The US — usually at the head of the table helping to coordinate in global crises — has declined to take a seat at virtual international meetings convened by the World Health Organization and the European Union to coordinate work on potentially lifesaving vaccines.

Former world leaders warn that the Trump administration risks alienating allies by politicizing the deadly pandemic with its push to punish China and have other nations choose sides.

The administration’s decision to halt funding for the WHO, the world body best positioned to coordinate the global response to the raging pandemic, has appalled global health officials…

“They want the US to lean in more,” said one European diplomat. “We know they’re doing a great deal with countries, including developing countries, bilaterally … but a lot of countries hanker after the decisive US effort that we saw when the Berlin Wall came down. A lot of countries believe this is one of those pivotal moments in history and the US has always led at those times.”