It’s not just a job. It’s an infection risk.

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The HIV infection rate among soldiers in South Africa’s National Defence Force may be as high as 60 to 70 percent, the Johannesburg MAIL & GUARDIAN reports. In some areas, the picture is even more bleak. One unit in KwaZulu-Natal underwent HIV-testing as part of a thorough physical before participating in a malaria drug study. When thirty out of the thirty-three member unit proved HIV-positive — an infection rate of 90 percent — the drug study had to be abandoned.

And South Africa doesn’t even win this grim race. The overall infection rates in the militaries of Malawi and Zimbabwe, at 75 and 80 percent, are worse still.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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