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THE CORONAVIRUS WILL SURRENDER FIRSTFor a moment I forget that I have to see a military doctor. Someone, who served in the border military units, was attacked by saboteurs and rescued soldiers wounded by a sniper’s bullet from the clutches of death. I remember how foreign doctors fighting against the coronavirus were crying in front of the camera, and I make myself ready for the upcoming conversation. But Ashot Papikyan, the head of the military department of the Nork Infectious Diseases Hospital, is smiling brightly. He is a young man with masculine features; there is a strong and self-confident look in his eyes.

“Do you know who you look like?” I said.

“Who?” He asks in surprise.

“A kickboxing athlete”.

The doctor laughs out loud.

“I know that muscle strength is not so important in the fight against the monarchy, but a great and muscular doctor always inspires confidence,” I try to explain my enthusiasm.

“Kickboxing?” The doctor raised his eyebrows. “That’s what it is. Covid-19 does not follow any rules. And when you don’t know when the day begins and ends, when, at best, you sleep for a few hours and are deprived of basic comfort, your soul becomes as strong as your physical strength. … You need to be able to stand on your own two feet to help the patient. Now the key is to stay on your feet.

“How are you, doctor?” I ask in a low voice, putting my whole gratitude in the word doctor. I express the word doctor with the same excitement as I called the heroes who defended our land during the April war.

“I’m fine,” he says, then adds unexpectedly. “Don’t be afraid, Covid-19 will lose sooner than we get tired.” He will be the first to lay down the arms.”

“Is this a war?”

“It is s a war,” the doctor replied calmly. “Covid-19 is a fierce enemy, evil and unpredictable.” The bad thing is that we don’t know anything about it. He came from the unknown, the doctors of the world are trying to get information about that enemy to make him manageable.

“Can I confess something? I dreamed of becoming a surgeon. A prolonged, thorough struggle is not in my nature. I love conflict, a battle where I will either win or lose … The surgeon’s job is a series of battles. That’s exactly what I needed …

I was appointed head of the military department at Nork Infectious Diseases Hospital when Covid-19 was already raging China. I was disciplining the department, forcing my soldiers to shave every day, stand up straight, because a sick soldier doesn’t stop being a soldier. … I thought the fight against Covid-19 would be like a battle, we would hit it hard several times and it would retreat. But that did not happen. This is a house war with the right tactics and many ‘battles’”.




Category: #16 (1336) 22.04.2020 - 28.04.2020, Army and Society, Spotlight