The world is facing coronavirus pandemic which has infected at least 185 countries. No single contingent is immune from the COVID-19. More than 2.2 million people have been infected leading to 145 thousand deaths. The outbreak has revealed the crisis of public health in various countries. The capitalist governments are incompetent to take coordinated actions to protect people from the virus. The pandemic has disclosed the fragile health systems that have been based on commercialization and austerity programs for years. Millions of people are facing uncertainty while medical workers are dying.
The outbreak led to an economic crisis. The livelihood of the people has worsened. The public ability to assure its financial security collapsed cruelly and rapidly. In various countries, the toll of unemployment skyrocketed. Spain recorded its highest unemployment rate in the history of the nation with 3.5 million people unemployed.
The global economic crisis from the coronavirus pandemic has hit the world harder than the 2008 financial crisis and the Great Depression in 1920s.
During the two crises, the stock market nosedived to 50 percent or even more, the credit market collapsed, leading to massive companies bankruptcy, and the rise of unemployment above 10 percent, and economic contraction to 10 percent or more. Unlike the two crises that took three years to appear, the current crisis only took three weeks to show its devastating effects to the macroeconomy and financial sectors.
The call for global humanity cooperation and partnership echoes in the middle of the pandemic. In Indonesia, the slogan “People help people” is increasingly popular in public conversation and action. Some people are actively contributing in the middle of uncertainty and public confusion. In this case, Cuba has given us a role model. The Caribbean country has sent its medical brigades to 37 countries including countries with hostile administrations to Cuba like Italy and Brazil.
On the opposite, the United States administration under Donald Trump misbehaved and against solidarity. President Donald Trump stopped to fund World Health Organization when the world needs its United Nations body most. During the pandemic, the White Hose produced a series of unreasonable actions. Trump labeled COVID-19 as “the Chinese Virus” to promote racism. Trump has deployed racism and xenophobic during his presidential campaign and intensified them during the trade war rivalry against Beijing.
Trump has carelessly named chloroquine to cure COVID-19 and claimed the Food and Drug Administration has approved its use to cure coronavirus. In fact, chloroquine poisoned a husband and wife in Arizona instead of healing them. Later on, A commissioner of FDA Dr. Stephen M. Hahn refused Trump’s claim. As mentioned in The New York Times, FDA announced the chloroquine has passed laboratory test to cure coronavirus, not clinical test.
While the people around the world are united under the suffering, the United States’ foreign policy does not take any compromise. The policy deepened the acute hatred against Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro. United States sents its warship to the Caribbean. Washington used the pretext of war against drugs smuggle to send the military. The pretext, like what Trump often said, are obscure and unreasonable. Washington sent the warship just a week after it convicted Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and other Venezuelan senior officials with the label of “Narco-terrorism”
US offered 15 million USD for information leading to the arrest of a democratically elected president Nicolas Maduro. Trump also declined to drop economic blockade against Venezuela. United States has intensified the world conflict and disorder when it failed to protect its own citizens from the COVID-19 pandemic. In the country, at least 735,289 cases of COVID-19 occurred with 39,090 fatalities. United States has been on the top of global COVID-19 cases. Trump’s policy will potentially increase the number of cases and threaten the people of the United States.
Considering the global situation and, specifically, the policy of The United States, the Indonesian Confederation of United Workers (KPBI) based on international solidarity expressed the concern of the events. The imperialism of the United States has been threatening humanity even when the world suffers. Therefore, KPBI needs to clearly declare:
1. Condemning the United States for sending the warship to the Caribbean and the threat of security to President Nicolas Maduro
2. Criticizing the anti-solidarity and racism demonstrated by President Donald Trump
3. Respecting and appreciating Cuba in its international solidarity mission to fight COVID-19 pandemic in various countries.
4. Delivering the message of solidarity to the people of Venezuela who are facing the perpetual threat of military intervention and economic blockade.
5. Expressing solidarity for the people of the United States who have become the victims of U.S Government maladministration in fighting COVID-19
6. Calling for all parties to promote solidarity and cooperation among people in fighting COVID-19.
Jakarta, April 20, 2020
Indonesian Confederation of United Workers