COVID-19 OPERATIONS: ROLE OF THE ARMED FORCES

The metaphor of war has been universally invoked to describe the conditions under which ‘victory’ over COVID-19 is sought. The metaphor is certainly useful to galvanize a nation and harness its capacities that can be directed towards the ‘enemy’. The challenge in the fight is that the enemy can spread invisibly even through hosts who are unaware, as the individual can transmit the virus even during the incubation period when the individual is asymptomatic. Its detection requires testing but is not as yet known as a killer of the magnitude of previous pandemics, even though there is no cure nor vaccine. The most vulnerable are people over 60 years of age and those who are already nursing other ailments. It is obvious that if lives have to be saved then this war must be fought by the young while the old are specially protected.

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