This is what the new Covid world will be like ... and it’s not ...

World

This is what the new Covid world will be like ... and it’s not too bad

Israel, the globe’s guinea pig for vaccinations, isn’t worried about its Delta outbreak. On the contrary, in fact

Zev Chafets

Israel has been the world’s laboratory during much of the Covid era. It was the first country to achieve mass inoculations, first to add a booster to the two-shot regimen of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine and first to broaden inoculation to children who are 12 and over. By the start of its summer, it appeared to be on the way to becoming the first country to achieve herd immunity.

And yet Israel now has the world’s highest rolling weekly average of new Covid cases. That’s been something of a shock and begs the question of whether the country’s pandemic plan has worked. While the news may look grim, and the government has been scrambling to respond, the reality is more prosaic: Israel hasn’t defeated the virus, but it has probably redefined what success against the virus looks like. It’s a messy reality, but not an intolerable one.

The new government of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has a sanguine attitude towards recent developments. On Saturday, health minister Nitzan Horowitz assured the country that everything was under control. “Stop with the panic,” he enjoined the public. “I said there won’t be a lockdown and there isn’t one.” He repeated his promise not to close schools or shops...

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