Wednesday, October 22, 2014

World War E: Obama’s Political Strategy of Appeasement

With potential World War E looming over the Ebola outbreak, Obama has adopted a Neville Chamberlin appeasement approach.  Obama now declares Ebola under control and that the U.S. will lead the global response in Africa.  Peace in our time.  Simultaneously, however, WHO has sounded the alarm and admits it has already botched the global Ebola response.  The biggest danger of appeasement, of Obama’s political dithering over the Ebola outbreak, is with the math, and I’m not talking Common Core.  We may witness a global Ebola death toll rivaling total deaths in WWII.

According to the CDC, the number of infected victims in this Ebola epidemic doubles every 2-3 weeks.  One great worry is the virus spreading to Southeast Asia.  But in apparent appeasement to potentially angry foreign governments, the CDC and President Obama tell us that air travel bans will not work because they hinder the ability to track disease carriers who would otherwise sneak across borders.  Air travel bans might work in the U.S. with its highly sophisticated healthcare system, but how can we expect poor, primitive public health systems to “track” Ebola carriers internationally?  In the U.S. over 800 people are being tracked from a single passenger flight taken by the second infected nurse in Dallas.  How can third world nations to do such comprehensive tracking when there are dozens, hundreds or thousands of patients?  It’s all in the numbers, and they don’t look good.

The doctor who helped originally identify the Ebola virus is "especially worried" about its spread to the 1.2 billion inhabitants of India, describing it as “a particularly dreadful scenario” because of the primitive state of public health in India where, for example, “doctors and nurses often don’t wear protective gloves.”  WHO expects Ebola infections to rise to 10,000 cases per week in West Africa.  What happens when Ebola travels to a poor nation like India with 300 times the population of Liberia?  Could that 10,000 weekly number in West Africa be multiplied by 10, 50, 100 or more in densely populated India?  Crunching the numbers is terrifying.

As WHO says, “Ebola does not respect borders.”  Neither does Obama for political reasons. It has been suggested that Obama won’t force travel restrictions out of Ebola hot zone countries because he fears it would endanger his Africa political legacy.  Appeasement.  Obama won't protect our borders from Ebola carriers because he fears alienating critical voting blocs.  Appeasement.  After his political manipulations led to disaster in Benghazi, Obama dismissed American deaths as mere “bumps in the road”.  Will thousands or more Ebola deaths in India, Asia and other parts of the third world be so many more bumps in Obama’s road to political legacy?

With just two weeks until critical midterm elections, Obama seems to approach Ebola less as a medical crisis and more as a political crisis.  If Ebola’s worst damage occurs outside the U.S., will Obama depict himself as another FDR who successfully led America through a global Ebola crisis, to spin a “World War E” scenario in the most favorable political light possible?  Is that what’s behind Obama’s appointment of Ebola Czar Ron Klain, the veteran Democrat political hack with absolutely no medical training?  Obama’s political appeasement strategy throws Americans under the bus, and perhaps the world along with us.

Originally published at October 21, 2014.

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