Thursday, July 27, 2006

'Crimes' of Lebanon

Some time ago whilst I was living in Thailand the local English daily newspaper and other local media bemoaned the fact that passengers on a bus did nothing while a group of young men in the back of the bus, in the middle of the afternoon, committed the rape of a young schoolgirl. Obviously the rape was a crime however so was the action, or rather the inaction of the other passengers. Their stance… “its none of my business”. The ‘non-involved’ passengers were aware of what was going on and committed the crime of “doing nothing and remaining selfishly detached” and in my view should have been charged with ‘criminal neglect’ of a young person in need of help.

Much of the Lebanese public and the Lebanese Government are suffering as a result of this same criminal neglect. Hizbollah is a terrorist organisation and is listed as such by many countries. The Lebanese Government and the rest of the world admits that the ‘National Government’ does not hold authority in southern Lebanon, Hizbollah does. The government and therefore the people it governs are to a great measure responsible for the actions of Hizbollah, as they have chosen not to pressure the group to dissolve or at least give up its arms. The southern Shiite population, many of whom actively support the fighters on constant news reports, cannot now cry foul when the Israelis seek to defend themselves.

As for the rest of the world and particularly those that comment on news reports in a somewhat biased and very anti Israel manner, what are they thinking? Why the outrage? The simple fact is that they (we all) are driven by a self-centred fear that the war may escalate and in some way touch our comfortable lives. What really pisses me off is that these few thousand grubby people (Hizbollah) can command so much of the world’s attention and resources. There are for more outrageous things happening in the world we should focus on and we should just let Israel get on and do the necessary. As an example, what is happening to the hundreds of thousands of refuges suffering in Darfur at the minute? Why aren’t the world and its news organisations focussing on the Congo where according to and I quote a July 2006 report, “the conflict and violence that has consumed the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for nearly a decade has killed more people every six months than were killed by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Estimates place the total deaths at four million, although some experts say the figure is far higher. In a report released today in London, UNICEF said that as victims, children have defined this often forgotten, but world’s deadliest, humanitarian crisis in the heart of Africa. The report goes on…”As a direct or indirect result of conflict, 1,200 people die every day in DRC and more than half of those are children.”

Shame on us all for our selfish crime of neglect of those most in need and lets hope the Israelis are at least able to decimate one small group of nasty fanatics.

Oh and by the way, on Kofi Annan and his outrage and his terse approach to the realities of the danger of being an ineffective unarmed UN soldier in the middle of a battle zone, he seems to be overseeing an ineffective toothless force yet again. Remember and again I quote (Wikipedia)… “In his book Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda, ex-General Roméo Dallaire who was force commander of the UNAMIR claims that Annan has been overly passive in his response to the 1994 Tutsi genocide in Rwanda. Gen. Dallaire explicitly stated that the then Undersecretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations held back UN troops from intervening to settle the conflict and from providing more logistic and material support. Annan would have, as an instance, abstained from giving any kind of answer to his repeated faxes asking him to gain access to a weapons depository, something that could have helped to the defense of the Tutsis.” How many (non oil rich) Africans died?

I believe this man should be ejected from the UN.


No comments: