Another Virus WTF

The world is fighting a war with the Covid-19 that is everybody but North Korea……and yet WHO will send them to help- fight a disease they say they have none of…….WTF?

North Korea may claim it has no coronavirus infections, but the country still is getting hundreds of thousands of dollars from the World Health Organization to contain the deadly virus.

Data from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) shows the WHO will spend $900,000 to support North Korea’s efforts to fight COVID-19.

North Korea is bordered by China and South Korea, two of the countries that saw some of the worst impacts of COVID-19 at the start of the global outbreak. The Hermit Kingdom has repeatedly said there hasn’t been a single case on its soil and that it is implementing social distancing measures.

Then there is the other thorn in US foreign Policy…..Iran……

Talk about theocratic temerity. The regime in Tehran is calling on the International Monetary Fund to “stand on the right side of history” by giving Iran $5 billion to fight the coronavirus pandemic. It’s the first time the Islamic Republic has sought financial aid from the multilateral institution. (The last time Iran asked was 20 years before the 1979 revolution.)

For the international community — and for the U.S., which has effective veto power on IMF decisions — this presents a quandary: The Iranian people definitely need the help, but their leaders can’t be trusted with the money.

The Islamic Republic is the third-worst hit country after China and Italy, with 429 people dead. The regime has manifestly failed to manage the crisis. In the first phase, the leadership lied about the extent of the outbreak, and made a series of decisions that only aggravated the contagion.

The Iranian problem will get worse…US sanctions will put the squeeze on the nation in this time of need…..

The war against the coronavirus pandemic is literally a life and death fight for nations. But Iran is waging it with an economy badly crippled by United States sanctions that have Tehran bereft of financial resources to mount an effective public health response.

Mahsa is a 28-year-old nurse in Mazandaran, a northern province in Iran that has been hard hit by the virus.

“Ventilators are very crucial for treatment of COVID-19 patients, but officials tell us that because of the sanctions, they have not been able to order enough of them from abroad,” she told Al Jazeera. “Medical goods are supposed to increase in accordance with the number of admitted patients, but these goods are very hard to find these days.”

I am told the humanitarian aid is NOT part of the sanctions…..but is that true?

Another report….another WTF…… has come out that Trump sent the Guard out and refuse to let them have medical stuff……

Thousands of National Guardsmen around the country are in contact with people who’ve contracted COVID-19. But while the federal government has called on them for frontline assistance in battling the pandemic, it’s not giving them what they need to protect themselves: access to the military’s health insurance.

The approximately 20,000 guardsmen who have been called up to help states around the country deal with the spread of the coronavirus are federalized on what’s called Title 32 status, which puts them in command of their various state governors but with the federal government paying costs. 

But according to the National Guard’s advocates and the U.S. governors’ association, the guardsmen are activated on orders that last 30 days. That puts them one single day shy of the requirement allowing the military health insurance system known as TRICARE—think of it as Medicare For All In Uniform—to cover them. Military Times first reported the eligibility shortfall.

Apparently we are NOT all in this together…..

It’s become a truism, almost trite, that with the coronavirus crisis, “we’re all in this together.”

But not everyone agrees.

A small but highly influential group of billionaires, executives and right-wing pundits have a different view: Some of them urge that we must “normalize” the economy as soon as possible, implicitly – and in some cases, explicitly – accepting that this would mean sacrificing lives. Others, apparently, just don’t care about those risks, or conveniently believe against evidence that they are not real or overblown

Proponents paint this callous approach as the kind of “tough” decision that strong leaders must make. They have had a dangerous influence on policy. And although their recommendations have been shunted aside for now, there’s a great risk that save-the-economy-and-let-the-chips fall-where-they-may chorus again gains the president’s favor, with potentially horrifying consequences.

Now Kentucky, the state that brought us the spineless Mitch, has a new way to make virus sufferers lives even worse……

An ominous scoop by The Courier-Journal, a local paper in Kentucky: judges in the state are ordering coronavirus patients to isolate — a demand they’re enforcing by making them wear ankle monitors, as if they were under house arrest.

“The home incarceration program is well-suited for this,” Amy Hess, Louisville’s chief of public services, told the newspaper. “It provides us with the proper amount of distancing. We can monitor activity after (the monitoring device) gets affixed to them… to make sure they’re not further affecting the community.”

The one great idea to come out of the fight against this pandemic is the call in the UN for a curbing of war during this time of crisis.

With the world in the throes of the calamitous COVID-19 pandemic, UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres is pushing for a global ceasefire, seeing a planet-wide halt to war as a chance to allow an all-out effort to fight the virus.

This is getting some interest beyond NGOs and the Pope. As of Friday, 11 countries have endorsed the idea, including Cameroon, Central African Republic, Colombia, Libya, Myanmar, the Philippines, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Ukraine, and Yemen.

While the UN is still looking for a big nation engaged in foreign wars to really make this a thing, but some of these nations have some substantial domestic conflicts that might benefit from a ceasefire, and countries like Syria may find themselves influencing others.

These are also some of the countries most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemics, with countries like Yemen, Libya, and Syria some of the nations least prepared for an outbreak, with war leaving the countries with little medical infrastructure.

Recognition that the wars would only make their situations worse, these nations are backing the global ceasefire, and while it’s still a long way from stopping any huge wars, it shows promising understanding that war and pandemic are two distinct priorities.


There is an idea that all nations should sign onto…..we need all our resources to fight this pandemic…..not each other.

My latest list of WTF reports……I am sure there will be more….

Be Calm…..Avoid Crowds……Wash Hands Often…..Be Prepared

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

18 thoughts on “Another Virus WTF

  1. It’s impossible to know if the DPRK has any cases, as they would never tell us anyway. I saw on the news today that Turkey is the latest country to be badly hit, with a potential spread larger and faster than Spain or Italy.
    Best wishes, Pete.

      1. Haha I am too but I’m the kind who likes to have written more than I actually like to write. That’s my biggest problem. Lol

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