How Europe failed the coronavirus test | Politico

“They could have known. They should have prepared. They didn’t listen.

Europe, in early April, remains the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic — where the outbreak, uncontrolled, morphed into catastrophe. Nearly 50,000 dead. More than 600,000 infected. And the devastation is far from over.

The world’s largest economy is paralyzed. The planet’s most open societies are frozen in fear — with the Continent’s treasured freedoms blamed for accelerating the spread of the most pernicious contagion to afflict humankind in more than 100 years.

It is a crisis with no end in sight. And it is one that Europe’s top leaders failed to see coming.

They failed to hear the warnings that containment would prove ineffective. They failed to heed experts who said no country could fight the virus on its own, failed to perceive that the world’s most advanced health care systems were at grave risk of being overwhelmed. They failed to understand that drastic measures would be needed until Italy — patient zero among EU member countries — frantically imposed travel restrictions that impeded European leaders’ own movements.”

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