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By Pete Moore On February 4th, 2021

The Wall Street Journal lauds Operation Warp Speed, explaining how “the successful vaccine program followed the model of U.S. mobilization in World War II”. That would be President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, launched with the swish of his pen in May 2020.

Meanwhile the UK has vaccinated more than ten million people as the rollout gathers even more pace. That’s the UK whose Prime Minister ignored all that sensible advice to stay with the EU scheme. That’s an EU scheme which is still stalled in the blocks.

Effete metropolitans used to laugh/despair that Boris and Trump had the top jobs, enviously watching those sensible Europeans with their Merkels, Macrons and their von der Leyens. I don’t know how they are getting on with that now because a lot of them have suddenly gone quiet.


  1. Well done Pete , you’ve found the one single aspect of this whole Covid pandemic where we have done better than Europe and boy will you harp on about it. I don’t think the Europeans need a Boris though. If he achieved for Germany what he has here in the UK they would have a ‘Brexit bounce’ death toll of 130,000 instead of the 59,000 they currently have. I think they’ll pass in your Boris offer.

  2. Germany would need an NHS to have NHS-level death tolls. Jeez, if only Boris had sold it to Trump …

  3. The very good Pfizer vaccine was developed in Germany.

    Give Germany / EU credit for that.

    Trump also effectively discouraged mask wearing, and promoted quack cures, such as hydroxychloroquine, light inside the body, disinfectant inside the body. All those set the country back terribly.

  4. Make your mind up Pete , as I mentioned on the Sir Tom thread, one minute you claim the COVID death stats are fake, now you believe the totals and that it’s all blood on the NHS hands.

  5. Government intervention in vaccine development and our centralised NHS are key reasons for the UK’s success in vaccination. The vaccine task force has been a great success:

    “At the time, scientists at Oxford University were working on a vaccine for Mers, an earlier coronavirus. They switched to Covid-19 in early February and looked for a commercial partner: a deal was almost signed with Merck, a US giant, until the small print came up. ‘We needed a cast-iron pledge that they’d supply us exclusively first, but it said “best efforts”,’ says one minister. The fear, then, was that America would ban vaccine exports. When AstraZeneca came along, the first contract was not good enough — Hancock passed a draft to Downing Street, and Sir Patrick and No. 10 aides spotted a supply problem. It did not give the UK the rights to the vaccine that it now enjoys. They came up with the idea to pay for almost all manufacturing costs in return for secure supply in a British plant. ‘Vallance was hammering the point about onshore manufacturing from early on,’ says an official. ‘He was responsible for that Oxford deal.’…

    The UK could not rely on one vaccine coming through. Bingham shortened the 120-odd vaccine candidates to a 23-strong shortlist. Orders were placed for seven vaccines in total, of which three have already been approved, with another three expected. (Sanofi, the French offering, looks like it might fail.) A crunch moment came when Clive Dix chose to prioritise Pfizer over Moderna, whose officials had made headway with the government before Bingham started. The bet was that, for all Moderna’s promise, it would arrive later. So it was to prove: the first orders of Pfizer arrived in December. Moderna is not due until the spring…

    Once the vaccines were ready to go and be distributed to hospitals and care homes, a plan was needed to ensure that this was done speedily — by bringing in the private sector. As Pfizer’s vaccine needs to be transported at temperatures below freezing, a decision was made not to rely on PHE logistics but to go to companies already used to cold-chain medicine — the distribution arms of Boots and Superdrug. One minister describes it as ‘the best decision we made’.”


  6. I hope the government applies the same imaginative and cross platform deliveries it has used for the vaccine procurement and roll out to the test trace and isolate system. We can’t undo the big testing failure of the last year but we can change and adapt it to follow the success of the vaccine programme.

  7. Colm

    It’s still the isolate leg of the stool that’s the problem. Some research suggests that only around 20% of people told to isolate have actually done so, in most cases because they couldn’t afford to because statutory sick pay is just £92 per week. Until that’s addressed properly any system will be doomed to failure.

  8. The same issue would exist here, Peter

    And many can’t isolate, because they live in a small house with a multi generational family, etc.