As early as Thanksgiving 2019, confidential channels throughout the government indicated that China’s leaders knew their coronavirus epidemic was out of control. The National Center for Medical Intelligence (NCMI) warned the military and the White House in a report about the spread of the virus in China as far back as late November. The NCMI falls under the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency.
The NCMI report said, according to an ABC News exclusive:
‘Analysts concluded it could be a cataclysmic event.’
December 2019, the White House was briefed repeatedly, and information was inserted into the President’s Daily Brief of intelligence issues in early January.
An ABC source reported about China’s city of Wuhan where the pandemic began:
‘The timeline of the intel side of this may be further back than we’re discussing. But this was definitely being briefed beginning at the end of November as something the military needed to take a posture on.’
Last week, ABC’s This Week host George Stephanopoulos asked Defense Secretary Mark Esper:
‘Did the Pentagon receive an intelligence assessment on COVID in China last November from the National Center for Medical Intelligence?’
Apparently, Esper was afflicted with White House amnesia:
‘I can’t recall, George, but we have many people that watch this closely. We have the premier infectious disease research institute in America, within the United States Army. So, our people who work these issues directly watch this all the time.’
Stephanopoulos dug more deeply:
‘So, you would have known if there was briefed to the National Security Council in December, wouldn’t you?”
Esper replied that “Yes. I’m not aware of that.”
On January 22, the president responded to an CNBC’s reporter’s question about whether he was worried about a pandemic. He replied:
‘No. Not at all. And we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.’
On February 19, Trump gave China compliments for how it handled the coronavirus:
‘I’m confident that they’re trying very hard,” Trump told an interviewer from Fox 10 in Phoenix. “They’re working it — they built, they built a hospital in seven days, and now they’re building another one. I think it’s going to work out fine.”
On March 13, Trump finally declared a national emergency.
Former Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary and ABC News contributor Mick Mulroy commented on the NCMI report:
‘It would be a significant alarm that would have been set off by this. And it would have been something that would be followed up by literally every intelligence-collection agency.’
Mulroy, who previously served as a senior official at the CIA, said NCMI does serious work that senior government leaders do not ignore.
‘Medical intelligence takes into account all source information — imagery intelligence, human intelligence, signals intelligence. Then there’s analysis by people who know those specific areas. So for something like this to have come out, it has been reviewed by experts in the field. They’re taking together what those pieces of information mean and then looking at the potential for an international health crisis.’
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.
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