ME and Ophelia

Thursday, September 30, 2004

China send riot police for a peacekeeping mission in Haiti

Photo here below shows a boy kissing his father, a member of Chinese peacekeeping police, at the International Airport in Beijing, September 17, 2004.

The advance troops of riot police composed of 30 members including four policewomen left for Haiti on Friday, September 17.

At the request of the United Nations, China will send 125 police officers to form a contingent of riot police for a peacekeeping mission in Haiti.


One can't help wondering why the UN Security Council did not ask China to send riot police for peacekeeping mission in Darfur.

China's oil companies are adjacent to Darfur. China gets a lot out of Sudan. What does China do for the Sudanese, in return for exploitation of their land and natural resources?
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"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

Margaret Mead
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"If we'd been born where they were born and taught what they were taught, we would believe what they believe"

A sign inside a church in Northern Ireland, explaining the origin of intolerance and hate.
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Note new posts on Japan and China - and the interview with Japanese Rank Xerox boss - in my Asia Oil Watch file: click into sidebar here on right of your screen.

# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 9/30/2004 0 comments  
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The UN and Darfur

The UN and politicians are not really listening. Even when they do, the whole business of politics just boils down to empire building, for the benefit of those inside the empire. Public servants seem to forget they work for us, not vice versa.

The below copied letter, authored by Shashi Tharoor, under secretary general for (of all things) communications and public information, goes to show how bureaucrats think, talk and act. The letter states: "the United Nations, at its best and its worst, is a mirror of the world". Utter tosh. The UN Security Council is, in a nutshell, corrupt.

The UN does not even have the moral fibre to name and shame countries that are not paying for aid. Instead they tip toe around the subject by sneaking it in emotive press releases capitalising on humanitarian crises. What are they afraid of?

Within the past five months Kofi Annan admitted the UN were too slow in responding to the needs of Darfur. Now the UN says it's donors fault that UN was unable respond properly in time to what they termed as the world's worst humanitarian crisis in Darfur. Rubbish. The war in Darfur started 19 months ago. The UN only started providing aid in earnest five months ago, 14 months into the war, just as the world's media started shining its light on Darfur.

If the UN is not a political body, why do they not name and shame the countries that are not paying contributions? Why tip toe around, sneaking in cowardly little digs at donors in press releases. Why not shout from the rooftops? The UN needs to be shaken up, and not by the UN either. Kofi Annan needs to retire. And so too does the person in charge of the UN World Food Programme and the UN refugee programme. If they don't retire, they ought to be fired. A new broom needs to be brought in to do a big sweep.

My knowledge of how politics and power works is zero. I really don't care to look into how it works, I just feel it does not work. The people who are in charge of running this world are so far out of touch with what ordinary people really want.

We see how our world is being ruined and the priorities messed up and never sorted. Surely, this must be what is causing the surge in extremism and fundamentalism. When you can't get politicians to help stop the world from being ruined, what hope is there, where do you go and what do you do?

Putting it simplistically, the world is run by a handful of men in multi-nationals, politics and media. They take the world as their stage and treat us like serfs of the land, their audience. We have to beg and grovel until we are blue in the face, pleading and tugging at their coat tails: to please help stop millions of people from being massacred and suffering the most miserable existence on earth.

Psycho dictators like Saddam Hussein and others around the world spend their careers stealing peoples money to pay for palaces and monuments for their name to live on. They're all meglomaniacs. Even Margaret Thatcher bought the Channel Tunnel for her name to be carved in stone. Interesting to note how US President George W Bush gave the OK for the native North American Indians to have their new museum at the foot of Capitol Hill. I wonder what the Klu Klux Klan are up to these days and how good race relations are across America.

It's not that long ago when the singer Sammy Davis Jnr starred at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas but was forced to enter by the back door. Because he was black, he was not allowed to enter the front of the building where the marquee billed him as star of the show with his name in lights. Australia talks about helping those in Darfur while it marginalises the native aborignes. Who knows how many years or centuries it will take for a non-white Prime Minister to take office at 10 Downing Street.

A few weeks ago, I started work on a post that questions what is behind the horror in Sudan. Yesterday, I completed it well enough for posting. It is quite long, and is just a collection of notes to myself, a brain dump really, to help myself work out the reason for the unease I feel over the news that is coming out of Sudan. See Sudan Watch post: What’s behind the horror in Sudan?

Here is the letter by Shashi Tharoor, New York, UN under secretary general for communications and public information, that found online at IHT. Looks like it was published September 30, 2004, in a letters page, presumably in answer to an opinion piece or letter by David Brooks. Compare its tone, pitch and message to that of Gandhi's (see next post here below).

The UN and Darfur

"David Brooks ("Another triumph for the UN," Views, Sept. 27) spins an elegant web of sarcasm about the United Nations' failure to act as he would wish in Darfur. But the United Nations, at its best and its worst, is a mirror of the world, reflecting its agreements and disagreements.

Where the world - as represented in the Security Council - agrees, the United Nations does intervene decisively, as it is currently doing in 18 hot spots, from Congo to Haiti and from Liberia to East Timor.

Where there are disagreements, the United Nations provides the mechanism for discussion to resolve them, and compromises have to be found. But that doesn't mean the organization is sitting around wringing its hands; our humanitarian workers are on the ground, bringing food, shelter and nourishment to the displaced in Darfur and Chad, as are our political representatives, putting pressure on the authorities to end the atrocities and working to promote the efforts of the African Union's monitors in the area.

Brooks's concern for the victims in Darfur would be better used to demand that the world's outrage be matched with real contributions to the United Nations' continuing lifesaving efforts, which are severely underfinanced."