Former Australia Prime Minister Kevin Rudd ripped Donald Trump’s botched handling of the coronavirus pandemic in a new op-ed, describing the US president as a “quack apothecary” for hyping unproven cures.
Trump last month pondered injecting disinfectant or using powerful lights to treat COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. Following widespread anger and disbelief, Trump claimed he was being sarcastic. He also has touted unproven drugs that were later shown to be ineffective and dangerous.
Rudd, who led Australia from 2007 to 2010 and again in 2013, this week called out the Trump administration’s “chaotic management” of the crisis in a lengthy column for Foreign Affairs. The article, headlined “The Coming Post-COVID Anarchy,” explores the future relationship of China and the US and their standings in the world.
The world has watched in horror as an American president acts not as the leader of the free world but as a quack apothecary recommending unproven “treatments.” It has seen what “America First” means in practice: don’t look to the United States for help in a genuine global crisis, because it can’t even look after itself. Once there was the United States of the Berlin airlift. Now there is the image of the USS Theodore Roosevelt crippled by the virus, reports of the administration trying to take exclusive control of a vaccine being developed in Germany, and federal intervention to stop the commercial sale of personal protective equipment to Canada. The world has been turned on its head.
Rudd also warned that the US may emerge “as a more divided polity rather than a more united one, as would normally be the case following a national crisis of this magnitude.”