Name: Cheyenne Ward
Course: US and World Affairs
The Ebola Crisis of 2014
When faced with a crisis, it is our natural human instinct to run away and avoid association as much as possible. However, particularly with increasing globalization, such tactics are becoming more dangerous and even outright impossible as highlighted by the current Ebola virus which has officially spread beyond its African borders. With the situation far from being contained, the United States is faced with a critical foreign policy decision on how to respond to the virus both locally and internationally.
The first choice of action, but the one that is ultimately impossible at this point, would be to do nothing ...view middle of the document...
Already rumors and myths have been spread saying that Ebola was a disease created and released on the African continent to further Western agendas. As a result, such invasions could be viewed negatively as excuses to control and exploit the country and increase American international power. On the other hand, taking responsibility in battling the disease, especially considering the success the USA could achieve through its knowledge and resources, could have a positive impact on the United States’ international and local image as a humanitarian, while bringing relief to countries struggling to manage and stop Ebola themselves. While this stance will take a considerable amount of resources, finances, international cooperation and time, the USA is one of the few countries that can actually make this choice when fighting Ebola.
A third foreign policy direction that the United States could take is a more moderate approach, that is a combination of both isolationism and internationalism, which is more in line with tactics it is currently using. With this choice of action the USA could continue to focus on treating its own citizens that have been infected and screen or bar people from countries with the disease from entering its borders. Simultaneously, they could share knowledge of how they are combating and treating Ebola with medical researchers and infected nations. In addition, the United States could also set up resources and systems to educate people across the nation and the world on how to accurately recognize and prevent the spread of the virus. While this is not as drastic as the previous two approaches it would require minimum resources and finances while still having a significant impact on containing, battling and minimizing the chances of the virus further entering US borders. However, in terms of public opinion, it could have negative consequences. This has already been seen with the outrage of the world at US citizens being forced into quarantine after returning from the African continent, the refusal of acceptance of completely healthy Nigerian students into a Texas university, and Rwanda’s brief retaliation to African discrimination by screening American citizens trying to enter the country. Overall, while this more restrained tactic would not combat Ebola as directly as the second option it certainly has the potential to cause significant improvements, especially within US borders. At the very least it is more proactive than simply doing...