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March 2, 2011

Myanmar Still Dragging It`s Feet With Aide

It seems like this is the story that just won’t go away. The cyclone that hit Myanmar struck over a week ago now and still the government there is not letting aide in fast enough. Now it appears that they are admitting some aide into the country but they are making sure that names of different military and government personnel is on it. They are putting names on aide that has come form other countries in an attempt to make the citizens of Myanmar believe that they are the ones handing out supplies and food.

This is a terrible situation where a government is pretty much going to commit genocide because they don’t like outsiders. I don’t understand how behaving in this manner is going to improve the conditions of the country. If the government continues to act this way the death toll will keep growing.

As time passes more and more people are in danger of dying. Dead bodies are all around and fresh food and water are scarce. If Myanmar had the power to mend this tragedy by itself surely it would have done so. For reasons that are unclear Myanmar was not “ready” to receive aide from the United States until Monday. The aide is also being given to the military to distribute so who knows if it is really getting to the people or not. Although the government of Myanmar is saying that around 22,000 people died from the cyclone, the UN is saying that that number could be between 63,000 and 100,000. It seems like if the toll is really 22,000 opposed to the other numbers, Myanmar would not be so hesitant to let outsiders in to see exactly what is going on.

There was talk at one time of dropping aide from airplanes without the permission of the government. That plan was vetoed for a number of reasons, one of those being that no country wants to break the laws of another countries. That could lead to trouble. On the other hand, people are dying and some of the people that have perished recently may have been saved by a food drop. Of course the other problem with dropping food is that you don’t know exactly where it is going to fall. Food could be dropped in areas where there are no survivors and that would be a waste.

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans I remember the chaos and helplessness. When a disaster of such magnitude strikes immediate assistance of any kind should be taken. The people that survived the cyclone and are in hospitals suffering from life threatening injuries deserve better. I am always amazed at the selfishness of some governments and the complete lack of concern for the people they govern. At this point, Myanmar should be taking aide form everyone, including sworn enemies, to save as many people as they can. The only thing worse than losing loved ones to the cyclone is watching them linger and die in the aftermath. Someone must do something to stop this tragedy.

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