November 25, 2005

SUDAN: Agencies prepare for measles campaign in the south

Filed under: United Nations - IRIN — United Nations - OCHA IRIN @ 5:59 pm
Relief agencies are preparing for a comprehensive measles campaign across southern Sudan - the largest public health campaign in the region ever - to reduce the deadly impact of the disease among young children, officials said.

PAKISTAN: ‘Adopt a village’ programme in quake zone

Filed under: United Nations - IRIN — United Nations - OCHA IRIN @ 5:59 pm
A villager in a metal basket dangles above the Jhelum River as two boys tug at pulley ropes, edging him towards the riverbank. The basket wobbles precariously above the rocks and water. Since the devastating regional quake of 8 October that has killed at least 80,000 people, this is the only way people from the village of Purrak can reach the main road that leads to Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistani-administered Kashmir.

ERITREA: Government criticises Security Council resolution

Filed under: United Nations - IRIN — United Nations - OCHA IRIN @ 5:59 pm
The Eritrean government has sharply criticised the latest UN Security Council resolution on the border dispute between Eritrea and Ethiopia, describing it as "deplorable" and "lopsided".

HEALTH-CHINA: Corruption May Stymie Fowl Inoculation Drive

Filed under: IPS Inter Press Service — IPS Inter Press Service @ 5:59 pm
BEIJING, Nov 25 (IPS) - As China prepares to undertake a massive drive to inoculate every chicken and duck in the country against avian flu, experts are cautioning that political will and ample budgets are insufficient to accomplish this Herculean task.

HEALTH-CHINA: Corruption May Stymie Fowl Inoculation Drive

Filed under: IPS Inter Press Service — IPS Inter Press Service @ 3:59 pm
BEIJING, Nov 25 (IPS) - As China prepares to undertake a massive drive to inoculate every chicken and duck in the country against avian flu, experts are cautioning that political will and ample budgets are insufficient to accomplish this Herculean task.

Russell Shaw: Teach Your Children Well- Teach Peace

Filed under: Huffington Post — Russell Shaw @ 2:50 pm

Somewhere, maybe in your town, there was a house with an empty seat at the Thanksgiving dinner table.

You probably don't know the people who live in this house, but you may have seen this house.

It's the house with several large American flags, "W" and Bush/Cheney" bumper stickers on the window of the SUV parked out front. Maybe a "Freedom Is Not Free" on the rear window. Perhaps even a fish on the rear bumper as well.

Who lives in this house?

This is a family who from their boy's early childhood, told him to stand up and fight. To not back down.

This is a family who did not say "no" when their son was four, and he asked for a toy gun for Christmas.

This is a family who taught their son that there is "right," and there is "wrong," and there is "good," and there is "evil," and shades of gray are for the weak-minded.

This is a family that believed, and taught their son, not to question authority and to always follow orders.

This is a family that has always believed, and taught their son, "my country, right or wrong."

This is a family where the father holds Jane Fonda and Bill Clinton, in only slightly less contempt than Satan, and who listens to Hannity, Limbaugh, Savage, O'Reilly.

This is a family who beamed with pride when their son joined ROTC.

This is a family with a son who, after 9/11, saw evil in the burning towers and wanted to do his part to kick back at that evil 1,000 times harder than they hit us.

This is a family who believed that Saddam was behind it all.

This is a family who beamed with pride when their son became a soldier.

This is a family who beamed when their son beamed at them over an Internet video call from Tikrit.

This is a family with a son who wandered too close to a roadside bomb.

This is a family who, two days later, got a knock on their door from two impeccably dressed, sad-eyed men in uniform.

This is a family who since that knock, has cried.

This is a family who as they said Grace yesterday, looked at that empty chair at the head of the dinner table, and then looked upward where they believe that communication could be established with he who would have been sitting there if only.

If only the Lord hadn't called him home.

But maybe this was not the Lord's doing.

If only he would have been taught another way.

But is too late for that.

We must, instead, ask, what can this family teach us?

There will be other wars. And other boys who want to play with guns, and who will have the urge to fight when they feel wrong.

But in other houses, there are sons who will learn not to play with guns, who will learn to think rather than to react, who will be taught that sometimes the difference between good and evil is not as stark as a President or a preacher might say, or that their country is always right.

Sons (and daughters) in these houses will learn that turning the other cheek is not a sign of weakness, but of strength.

For it is in these houses, that peace will be taught.

BURUNDI: Rwandans to be moved closer to own border

Filed under: United Nations - IRIN — United Nations - OCHA IRIN @ 1:59 pm
Some 3,500 Rwandans in northern Burundi who the government has labelled "illegal immigrants" will soon be moved to a temporary camp 30 km from the Rwandan border, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said on Thursday.

SOUTH ASIA: Bhutanese Refugees Forgotten in Nepal’s Turmoil

Filed under: IPS Inter Press Service — IPS Inter Press Service @ 1:59 pm
KATHMANDU, Nov 25 (IPS) - King Gyanendra's military-backed ‘royal coup', on Feb.1, has proven a major setback for the Lhotsampas (Bhutanese nationals of Nepali origin) fleeing the autocratic regime of the world's other Himalayan kingdom.

SOUTH ASIA: Bhutanese Refugees Forgotten in Nepal’s Turmoil

Filed under: IPS Inter Press Service — IPS Inter Press Service @ 1:59 pm
KATHMANDU , Nov 25 (IPS) - King Gyanendra’s military-backed ‘royal coup’, on Feb. 1, has proven a major setback for the Lhotsampas (Bhutanese nationals of Nepali origin) fleeing the autocratic regime of the world’s other Himalayan kingdom.

China Defends Handling Of Toxic Benzene Spill, Blames Oil Company…

Filed under: Huffington Post — The Huffington Post @ 1:22 pm

HARBIN, China - China's government defended its handling of a chemical plant explosion that sent a 50-mile-long toxic slick of river water coursing through a major city Thursday and blamed the disaster on a subsidiary of a state-owned oil company.

The benzene slick on the Songhua River in northeast China flowed into Harbin days after the city of 3.8 million people shut down its water system, setting off panicked buying that cleared supermarket shelves of bottled water, milk and soft drinks. The government said it would take about 40 hours for the chemical to pass the city.

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