Russia’s scientists are far ahead in the international race for a vaccine, according to President Putin. Doubts are warranted.
In a press photo, the new vaccine is presented at an institute in Moscow Photo: RDIF/ap
Chapeau, Vladimir Putin! This man should not be underestimated. Once again, Russia’s president is on the front lines. This time not in the Donbass to protect his countrymen from Ukrainian "fascists," but in the fight against Corona. Russia already has the first vaccine, and already people like Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro are queuing up to buy the antidote.
Now, no one can seriously claim that Russia lacks capable scientists. Even in Soviet times, there were outstanding specialists whose zeal was at best hampered by a chronic lack of resources. It is also difficult to reproach Putin for not taking the pandemic seriously, unlike his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko.
However, this does not change the fact that medical personnel who are too willing to provide information have also lost their jobs. And no one believes the official statistics anyway. Nevertheless, Moscow’s move comes as a surprise – even for local experts who have doubts about the effectiveness of the substance. But it is not just about the new wonder weapon Sputnik V. Rather, one is reminded of the race between two systems during the Cold War.
The "giant leap for mankind," as Neil Armstrong called the first moon charge in 1969, was achieved by the Americans and not the Soviets. 12 years earlier, SED leader Walter Ulbricht had wanted to overtake the capitalist system without catching up with it. Nothing came of this either. The competitors for the development of a Corona vaccine should not get involved in a competition to outbid each other.
After all, human lives are at stake. However, should Sputnik V actually put an end to the virus, it would be at least as big a leap for mankind.