While the $2.2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill was authored in the spirit of beating back a pandemic, buried deep within its text is a stipend for the US State Department operations dedicated to carrying out foreign interventions that have contributed to the outbreak of preventable diseases like polio in Syria and Pakistan. Passed unanimously by Congress this March, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides $250 million for the State Department to implement “economic, security, and stabilization” activities through an “Economic Support Fund” (ESF). Earmarked for activities through September 2020, the bill authorizes the State Department to fund “international organizations.” While the bill does not specify which organizations qualify for funding, many recent State Department “security and stabilization” operations have relied heavily on foreign proxies which did exactly the opposite of improving public health systems.
The spread of the COVID-19 virus has caused not only a world health crisis, but may also cause a deep economic depression. The fabric of society is becoming strained to the breaking point, and social, economic, and political catastrophes are already erupting in a variety of forms. We live in a society in which our very existence is constantly dominated and constrained by the dual imperatives of profit and competition.
Confronted with an "unprecedented" outbreak of the novel coronavirus, China has done a "remarkable" job in limiting the spread of the disease, said leading experts in the US. "China has done extraordinary things to mostly contain the virus within Hubei and central China," said Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, to China Daily. "They recognize their responsibility to the world as well as to the people of China and have worked hard to contain this virus." Hotez said that it's "almost impossible" to contain a highly contagious virus, like the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), without a vaccine, but China has made progress.