Multiple sources say U.S. intelligence officials raised a red flag about China’s coronovirus problem as far back as November. A series of government-wide briefings took place in the weeks after the National Center for Medical Intelligence released its report, the sources noted, with a detailed explanation of the COVID-19 crisis finally landing the President’s Daily Brief of intelligence issues in early January.
News of the 2019 intel bolsters critics’ claims that Washington could have implemented mitigation and containment strategies much earlier to prepare for the arrival of coronavirus in America, where 12,000 people have now died.
The president assured the nation on Jan. 22 that there was no need to worry, waiting nearly two more months before declaring a national emergency. “It’s not surprising to me that the intelligence community detected the outbreak,” remarks ABC News contributor John Cohen, former acting undersecretary at the Department of Homeland Security. “What is surprising and disappointing is that the White House ignored the clear warning signs, failed to follow established pandemic response protocols and were slow to put in place a government-wide effort to respond to this crisis.”
source: ABC News