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Joe Scarborough: the atmosphere inside the White House is 'very sober,' and COVID-19 is 'going to change the way Americans live'


He was dead serious

Image source: Mediaite video screenshot

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough says that the COVID-19 outbreak is more like World War II rather than like 9/11.

Speaking with presidential historian Jon Meacham, Scarborough said that the U.S. was facing a challenge comparable to WWII.

What are the details?

The "Morning Joe" co-host said that the weekend's "sobering report" that estimated the death of at least 2 million Americans from the COVID-19 spread puts the country on par with WWII rather than the events that unfolded on Sept. 11, 2001.

"[That's] more Americans than died in World War I, World War II, Vietnam, and the Civil War combined. It is a staggering number," he said.

"The same thing happened in Great Britain, where they reversed course after finding out their models yesterday would lead to 250,000 British citizens dying," he continued. "The White House is unusually focused and frightened about what is coming."

Scarborough, who said he spoke to "high-ranking officials" this week, insisted that he received information that "this is going to be very bad."

"We are going to have to, you know — it is all hands on deck," he added. "This isn't like 9/11. This is like World War II. It is going to change the way we live as Americans. And the atmosphere inside the White House was very sober."

Scarborough pointed out that even President Donald Trump seems to be feeling the ominous atmosphere judging by his suggestions.

"As I hear the president yesterday talking about voluntary measures, and then suggesting they may have to lock down so-called hot spots, I was thinking, 'That's actually the best way to go at first,'" he admitted. "Because we Americans might not respond as well, certainly not as well as, let's say, people in China, people in Singapore, to federal government locking things down. It is going region by region, state by state, locality by locality."

What else?

Meacham added that he believes it feels more like "England and Britain during World War II."

"The analogy I keep thinking of is less about America during World War II, because though we mobilized, we did it very late," he explained. "Obviously, after Pearl Harbor and Germany declared war on us, 16 million Americans served, 11 percent of the male population, 2 million in Europe. There were victory gardens, and there was a full mobilization."

He continued, "I think this is more like England and Britain during World War II. Civilians are actually combatants, if you will, if you followed the analogy. Everybody was at the front, right? Churchill said in the great 'finest hour' speech, you know, let us so conduct ourselves that if the British empire were to last 1,000 years, men will still say, this was their finest hour."

He concluded, "[Churchill] needed everybody because Germany was dropping bombs on everybody. Where we're living right now, the Luftwaffe is overhead in the form of a pandemic. It requires, dare I say it, Churchill-like leadership."

03 17 2020 06 10 55

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