On March 4, 2020, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo thanked the Chinese government for donating 1,000 ventilators.
He also thanked Jack Ma, the co-founder of e-commerce Alibaba, and Joe Tsai, another co-founder of Alibaba and the owners of the Brooklyn Nets, for their help.
Cuomo tweeted, “We finally got some good news today. The Chinese government helped facilitate a donation of 1,000 ventilators that will arrive in JFK today. I thank the Chinese government, Jack Ma, Joe Tsai, the Jack Ma Foundation, the Tsai Foundation and Consul General Huang.”
The Chinese government helped facilitate a donation of 1,000 ventilators that will arrive in JFK today.
I thank the Chinese government, Jack Ma, Joe Tsai, the Jack Ma Foundation, the Tsai Foundation and Consul General Huang.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) April 4, 2020
NetsDaily reported that Tsai and his wife, Clara, were able to facilitate an initial shipment of 2.6 million masks, 170,000 goggles, and 2,000 ventilators
“We kept hearing cries for (personal protective equipment) from our community and wanted to help,” Clara Tsai said in a CNN interview. The state will allocate the second shipment but “it’s our intention to help the most underserved institutions.”
Clara Tsai said Jacobi Medical Center and Lincoln Medical Center in the Bronx, and Elmhurst Hospital in Queens were institutions she and her husband believed would need the supplies the most.
Chinese Counsel General Huang Ping, the People’s Republic diplomatic emissary in New York, was also thanked for facilitating the donation.
Although this was a nice gesture from the Chinese government, we should remain skeptical.
There are already reports of defective masks coming from China.
Will Josh Hawley be the Next Champion for an America First Foreign Policy?
America First May Have its Next Leader to End Wars Abroad
Does America First have a new non-interventionist champion?
Missouri Senator Josh Hawley has been viewed by many as one of the figures who could potentially lead a Trumpist movement after Trump, should Joe Biden end up being installed as president on January 2021.
Hawley has made a name for himself as a champion of Middle America and questioning the neoliberal orthodoxy on immigration and trade. Lately, Hawley has made a pivot towards questioning the interventionist conventional wisdom on foreign policy.
In early October of this year, the Missouri Senator called for the American government to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. Hawley tweeted, “Almost 20 years now in Afghanistan. Long past time to draw this war to an end.”
Hawley’s foreign policy has been a work progress over the past two years. During a 2019 speech Hawley gave at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), he questioned the nation-building policy prescriptions of previous administrations, demonstrating some degree of skepticism towards non-stop interventionism abroad on the part of the Senator.
That said, it remains to be seen if Hawley’s legislative record will fully match his rhetoric.
Hawley is a staunch China hawk, who fears the rise of China and is a strong voice against China’s expansionist efforts. Hawley’s track record shows that his foreign policy views are rough around the edges. Daniel Larison of The American Conservative is not as optimistic about Hawley judging by his votes on the Yemeni Civil War. Larison cited several of Hawley’s votes that may be cause for concern:
“Sen. Hawley voted against the Senate’s resolution of disapproval that opposed the president’s effort to circumvent Congress with a bogus “emergency” to expedite arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. More important, he voted with the president and most Senate Republicans against the antiwar Yemen resolution that would have cut off all U.S. support to the Saudi coalition.”
Nevertheless, Hawley’s comments on Afghanistan are a good sign that Hawley is catching on to the fact that Americans are tired of foreign wars. Politicians can change their views and behaviors. Hawley is likely recognizing that the America First movement is exhausted by the endless wars and wants candidates and elected officials who offer withdrawal plans.
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) November 24, 2020
Journalist Glenn Greenwald, a fierce interventionist skeptic, maintained cautious optimism about Hawley. In a tweet, he commented, “All kinds of reasons to be skeptical of the authenticity here, but — purely as a matter of rhetoric — just imagine any national Republican speaking this way about a Dem administration even 10 years ago. The framework of politics is radically shifting.”
All kinds of reasons to be skeptical of the authenticity here, but — purely as a matter of rhetoric — just imagine any national Republican speaking this way about a Dem administration even 10 years ago. The framework of politics is radically shifting:https://t.co/0g3jpVPsDm
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 24, 2020
The jury is still out on Hawley. Regardless of flaws in his voting record, America First advocates should continue to push him and other America First leaning Republicans in the right direction. We should never forget that politicians are still receptive to political pressure and the grassroots holds the keys to political change.
Young senators like Hawley are the future of American politics and it makes sense for foreign policy restrainers to lobby them and push them in a direction that favors non-interventionism.
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