WASHINGTON — As the coronavirus emerged and headed toward the United States, an extraordinary conversation was hatched among an elite group of infectious disease doctors and medical experts in the federal government and academic institutions around the nation.
Red Dawn — a nod to the 1984 film with Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen — was the nickname for the email chain they built. Different threads in the chain were named Red Dawn Breaking, Red Dawn Rising, Red Dawn Breaking Bad and, as the situation grew more dire, Red Dawn Raging. It was hosted by the chief medical officer at the Department of Homeland Security, Dr. Duane C. Caneva, starting in January with a small core of medical experts and friends that gradually grew to dozens.
The link is below. I was particularly struck by this item that occurred in the third week of February:
Dr. Kadlec and other administration officials decided the next day to recommend to Mr. Trump that he publicly support the start of these mitigation efforts, such as school closings. But before they could discuss it with the president, who was returning from India, another official went public with a warning, sending the stock market down sharply and angering Mr. Trump. The meeting to brief him on the recommendation was canceled and it was three weeks before Mr. Trump would reluctantly come around to the need for mitigation.
Read the story. This is more evidence federal agencies are on top of events even if the President and other political appointees are not.