On European solidarity and Anglo-Saxon protectionism
I am happy people in the US are getting vaccinated, but the fact that a healthy 16-year old can now get vaccinated in Michigan while a 60-year old across the border in Canada cannot is disturbing. It is also pleasing that Britons are getting vaccinated, but their prime minister's credit that "greed" and "capitalism" are responsible for their success is even more disturbing.
Much of the world is seeing the EU through a distorting lens. So do many of us Europeans themselves. French and Germans, Dutch and Belgians, Danes and Swedes, French and English; all fought each other on our history's bloody timeline. We Europeans need to understand that our union is the most successful peace project in human history. We formed ourselves together to end the frequent and gory wars between us, culminating in the Second World War. As of 1950, the European Coal and Steel Community begins to unite European countries economically and politically to secure lasting peace. We understood that without making creative efforts proportionate to the dangers, we could not safeguard world peace.
Because of this, we decided that Europeans plans are supplying vaccination to the world. We also chose this because the US export ban has meant that Canada, Mexico and Japan need to get their vaccination doses from European plants instead. So far, the EU has exported 4.6 Million doses to Canada, 3.8 Million to Mexico and 4 Million to Japan. The situation is particularly absurd for Canada, which must get its vaccines from Pfizer from Belgium instead of Michigan's next door. Even the US has received a significant amount of vaccine exports from the EU!
We did this because we believe in a free market and good faith from our partners. We also assume good behaviour. Unfortunately, the US and the UK manoeuvred to benefit themself. The German nationality-agnostic approach, which enabled Pfizer to learn from BioNTech, was not the United Kingdom's approach. Oxford was originally going to partner with the American company Merck, but their local government overruled their decision.
Under all the challenges we Europeans face and our slower progress on vaccination, it now appears naive. But let's do not forget that there is no protection in protectionism but isolation in isolationism. As long as greed is stronger than compassion, there will always be suffering and, therefore no peace. One of the critical problems of the business world is that greed has become culturally acceptable. The anglo-saxon vaccine nationalism currently practised by the US and the UK will not end the Coronavirus pandemic and, therefore, will also be a cause of global unrest and a danger to peace.
ONE, if people are not vaccinated, people will eventually get infected.
TWO, if people get infected, people will most likely get sick.
THREE, if people get sick, people may die sooner or be forever ill.
FOUR, we have too little vaccine and too much protectionism.
FIVE, we will eventually have enough vaccine and too many foolish anti-vaxxers.
SIX, There is no "after Corona".
The G20, as an international forum for governments and central bank governors, should put all their differences aside and work together on how we can solve this pandemic on a global level—not just on local or national levels. Solving the pandemic on an international level should be our highest priority.
To most Europeans, Biden's and Johnson's vaccine hoarding and export ban's political motivations are apparent. Perhaps it was naive of us to think that two of the world's most powerful countries would have behaved differently. But the world will remember the me-first attitude of their governments and remember from who they got vaccinations first, from the European Union, China, Russia and India.
Luckily, an increasing number of individuals and institutions are speaking up against the anglophone media's perspective, which becomes more and more distorted.
E.U. Exports Millions of Covid Vaccine Doses Despite Supply Crunch at Home, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/10/world/europe/eu-exports-covid-vaccine.html?fbclid=IwAR3h8r8AiFss1cpfibiLn0n_Uav38zMfa5yQjAXAyhqoyBb2m8IzScJE9jU