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Indonesia Surges Past India in New Covid Cases Per Day

Indonesia Surges Past India in New COVID Cases Per Day

July 14 (EIRNS)–Indonesia hit a record 54,000 official new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, about a twelvefold increase over the last seven weeks. Covid deaths follow new cases by two weeks, going from 200/day to over 1,000/day over the last five weeks. India, with five times bigger population, has dropped below 40,000/day. Indonesia, a country of 270 million souls, has only vaccinated about 15.6 million people, with another 31 million having received their first dose over the last several weeks. They’ve now acquired a total of 108.5 million doses of China’s Sinovac vaccine and recently another 25 million doses of AstraZeneca. The United States chimed in with 3 million doses of Moderna on July 9, both too little and rather late — even though President Biden’s commitment to get a total of 4 million doses to Indonesia represents one of his largest actions. The total projected doses amount to potential coverage of 69 million people, or about a quarter of the population, and they are presently administering about three-quarters of a million jabs/day. The Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin reports that more than 90,000 of 120,000 available hospital beds are taken up with Covid patients, while certain provinces are reaching 100% capacity.


Fauci: 99.2% of June U.S. COVID Deaths Were Unvaccinated People

Fauci: 99.2% of June U.S. COVID Deaths Were Unvaccinated People

July 8, 2021 (EIRNS)–The ideological insanity of people who either refuse to get COVID-19 vaccines, or who preach to others not to get the vaccine, is producing a forecastable result: death from SARS-CoV-2.

On July 4, Dr. Antony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, appeared on the NBC News Meet the Press program. Host Chuck Todd asked Dr. Fauci,

“It’s disconcerting to realize that we have had nearly 10,000 people die of COVID in this most recent month that we completed in June. How preventable were each one of those deaths? And how many of them were unvaccinated?”

Fauci responded, “Well, if you look at the number of deaths [in June], about 99.2% of them are unvaccinated. About 0.8% are vaccinated. No vaccine is perfect. But when you talk about the avoidability of hospitalization and death, Chuck, it’s really sad and tragic that most all of these are avoidable and preventable… The overwhelming proportion of people who get into trouble are the unvaccinated. Which is the reason why we say this is really entirely avoidable and preventable.”

Fauci continued: “Over the decades that I’ve been doing this, you’re frustrated because you have diseases where you don’t have an appropriate countermeasure, be it prevention or a treatment. And then when you have a situation like you have today, where you have a formidable enemy in the virus that has tragically really disrupted our planet now for about a year and a half, destructive — destroyed economies, ….and yet we do have a countermeasure that’s highly, highly effective. And that’s the reason why it’s all the more sad … And whatever the reasons, … some of them are ideologic, some of them are just fundamentally anti-vax or anti-science or what have you. But, you know, we just need to put that aside now. We’re dealing with a historic situation with this pandemic. And we do have the tools to counter it.”

He added that, “There are people throughout the world who would do anything to get vaccines.”

On July 1, at a briefing at the White House by the White House COVID-19 Response Team, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control, said, “Preliminary data from a collection of states over the last six months suggest 99.5% of deaths from COVID-19 in these states have occurred in unvaccinated people.” Even though this covered a period at the beginning of the year when vaccines were not generally available, the numbers remain impressive.


WHO Briefers Angry at Lack of Health Infrastructure in the War vs. COVID-19

WHO Briefers Angry at Lack of Health Infrastructure in the War vs. COVID-19

July 6, 2021 (EIRNS)—The World Health Organization’s Mike Ryan and Maria Von Kerkhove answered questions for the public on Monday and allowed some of their frustration and anger to show. First on Monday: While new cases worldwide have stabilized, they have done so at an uncomfortably high level; this, in fact, reflects a dangerously unstable situation. While new cases in the Americas declined (13%), they raced upwards in Africa (15%) and Europe (28%). This last week had twenty countries undergoing sharp rises. Basically, the point of impact simply shifted. The two WHO specialists cited three interacting factors: uneven vaccination levels, the spread of the Delta variant, and social relaxing.

Then the anger: The WHO teams are fighting on the front lines. We’re really humanitarians, and we won’t give up. But the vaccines aren’t coming as they should, or even as promised. “The cavalry is not coming.” This destroys morale. So, people then give up, go back to work and accept what fate will bring them. What is needed is to build and invest in systems now—don’t wait for the next surge. A system involves: surveillance systems, testing in place, isolation, clinical care, contact tracing or at least cluster investigations and such; so that we can find out where the enemy is and go after it. Those systems need to be built now, and the wealthier West is not even doing it for their own populations. Their admonitions are an echo of Helga Zepp LaRouche’s 2020 call for a new global health platform for each country.

Ryan stressed that there were enough vaccines in the world right now to inoculate all the “at-risk” categories and the medical personnel. Kerkhove stressed that enough is known about the workings of the coronavirus to design a comprehensive war plan against it. It seems that the first 18 months of the battle finds the immaturity of political culture is no match for the reality of the virus.


Mexico and Argentina Coordinate Through CELAC to Distribute Vaccines to Ibero-America and the Caribbean

Mexico and Argentina are exercising important leadership in providing vaccines to Central and South America and the Caribbean, coordinating through the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), of which Mexico is the President pro Tempore. This initiative reflects the two nations’ strategic partnership which extends beyond the matter of vaccines, into foreign policy and economic development issues. In the middle of the Covid pandemic, however, their collaboration on vaccine production and distribution has been crucial. As per the agreement signed by the two governments last year, Argentina’s mAbxience lab produces the actual AZ vaccine which is then shipped to Mexico’s Liomont lab for final bottling and packaging.

Delayed for a few months, the program really got underway on June 12, when Mexico sent 400,000 AZ doses to Bolivia, Paraguay and Belize–100,00 for Belize, and 150,000 each for Bolivia and Paraguay–which, as Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard pointed out, makes six CELAC countries that have access to the AZ vaccines. He reported that Haiti, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago would soon be receiving vaccines as well; Jamaica did receive 65,000 AZ doses on July 3, the seventh Mexican vaccine donation to that country.

All of the vaccines donated to other nations are personally delivered by high-level officials of the Mexican Foreign Ministry. Maximiliano Reyes, Undersecretary for Latin America and the Caribbean, delivered vaccines to Belize, and on June 24, Ebrard himself flew to Central America on a Mexican Air Force jet–two planes were deployed, one to Honduras and one to Guatemala and El Salvador– to deliver 400,000 doses of AZ vaccine for distribution among those three countries. In a tweet, he emphasized that the 400,000 donated doses are “produced by Argentina and Mexico” and are being provided to demonstrate “that we are consistent and [have] solidarity with other countries,” Sputnik reported him saying the same day. “The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States is present! United we are better!” he added.


G20 Matera Summit: Long on Rhetoric, Short on Solutions

Foreign and Development Ministers of the Group of 20 and representatives of UN agencies met today in a one-day summit in Matera, Italy, hosted by Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio as Italy is currently the rotating president of the group. Several of the ministers appeared in person, but China’s, Russia’s, Brazil’s, and other ministers attended virtually. The major emphasis of the summit, whose unimaginative title was “People, Planet, Prosperity,” was combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as food insecurity, famine, poverty, disease, and promoting “sustainable development,” and “sustainable” health systems–especially for Africa. Di Maio said in the closing press conference that the G20 has a special responsibility to help Africa to emerge from a “difficult period.” This must be done in such a way, he said, that people won’t feel the need to leave their countries and migrate to Europe.

The “Matera Declaration on Food Security, Nutrition and Food Systems,” announces a number of initiatives for addressing the developing sector’s most urgent problems, but all are couched in terms of “sustainability,” respecting biodiversity and gender equality, and adapting “agriculture and food systems to climate change.” The statement ends with a call for a “global mobilization” to solve these problems, while it presents none of the solutions that might actually yield results. This document cries out for the Schiller Institute and LaRouche Organization’s programmatic proposals for building a global health system, bankruptcy organization of the global financial system, and reconstruction of the world’s economies with major infrastructure projects.

During the conference itself, there was much rhetoric about “multilateralism,” loudly advocated by Secretary of StateTony Blinken, who had the audacity to say that the U.S. is leading the multilateral effort for vaccine distribution, to which Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi tweeted in response that “multilateralism is not a high-sounding slogan, let alone gift-wrapping for the implementation of unilateral acts.” In his public statements, Wang called for an end to the “zero-sum game” in foreign relations. For example, he said, in fighting the pandemic it is to everyone’s benefit that those nations which have vaccines and vaccine capacity lift their export restrictions. Forget about ideology, and get to work on stabilizing vaccine production and supply lines, he said. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas ignored that advice when he complained that Russia and China are only using their “vaccine diplomacy” for political leverage in the countries they aid. “We must openly discuss the fact that we do not think much of their vaccine diplomacy,” he harrumphed.

Michele Geraci, former Undersecretary of State at the Italian Ministry of Economic Development, said in an interview with CGTN that there is a lot of talk about multilateralism, but if it means that 200 nations do their own thing, and there is retrenchment, this doesn’t work. It hurts production, people-to-people contact, international education, etc. What is needed is real collaboration, he insisted.

Di Maio and other Italian participants pointed out that in terms of protecting health, Rome is home to a number of international food organizations–World Food Program, Food and Agriculture Organization, etc.–and that they and Italy will host the July 26-28 World Pre-Summit of the Food Systems meeting that will be held at the UN in September. As this news service has pointed out, the Rome affair in July is terribly organized as a gathering of “stakeholders” — women, youth, climate, and biodiversity groups, etc. — and that its solutions are nature-based, not focused on ending famine. This is precisely the World Economic Forum/Davos model announced by Charles Schwab last January.


El Salvador Government: Responsible for Clean Water, Decent Hospitals

El Salvador Asserts Government Responsibility for Clean Water, Decent Hospitals

June 23, 2021 (EIRNS)—Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele sent a draft Water Bill to the National Assembly on June 19, which declares affordable access to clean water to be a human right, which it is the government’s responsibility to secure. Given the fact that the government’s “New Ideas” party has a majority in the Assembly, the bill could pass within 90 days. The bill’s Article I asserts the crucial principle:

“Article 1. The human right to water and sanitation is the right of all people to have sufficient, healthy, safe, acceptable, clean water available to them, accessible in amount, quality, continuity and coverage at an affordable price.

“The State, in all its basic authorities and institutions of Government has the obligation and paramount responsibility to guarantee, without any discrimination whatsoever among persons, the effective enjoyment of the human right to potable water and sanitation for its population, for which purpose it must adopt all policies, legislation and measures which lead to the full realization of this right.”

It is no wonder that most Salvadorans are now more optimistic about their future than they have been for decades. The Bukele government at the same time is celebrating the arrival of enough new, modern hospital beds to replace 50% of the existing beds in the country’s public hospitals. Those new beds are already being distributed around the country. The other 50% of old beds will be replaced in the second phase. Pictures of the existing decrepit beds, many dating back to the 1950’s, are sickening. As President Bukele pointed out: these beds have been used during 10 governments—not counting the coups d’etat.


Africa Enters 3rd Wave; Equitable Vaccine Distribution Could Have Prevented It

Africa Entering Third Wave; Equitable Vaccine Distribution Could Have Prevented It

June 21 (EIRNS) — Africa has officially entered its third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in less than two years — having been struck with two waves in 2020, and now going into another Winter season — with little relief in sight, and new more-virulent variants to deal with. “New cases, continent-wide are up by nearly 30% in the past week, and deaths are up by 15%,” said WHO Africa Regional Director, Doctor Matshidiso Moeti, in her weekly press conference June 17. “The threat of a third wave is real and rising.” A meager 1% of the African population has been vaccinated, due to the massive logistics barriers involved, along with lack of vaccine accessibility and financing.
            The land-locked nation of Uganda is the latest crisis spot– as cases in the nation of nearly 50 million have shot up over 131% in the last week– with Namibia, DR Congo and Angola each showing lesser spikes. Many more of the victims are now younger, and a much higher percentage of them now require oxygen as part of treatment. Uganda’s hospitals are nearing their limits, and the nation has put out requests to neighboring states for emergency relief supplies.
            The other nation again in the unwanted spotlight is South Africa, where President Cyril Ramaphosa was forced to make a national address on June 15, as he once again declared a Level 3 lockdown. “A third wave of infections is upon us,” the president said. In just the past two weeks, “the average number of daily new infections has doubled. Then, we were recording around 3,700 daily infections. Over the last seven days, we have recorded an average of 7,500 daily infections. Hospital admissions due to COVID-19 over the last 14 days are 59% higher than the preceding 14 days.”
            Again reflecting the increased threat from variants, Ramaphosa said, “The average number of people who die from COVID-19 each day has increased by 48%  from 535 two weeks ago to 791 in the past seven days.” [emphasis added] Although South Africa responded effectively and built emergency capacity last year, four of the most populous provinces are officially in a third wave, with Gauteng — the most urban and populous — accounting for nearly two-thirds of new cases in the past week. “The increase in infections … is now faster and steeper,” he said, and “within a matter of days, it is likely that the number of new cases in Gauteng will surpass the peak of the second wave.” And Winter is just starting.
            South Africa’s vaccine rollout has been severely frustrated, first by the denial of AstraZeneca vaccines from India (as they faced their own crisis), and further by the complications around the Johnson & Johnson version, either one of which could have prevented this crisis. Vaccines are “the one statistic that provides a clear reason for hope,” Ramaphosa said. Last year (during the second wave), over hundreds of healthcare workers had become infected, as the “South African variant” was first encountered. “In the last seven days,” he said, “only 64 health care workers have been infected.”
            By the end of the week, South Africa is expected to produce its own Johnson & Johnson vaccines. 


International Groups Rally to Help Cuba Get Syringes To Vaccinate Population

International Groups Rally to Help Cuba Get Syringes To Vaccinate Population

May 28 (EIRNS)–The U.S. economic blockade of Cuba, in place since 1962, plus more recent sanctions imposed by the U.S. government, make it impossible for Cuba to obtain the 20 million syringes it needs to vaccinate its 11.2 million citizens against COVID. It has already vaccinated one million people with its Soberana 2 and Abdala vaccines, but hopes to begin a mass vaccination campaign by sometime in June, as soon as its regulatory agency grants emergency use authorization and phase 3 clinical trials are completed. Operating under the slogan “the blockade kills–your solidarity kills the blockade,” many international charitable organizations and Cuban solidarity groups, from the U.S., Europe and Ibero-America have begun raising funds to purchase the syringes and send them to Cuba, Telam news agency reported today. This collaborative effort expects to be able to raise enough money to buy and send all 20 million syringes


Dr. Joycelyn Elders, on Caribbean Facebook Forum on Health Security

Dr. Joycelyn Elders, Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites, on Caribbean Facebook Forum on Health Security

May 27, 2021 (EIRNS) – A forum was held today in Trinidad Tobago, streamed on Facebook Live Video with the online participation of Dr. Joycelyn Elders, former U.S. Surgeon General, who co-founded the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites in 2020 with Helga Zepp LaRouche, Schiller Institute President. The topic was, “Building Global and National Health Infrastructure in the Wake of Covid.” Host Dr. Kirk Meighoo opened the hour-long dialogue, which is the second of a weekly series for a new season of his The Story Club series, with quotes from the May 14 Committee release, “Global Health Security Requires Medical Infrastructure in Every Country—Major Industrial Nations Must Collaborate Now!” The forum also airs in India.

Joining Dr. Elders were Dr. Tim Gopeesingh, from Trinidad Tobago, and Marcia Merry Baker, from EIR News Service. Dr. Gopeesingh’s long background of both medical specialty—gynecological oncology—and long, high-level public service, parallels Dr. Elders, who is a pediatrician, and the two compared views on many concrete aspects of health care, from teaching, to community health, to hospitals. Gopeesingh was a Cabinet Minister, Member of Parliament, Senator, and Health Administrator. He personally oversaw a dramatic expansion of the medical care delivery capacity in Trinidad Tobago. He was on the faculty of the University of the West Indies—which has multiple locations in several nations, and served as Clinical Dean of the Faculty of Medical Sciences there from 1994-1997.

The two physicians stressed the necessity for building capacity to deliver care. Elders said that the pandemic has revealed the “soft underbelly” of the inadequacies of medical and public health systems. On the U.S. situation, she said that for years the U.S. has not had “health care.” Instead, it has “sick care.” Both doctors spoke of providing health care in the community.

Gopeesingh described some of the capacity he had helped to build up, including new hospital resources. Then, he said, another administration came in and let the system languish. One hospital was completely shut down; now with COVID-19, it has been reopened. Elders concurred strongly, that “leadership” is the biggest need in public health and medicine. She presented “Five Cs” for leadership. Among them, Concern, Competence, and Commitment. Elders recounted when and why the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites was founded in 2020, as the “brainchild” of Helga Zepp-LaRouche, to show that people can work together.

Baker identified the green evil we now see from the Wall Street-City of London crowd. UN Climate Action Envoy, and former Bank of England governor Mark Carney tells Africa that they should not develop their resources or build infrastructure. They should sell carbon offset credits for retaining a primitive economy, and just die off, while the bankers try to create a green bubble for themselves off the new carbon credits market. This must be stopped. Baker reported the opposition to this, in the form of the critical initiatives for a new world health security system, for example, the Mexico-Argentina vaccine production partnership, the provision of vaccine to the Honduras mayors by El Salvador after they appealed for help, the achievements of Cuba in their work on new vaccines and bio-medical research. She called for the major powers to get together and collaborate.

Dr. Gopeesingh warned against any shallow thinking that once this terrible pandemic is over it will be smooth sailing. Not at all. The coronavirus has appeared before in deadly form (SARS, MERS) and may do so after the SARSCov2 period. The cold virus requires vaccination every two years. We have to get realistic. Link to the full program is at this Facebook link: https://fb.watch/5LyRSLABHY/


Honduran Mayors Explain Success in Appeal to El Salvador for Vaccines

Honduran Mayors Explain Their Successful Appeal to Neighboring El Salvador for Vaccines

Honduran Mayors Explain Their Successful Appeal to Neighboring El Salvador for Vaccines

May 27, 2021 (EIRNS) – A group of seven Honduran mayors from the poorest municipalities of that most impoverished of nations, recently requested of the President of neighboring El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, that he help them with anti-COVID vaccines. Bukele has made a point of obtaining at least some vaccines internationally, including from China, with whose government El Salvador signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the Belt and Road Initiative in 2018. Honduras, on the other hand, remains one of the few nations in the world that has diplomatic relations with Taiwan, and not with China, and has predictably not gotten any vaccines from the United States either.

President Bukele responded favorably to the request, met with the Honduran mayors, and donated 34,000 vaccines to their municipalities in mid-May. This was especially significant because El Salvador and Honduras have a long history of hostility, with territorial disputes, and even fought a short but bloody war in 1969, today known as the “Soccer War.” Bukele’s gesture in fact falls in the domain of the kind of solutions to problems proposed by the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites. The Schiller Institute’s José Vega interviewed two of the seven mayors about the situation in Honduras and their successful appeal to Salvadoran President Bukele. We present here excerpts from a May 16 conversation with Amable de Jesús Hernández, Mayor of San José Colinas, and a May 24 discussion with David Castro, mayor of Cedros. (A video of the interview with Mayor de Jesús can be found here.)

Mayor Amable de Jesús Hernández:

“I think that only with solidarity, with humanitarian actions, with exchanges and mutual cooperation among countries, peoples, neighbors, families, institutions, among all of us, will we be able to defeat this pandemic. There’s no other way to be able to do it. This has overwhelmed human capabilities, it has exceeded the capabilities of even the most formidable health systems of the world, and it has collapsed them.

“The only way to deal with this is with solidarity. And I think that’s what Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele has done with us, from the poor, C-category municipalities of Honduras. Because it was an act of humanity, of solidarity, of brotherhood, of altruism and comradery, which doubtless strengthens the relationship of our peoples, and it promotes solidarity. There’s no question that this has to be an example for other countries to do the same, to share vaccines, which is what is needed right away to be able to vaccinate the population and defeat this pandemic. It’s the only way…

“Because governments should have an agenda which allows for the development of the people. And as you said, all of the policies of the International Monetary Fund are out to make sure there are no investments in health: the more collapsed the health system in the country is, the better.

“And that’s exactly what the pandemic has laid bare: the humanitarian catastrophe that is reflected in the hundreds of children, men, women, elderly and adults who leave, every single day, on route to the American dream. This is caused precisely by this same model that has been imposed on us.

“So many conditionalities have been imposed on our states, that they’ve pretty much wanted to direct the entire policy of these governments from Washington, or from the offices of the IMF. And logically that has led to the entire institutional collapse that has now sunk those countries in the worst misery…

“We have to globalize solidarity; we have to globalize humanism; we have to globalize brotherhood. This gesture with us by President Bukele created what has to be seen as a gesture to be imitated by many governments in the world, so that we can come out on top of the pandemic.”

Mayor David Castro:

“The vaccine situation has infuriated all of the municipal governments… We’re watching how people have been dying in our municipalities, and we couldn’t bear to sit by and do nothing. We saw the reports that El Salvador is leading the vaccination drive in Latin America. One day I was in my office, and I told my secretary, let’s write an official letter to send it to El Salvador to request a meeting with President Bukele. The government of El Salvador answered us: `We’re going to help you.’

Mayor Castro recounted that the seven mayors were received by President Bukele. “He began by saying the following: Dear mayors, make yourselves at home. I’m not speaking with you as President, but as a mayor, since I was a mayor as well. I’d like to talk as friends… I don’t know why borders exist; borders should be imaginary, but they should never exist in our hearts.”

Mayor Castro told President Bukele that what he was doing was helping to save Honduras, to which Bukele responded: “Look, David, sometimes we plant trees and we don’t know who is going to enjoy their shade. Today we are planting a tree, which is the tree of brotherhood in Central America and hopefully tomorrow that tree will provide shade to all five countries of Central America.”

Asked by the interviewer if his constituents backed his efforts, Castro stated: “Not only my constituents. The entire nation turned out to support us. The whole country. Not just the seven municipalities, but all 290 municipalities… they backed us 100%.”

“The population of Cedros is 28,500; they gave us 4,760 doses. My dream is to vaccinate 50% of the population; that’s about another 14,000 doses. That would be a lesson for all the municipalities, that it can be done…

“Regarding the youth: like El Salvador, we have the problem of the Maras gang, which is a well-known scourge… There are also a lot of migrants who go from our country to the U.S. If we were to help those people directly in their communities, they wouldn’t have to emigrate.”


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