January 03, 2015

Mixed Emotions

Over the last 3 days there's been a bit of back and forth on the veracity of this story, but as I type this it is looking like there has been an ebola outbreak within the ranks of ISIS. Now this could not happen to a more deserving bunch of scumbags, so the first impulse is to just snark.




However, this is actually a dreadful development if true. 

For one thing, you will be shocked...SHOCKED to learn that ISIS, is not responding to the situation with the rational calm of a civilized military (Eisenhower with the Spanish Flu) or religious (Samaritan's Purse against Ebola) organization. Instead, they are killing the doctors who won't go near ebola patients without protective gear....so...they are killing the sane competent doctors. One of the reasons ebola spread so fast in East Africa was due to the fact the area had been ravaged by a recent war. The areas under ISIS influence are being ravaged by an ongoing one, and ISIS is being particularly efficient at spreading blood around in ways not seen since Tamerlane. 

But it gets worse:

The disease will go wherever the blood is spattered and that means into the local population which means it could easily get into the waves of refugees....

...or pilgrims.




...and that has the potential to be an unspeakable calamity. 
The hadj is not until September this year, but Mecca is open to pilgrims year round. (Medina too)

The Saudis have astutely banned entry to Mecca for people from Ebola affected areas. However,  ISIS is not known for respecting border restrictions. Furthermore, one of the more likely ways ebola could have reached Mesopotamia is via jihadis traveling from Africa. If these people were willing to travel all the way from West Africa to fight in a war, little will stop them from making the much shorter hop to a place their faith requires them to visit before they die. 

Fortunately ebola victims tend not to be terribly mobile while contagious, but given that they tend to become quite messily contagious it's easy to see where this could get out.

The doctors of East Africa are not incompetent, yet a huge number of them have died even after getting proper equipment. Samaritan's Purse and Medicines Sans Frontiers have highly trained and well equipped  people yet they have both had their people infected and despite heroic efforts the disease is still ravaging the area. ISIS is ill equipped, untrained and stark raving mad. 

The question of how it got there is troubling as well. While the most likely vector was jihadis traveling from the infected area it is conceivable that given their megalomanic outlook ISIS was trying to weaponize the bug. Ebola is a poor bioweapon (though its terror potential is considerable) and the chances of ISIS being able to successfully transport and deploy the thing is quite remote. However given that they are stark raving nutters the chance that they might try and fail spectacularly has always been much higher. 

Closer to home....

As bad as this could be it is still likely that the higher death toll this year will be from the flu, especially given that this years flu shot did not work. New Jersey is reporting its hospitals are full due to the current outbreak, which the CDC has just officially declared an epidemic
I think its possible that we could see the worst flu season since 1968

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 11:35 AM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
Post contains 578 words, total size 6 kb.

1 Seems like I've picked a good time to be a hermit.

Posted by: Wonderduck at Sun Jan 4 05:35:42 2015 (jGQR+)

2 There's a bad time for that?

Posted by: Mikeski at Sun Jan 4 23:18:15 2015 (kykiW)

3
 There's a bad time for that?  

Well yes...Catgirl Day.  (duh!)

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at Mon Jan 5 10:46:52 2015 (DnAJl)

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What colour is a green orange?




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