Just when you think you have heard it all – the overwhelming stupidity of people can still astonish you.
Background: we have a team that is actively involved in support to civil affairs. Among our team members is an Entomologist. He is actively working vector control programs and trying to figure out how to reduce the burden of malaria on the Afghan population. I like his ideas and potential programs since they will benefit the US service members as well. Fewer mosquitoes means fewer chances to get malaria.
There is a toad in the road. WHO. In their pie in the sky program on vector control, they try to avoid insecticides. In fact, they would just as soon never use them at all. Admittedly, when there are other options, I will go for them. But if the option is small fish which will displace native fish (food source), I am not enthusiastic. If the proposals involve other methods -well – crop rotation is not a sensible suggestion.
For those areas which are rice growing – you would be asking farmers to cease growing their staple food crop. Rice paddies, of course, are great places for mosquito larvae. I am not sure what they would eat. Rice is what they know how to grow and it is suited for the area and the land.
In other areas, the same solution has also been suggested and met with the same skepticism. I am not sure we want to encourage poppy growing. Otherwise, there are four main crops grown for export. I think that poppy fumes have gotten to WHO – exactly how do you rotate the main crops? And when would you expect a reduction in mosquito population?
Oh – the four crops? Grapes, apricots, pomegranates, almonds. Not exactly overnight cro