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Up to 23% in South African Army have HIV/Aids

“Between 17 and 23 percent of SA National Defence Force members may be infected with HIV/Aids, Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota said on Tuesday.”

This official figure from the government has been bandied about to undermine previous reports from a report that said 89% of the military was HIV positive. That figure came from a self-selected group of soldiers who volunteered to be tested as part of a project that was sponsored with the U.S. Department of Defense on HIV/AIDS in the military.

Infection rates among members of the military are a concern for the security field in part because of the worry that efforts to forge regional peace-keeping units within Africa may be compromised. See the piece by Peter Singer I posted in the gems. An older piece by Harvard’s Stephen Peter Rosen looked at this in 1989, particularly with reference to the Cuban military.

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One Response to “Up to 23% in South African Army have HIV/Aids”

  1. […] There is no shortage of studies looking at the links between AIDS and security (the Council on Foreign Relations has a long study, Tony Barnett at the LSE has another, Stephan Elbe has a long piece in International Studies Quarterly, and P.W. Singer has a piece in Survival). There is also the famous National Intelligence Council report warning of the next generation of AIDS cases in China, India, and Russia. We’ve also blogged (and here) about the links between HIV and security. Despite these purported links, Alex de Waal in his recent book makes a pretty strong case for why AIDS hasn’t been much of a political issue yet which I think also causes us to wonder about whether or not AIDS will become a security challenge. […]