Corona Update: USA (5) - aktuelle Studien, Analysen und Kommentare

von Sabine Murphy, Jeanene Lairo, Elmar Sulk, Syreta Haggray, Dirk Hegen, Paul Linnarz

Für die Zeit vom 24. bis 30. April 2020

Die Corona-Krise hat über die erheblichen gesundheitlichen Risiken und Folgen hinaus weitreichende Auswirkungen auf die Wirtschaft, Sicherheit, Forschung, Innen- und Außenpolitik sowie das gesell- schaftliche Leben in den Vereinigten Staaten. Namhafte US-amerikanische Think Tanks und Experten setzen sich intensiv mit den unterschiedlichen Aspekten und Herausforderungen dieser in ihrem Um- fang und ihrer Schnelligkeit beispiellosen Krise auseinander. Für einen Überblick über den aktuellen Stand der Diskussion stellt das KAS-Auslandsbüro USA mit Sitz in Washington D.C. wöchentlich eine Auswahl an Studien, Analysen und Kommentaren jeweils mit Links zu den Beiträgen zusammen.


„The Pandemic Is Making Transatlantic Relations More Toxic“

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (April 29, 2020)

Erik Brattberg, Director Europe Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

On the one hand, Brattberg argues in his report, “the Trump administration has remained unsettlingly hands off in its engagement with Europe” even as the coronavirus tears at the fabric of the modern European project. Unlike during many past crises, few if any European governments are turning to Washington for leadership and inspiration this time. On the other hand, the author states, could U.S. unilateralism risk further fueling European distrust in the Trump administration, “giving Russia and China additional ammunition to wage disinformation campaigns aimed at undermining transatlantic unity.”


“COVID-19 Could Bring Down the Trading System”

Quelle: Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE, April 28, 2020) – published in Foreign Affairs

Chad Bown, Senior Fellow, PIIE

The financial crisis of 2008 produced an economic collapse sharp and deep enough to threaten the modern trading system. The author suggests in his article that now other forces would be battering international trade. According to him, the pandemic spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, is stoking new pressure for protectionism, and the WTO needs to prepare for more countries to capitulate under the strain. He suggests that only a coordinated political commitment among global leaders will prevent an onslaught of protectionism in these extraordinary times. "The WTO rules actually make such protectionism likely in the absence of an upfront plan to stop it. But no such global policy commitment has materialized", says Bown.


“WHO and President Trump on the Ledge”

Quelle: CSIS (April 28, 2020)
J. Stephen Morrison, Senior Vice President, Global Health Policy Center, CSIS; et al.

On April 14, President Trump announced that the United States would suspend its funding for the World Health Organization (WHO) for 60 to 90 days to conduct a review of the global public health authority’s handling of the Covid-19 response. According to the authors of this CSIS commentary, the effects of the announcement could be profound: at stake are U.S. support to WHO (over USD 400 million in 2019, that is more than 15 percent of WHO’s total budget); the integrity and capacity of WHO to respond to a historic pandemic; U.S. global leadership; and U.S. national security interests.


“The Way Forward: What Next?”

Quelle: The Atlantic in collaboration with Chatham House, Emerson Collective, and the Peterson Institute for International Economics (April 28, 2020)

Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic moderated a high-profile discussion on the pathway forward out of the coronavirus pandemic. Participants were: Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education and Former Prime Minister of the UK; Prof. Danielle Allen, Harvard University; Agnes Binagwhaho, WHO, and Dr. Arvind Subramanian, PIIE. Gordon Brown, since “global problems require global solutions,” predicts that with the absence of international cooperation this crisis will be prolonged and the disease will not be completely eradicated. Prof. Allen refers to her recently published report “Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience”, where she stresses that only thorough broad-based testing, contact tracing and supported targeted isolation can lift collective quarantine orders. Dr. Binagwhaho focuses on the success in Rwanda, that she attributes to science-based decision-making of the government. Dr. Subramanian describes current global cooperation as absent, or even as “G minus 2,” where China and U.S. are both weakened through internal struggles.


“Can We Make Peace with the Coronavirus?”

Quelle: United States Institute of Peace (April 27, 2020)

Jeremy Moore, Senior Program Officer, and Erica Sheeran, Research Assistant, USIP At USIP, the experts analyze in the paper how the tenets of environmental peacebuilding can be used against COVID-19 in conflict zones. It is through “global health diplomacy” that human security can be promoted more holistically, according to the authors. In particular, they see such diplomacy could halt hostilities when disease is spreading.


“IMF managing director urges more global action to soften coronavirus’ economic toll”

Quelle: Atlantic Council (April 27, 2020)

David A. Wemer, Associate Director Editorial, Atlantic Council

The managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, spoke at a Front Page event of the Atlantic Council. Georgieva called on policy makers “to build unity of purpose in action.” While drawing attention to the worldwide challenges caused by COVID-19, especially in emerging markets, Georgieva struck an optimistic tone. She outlined strategies how to help poorer countries now and how to use this crisis as an “opportunity to do better”.


“Coronavirus and Farmworkers: Is the Food Supply at Risk?”

Council on Foreign Relations (CFR, April 29, 2020)

Amelia Chaetham, Editorial Assistant

President Trump's recent executive order limiting immigration has made special allowances for guest workers visas. These foreign laborers are the backbone of U.S. agriculture and represent an overwhelming majority of essential workers in many food-related industries. However, foreign laborers have proven particularly susceptible to COVID-19 and further vulnerable to U.S. government labor standards preconditioned by the coronavirus outbreak. Amelia Cheatham explores this and other topics further in her article.


"CORD-19: The COVID-19 Open Research Dataset"

Quelle: Allen Institute for AI (AI2) (April 25, 2020)

Lucy Lu Wang, Semantic Scholar Research Team, Allen Institute for AI; et al.

The Allen Institute for AI's Semantic Scholar team collaborates with leading research groups to provide CORD-19, an automated text analysis resource currently consisting of more than 57.000 scholarly articles about the novel coronavirus for use by the global research community, leveraging AI-based techniques in information retrieval and natural language processing. The paper states that "CORD-19 aims to connect the machine learning community with biomedical domain experts and policy makers in the race to identify effective treatments and management policies for COVID-19."


“Two-Thirds of Americans Expect Presidential Election Will Be Disrupted by COVID-19”

Quelle: Pew Research Center (April 28, 2020)

According Pew Research's latest survey, a majority of Americans belief that the COVID-19 pandemic will disrupt the upcoming 2020 presidential elections. Although there seems to be broad support for a voting by mail option, there is widespread fear that the elections will not be conducted fairly and that many Americans will lack access to the voting booth, whereas Democrats express these fears stronger than Republicans do.


"Selecting and Safely Using Collaboration Services for Telework"

Quelle: National Security Agency, Cybersecurity Information (April 24, 2020)

Due to the coronavirus and various social distancing measures, an unprecedented percentage of the U.S. workforce performs its work from home, more often than not, relying on digital, internet-based collaboration services for telework. This official U.S. government cybersecurity guidance assesses the security standards and frameworks of 13 commercial collaboration platforms, from "Cisco Webex" to "Zoom." Security-relevant factors considered include encryption standards, the availability of multi-factor authentication, participation controls, privacy standards, data deletion and protection practices and whether the service employs open-source software.


“COVID-19 is expanding further into Trump country”

Quelle: The Brookings Institution (April 29, 2020)

William H. Frey, Senior Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program, The Brookings Institution

According to this report, “the COVID-19 pandemic has already shown dispersion away from the nation’s most urban and densely populated counties to suburban, somewhat whiter, and less politically Democratic parts of the country. Yet the group of counties that newly qualify as areas with a high prevalence of COVID-19 cases are even more dispersed, and represent places where Donald Trump gained more votes than Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.”


Weitere Kurzbeiträge:

“Supply Chain Disruptions Due to COVID-19 and Social Distancing”

Quelle: RAND Corp. (April 28, 2020)

Aaron Strong, Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School, et al.

In their commentary for the Rand Corporation blog, the authors examine the economic consequences of social distancing policies in the United States and find that they “vary widely across states”. In one of their scenarios, the authors predict a decline of income of up to 45% in several states across the Midwest.


“This Virus Is Tough, but History Provides Perspective: The 1968 Pandemic and the Vietnam War”

Quelle: RealClearDefense, RCD (April 24, 2020)

Nathaniel L. Moir, Postdoctoral Fellow; Member of the Applied History Project at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

The author argues that 1968 was worse than (so far) 2020. “Globally, the 1968 Pandemic (created by H3N2) killed over a million individuals, and in the United States, with a 1968 total population of 205 million, the virus killed over 100,000 individuals. After studying the Vietnam War for almost fifteen years, it is surprising that the 1968 Pandemic is not even mentioned.” In his report, Nathaniel Moir asks, “why has this topic elided historians focusing on the Vietnam War?” The author states that the main difference between 1968 and 2020 may be due to the ongoing economic devastation caused by the corona pandemic in many countries this year.


“In a cosmic irony, it’s the big chain-owned newspapers that can’t seem to get any help from the government”

Quelle: Nieman Lab, Harvard University (April 28, 2020)

Joshua Benton, Director Nieman Lab

In his commentary for Harvard University’s Nieman Lab, Joshua Benton writes about the “irony” that the consolidation of newspapers into big conglomerates made them ineligible for government help. Many local papers are owned by big companies that are not included in the federal stimulus package, although the individual papers would qualify as small businesses. Many local papers are suffering from lost advertising revenue due to the coronavirus and are facing an existential threat.


“Hypocrisy strikes: ‘Essential workers’ and the meat packing industry”

Quelle: American Enterprise Institute (AEI, April 29, 2020)

Brent Orell, Resident Fellow, Poverty Studies, AIE

This week’s U.S. headlines included a reports of nationwide meat shortages due to the closure of meat production facilities, the cause being high coronavirus infection cases among the plant workers who lack the ability to properly social distance. This has resulted in these facilities and the counties they are located in to become coronavirus hotspots. Brent Orell's blog-post briefly highlights economic coercion and its origin the meat production workers face amidst the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S



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