A policy blend that keeps America and Texas on top
We Americans tend to look at immigration and our policy toward Latin America from the perspective of the rhetoric surrounding “the wall”, but the wall along our Southern border is a last line of defense, and is not the only thing we should do. For the United States, and specifically Texas, Latin America is an important trading region, the location with the most foreign direct investments, and the family origin of many great Texans. But it is also the battleground for a new cold war that is emerging between the U.S. and China. How do we maintain the U.S. as the number one destination for highly qualified immigrants while boxing out the corrosive influence of China?
China is beating us to investment opportunities in our own backyard, but rather than bringing stability, China is exploiting our southern border by sowing instability through predatory lending, selling precursor chemicals for illicit drug production in mass quantities, and building Huawei and ZTE 5G networks to tie into our internet networks for intelligence collection. This is all part of the Chinese grand strategy.
Currently, China owns all three ports on the Panama Canal and has bought the political influence of the Panamanian government to make the U.S. Canal Accord with the Panamanian government questionable. With Chinese infrastructure on the canal, they could close it down, with or without force, for any type of conflict we might have in the Pacific, adding a month to the trip for the U.S. Navy’s Atlantic fleet to surge forces into the Pacific. This is unacceptable for a canal that we financed and built. However, we cannot solve this with the U.S. government or military alone.
The men and women of the military that I served with for twenty years are some of the brightest and most capable people I have ever met, but as we Texans know, they serve a federal government bureaucracy that is inefficient and cannot solve all of the problems south of our border. America’s great strength has been, and continues to be, our entrepreneurial spirit. We have great minds with a plethora of backgrounds that can be harnessed to regain our dominant standing in the world and create stability with economic growth. Texas has some of the best business minds and business culture in the U.S. with experience investing and building in Latin America. We need a policy of tax incentives and diplomacy to promote opportunities for our business community in Latin America to compete with China. Our investments can both bring profits to the U.S. while bringing stability to Mexico, Central America, and South America.
The policy prescription from Congress needs a whole-of-government approach to harness the greatest power of the U.S. — its people and ideals. Texas is the epitome of the entrepreneurial spirt that will create stability in Latin America to stop mass migration through economic growth, ensure American access to strategic resources, and push China out of the region that is the most important to the safety of our homeland. Latin American companies and governments would rather work with American companies, but Congress needs to set the right conditions and incentives for our great people and businesses to increase their efforts in Latin America.
The policy blend to increase our business investments abroad could be focused not just on Latin America, but any region where we see malicious economic efforts by the Chinese or Russians. If elected to the U.S. Congress, I will work tirelessly to help our country win the global strategic competition against China, and regain our business prominence in Latin America as a model for the rest of the world.
Major Jon Camarillo, USMC (retired) is a candidate for Congress in Texas’s 22nd district, which includes Fort Bend County and parts of Harris and Brazoria counties. Major Camarillo was a Latin America representative for the U.S. Marine Corps, and he served in multiple countries in that region.
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