Child Sex Abuse by UN Peacekeeping Missions

It is a paradoxical that a human worker allows himself to fall in inhuman act, especially child rape . Since sexual abuse of victims such as young girls and boys has reached a big magnitude, aid workers should be selected on the basis of their conduct, not just competence. They should take oath, for example, not to transgress human dignity. Such people should not be allowed to trade in human dignity.

Offering “help” to victims just to satisfy dirty desires is another form of human slavery or at least an encouragement to prostitution. Girls, In particular, will in the long term find it natural to offer their bodies for a loaf of bread or for a ride on a car. So these so called humanitarian workers are just perpetuating the suffering they’re supposed to alleviate, which will be aggravated by the psychological scars they can inflict on innocent girls unaware of the aftermath of their indulgence in return of a dismal gift.

A catastrophe can’t be alleviated by another one. The UN should be swift in taking actions and not to turn a blind eye on this simply such abuses are taking place in third world countries where such abuses are supposedly commonly practised by the locals and visitors. If such aid workers – some of whom are representing their countries – can’t be tried at home for their inhuman excesses they should be tried in an international court as war criminal or for crimes against humanity.

Jordan’s King Warns of Civil Wars

Jordan‘s King Abdullah has warned that three civil wars could break out in the Middle East unless the international community takes urgent action.

Lebanon, Palestinian Territories and Iraq have reached the climax of violence recently. All have been the scenes of open political differences among key leaders when blood is split among those supposed to have national affinities. They have got all the ingredients to fall in a civil war as they have reached the climax of violence recently. In each of these prominent politicians have sharp differences about government style and foreign alliances.

In Iraq there is sectarian violence between Shia and Sunni. In Palestinian territories there are violent clashes between mainly Fatah and Hamas armed groups, putting in jeopardy peaceful living among Palestinians themselves. Lebanon has become notorious for political killing; the latest is the death of industry minister Pierre Gemayel.

But as the USA is still holding the strings of politics in the region, it has the power to influence the events. It has the power to influence the events by opening channels of shuttle diplomacy with countries like Syria and Iran, one the most influential players in the region. The political time-bomb is around the corner in all three areas. Calm diplomacy is needed to diffuse it the soonest before nightmare becomes a reality.

Can Violence End in Iraq?

A wave of car bombs and mortars in Baghdad’s Sadr City district has left at least 144 people dead and more than 200 injured, Iraq police have said.

Such a rate of death occurring daily is a loud call for internal, regional and international cooperation to restore peace in Iraq. Violent attacks have become a routine in a worrying way even for people living far from Iraq because of the human cost. It’s high time key players in the region joined together to put an end to such atrocity out of human consideration.

Linking the human situation in Iraq to political differences will simply amplify the daily risks. It’s better for all the politicians to see themselves as a part of UN Red Cross to have the feel of what must humanely be done regardless of political calculations.

The end of violence in Iraq is in the hands of the Iraqis themselves. The daily atrocities are committed mainly by Iraqis against Iraqis, leaving families after families in a state of mourning . Iraq should be a country where life is celebrated. It shouldn’t be a country where killed people are daily counted, with the subsequent silly figures and graphs calculating the ratio of deaths and comparing them to past periods.

Regional cooperation to end the violence in this country can succeed by disarming the militias and creating a national army that can secure peace in Iraq with or without foreign forces. These will sooner or later leave Iraq. Iraqis will be left to their fate, likely to continue living in a bloodbath if they can’t reach a national consensus for durable peace.

The Soaring Olympic Games Cost

The Olympic Games have become costly because of the conditions attached to them. There is at first competitions between nations who bid for their organisations. So each must display the best it can offer. The fact that no more than ten cities are officially proposed for the event shows the great responsibility it entails.

Such games have also political considerations. The host country wants to show the whole world its savoir-faire from all angles. Currently, first of al,l to create secure conditions during the games period.

The soaring costs of the Olympic Games have to do with the luxury that must be provided for the participants and the visitors. Each Olympic Games organisation must prove better than the previous one and obviously it turns out to be more costly.

The slogan of the Olympic Games is that what counts is participation. But nowadays, in addition to this what counts is the gain companies and the host country can financially and politically gain.

Today there is also the security cost. In 2004, Athens had to substantially increase the budget for security more largely than had been expected because of the fear of international terrorism at a time when the USA particularly was waging a war against the insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But putting the financial cost aside, the Olympic Games remain memorable moments for the participants, the spectators around the world and for the city itself. They are a sort of prestige for everyone involved in them. Although an organising city may be left to pay the debts, it keeps the interests of having an infrastructure that couldn’t have been laid down without the incentive of the Olympic Games.

If it is a national pride to hold a major sport event like the Olympic Games, the cost should not be as an excuse to curse the day when a country was chosen to hold them.

Each privileged and rare opportunity has a price. The price of such an event is the length of the efforts needed to get the games ready and the bills or debts to pay long after the games.

Olympic Games and World Cup are among the most expensive sports events. But there are fans ready for taking the trouble to travel from extreme points of the earth and to buy expensive tickets for the pleasure of having a seat in the stadium.

Olympic Games have become a part of collective memory for billions around the world. There can be criticism after criticism about their cost and organisation. What is sure there can never be a call for their indefinite suspension. Without games the world becomes a dull place.

Gaddafi call for Free Migration

The Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, has told African and European government ministers that they must accept high levels of cross-border migration.

Before asking Europe to solve migration problems by opening its doors to migrants, Gaddafi should open his country to them and allow them to settle there without threatening them of repatriation. As a leader calling for African Unity, he should work out an economic strategy in line with his ideology to allow would-be migrants to stay in their countries and find jobs in them rather than risk their lives through drowning in the waters leading to Europe or famine, when walking in the harsh desert.

Europe can’t absorb all the would-be immigrants. From Africa alone there can be millions heading for it if its doors happen to be open to all. Europe can accept only the types of immigrants it needs, especially qualified ones. If the freedom of movement is a human right, European countries, ethically, shouldn’t “rob” poor countries from their best human resources. It should encourage them to stay in their countries to help their countrymen help themselves in their homeland for the good of all.

China-India Summit, What Prospects?

The latest India-China summit has an aim for creating a rapprochement between these two giant countries. But it is likely that they will remain rival powers. They have different political system. India is the biggest democracy in the world. In China is the biggest country in terms of human rights repressions. As an example, it is one of the few countries in the world that censor free accession to internet sites. But what they have in common is the largest population in the world. Both are struggling to cater for their large section of impoverished populations, especially in rural areas, which are striking examples of great disparities between the have and the have-not.

Economically, they need external markets. China has managed to have tight grip on many third world markets, especially in Africa. This must have left India with little opportunities to have access to them. India will need new market strategies to attract more customers and to compliment what China has brought to these markets.

The only good thing that can emerge from summit meetings between the leaders of the two countries is trust building, mainly on military issues. Both are nuclear powers. They should use this to create stability in Asia and not by having satellite states that can be used to impair their mutual relations. They can engage in solving political tensions as with North Korea.

India and China can have a great deal to offer to each other. But as giant countries, they shouldn’t use their pact to absorb small countries, making them helpless by exploiting their resources rather than helping them to stand on their feet.

Nigeria Oil Workers Hostage Taking & Political Points

Nigeria is one of the countries that are making a mess of their oil resources. There is lack of good management to make them a motor for progress benefiting all the Nigerians, especially those living in production areas. Its oil has had human disasters. Hundreds of people died in oil explosions from pipes as it has been the case this year. There are recurrent kidnapping of oil workers, which are in most cases freed unharmed.

But the latest kidnapping of oil workers turned out in disaster. It ended in the death of a British kidnapped oil worker during a rescue operation by the military. This shows that Nigerian military isn’t trained to deal with such a situation or the kidnappers have strong tactics, which has enabled them to resist the military raid, although they, too, suffered casualties.

Hostage taking shouldn’t be used as a tool for pressure, especially foreigners who have nothing to do with the political situation of the countries where they work. In Nigeria, hostage taking is a form blackmail to put pressure on the central government to comply with the kidnappers’ political demands.

Such kidnapping is a form of economic sanctions on the government as it is sure to scare existing oil workers into fleeing the country and it discourages new ones from coming as a replacement. This can affect production in the same way as a strike, the start of popular unrest or political crises threatening the stability of the country.

But Nigeria’s regional political problems can’t be solved by hostage taking. This can draw attention to the problem. But it is unlikely to bully the government to yield to kidnappers demands as in its views their actions will look as legitimate, encouraging them to carry out more kidnapping. Foreign workers just do the job for which they are paid. The government, whose some officials are accused of oil revenue embezzlement, should be transparent about its deals. It should work for equal wealthy distribution. Oil companies should step up security measures for its personnel.

Animal Rights or Human Rights?

People in Holland voted in two MPs representing the Party for Animals . This can be equated with people voting elsewhere for green parties to protect planet Earth as a whole from the mess of human mismanagement and greed.

But in countries where human rights are no longer burning issues, Animals rights can be an interesting issue. In Holland the issue of the burqa seems to have been eclipsed by the plight of animals, attracting a new type of voters. But voting for a Party of Animals sounds less strange than the likelihood of voting into power another newly formed Dutch political party calling for the reduction of the right of children aged 10 to have sex and defending the right of humans to have sex with animals.

As animals in Europe are mainly used as pets or considered as family members, they, too, should have the attention of politicians. Making animals happy means making their owners happy too. Which also means winning their votes in campaigns.

This can work in developed countries. But countries with poor human rights records need political parties for human rights per se, where priorities should be given to defend them at least theoretically. On the ground, decades are needed to make human rights a reality around the world. Many countries are using their “successes” in human rights to brag about their political achievements.

Maybe as in some literary works of science fiction or fairy tales, one day animals will be ruling the world. Humans will be their mouthpiece, clashing with one another about who is their representative and advocate.

Perhaps after this post I should be reading “Gulliver’s Travels” in which horses have their kingdom and where Gulliver becomes their subject. I should also be reading “Planet of the Apes” where humans are ruled by …… APES!

Pierre Gemayal Assassination

Political assassinations are common in Lebanon, prior to its notorious civil war. It didn’t spare anyone from all sections of the Lebanese society, Muslims or Christians. The most spectacular one was that of the former PM Rafik Al Hariri whose death shook up the political landscape in Lebanon. Among other things the military withdrawal of Syria, although its political presence behind the scene.

Lebanon as a democratic country has failed to be a model for the Arab world in particular. Democracy means protection from prosecution and jail.

What is queer about the political situation in Lebanon is that it is a rare democracy in the Arab world. But politicians aren’t immune from threats from inside and outside its borders. Lebanon has perhaps the biggest rate of prominent political assassinations.

Usually Lebanon doesn’t have political opposition outside the country. It doesn’t have political prisoners. The only reason behind this is that prominent politicians who have a political influence threatening those with interest in Lebanon- Lebanese or not- are simply killed or remain on the black list until the appropriate moment. Then the act is carried leaving behind it many questions hovering in the air. Secret services may be involved. The question remains whose service.

In Lebanon, prominent politicians have to be under big security from armed body guards.

The assassination of Pierre Gemayal means life is never safe there. Ballots are not an assurance to have a comfortable seat in power. Politicians can’t rely on the state to protect them because the state itself doesn’t have a unified national security force. Hezbollah is an example of the armed forces that are independent of the “central” government.

This political assassination can throw Lebanon in further political instability especially if key sections turn their back to one another- deepening their historic mistrust – and seek political allies outside their country. This will make the country remain in the grip of foreign political influences.

This assassination can’t serve as a lesson to any. Such Assassinations are recurrent events. Perhaps, it’s brave to be a politician in Lebanon. Because the first thing it means is that one should be ready to die and have really trusted friends inside and outside the political circles.

Should a Priest Get Married?

The Vatican has re-affirmed celibacy among Catholic priests after the case of a married African archbishop, excommunicated last year for ordaining other married priests.

The question to ask is: if a Protestant priest can marry, does this make him less Christian than a catholic one? Both have come to the world through procreation. Catholic priests shouldn’t be denied the pleasure of marriage as it seems they’re the only ones obliged to celibacy in all revealed religions denominations.

If it’s possible for ordinary people to achieve spirituality while keeping a family, it can be possible for a Catholic priest to be and remain a spiritual guide without being deprived of marriage.

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