Webb: Not retreat, recovery

Webb: Not retreat, recovery
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The cure cannot be more destructive than the coronavirus.

There’s a lot of talk about this being a Pearl Harbor week for America. I’d like to offer you another point of view. In World War II the Dunkirk retreat was pivotal. An action that seemed to be a point of failure was followed by the Churchill rally and reengagement against an enemy. A tactical position can be a retreat or seem like a retreat. Led by President TrumpDonald John TrumpSessions accepts 'Fox News Sunday' invitation to debate, Tuberville declines Priest among those police cleared from St. John's Church patio for Trump visit Trump criticizes CNN on split-screen audio of Rose Garden address, protesters clashing with police MORE and Vice President Pence, who heads up the coronavirus task force, America is not in retreat but preparing for a Churchill rally.

This is not an extinction-level event for America or the globe. It is a significant pandemic and thankfully one that occurs in a modern time where medicine, communication and information are key factors in combating coronavirus.

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Let’s look ahead to some needed action items after the pandemic is passed. There are some necessary choices ahead. And in some cases, we all have a role to play. Divesting China is a long-term strategy, needed punishment and a necessary realignment for the globe. China did lie, suppress, destroy and then attempt to deflect from their responsibility when they first learned of the coronavirus outbreak.

I’m not interested in the exact dates of the first occurrence, but in the way the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) used this outbreak against the world and to further its interests.

This is possible because many countries including the United States have demonstrated levels of irresponsibility in policy, economic policy and deliberately ignored the way the CCP aggressively seeks to fulfill its goals. The CCP has a domestic and a global agenda which will continue if it is not dealt with effectively by deploying a long-term strategy.

Italy tied itself so closely to China’s Belt and Road Initiative that it could not contain the virus in part because it could not contain the daily travel with China. Iran, which is an ally of China, continued to have flights between China and Tehran and as a result, coronavirus spread easily into the Iranian population. To their own population’s detriment, European nations like the Czech Republic and Spain purchased coronavirus tests from China that proved to be faulty. European leadership has bound itself to China and is now paying the price.

For all of us in America, we must begin to divest ourselves of China in the form of cheap products made often by slave labor wages. This won’t be easy and it won’t happen overnight. There needs to be a realignment and economic repercussions. At home we need better tax policies. We must lower labor costs for manufacturing on American soil or on free soil anywhere in the world.

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Over the years consistent behavior will help to weaken China’s negative impact and may result in a contraction of power within the CCP domestically. Communism failed in the Soviet bloc because it could not support itself economically.

There are other aspects of this global realignment and strategy in energy. Iranian, Saudi and Russian energy connections must be disrupted no matter where it reaches. Energy is necessary, but energy must also come from free nations. 

Europe’s dependence must change. As a result of the European Union structure, it is weak and dependent on China. This pandemic could further the demise of the euro. China took advantage of Europe’s fractured weakness under the European Union. European nations must reassert their sovereignty in order to have relationships that make them stronger.

In the Middle East, Israel can become a more powerful and pivotal player than ever before in the pharmaceutical industry and technology. These are the immediate thoughts because of the current situation but in other technologies such as water desalinization and using brain power over land mass and population size, Israel can be a giant on the world stage.

India has population, education and technology as a foundation. India has an opportunity, but will it deliver, not just provide a technology backbone and labor. American companies need to partner with, but not import cheap labor from India, which is a suppression of our workforce. For this to be effective, we need to develop our STEM education and build our workforce.

Let’s not ignore our own backyard with Canada, Mexico the Caribbean, Central and South America. The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement is an opportunity for a stronger relationship that reduces our reliance on China and other nations where cheap products are made and shipped into our hemisphere. The Caribbean which is close geographically can be improved with an American-led business plan that enriches the Islander. We can develop the Caribbean strengths not just tourism.

Sea power and shipping is a key component to support a shift in manufacturing supply lines on a global scale. America must become the modern day commercial sea power version of the British Empire at its height without colonization. Cooperation over colonization is entirely possible and for those that we partner with on a global scale, mutually beneficial. This can be scaled and foster a natural economic expansion. American leadership has never required conquest but conquers by ideas and successful examples that others can copy into their own economic system.

When coronavirus ends, the leadership in America must commit to a long-term strategy that not only benefits this nation but many others. This can be unlimited in the decades to come.

One final benefit and an important one. Stronger free-market economies will help America and many other nations grow their way out of decades of burgeoning debt.

Webb is host of “The David Webb Show” on SiriusXM Patriot 125, host of “Reality Check with David Webb” on Fox Nation, a Fox News contributor and a frequent television commentator. His column appears twice a month in The Hill.