Trump blasts 'failing NY Times' over report on 'opposition' to breastfeeding measure

Ric Francis via ZUMA

Ric Francis via ZUMA

Several other countries backed away from sponsoring the resolution in fear of USA threats.

When this failed, the Times reported that US delegates turned to threats. With more first world mothers opting for Mother Nature's way, most of the industry's modest growth comes from developing countries.

The narrative was set.

"The failing NY Times Fake News story today about breastfeeding must be called out".

Mr. Trump said the country "strongly supports" breastfeeding, but the issue the US representatives had was with denying access to formula. "Many women need this option because of malnutrition and poverty", Trump said.

The New York Times, meanwhile, published a piece that painted America as a bully.

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Ecuador, which was slated to introduce the resolution, was the first country targeted by American officials. At first, the United States delegates attempted to simply dilute the pro-breastmilk message, voiding language that called for governments to "protect, promote, and support breastfeeding" and limit promotion of competing baby food products that experts warn can be harmful.

Threats to end vital USA military aid and punishing trade measures forced the Ecuador delegates to drop out.

The Trump administration's slavish devotion to corporate profits and their contempt for the health and well-being of Americans and people throughout the world is beyond appalling.

The intensity of the administration's opposition to the breastfeeding resolution stunned public health officials and foreign diplomats, who described it as a marked contrast to the Obama administration, which largely supported WHO's long-standing policy of encouraging breastfeeding.

The resolution at the World Health Assembly in Geneva in May was aimed at promoting breastfeeding. Abbott reported that it had lobbied Congress on "Proposals regarding infant nutrition marketing".

"The existence of infant formula is not in question here".

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The resolution was passed when it was introduced by Russian Federation, but the U.S. did successfully strike out language calling for World Health Organization support to nations trying to prevent "inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children", and added the phrase "evidence based" to certain provisions.

During the same Geneva meeting where the breastfeeding resolution was debated, the United States succeeded in removing statements supporting soda taxes from a document that advises countries grappling with soaring rates of obesity. For decades, there has been an worldwide consensus about this, and the need to curb tall claims in formula advertising. This could ban all marketing of formula, such as advertising, free samples and product placements (as the FCTC did with tobacco marketing); require breastfeeding assistance at hospitals; provide paid maternity leave so that women could have the time and security to breastfeed, and so on. This makes formula particularly problematic for poor mothers, who may not be able to buy sufficient amounts of the product, and end up watering it down or feeding the child smaller quantities, which then leads to malnourishment. Among the myriad issues discussed at these annual meetings are policies and initiatives related to infant nutrition, breastfeeding, and breast milk substitutes, topics that gained prominence in the Assembly in the 1980s. But the USA delegation, according to the Times, sided with the $70 billion baby food industry.

This is not an atypical approach for some anti-formula activists.

The United States tried to stop a pro-breastfeeding resolution at the United Nations, but ultimately failed.

The U.S. stance on the health issue was enough to draw heated reaction from a number of progressive-leaning websites.

Humans are mammals. Therefore, they can breastfeed their offspring, and they should.

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The State Department would not answer the Times' questions.

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