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BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?

Emma B 11 Aug 10 - 09:49 AM
bobad 11 Aug 10 - 09:37 AM
artbrooks 11 Aug 10 - 08:54 AM
Emma B 11 Aug 10 - 08:45 AM
Arthur_itus 11 Aug 10 - 08:34 AM
Greg F. 11 Aug 10 - 08:29 AM
theleveller 11 Aug 10 - 08:11 AM
bobad 11 Aug 10 - 08:03 AM
Richard Bridge 11 Aug 10 - 07:52 AM
theleveller 11 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM
Richard Bridge 11 Aug 10 - 06:49 AM
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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Emma B
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 09:49 AM

The worst tragedy IMO about this tragic natural disaster is the attempts to view humanitarian aid as a political tool

As art posted the spokesman for Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, the main Taliban militant umbrella group in Pakistan primarily in conflict with the central government, is reported to have said

"We condemn American and other foreign aid and believe that it will lead to subjugation.
Our jihad against America will continue," "The government should not accept American aid and if it happens, we can give $20 million to them as aid for the flood victims,
"We will ourselves distribute relief under leadership of our chief Hakimullah Mehsud among the people, if the government assures us that none of our members will be arrested."
-Azam Tariq a spokesman for the group, reported by the AFP news agency.

Meanwhile American concerns about other extremist groups providing aid to needy Pakistanis were addressed by Daniel Feldman, a senior US State Department official working on Afghanistan and Pakistan as "quite overblown".

However referring to US efforts to win public support in a country where anti-American feeling runs high, Mark Ward, acting director of the US Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, said the US government tries to "brand as much as possible" of its aid.
For example, US helicopters and other military assets delivering aid "show the flag," while plastic sheeting sent by the US Agency for International Development is stamped with "from the American people," he added

Yesterday the Guardian reported

"Oxfam said the UN's financial tracking system showed that as of August 9, governments had committed less than $45m, with an additional $91m pledged – considerably less money than was collected for previous disaster relief efforts over a similar period. India, Pakistan's much larger and wealthier neighbour, has not offered any aid or assistance at all.

It was confirmed today that India, Pakistan's historical foe and close neighbour, has offered no help so far and apparently has no plans to do so. A spokeswoman for the Indian High Commission in London said: "No decision has been taken so far on providing aid or assistance."


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: bobad
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 09:37 AM

"What an appallingly leading and implicitly anti - Islam question to ask!"

How you can construe my question as being anti-Muslim is beyond me, but I am not too surprised seeing as how the accusation is made by someone who still believes that the Gaza flotilla was about humanitarian aid.


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: artbrooks
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:54 AM

This from CNN.com:

U.S. emergency relief teams continued to arrive in Peshawar to help, the U.S. State Department said. The U.S. Agency for International Development has committed $55 million in aid to international organizations and nongovernmental organizations, it said. The United States has provided more than 435,000 meals. This assistance is in addition to U.S. military efforts, which include rescue airlifts, food supplies and other deliveries provided by the Pentagon.

Of the total, $20 million will be used to expand humanitarian operations farther south as the flood zone expands, Mark Ward, acting director of the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, told reporters Tuesday.

Islamic militants, however, called on the Pakistani government to reject any aid provided by the United States for flood relief. "For the sake of God, don't accept donations from the U.S. because they are our enemies," said Azem Tariq, spokesman for Pakistan Taliban. "Whatever amount the U.S. will give as donation, we will give the government of Pakistan more."


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Emma B
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:45 AM

'Will the countries which mobilized the flotillas of humanitarian aid for their Muslim brothers in Gaza do the same for the beleaguered people of Pakistan who have been left homeless, hungry and battling disease due to the flooding caused by the monsoon rains?'

Of course they will - as they also did for the estimated 2,000 to 3,000 Christians in Gaza also suffering under the blockade
What an appallingly leading and implicitly anti - Islam question to ask!

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

"35 tons of humanitarian aid, consisting of food packages, blankets, sleeping bags and beds, was sent to Pakistan by a Turkish Airlines cargo plane last Friday.

A second cargo plane is expected from Turkey to Pakistan on Wednesday evening."
Turkish press release

Ireland, the point of departure of the MV Rachel Corrie although in economic crisis, reports

"The Government today announced €550,000 in additional humanitarian aid for Pakistan. This is on top of €200,000 in funding which was released immediately after the flooding, bringing to €750,000 the total which the Government is providing to alleviate the crisis.

The aid is being allocated to Concern, Trócaire and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs."
9 August, 2010

Also represented on the Rachel Corrie...

"Kuala Lumpur, Aug 5: The Malaysian government has pledged to contribute US$1 million (RM3.17 million) to the Pakistan government as humanitarian aid in the wake of the flood disaster that has hit several parts of Pakistan since July 22.

The Foreign Ministry of Malaysia said that the aid was a manifestation of the Malaysian government and the people of Malaysia's concern and sympathies to the government and people of Pakistan over the loss of lives and destruction of infrastructure and property as a result of the disaster."


Channel 4 News foreign affairs correspondent Jonathan Miller describes a week ago the siutuation in the badly hit nillages in Upper Swat and Kashmir and the very real difficulties of getting aid through
The forgotten victims of Nowshera


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Arthur_itus
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:34 AM

Where will the money truly go and who can you trust to ensure that it is implemeneted properly and effectively?

Aren't Westerners at grave risk going into that area?

very difficult situation and it is very very sad.

I am surprised that the Pakistan cricket team have not gone back home. Surely some of those players must be affected by it all and must be worried sick.


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Greg F.
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:29 AM

This would be a good opportunity for western countries to fight the Taliban influence by giving aid.

Don't hold your breath- the U.S. is too busy "winning hearts & minds" in Afghanistan.


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: theleveller
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:11 AM

It would seem that Islamic charities are leading the aid efforts but the Taliban is urging the rejection of foreign aid.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE66T3RS20100811

This would be a good opportunity for western countries to fight the Taliban influence by giving aid.


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: bobad
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 08:03 AM

I put this question to Tarek Fatah a Canadian of Pakistani origin he is an activist, writer, broadcaster and founder of the Canadian Muslim Congress.

    Will the countries which mobilized the flotillas of humanitarian aid for their Muslim brothers in Gaza do the same for the beleaguered people of Pakistan who have been left homeless, hungry and battling disease due to the flooding caused by the monsoon rains?

This is his reply:

    "I doubt it very much; we are too dark-skinned to deserve a flotilla. So, in exchange, Our 'brothers' have sent us tonnes of 'prayers' and 'chants' along with the consignment of AK-47s, an arsenal of IDU components and clerics to pray for the dead.".


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 07:52 AM

My suspicion was that in so many western eyes the whole of Pakistan has been tarred as terrorist.


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Subject: RE: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: theleveller
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 07:02 AM

I suspect that it might be 'compassion fatigue' especially when people are worried about the economic situation at home.


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Subject: BS: So little empathy for Pakistan?
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 11 Aug 10 - 06:49 AM

I have heard (but cannot cite) several reports that charitable donations have been slow to come for the 14 million who have seen their homes and livelihoods destroyed and members of their families killed by the extraordinary floods in Pakistan.

I wonder why that might be.


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