Linked Up: Sri Lanka, Nuclear Graybeards, Swine Flu Vaccine, and All Those Other Diseases

Steve Crawshaw of Human Rights Watch sounds an alarm with which we wholeheartedly agree: the UN’s got to step up to the plate on Sri Lanka, and soon. But it’s worth keeping in mind, for the talk of the leeway that’s been afforded Sri Lanka because of the “war on terror” rationale, it’s still Russia and China that are the primary obstacles to more emphatic Security Council action.

“Graybeards” like former Secretary of Defense William Perry might not think that reaching the goal of worldwide nuclear elimination is possible in their lifetimes, but that doesn’t mean that the “top of the mountain” isn’t even visible — it just might take younger eyes to see it.

Jacob Goldstein at the Wall Street Journal‘s Health Blog reports that, if vaccines are to be produced for swine H1N1 flu, UN agencies will be among the first buyers. This is decidedly a good thing, as it will ensure that poorer countries are not left out of the drug-buying spree that would likely ensue.

And (to return some link love) Josh Keating lists five diseases worse than the dreaded H1N1 virus. My only question is — why only five?  Especially when we have top officials (not including Joe Biden, that is) telling us (rightly) that swine flu “is not stronger than regular seasonal flu.”