Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Burma - 18 days on

18 days on.
78, 000 dead.
56,000 missing.
2.4 million severely affected.
Only 25% of people needing aid being reached.

Naked facts about a horrific natural disaster made worse by human inaction, human pride, human ignorance and human failings.

18 days on and people still die while idiots talk.

I, like others have tried to comprehend or find some understanding in this. Why do the Burmese military Junta refuse to openly accept all the aid that can get into their country. They must know that people are dying because of their decisions.

Humanitarian Emergencies are not about politics, or pride or national / regional boundaries they are about saving lives, helping people and restoring basic services.

Are the Burmese leaders too proud too accept help. Would it cause them so much dishonour to recognise that they need outside assistance? Can that really be what prevents them from acting.

Leadership is often about making the hard decisions, about not being afraid to focus on the end game. Sometimes its about the end justifying the means, its can be about breaking rules. For the Burmese military leadership should be about recognising we need all the help we can get. Call in all the favours and all the debts, accept every bit of charity because our people need help now.

If there is a fall out from such Western involvement it can be dealt with later. There is no honour or pride in 78,000 dead.

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