Dominic Cummings: key claims in his newest assault on authorities

Dominic Cummings has delivered but extra incendiary claims – backed up with some new proof – in an try and sort out what he says is an “Orwellian” rewriting of historical past by the federal government about errors made through the Covid pandemic.

In a greater than 7,000-word essay revealed on the net platform Substack, he made a collection of allegations below the broad headline: “The PM on Hancock: ‘completely fucking hopeless’”.

Simply as he did throughout his testimony to MPs three weeks in the past, Cummings repeatedly accused the well being secretary of speaking nonsense, being slippery and blaming others for his personal errors – claims the well being secretary has strenuously denied.

Cummings’s key claims included:

Lockdown modelling: late and chaotic

Cummings revealed three key COBR paperwork from conferences in early March which he stated confirmed the federal government meant to pursue a herd immunity technique by September.

The primary doc stated that the federal government “seeks to keep away from” a excessive second peak of the virus within the autumn when the NHS could be overstretched and that that may be exacerbated by “very stringent social and behavioural interventions like China” as a result of the virus would surge after lockdown ended.

The second doc confirmed the interventions that the federal government have been contemplating and its impact on intensive care unit capability. It reveals essentially the most stringent intervention that was modelled was case isolation and social distancing for over-70s. It didn’t present any modelling for a full “keep at dwelling” lockdown.

A closing doc recommended there could be 250,000 lifeless after the “optimum single peak technique”, with herd immunity by September.

Cummings additionally revealed “whiteboard” plans proven to the PM urging a shift to a lockdown technique on 14 March, in addition to mass testing and rising NHS capability. Cummings insisted this was the primary time a lockdown situation had been modelled.

He stated each Hancock and the Scottish first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, had needed to delay the introduction of quarantining these with signs as a result of a helpline wasn’t prepared and have been overruled. “Each of them have misled the general public about this,” he stated.

Hancock informed MPs {that a} plan for suppression had been revealed on 3 March – – the contain-delay-mitigate technique, a doc Cummings referred to as “embarrassingly terrible”.

Testing: ‘Hancock “hopeless”, however PM does nothing’

In his blogpost, Cummings stated Hancock’s choose committee listening to had “muddied the waters” in regards to the objective – suggesting he had opposed it – and disclosed textual content messages to show he had pushed to ramp up testing. “I used to be pushing the system on testing weeks earlier than Hancock’s announcement and to construct a system for 1m per day,” he stated.

What he had opposed, he stated, was the “chaos” the place Hancock “blurted out his 100k goal to the media” and stated the well being secretary had taken the chance whereas each Cummings and Johnson have been in poor health with Covid.

In a textual content message to a WhatsApp group together with the prime minister, Hancock, Chris Whitty, Patrick Vallance and the then director of communications, Lee Cain, Cummings raised the objective of 100,000 exams a day.

Cummings stated Hancock had misled the assembly when the objective was agreed, together with saying that the present hold-up was with the Treasury. On 26 March, Cummings texted the PM saying that Hancock was falling behind on his testing guarantees and that it will imply tens of hundreds of NHS workers may very well be absent.

The prime minister texted again saying: “Completely fucking hopeless.”

Nevertheless, Cummings stated that Johnson by no means confronted Hancock – “he would by no means say to him, regardless of dozens of requests from two Cupboard Secretaries, me and different ministers and officers”.

Cummings stated the 100,000 objective had distracted from different essential points together with care properties throughout April – “distorting priorities throughout the system in order that he [Hancock] may maintain a profitable press convention”.

Care properties: Hancock’s ‘new model of actuality’

One of many largest scandals of the primary Covid wave was that hospital sufferers have been being discharged into grownup social care properties with out being examined for Covid – seeding the virus into the susceptible and aged.

Cummings accused Hancock of “creating a brand new model of actuality” by claiming the federal government “threw a protecting ring” round care properties. He stated the well being secretary “uncared for” care properties all through April 2020 as a result of he was “attempting to focus effort on his press convention” on the finish of the month, the place he needed to triumphantly declare his testing goal had been met.

Having returned to work on 13 April following his Covid sickness and journeys to Durham and Barnard Fortress, Cummings stated that regardless of Hancock’s assurance that individuals could be examined earlier than being moved from hospitals to care properties, that was not taking place and “there was nonetheless no plan to take action”.

Two days later, Cummings stated, No 10 was informed that quite a lot of exams weren’t getting used as a result of Hancock’s division had “left in place guidelines that have been limiting these eligible for exams, regardless of care properties screaming”.

Regardless of this, “the care properties nightmare continued”, stated the previous No 10 aide.

Then on 3 Could, Cummings recalled he wrote to Johnson: “I feel we’re negligently killing essentially the most susceptible who we’re imagined to be shielding and I’m extraordinarily frightened about it.” A number of days later, Cummings stated, he and No 10 dug into Hancock’s denial of any downside – and ended up concluding the well being secretary’s “failures and dishonesty made him unfit for his job” given “there was nonetheless no severe testing in care properties and this was killing individuals”.

PPE: the system collapsed

Additionally very important to stopping the virus spreading in hospitals and care properties, and making certain workers didn’t go off sick, was private protecting tools (PPE).

“The shortage of PPE killed NHS and care dwelling workers in March-Could,” was Cummings’ blunt evaluation. He stated Hancock had given a “fictitious” account of the procurement of things corresponding to aprons, gloves and face shields.

He added this was one other topic on which Hancock and No 10 have been “creating a brand new model of actuality”, saying that the federal government’s procurement operation had “collapsed” and caught to outdated guidelines when it ought to have been working on a “wartime mentality”.

The well being secretary insisted PPE was “all below management” on 26 March – resulting in wasted weeks the place issues weren’t solved, Cummings stated, including Hancock sought responsible the chancellor, Cupboard Workplace and chief govt of NHS England, Simon Stevens.

“The cupboard secretary [Mark Sedwill] informed the PM’s workplace that Hancock’s claims have been false,” Cummings stated. “The shortage of PPE killed NHS and care dwelling workers in March-Could.”

Hancock “needed to be faraway from essential choices”, stated Cummings, which means procuring PPE was handed to Lord Deighton – a Tory peer who was judged to have led effectively the 2012 London Olympics organising committee.

Officers have been flatly contradicting Hancock’s insistence that PPE was not operating brief, Cummings stated, with civil servants telling him most deliveries of the objects would solely arrive after the primary wave in April.

By 20 April, Cummings stated, Hancock’s division had solely simply arrange a 24/7 funds system for procurement with Asia. “Think about if NHS workers sporting bin baggage had realised that DHSC had not even arrange a round the clock system at this level, think about the trend in No10 once we found this,” the ex-aide stated.

“Presently NHS workers have been screaming for PPE. The dashboard day by day conferences confirmed we have been operating out of vital objects corresponding to robes. Experiences flooded in of hospitals having run out or on the point of operating out and begging for provides. Hancock brought on additional chaos by repeated briefing to the media about how new masses have been flying in, bluffing his means by means of assembly after assembly – his complete routine.”

Cummings additionally teased the discharge of additional info, saying Hancock had given “a fictitious account of what occurred on masks” however that he would “go away that to a different day”.

Boris Johnson: desires to ‘earn cash and have enjoyable’

Hancock might have been the principle goal of Dominic Cummings’ ire, however the spurned former adviser additionally ranges a collection of expenses on the prime minister. He claimed Johnson’s administration couldn’t be trusted, and would “unravel”, urging Johnson’s opponents to start out making ready now for “what comes subsequent”.

Cummings was significantly preoccupied with what he claimed have been No 10’s efforts to rewrite the historical past of the early days of the pandemic, by claiming “herd immunity” was by no means the federal government’s plan A.

He lays the blame for what he noticed as these lies firmly on Johnson’s shoulders, accusing him of “attempting to affect officers/advisers to help the rewriting of historical past” and “encouraging ministers to provide false accounts to parliament”.

Cummings additionally claimed that what he noticed as Johnson’s safety of Hancock despatched a dangerous sign: that “a secretary of state shall be rewarded regardless of repeated incompetence and dishonesty and the federal government machine will search to rewrite historical past in Orwellian style as a result of the PM thinks it in his private pursuits to take action”.

In fact, many at Westminster felt Johnson’s safety of Cummings over his lockdown-busting journey to Durham a yr in the past despatched a fairly robust sign, too.

Cummings additionally stated the prime minister had a “clear plan”, to not “go on and on”, however to step down two years after the subsequent common election, to “earn cash and have enjoyable”.

Lastly, Cummings gave an excruciating account of the way in which Johnson chairs conferences – claiming he informed rambling tales and jokes and averted any tough points, urging colleagues to “take it offline”, earlier than shouting “ahead to victory”, doing a thumbs-up and fleeing the room earlier than anyone may disagree.

Regardless of Cummings’s prolonged and sometimes rambling evaluation, the well being committee chair, Jeremy Hunt, identified in a Twitter thread that he has but to provide any proof that definitively exhibits Hancock lied to the prime minister.

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