coronavirus - as Brazilian leader he shook hands with claims a second test shows he does NOT have the virus after his son said he had it

* President Donald Trump will hold a press conference on Friday afternoon amid confusion and chaos about the coronavirus
* Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive Friday for coronavirus, according to local reports, but then said a second test was negative
* Press conference is at 3 p.m. at White House
* Trump will declare national emergency, which frees up federal funds
* G7 leaders to hold video conference on Monday to talk coronavirus
* Bolsonaro was tested after his press secretary Fabio Wajngarten tested positive
* Bolsonaro, Wajngarten, and staffers were guests at Mar-a-Lago over weekend
* Wajngarten posed for a photo on Saturday with Trump and Vice President Pence
* Trump down played concerns
* White House said first family would not go into quarantine
* Miami Mayor Francis Suarez tested positive for coronavirus after attending an event with Bolsonaro in Miami on Monday
* He hugged Bolsonaro and gave him keys to the city

President Donald Trump will hold a press conference on Friday afternoon amid confusion and chaos about the coronavirus after reports Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who dined with him on Saturday at Mar-a-Lago, tested positive for the disease but then said a second test showed a negative result.

Trump, who shook hands with his Brazilian counterpart at that meal, will declare a national emergency, Bloomberg News reported, which would open the door to more federal funds for states and cities.

Additionally, Trump and his fellow G7 leaders spoke, according to French President Emmanuel Macron, and will hold a videoconference on Monday about combatting the disease.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: He is probably going to make this national emergency announcement  at a news conference currently slated for 15:00 EST today (see tweet below).

More News On Reports That President Trump Will Be Declaring A National Emergency Over The Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic

Trump preparing to invoke emergency powers over coronavirus -- AP
Trump to declare coronavirus a national emergency - source -- Reuters
Trump plans to declare national emergency over coronavirus pandemic -- CNBC
Trump to Declare National Emergency to Speed Virus Response -- Bloomberg
Trump will reportedly declare a national emergency over the coronavirus after weeks of downplaying the threat of the pandemic -- Business Insider

Director Of NIH And NIAID: Complete US Shutdown Is 'On The Table' And Warns The Crisis Could Last Two Months

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 09:59 AM PDT

Daily Mail: White House coronavirus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci says complete US shutdown is 'on the table' and warns the crisis could last TWO MONTHS

* Fauci said on Friday that the crisis will last for at least a few more weeks and possibly up to two months
* He said that 'there is no doubt we have not peaked yet' in terms of severity and that it would get worse
* Fauci said that he was 'not sure' if the US would reach full shut-down mode but that it's not off the table
* There are more than 1,700 people in the US with coronavirus and 41 have died as a result of the deadly illness
* Fauci promised testing was going to become more available but he did not give specifics on where or how
* In California, doctors have been receiving tests from the CDC that are missing crucial components
* There has been a hurry to approve privately-developed tests for the virus and get them to the public
* It remains to be seen though when anyone in America who wants one will be able to get a test
* Until then, the country is being told to be vigilant about social distancing and stay away from the vulnerable
* President Trump, who has come into contact with several dignitaries and politicians with the virus, has not been tested for it yet, according to the White House

White House coronavirus expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Friday morning that the current state of crisis in the US would last for two months and that 'it's all on the table' in terms of how much more severe things may become.

In a series of interviews with Good Morning America and CBS This Morning, Fauci gave his bleak assessment of what is still to come.

'It's certainly going to get worse before it gets better...there's no doubt we have not peaked yet,' he said.

Read more ....

Update #1: Dr. Anthony Fauci cautions against 75-150 million coronavirus case estimate -- FOX News
Update #2: Who is Anthony Fauci, America's top coronavirus fighter? -- The Hill

WNU Editor: The Chinese are predicting the same thing .... Senior Chinese Medical Adviser: Coronavirus Pandemic 'Could Be Over By June' If Countries Act (March 12, 2020).

This Is What My Brother Told Me About The Covid-19 Coronavirus

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 09:13 AM PDT

WNU Editor: My brother lives in the Bay area in California. He has a doctorate in chemistry, but his specialty is in making sure that the new drugs and products that he makes for the company that he works for gets approved by the FDA. He is also responsible for the manufacturing of a product that many drug makers use in testing the quality of their drugs before it is distributed to customers. He is considered to be one of the best in his field, and because of his work he has close contacts within the FDA, and the NIH.

He called me last night at 1:00 AM wanting to talk. He was depressed and deeply troubled with what he is seeing, hearing, and learning. First things first. The Bay area has shut down. As he told me this morning. The highways are empty. The schools are closed or closing (his kids are home today and will be home until further notice). All events and activities have been cancelled. And almost everyone has made the decision to self isolate. But he does not think it is going to make a difference. Because of the nature of this virus, he has been told that a majority of Americans are going to get it. He is also 100% sure that he will get it. Because of the nature of his work, and the many people that he needs to meet, it is only inevitable that he will be contracting it. He has also been told that this emergency is going to last for at least a year. On a bright note. He told me that the pollution has dissipated, and for the first time since he moved there in the 1990s, he is seeing the stars like he has never seen them before.

He also told me a few other things, much of what we already know. This disease is very contagious, and dangerous for certain segments of the population (the old, people with immune deficiencies, and health issues). There will also be no Covid-19 vaccine for at least 18 months. There is also a very real possibility that this disease will taper off during the summer, but may come back in the fall.

He is also worried about our mom. She is 93, and we take care of her here. We are fortunate that she is physically well and strong. But she is 93! Soon to be 94 (next month). As she told me this morning. She lived through the Second World War and its aftermath. This is nothing new.

This Is The Worst-Case Estimate for U.S. Covid-19 Coronavirus Deaths

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 08:27 AM PDT

DNYZ: The Worst-Case Estimate for U.S. Coronavirus Deaths

Officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and epidemic experts from universities around the world conferred last month about what might happen if the new coronavirus gained a foothold in the United States. How many people might die? How many would be infected and need hospitalization?

One of the agency's top disease modelers, Matthew Biggerstaff, presented the group on the phone call with four possible scenarios — A, B, C and D — based on characteristics of the virus, including estimates of how transmissible it is and the severity of the illness it can cause. The assumptions, reviewed by The New York Times, were shared with about 50 expert teams to model how the virus could tear through the population — and what might stop it.

Read more ....

Update #1: The Worst-Case Estimate for U.S. Coronavirus Deaths (The New York Times)
Update #2: Worst-case coronavirus scenario: 214 million Americans infected, 1.7 million dead (MIT Technology Review)

WNU Editor: A very sobering read.

Editor's Note

Posted: 13 Mar 2020 06:34 AM PDT

I know the world is going through a unique time when I end up talking to my brother till 3:30AM. But before that I talked to my cousins and other relatives in Russia for about five hours. And then there is the girlfriend and friends in Canada.

Blogging will resume within an hour when I catch up with what is happening in the world.

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