how the army will help people in the face of coronavirus


“Resilience”. The word is loud and clear to describe the operation announced on Wednesday evening March 25 by Emmanuel Macron. At the request of the government, the armies will intensify their efforts in the face of the rapid progression of the epidemic of coronavirus, to come to the aid of the populations in terms of health and logistics, especially in the overseas territories. This operation remains very distinct from Sentinel. This anti-terrorist operation on national territory “Endures because the threat remains” But “His rules of engagement do not change”, underlines the staff.

Faced with the coronavirus threat, has the government been slow to react?

Here is what we know about this unprecedented military operation:

  • The “Resilience” operation “Will be entirely devoted to help and support populations, as well as support for public services to deal with the epidemic, in mainland France and overseas “, said Emmanuel Macron, evoking a help of order “Sanitary”, “Logistics” or even relating to the “Protection” sensitive sites.
  • The operation is not intended to help police and gendarmes to enforce the containment of the population to stop the spread of the virus, specifies the ministry for the Armed forces.
  • Two amphibious helicopter carriers (PHA), the Mistral and the Diksmuide, will be respectively deployed in the south of the Indian Ocean, towards the island of Reunion, and in the Antilles / Guyana zone, to come to the aid more specifically to the populations of Overseas -sea. If these regions are for the moment less affected by the “epidemic” (some 365 cases listed Wednesday on all of the territories and two deaths, in Martinique and Guadeloupe), many are worried about a possible health disaster in their soil, especially because of the low capacity of the sick, the isolation … Like the Tonnerre helicopter carrier, sent to the rescue in Corsica last weekend to evacuate 12 patients with Covid-19 to Marseille hospitals, the Mistral and Diksmuide have on board real “On-board hospitals”, each with two operating theaters and 69 medical beds.
  • “According to the prefects”. Staff spokesman Colonel Frederic Barbry said that“According to the requests of the prefects, the armies will respond according to the means available”. The number of soldiers concerned has not yet been specified, however. “We reason in terms of effects to be obtained, not in numbers”, underlines Frederic Barbry, emphasizing the aspect “Local” of the operation, “As close as possible to the needs”.
  • Transport masks. This is a concrete logistical example. In terms of logistics, the army could, for example, be asked to transport masks to a given French region.
  • Provide protection. This could for example concern sites of“Operators of vital interest”, or OIV, like nuclear power plants. This reinforcement of the military will allow, as during Euro 2016 football, “Raise the internal security forces” so that they can devote more resources to maintaining order, a mission of which they have exclusive control and which the armies cannot in any case ensure, it is argued in the ministry.
  • Ensure travel. On the health side, the armies are already active. Since the start of the health crisis, the French military and their health service (SSA) have carried out three air rotations to evacuate patients from the Grand Est to regions less saturated with patients, have set up a tented hospital in Mulhouse with 30 resuscitation beds, and have transferred a dozen serious cases from Corsica to the mainland by sea.

The Scientific Council, the outpost of the war against the Covid-19

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