U.N. Calls Middle East Polio Outbreak ‘Greatest Polio Challenge in History’


doctor-kid-medicine-polio-fluFirst Syria, now Iraq-polio is spreading through these war-torn countries, and the challenges to get the spread under control are great.

The three-year long civil war in Syria, which has claimed an estimated 150,000 lives, has come to affect the infants and children of the region in a new way. From the start, bombs and chemical weapons brutally harmed many kids as well as adults, but now young ones are at risk from something new: the spread of infectious diseases.

With the war-related deterioration of the government’s ability to provide even rudimentary services, the vaccination of infants can no longer reliably be performed. Thus, starting last summer, cases of measles and-most disturbingly-polio among unvaccinated children were identified in Syria.

Now, a case of polio has been diagnosed in Iraq and many others are certain to follow. The UN has labeled this the greatest polio-related challenge in history-an observation that’s hard to argue with, even using the WHO’s possibly (very) watered down numbers.

The new polio threat is a major and predictable consequence of war, just like shrapnel injuries and broken families. The disease will not spread outside war-torn or impoverished areas and into suburbs in the United States-our governmental and societal will, though so often ridiculed, is far too strong to allow such a calamity. We are protected here because our government actually is effective.

Read more at the Daily Beast.

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Excellent article. We take so much for granted here in the US. We can’t imagine what it must be like to live someplace where there is no security or social organization.

  2. In light of the above- and other similar, recent articles, could someone from the anti-vaccine crowd please explain your position about the polio vaccine. It seems to be very clear that the countries with vaccines have no- or minimal polio, and the countries without it do have polio. Polio was recently eradicated from India, due to enormous effort to vaccinate everyone. The anti- vaccine crowd claims that the polio vaccine doesn’t work, and that vaccinations are a scheme invented by the pharmacy companies who make money selling them.


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