JRL NEWSWATCH: “Beware of Bad Samaritans; China and Russia are sending medical aid to Italy and other coronavirus-stricken countries, but their motives aren’t so altruistic” – Foreign Policy/ Elisabeth Braw

Medical Symbol with Pole, Serpents, Wings, adapted from image at lanl.gov

“… ‘Of those Russian supplies, 80 percent were completely useless or of little use to Italy. In other words, the delivery was more like a pretext’ …. for example, equipment for bacteriological disinfection and a field laboratory for chemical-biological sterilization—not the ventilators and personal protective equipment so desperately needed …. The Kremlin’s aid is indeed rather unusual. The medical experts were dispatched by the Russian defense ministry, not the health ministry …. many are senior biological, chemical, and nuclear officers in the medical branch of the Russian armed forces — hardly the front-line medics ordinarily dispatched to help fight a humanitarian crisis. … the Russian officers are based in the Bergamo area … worst hit by the coronavirus … less than two hours from Vicenza, the site of a major U.S. military base. …”

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