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Donald Trump is culpable in the deaths of thousands of Americans by using the coronavirus pandemic to boost his electoral prospects and line the pockets of big business, Prof Noam Chomsky has said.
In an interview with the Guardian, the radical intellectual argued the US president was stabbing average Americans in the back while pretending to be the country’s saviour during the worst health crisis in at least a century.
He said Trump, who will seek re-election later this year, had cut government funding for healthcare and research into infectious disease for the benefit of wealthy corporations.
Chomsky said: “That’s something that Trump has been doing every year of his term, cutting it back more. So [his plan is] let’s continue to cut it back, let’s continue to make sure that the population is as vulnerable as we can make it, that it can suffer as much as possible, but will of course increase profits for his primary constituents in wealth and corporate power.”
Footage showing half a dozen dead bodies lying on beds next to Covid-19 patients in hospital has horrified India and exposed how the nation’s health system is struggling, in some areas, to cope during the pandemic.
The footage from Sion hospital in Mumbai showed the bodies, wrapped in black plastic, lying next to patients undergoing treatment. Families tending to the patients were also seen moving around the ward, with the bodies lying nearby .
The vision provoked public outrage and echoed the fears expressed by many Indians that some states might be overwhelmed if there is an increase in cases. The country’s official Covid-19 figures remain low compared with the scale of the pandemic in Europe and the US, and given its population.
The hospital’s dean, Pramod Ingale, blamed the families of the dead for failing to collect the bodies of their loved ones and said the bodies were left in the ward because the morgue was full. Ingale said the rules were not clear about what the hospital should do with unclaimed bodies.
Regulations state the body of a Covid-19 patient has to be removed 30 minutes after being declared dead.
Four days after many newspapers looked forward to a widespread easing of restrictions on “Magic Monday”, the story was very different following Boris Johnson’s Sunday’s night’s televised address to the nation.
“Boris keeps handbrake on”, says the Mail’s front page headline alongside a large picture of the prime minister clenching his fist as he makes a point during the broadcast. It says Johnson set out the “first steps to free Britain”.
Freedom is also the theme of other front pages with the Express proclaiming “Boris: our route to freedom… in baby steps”, and the Telegraph saying: “The long road to freedom”. However, the broadsheet also carries a front page commentary which says that the prime minister “gave us the map, but only a few vague directions”.