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Anton Alexander's blog

Durable malaria elimination and democracy (originally posted in 2015 in Forum Topics)

February 28, 2018 - 10:30 -- Anton Alexander

Can there be a link between Durable Malaria Elimination and Democracy?  Testing a hypothesis.

Democracy is a belief in freedom, a belief in equality between people, a belief that everyone should have an equal say in deciding our collective future.

Four years ago, with the Arab Spring, it was believed democracy was about to spread around the region. But there was no such spontaneous or mechanical outcome. Instead there was bloodshed and civil war.

So what went wrong?

Palestine, Malaria and The last large-scale cavalry charge of WW1 in 1918

March 21, 2016 - 21:09 -- Anton Alexander

See Allenby's cavalry charge .
This extreme example is useful for those who wish to see the difference between durable malaria elimination and a temporary practical intervention in what was referred to as one of the most malarious countries in the world.

WHY WAS PALESTINE 'THE MOST PEACEFUL COUNTRY OF ANY IN THE MIDDLE EAST' 90 YEARS AGO? Probably because everyone there was so busy getting rid of malaria.

October 3, 2015 - 10:27 -- Anton Alexander

In view of the tragedy, the barbarity and shocking loss of life in Syria, I felt this may be a timely reminder about how malaria elimination was, and could still be, a huge inspiration to all mankind and an aid towards a calmer and more peaceful world.

Malaria elimination needs a higher profile, a greater sense of urgency. Why shouldn't malaria professionals try to take charge?

September 28, 2015 - 17:30 -- Anton Alexander

Countries known to have ebola are avoided by tourists because people die of it, and recently this disease has been given much media attention.

IBM and mosquito bednets.

August 10, 2015 - 19:49 -- Anton Alexander

When IBM dominated the computer world in the 1970s, an expression arose ‘No-one was ever fired for buying IBM’, even though competitors’ machines may have been more suitable for the task. Has a similar attitude now arisen towards bednets by those considering malaria elimination? Is the default position with regard to malaria elimination ‘No-one ever gets fired for buying mosquito bednets’? By 1970, Malaria was eliminated in North America and Europe. Were bednets extensively used there?

Has practical malaria-elimination in the field lost its way?

July 25, 2015 - 11:20 -- Anton Alexander

The quest for the anti-malaria ‘silver-bullet’/’magic-bullet’ drug or vaccine. Has this confused, distracted, mesmerised or misled the practical (cf theoretical lab-based) anti-malaria scientists?

Google’s definition of ‘Silver Bullet’ includes “ A simple remedy or a quick solution for a difficult problem”. Simple. Quick. And its definition of ‘Magic Bullet’ includes “A drug or treatment that cures a disease quickly and easily without producing bad effects”. Quickly. Easily.

Durable Malaria Elimination – You can take a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink

May 26, 2015 - 13:39 -- Anton Alexander

On 7th August 2012, Bart Knols brought to our attention a lecture by Margaret Heffernan entitled ‘Dare to Disagree’, and which can be seen at http://www.malariaworld.org/blog/margaret-heffernan-must-see-all-mw-subscribers . Margaret Heffernan spoke amongst other things about a scientist, Alice Stewart, who, in the 1950s, investigated and demonstrated the incidence of childhood cancer and its connection with the practice of X-raying pregnant women.

The advantage of a vested interest in malaria elimination.

April 15, 2015 - 06:01 -- Anton Alexander

This article will focus on the improved likelihood of a successful outcome where malaria elimination is conducted by scientists who live in the affected area. The blog by Alvaro Pemartin of 22nd January 2015 entitled "Column: Public health concerns (too) far away from home. Who cares?" is both instructive and fascinating. He showed statistics that revealed the global burden of swine flu, avian flu and ebola is far lower than the losses caused by malaria. He demonstrated that the media seems to overlook this point.

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