<div dir="ltr">

  <div class="gmail-container gmail-content-width3">
    <div class="gmail-header gmail-reader-header gmail-reader-show-element">
      <font size="1"><a href="https://orinocotribune.com/us-leads-global-wave-of-nations-stealing-seizing-and-diverting-coronavirus-equipment/">https://orinocotribune.com/us-leads-global-wave-of-nations-stealing-seizing-and-diverting-coronavirus-equipment/</a>
      
      </font><h1 class="gmail-reader-title">US Leads Global Wave of Nations Stealing, Seizing and Diverting Coronavirus Equipment</h1>
      <div class="gmail-credits gmail-reader-credits">by            
                                Alan Macleod - April 3, 2020<br></div>
      
    </div>

    <hr>

    <div class="gmail-content">
      <div class="gmail-moz-reader-content gmail-line-height4 gmail-reader-show-element"><div id="gmail-readability-page-1" class="gmail-page"><div><p><span><span>T</span>here
 were dramatic scenes at an airport in Shanghai, China, as U.S. agents 
hijacked a plane full of lifesaving equipment, including 60 million 
masks, bound for coronavirus-stricken France. While the plane was on the
 tarmac, American agents managed to bribe locals into diverting the 
plane to the United States, plying them with cash.</span></p>
<p><span>The story was revealed by the president of the 
Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (PACA) region, Renaud Muselier, who noted 
that he had already paid in full for the cargo. “The Americans pay 
double – in cash – before they even see the goods!” he</span><a href="https://www.liberation.fr/france/2020/04/01/une-commande-francaise-de-masques-detournee-vers-les-etats-unis-sur-un-tarmac-chinois_1783805" target="_blank"> <span>told</span></a><span> French newspaper </span><i><span>Libération</span></i><span>,
 worrying now that his country is engaged in “a race against the clock” 
to secure and distribute masks amid the pandemic. PACA is situated in 
the southeast of France, bordering Italy. The first case in PACA was 
confirmed on February 28 in the famous seaside resort town of Cannes; a 
young woman traveling back from Milan – an epicenter of the virus – was 
infected. Muselier’s story was backed up by Jean Rottner, president of 
the Grand Est region. “On the tarmac, they arrive, get the cash out… so 
we really have to fight,” he</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/02/global-battle-coronavirus-equipment-masks-tests" target="_blank"> <span>said</span></a><span>.</span></p>
<p><span>This appears not to be an isolated incident. Canadian Prime 
Minister Justin Trudeau revealed that he had received similar reports of
 goods being seized and taken to the United States. “We need to make 
sure that equipment that is destined for Canada gets to and stays in 
Canada, and I’ve asked ministers to follow up on these particular 
reports,” he</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/02/global-battle-coronavirus-equipment-masks-tests" target="_blank"> <span>said</span></a><span>
 yesterday. Brazil, one of the U.S.’ most loyal allies, also broke with 
convention to criticize the Trump administration’s pandemic gangsterism.
 “Today the US sent 23 of their biggest cargo planes to China to pick up
 the material they had acquired. Many of our purchases, which we had 
hoped to confirm in order to supply [our country], fell through,”</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/02/global-battle-coronavirus-equipment-masks-tests" target="_blank"> <span>said</span></a><span>
 the country’s health minister, Luiz Herique Mandetta. “The whole world 
wants [supplies] too. There is a problem of hyper-demand.”</span></p>
<p><span>France has been hit hard by the coronavirus; 59,929 people have
 officially tested positive, but 5,398 have died already, the nine 
percent death rate suggesting that the country has not tested enough of 
its citizens. Both local and national governments have been criticized 
for their slow response to the pandemic, failing to shut down public 
events like markets. The famous Paris-Nice bicycle race, which finishes 
in PACA, was one of the last professional sporting events still running 
in Europe. Today the French service sector officially plunged into the</span><a href="https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-france-economy-pmi/french-service-sector-plunges-into-deepest-recession-ever-pmi-idUKKBN21L0YE?il=0" target="_blank"> <span>deepest recession</span></a><span>
 in its history. With tourism and transport halted, the government is 
using the high-speed TGV train service to ferry patients around the 
country at up to 357 mph to hospitals with free beds.</span></p>
<p><span>If the initial French response lacked zeal, the U.S. was even 
slower. President Trump spent weeks claiming the virus was a liberal “</span><a href="https://www.today.com/video/trump-calls-coronavirus-the-democrats-new-hoax-at-south-carolina-rally-79683653708" target="_blank"><span>hoax</span></a><span>”
 intended to dent his credibility, then downplaying the seriousness of 
the problem, before changing tack and blaming China for the thousands of
 dead. This week he</span><a href="https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2020/04/how-donald-trump-plans-on-spinning-200000-coronavirus-deaths-as-a-win/" target="_blank"> <span>declared</span></a><span>
 that if 200,000 Americans die, that would be a great victory for his 
administration. Over 6,000 have already died, with the tally of 
confirmed cases almost certain to rise above a quarter-million today. 
The Trump administration has used the virus to impose further sanctions 
on</span><a href="https://www.mintpressnews.com/stem-spread-coronavirus-trump-lift-sanctions-iran/265677/"> <span>Iran</span></a><span> and</span><a href="https://www.mintpressnews.com/coronavirus-aid-washington-gives-venezuela-ultimatum/266298/"> <span>Venezuela</span></a><span>,
 in an attempt to overthrow their governments. It also tried to compel a
 German pharmaceutical corporation to move production to the U.S., in 
order to make sure that America alone had access to and control of any 
coronavirus vaccine it might produce. He</span><a href="https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/03/16/depraved-trump-reportedly-offered-german-firm-large-sum-exclusive-rights-coronavirus" target="_blank"> <span>reportedly</span></a><span>
 wished to ensure that it would only be available on a for-profit basis.
 “Germany is not for sale,” the country’s furious economy minister</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/16/not-for-sale-anger-in-germany-at-report-trump-seeking-exclusive-coronavirus-vaccine-deal" target="_blank"> <span>replied</span></a><span>. The U.S. also</span><a href="https://www.defenseone.com/threats/2020/03/us-air-force-flew-half-million-coronavirus-test-kits-italy-tennessee/163879/" target="_blank"> <span>managed</span></a><span> to fly out half a million test kits on a military plane from Lombardy, Italy, the epicenter of the Italian outbreak.</span></p>


<p><span>Other countries, too, have made highly questionable decisions. 
Czech authorities seized Chinese medical supplies bound for Italy when a
 plane refueled there, the country keeping the equipment for itself. 
Meanwhile, Turkey has not only banned the export of protective gear but 
is also</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/02/global-battle-coronavirus-equipment-masks-tests" target="_blank"> <span>reportedly</span></a><span> reneging on shipments that other countries have already paid for.</span></p>
<p><span>The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic appears to be bringing out both
 the best and worst in human nature. With these latest U.S. moves, 
seizing and diverting lifesaving equipment from other countries, it 
seems there has also been a serious outbreak in gangster capitalism.</span></p>
<p>Feature photo | A N95 mask is seen on the sidewalk next to corona 
beer bottle caps outside Wycoff Heights Medical Center, April 1, 2020, 
in New York. Mary Altaffer | AP</p>
<p><em><strong><a href="https://twitter.com/AlanRMacLeod" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Alan MacLeod</a></strong> is a Staff Writer for MintPress News. After completing his PhD in 2017 he published two books: <a href="https://www.routledge.com/Bad-News-from-Venezuela-Twenty-years-of-fake-news-and-misreporting/Macleod/p/book/9781138489233" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Bad News From Venezuela: Twenty Years of Fake News and Misreporting</a> and <a href="https://www.routledge.com/Propaganda-in-the-Information-Age-Still-Manufacturing-Consent-1st-Edition/MacLeod/p/book/9781138366404?fbclid=IwAR2xQQWJd98C25wapG4ynmlEnGvL5wxG_mp5RwpBwtwPDxInjNZ1Oo7KD-E" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Propaganda in the Information Age: Still Manufacturing Consent</a>. He has also contributed to <a href="https://fair.org/author/alan-macleod/" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting</a>, <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/profile/alan-macleod" rel="noopener" target="_blank">The Guardian</a>, <a href="https://www.salon.com/writer/alan-macleod" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Salon</a>, <a href="https://thegrayzone.com/author/alan-macleod/" rel="noopener" target="_blank">The Grayzone</a>, <a href="https://jacobinmag.com/author/alan-macleod" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Jacobin Magazine</a>, <a href="https://www.commondreams.org/author/alan-macleod" rel="noopener" target="_blank">Common Dreams</a> the <a href="https://ahtribune.com/author.html?id=1088" rel="noopener" target="_blank">American Herald Tribune</a> and <a href="https://www.thecanary.co/author/alan-macleod/" rel="noopener" target="_blank">The Canary</a>.</em></p>

</div><p><span>
            <br></span></p></div></div>
    </div>

    <div>
      
    </div>
  </div>

  

</div>