Horrors of War: Doctors Without Frontiers

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Doctors Without Frontiers or Médecins sans frontières (MSF) willingly jeopardize their lives and safety to deliver medical care to those in need. Katrin Kuntz summarizes their experiences as “the deadly business of War-zone medical care” here.

Paul Mcmaster who works as a surgeon with the MSF attacks can come from the ground, which is the case in most war zones. Working in Syria, however, has made doctors apprehensive of dangers from the air.

MSF personnel provides care on a needs alone basis.

MSF demonstrates its independence to warring parties by ensuring that all funding comes from private individuals and not governments.

Doctors Without Frontiers experience firsthand the effects of conflicts in war zones. Their work continues to face hurdles that led to the formation of the non-governmental organization in 1971 by a group of French physicians working in Nigeria during the deadly famine and civil war in Biafra.

MSF sought to address frustrations caused by the slow pace of work and restrictions on doctors’ activities.

War and conflicts potentially disrupt the core functions of MSF, which include:

  • Medical,
  • Administrative/finance, and
  • Logistics

The experiences from the disruptions are diverse and affect the doctors and patients in different ways.

Emotional and physical toll

Everyone is different implying hey handle stress in disparate ways. Incidences of doctors completely shutting down and disengaging emotionally to utter hysteria are common occurrences. In most cases, they result from the cross-cultural differences in how to deal with stress.

Doctors who push themselves too much may need artificial relaxers to calm down after long hours of work.

A significant proportion of MSF doctors who work in the emergency pool – an elite team of first-responders who have proven themselves to be able to handle the chaos of emergencies and are on call for 24 hours – often end up with post stress traumatic disorder (PSTD).  Some adopt behaviours such as drinking and smoking that are risky to their health.

Immediate response

War and conflicts, regardless of stature, leads to fear of persecution and violence, uprooting communities and rendering them in need of urgent medical care. Trauma injuries rise during conflicts, and so do problems for people needing routine medical care such as pregnant women and the chronically ill such as diabetics.

Psychological distress and mental illnesses escalate. Sexual violence becomes common.

MSF doctors face the challenge of addressing these medical needs and highly tense environments.

Intense violence

MSF teams demonstrate a great deal of flexibility where violence engulfs their areas of operation. In 2011 when medical facilities in Misrata, Libya were engulfed in violence, MSF doctors had to evacuate the wounded patients safely and quickly out of the city.

Doctors are forced to risk their lives and those of their patients.

The situation worsens with the increase in the portrayal of war zones as death traps. Governments continue to ignore the rights of their enemies in the name of fighting terror – by objecting to their treatment.

The development presents extreme dangers to MSF personnel. Warring parties are likely to see them as sympathizers of the enemy by disregarding neutrality.

Hospital attacks 

“Medical under fire” is a phrase used to refer to an unsettling trend that makes MSF work difficult, denying thousands of victims medical care. Reports of hospital attacks in war zones are common news feature. The horrific attacks involve the destruction of medical infrastructure and attacks on aid workers.

  • The US Air Force attacked an MSF hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan in October 2015, killing forty-two people including fourteen MSF staff.
  • On January 2015, an MSF hospital with 150 patients and staff in Farandalla was bombed by a jet operated by the Sudanese regime.
  • In May 2018, unknown assailants attacked an MSF vehicle in the Central Republic of Africa, killing its driver.
  • In late July 2016, the Syrian regime attacked four MSF run hospital in Aleppo.

MSF personnel continue to face dangers working in the battlefield. The largest contributor is the growing intolerance of enemies by governments as the war on terror and criminals escalates.


Effects of war on Hemingway

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‘A farewell to arms’ is a piece of art by Hemingway focusing on a story a young Fredrick Henry a young American volunteer driver working with the Italian army during the World War one.  Upon volunteering for service with Italian army, Henry, meets an English nurse through his friends and falls in love with her, the English nurse in question is referred to as Catherine Barkley according to the book, a farewell to arms. Along the war versus love story, Henry desserts the English nurse while returning to the Italian front, however, as the fate of the war would prevail, Henry would desert the war and return for Catherine.  After finding Catherine, the two lovers would flee the war zone and escape into Switzerland. While in Switzerland, Henry and Catherine lived in peace and harmony till the horrific end of Catherine’s pregnancy and later the tragic death of Catherine. The novel, a farewell to arms has over the years been perceived a story is glorifying the war, however, the story’s farewell is seen in the departure of Catherine, a woman whose very hands held the sanity of the violent world of the First World War. Fredrick farewell to Catherine as she departs to the underworld gives meaning to the title of the novel. Ideally, the outcomes of the war had various consequences on Hemingway. This paper focuses on particular characters from the novels to discuss the effects of the world war on Hemingway.

Disillusionment was one of the primary effects of the world war on Ernest Hemingway. Typically, Hemingway upon volunteering went to war with courage and devotion bearing in his mind, victory upon his dedication. According to the novel, a farewell to arms, the main character Henry, approached the war with evident positivity and was utterly devoted to serving the army. Moreover, he was a volunteer thus he willingly agreed to serve the Italian army.  Henry approached his military duties as an ambulance driver with a lot of courage in the battle. All the expectation of Henry reflected heroism in his mind. Henry’s positivity drove his endeavors in the battlefield to the outcomes of the battle. However, this idealism ion henrys spirit was severely shuttered by the spoils of this war and turned into adverse disillusionment. Hemingway asserts that the dehumanizing effects of the war changed all the respect and admiration he had for the battlefield in utmost disappointment and disenchantment. Essentially, Henry according to the title we could deduce that Henry was biding the warfare a goodbye to find other varied pleasure of life. The world war disillusioned all the beliefs he had about the battlefield as a courageous soldier.

During the war, Hemingway is portrayed as a rather emotionally unhinged and severely maimed physically. The consequences of the war and the chaos, unbelievably by conveniently prompts Fredric Henry alongside his lover to escape the war and flee for safety and peace in the Switzerland. A brief insight on purpose, objectives and the code of ethics of the work of Fredric Henry and even his lover Catherine Barkley, one would realize that the war completely disillusioned the two characters. The abandonment of duty best elaborates the extent of disillusionment by Fredric Henry and fleeing from Italy. Additionally, the decision made by the engineer to abandon the likes of Henry is also a result of the same effect, disillusionment. The effects of the war on the character Henry, reflect on the effect of war of Hemingway, upon his return, a wounded and emotionally derailed soldier.

Logically, had there been no war, the greatest writers in his century Hemingway would not have existed. Similarly, without the violence of the world war one, the love life between Hemmingway and the Red Cross nurse would not have existed. Notably, the love life of the nurse and Hemingway formed the basis of the novel a farewell to arms. This .is because the two met as a consequence of the war and in the line of duty. The story of Catherine and Henry is a true reflection of Hemingway’s love life during the time he met the Red Cross nurse.

At the beginning of the novel, something tragic happens to Catherine Barkley. The war takes the life of Catherine Barkley’s fiancée, even though it is so unfortunate for her, this instance gives the basis to our second effect of the war. Catherine Barkley’s pain and sorrows caused by the war after losing her fiancée leads her to fall in love with Henry. The spoils of the war unite this two thus leads to the theme of love in the novel. Apparently, Hemingway devoted a very large percentage of his life during the aftermath of the war talking about love in his works; this is a vivid indication that the effects of the war in Catherine and Henry’s life are a true reflection of the love life of Hemingway as a result of the world war. The results of the war fuel the need for love in Catherine’s life prompting the lovers to have an intimate relationship. The harshness of the battle forced Catherine into Henry’s arms.

Ideally, without further violence and advancements of the war, Catherine’s fiancée would not have died, and Henry would not have met Catherine. .the love story .between the two from the point they met to the point Catherine tells Henry she loves him, were undoubtedly the effects of the war. Henry, on the other hand, joined the war at a time when love was not even in his mind. His meeting with Miss Barkley was like a game to him. Amazingly, war brings so much emptiness in is life, so much pain, and sorrow to him that he immediately responds to Catherine’s “I love you” positively confessing how much he loves her in return. World War brought the immediate need of love affection and care in Hemingway’s life. Similarly, when Henry is injured, the time he spends with Catherine Barkley allowing them to get fond of one another thus falling deeper in love. The effects of love brought Barkley and Henry together because Henry worked in an ambulance and Barkley worked as a nurse; the more intense the war got, the closer and more exciting the love story got. This is a true depiction of the love life of Hemingway and the Red Cross nurse due to the effects of the world war.

The novel also provides vivid descriptions of the war led to senseless brutality and violence and apocalyptic chaos. A farewell to arms primarily concerns itself with the process through which Hemingway alienates himself from the war and flee from it. According to the soldiers and those who participated o the war, it was rotten. In the novel, it is evident that the unfolding of the war has completely overtaken the conscience of the characters, neither of the characters seems to feel that the extent of brutality and violence is not wrong. Bonello takes the pistol from Henry and unnecessarily shoots the engineer on the head.

Typically the pain and agony Bonello has been subjected to through this war has changed them into extremists. The overly violent behavior displayed by Bonello for instance in killing the sergeant was an effect of the chaotic and the meaningless brutality of the war. The harshness of the war would further prompt Bonello to abandon all his friends to become a prisoner instead of risking his life. Regardless of the fact that Bonello joined the war on dedication to serving the army, similarly to Hemingway, the effects of the war led to Bonello’s exit of the war and opting to become a prisoner instead of death. The war was so brutal that even the ambulance drivers were killed. The senseless brutality of the war led to both, physical and emotional pain in the lives of both Bonello, Henry, and Hemingway leading to their exit from the war. Ideally, when Henry is severely injured, he is taken to Milan to recover. Essentially the brutality of the war led to Henry.

Conclusively, the world war led to an array of changes in the life of Hemingway. Most of the changes that occurred in Hemingway’s life since the time he entered the war to the time Hemingway left the battlefield were mainly impacts of the extremely violent war. The impacts of the war on Hemingway’s life as depicted by the characters in the novel a farewell to arms can be categorized into two groups. The impacts were mainly physical and emotional. The most significant effects of the war on Hemingway are violence, love, and disillusionment.

Is PTSD a Death Sentence? (Explanation of a Psychologist)

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Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental condition that people such as veterans develop after experiencing life-threating events or severe trauma. PTSD in soldiers of Iraq, Vietnam and the World War II, were majorly due to warzone-related stressors like witnessing the death of their colleagues, being ambushed, and severe wounds inflicted by explosives. People with PTSD usually seek help in hospitals and support groups, and these places present some likely scenarios to meet individuals with PTSD. PTSD intervention requires the collective effort of family, friends, and psychologists if notable changes were to be realized.


Community support groups provide people with PTSD a platform where they can share experiences, learn from others and help them connect with those with similar experiences. In addition to that, community-based clinics provide the needed therapy by telemental health or by referral to various community clinicians. As a psychologist, I should be prepared to provide social support, be a good listener, anticipate and help people with PTSD to manage triggers.

Sometimes it can be tough for PTSD patients to open up about their traumatic experiences; in such a scenario, we should not pressure our loved ones into talking. In fact, we should let them take the lead instead of always telling them what to do. Anyway, some given ptsd case of medical treatment and therapy is really successful but another demonstrates the sadness of failed mental recovery. Thus, its intervention should be conducted with due diligence.

Often people with severe PTSD tend to be suicidal especially when confronted with situations that they believe to be inescapable, intolerable, and interminable. For instance, the pain of losing a loved one is inevitable and can be so severe and prolonged to the extent of causing a neurobiological and psychological breakdown. More importantly, the pain can be unbearable that the client sees suicide as the only relief.

Further, there are numerous myths about suicide some of which I was not aware until the crisis intervention forum. For example, I did not know that discussing suicide with depressed people might give them the idea of committing suicide. I was not also aware that people who often threaten suicide do not do it and that the tendency to commit suicide can be inherited. These myths can stand in the way of assisting suicidal clients, and it is by disregarding them that the psychologist can identify those at risk and thus providing the necessary assistance. As can be seen, PTSD is a very sensitive issue.


What Do You Know About Macbeth?

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Macbeth is one of the most interesting plays.

The part of the three witches all through Macbeth is one of directing, not straightforward inner conflict. The witches do not just foresee the future; they take part in it. They can control the activities of Macbeth and other characters by debasing their forecasts. Thusly, all Macbeth’s malicious and wrongdoings can be due to his nearest partners in the play, the witches. By displaying expectations that fill Macbeth with false certainty, the witches shape the decisions Macbeth makes.

Macbeth’s irrationality to defend himself and kill anyone that stood in his way, moved him a step further towards his final fate, when he meets the Weird Sisters once again and is persuaded by their words. He is told to “beware Macduff! Beware the Thane of Fife!”. Upon knowing that Macduff escaped to England, he is angry for not acting quickly enough and announces that “The castle of Macduff I will surprise, seize Fife, give to th’ edge o’ th’ sword his wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line”. The evil act of killing an innocent family does nothing to make Macbeth safer, rather it gives Macduff even more reason to search him out and kill him.

In spite of the fact that Macbeth’s enticement began with the expressions of the Weird Sisters; the scourge of his destruction was from his internal battle, and also greed and aspiration. Macbeth decided to follow the path of letting the witches, as well as his wife, persuade him into killing King Duncan which led him to the killing of many other innocent people and finally to his own demise. There is a limit to what the witches can do; they may have told Macbeth he was going to become king, but they did not tell him how. As they say in Act 1, “Though his bark cannot be lost, yet it shall be tempest-tossed”. The witches can predict his future; however they do not have complete control over the outcome of his destiny. Macbeth made decisions freely and fixed his actions that brought turmoil and malicious deeds to himself and everyone around him.

Consequently, in Macbeth, it is not clear whether fate or freewill is what leads Macbeth to do the things he does all through the play. No doubt Macbeth is simply following his fate in the first place, however all through the disaster; Macbeth follows up on freewill on the grounds that he is persuaded he can change the fate the three witches prophesized for him at his own particular will. Macbeth following up on his own freewill is the thing that at last driven him to his death.

The bad decisions which necessarily result in to Macbeth’s death include the assassination of King Duncan, his ignorance to the prophecies of the three Weird Sisters, and the continuous murdering of innocent people. Macbeth had the ability to select his fate immediately he made the decision to stay and pay attention to the witches. Instead of distancing himself from the Weird Sisters, Macbeth decides that their words are important and says, “Stay, you imperfect speakers. Tell me more”. One may suggest that Macbeth’s fate may be set in stone, but it was Macbeth’s chosen path that slowly led him to his final fate – his death.


Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and firefighters

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Did you know that not only soldiers but firefighters very usually have PTSD?

Mental health illness can only be cured through positive mindset, positive thinking, and one’s inner motivation and courage. In addition, the support from the dear ones, and proper medications from the psychologist will heal the inner traumas of depression.  And it seems that such things do not work out for the firefighters who are constantly facing with the issues of mental illness.

There is a need of proper Health Advocacy Program that will focus upon the needs and requirements of these people; they are constantly exposed to working in stress situations. Hence, they get affected with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  Only providing medicines and recommending certain physical exercises will not solve the issue. There is a need to spread awareness through proper marketing campaign, which we shall discuss in this report.

Public Health Issue 

As per one of the latest research reports provided by the UN in 2012, it was found that the global expenditure for resolving fire emergencies has crossed the mark of $17 billion in annual expenditure. This report was presented in the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) Year Book of 2013.

It seems that these governments are focusing only upon fire-fighting strategies. Despite of this spending, the government is not providing proper support to the firefighters working in different challenging situations.

Also, due to recession firefighters are facing with several financial and healthcare issues. The government did not pay proper attention to their position; instead, it reduced the general spending and continued to spend more and more on other expenses. The US government has even failed to justify the policy objectives when it comes to give aid and assistance to the firefighters.

The firefighters need to be ready to face any situation as per instructions of the government. The firefighters are required to fight any threat of that nation in a given world. The government is not at all serious regarding the spending of huge amounts after these operations. This of course, is not a case of single firefighter belonging to US, is a case of several firefighters, who have been facing with the issues of mental illness.

As per one of the previous research studies, it is found that firefighters just withdraw them from the on-going life situations. The firefighters behave in such a way as if, they are not at all belonging to their respective families, but they are separate entities. They do not enjoy their family lives, and also in some way try to disturb the peace of their respective family. Hence, it becomes important to devise a policy with a complete set of objectives that will help these people to overcome their respective mental health issues.

Description of issue and proposed policy solution

Mental health issues are believed to be a group of diagnoses in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV TR) classification system. The key underlying feature of this disorder in any given firefighter seems to be the disturbance in their mood. As per ICD 10, this classification is known as Mood Disorder. It was initially known as affective disorder, but it was then changed to mood disorder, since the condition of an individual refers to the longitudinal emotional state.

The initial term was framed by English psychiatrist Henry Maudsley, where he referred to the state of mind, state of condition, and state of behavior of the given African American individuals to the external expression.

There have been several sub-types of this mood disorder observed amongst the firefighters. The commonly found disorders included unipolar depression, major depression, and several other forms of mood disorder, wherein the given person was experiencing several depressive episodes. The depressive or the mood disorder turns into Major Depression Disorder when, the diagnosis determine successive and recurrent episodes of the depression in the given individual. Some of the firefighters were also found to be suffering from unipolar depression, as their mood was remaining at the bottom pole.

The major symptoms that are leading to such disorders include depression, stress disorder (PTSD), adjustment disorder, and alcohol abuse and dependence. The risk of committing suicide is greatly elevated for these active-duty firefighters since the mental health disorder takes time to get cured.

The firefighters cannot constantly digest the war trauma and the mental stress from the physical and mental health perspective. They will get tired and hence, want to end their lives. One of the recent reports released by the US government in 2013 mentioned that the suicide rates for the firefighters that are deployed is increasing.