By : Taha Sakr
If there is a region in the world that listens to the call made by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, to stop wars in conflict areas in the world in order to confront Corona, it is the Arab region, as the hotbeds of wars and conflicts, according to all evidence, are now confined to The Arab region, which are wars that seem to many to be futile and futile, because they are nothing more than a struggle for power.
In many countries, from Libya to Yemen to Syria, people are caught between two fires; the fire of war and the fire of corona, and their condition says, that whoever did not die of war died of infection. Supporters of those wars insist that they continue, even though the years of war have come to the health infrastructure of conflict countries, so that they are no longer fit to care for people’s health in normal times, so how much the time of the epidemic.
The International Monetary Fund said earlier that many countries in the Middle East region will face many difficulties after the outbreak of the new Corona virus, especially those torn by wars, including Iraq, Sudan and Yemen.
The Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, said that those wars taking place in a number of Arab countries must stop, adding: “It is time for the guns in which the people of one homeland killed each other to be silent, especially since the global situation in the face of the Corona pandemic makes From the persistence of such conflicts a kind of futility. “
With the first case of coronavirus confirmed in Yemen, the international charity Oxfam warned that the virus could spread to the country on a large scale. Hassan Siddiqui, director of Oxfam in Yemen, said confirming the first case of HIV infection “dealt a severe blow to the country, whose system, which suffers from poor equipment after five years of brutal conflict, will not be able to contain the epidemic.”
More than 17 million people in Yemen do not have access to clean water. In shelter tents where a few million people live, the rules of social separation and hand washing regularly cannot be adhered to, which are some of the epidemic control requirements.
Yemen has suffered for five years from a conflict between the Houthis and the government, which is supported by both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. This conflict has led to a complete collapse in the country’s infrastructure, especially the health infrastructure.
The conflict also led to an outbreak of cholera, along with an acute shortage of food and medicine, which increases the risk of corona in the country. This was confirmed by the World Health Organization, which warned of the spread of the epidemic in Yemen on a large scale.
It seems that the international calls, calling for an end to the attacks between the warring parties in Libya and the full-time confrontation of the Corona epidemic, have not found resonance with the warlords there. Reports indicate that eastern Libya forces led by Major General Khalifa Hifter continue their attacks on the capital, Tripoli.
The internationally-recognized National Accord Government said that Haftar’s forces targeted drug stores in the Al-Sawani area, south of Tripoli, with “Grad rockets”, two days after they targeted drug stores at Al-Khadra Hospital in Tripoli.
The latest attacks come after a short-lived optimism, as the fighting parties in the country had previously responded to European and international calls to stop the fighting and devote themselves to confront the epidemic, especially for Libya’s geographical proximity to Italy, which was several days ago the largest epicenter of the epidemic in the world after China .
Like Yemen, Libya is suffering from a collapse in the health sector, due to years of fighting between the internationally recognized government and the forces of Major General Khalifa Hifter. The Haftar forces’ targeting of many medical facilities has further deteriorated the health infrastructure during the past period.
Syria, which the World Health Organization has described as the most vulnerable to the spread of the epidemic, is the scene of the world’s worst refugee crisis. But the Syrian regime seems to ignore all international warnings about the possibility of an epidemic among these refugees, amid what is being said about the state of secrecy over the casualties the country is witnessing, and questioning the accuracy of what is being announced.
The WHO spokesman, Hayden Halderson, had previously said that Syria had not yet confirmed any cases of the emerging virus, but “its fragile health systems may not have the capacity to detect a pandemic.”
The risk of a pandemic is increasing, according to the World Health Organization, in the northwestern region of Syria, where three million people are internally displaced people, in extremely difficult humanitarian conditions.
Misty Buswell, director of communications for the International Rescue Committee in the Middle East, was quoted by Agence France-Presse as saying that the situation in Idlib, northwestern Syria, and “is particularly prepared” for the virus to spread. Boswell warned of a disaster that could affect thousands of people due to lack of food and water.
The World Health Organization indicates that the outbreak of the disease in Syria will reach its climax next May, amid talk that the regime does not want to acknowledge the existence of the problem at the present time, especially as it may embarrass its internal political situation, which is already tense.
Some armies are currently reconsidering their military structures and war equipment, and they are preparing to adapt to the developments imposed by the epidemic. Will Coronavirus change the weapons of the future wars?
This question is answered by a Fox News report, as the Pentagon has already begun exploring a way to cope with the long-term effects of the Coronavirus.
The report indicates that tanks, armored vehicles as well as combat aircraft can be equipped with artificial respirators, antivirals and advanced sterilization equipment.
In addition, the spread of the virus will enhance the focus on designing anti-biological weapons, and changing traditional war strategies in proportion to the use of viruses as a weapon, according to the report.
The source expects that future soldiers will carry advanced equipment to protect them from viruses, and warships may also need to add new types of biological warfare technologies to their existing defense systems.
“Fox News” suggests that the navy is already thinking about new types of interceptor missiles equipped with a biological defense system, and military aircraft equipped with air technology may be designed to repel any attack of “diseases” over the air.
In light of this, it will be self-evident to increase the number of military doctors and mobile military hospitals, equipped with drugs and technologies to combat new diseases that may be unleashed by enemies as a weapon.
With all of these troubling possibilities in mind, senior US military commanders have already begun to think about engineering new warfare technologies and outlining future defense strategies.
“There is already some evidence that opponents are trying to take advantage of this situation,” according to a report prepared by the Air Force on April 1.
General John Murray, a US Ground Forces commander, recently confirmed that the military has already begun to consider new requirements related to long-term combat effects, with the spread of the Corona virus.
Interestingly, a 2006 article by the National Institutes of Health in the United States predicted the potential devastating effect of epidemics caused by some infectious viruses and germs.
At the time, the article warned that “the H5N1 avian flu virus (which was then widespread) could cause millions of deaths in a short time, which calls for vigilance in order to protect societies from the threats of infectious diseases.”