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Pakistan Earthquake Relief – “Blog Quake Day”

Some bloggers have declared today to be “Blog Quake Day” and are calling for online donations to agencies assisting the relief effort in Pakistan.

Oxfam declared today that “rich countries” are “failing to respond generously to the UN South Asian Earthquake appeal.”

In related news, Anatol Lieven, author of America Right or Wrong, wrote a hard-hitting piece for Sunday’s LATimes Op-Ed page which takes the Bush administration to task for its “pitiful” response to the earthquake in Pakistan.

The U.S. has pledged only $50 million in aid, a tiny fraction of what it is capable of providing. According to USAID, as of Oct. 17, nine days after the earthquake struck, the U.S. military had flown only 168 helicopter sorties to the affected areas. It can certainly do much more in a country next door to Afghanistan and near the Persian Gulf, where substantial U.S. airborne forces are deployed…

Much has been said in the U.S. in recent years about Pakistan’s actual or potential unreliability as an ally; some of it is fair. But reliability cuts both ways. The same U.S. pundits who have listed Pakistan’s faults and who lecture Pakistan on how to run its affairs are silent in the face of the administration’s failure. To Pakistanis, we are like a rich man in a manor who hectors his poor neighbors about their faults but refuses to help them in time of desperate need.

Why is the White House reacting so tepidly in Pakistan after handling the tsunami disaster so well? The answer may be that an administration that is becoming increasingly monarchical and politicized is also becoming increasingly paralyzed. It’s foreign policy crew can still walk and chew gum simultaneously, but it may not be able to think at the same time.

Whatever the reason, by failing to extend more generous and visible assistance to Pakistan, the Bush administration is committing a grave moral and political blunder.

LINK to Op-Ed in LATimes.

Recent Comments

  1. Naeem Tyab

    High in the Neelum Valley and the dazzling mountain ranges which envelope Muzaffarabad, a frightening sight is set to descend from the skies. In years gone by it would bring children rushing from their houses in eager anticipation and joy.

    But the children would have been wrapped up in woolly jumpers and padded jackets, with a warm meal waiting their return in the evening. This year however, when the heavens open and snow falls in this region there will be little joy or eager anticipation.
    Instead the wintry snow and frosty chill will be greeted with misery by the desperate people of Kashmir and the coming dark months are set to pose an immense challenge for all relief agencies working in this region.

    Temperatures will fall below zero and with many having only tents to shelter them from the freezing conditions the situation looks bleak.

  2. Zahid Khan Khosa

    Worst times have arrived therefore Mr. 10% (ten percent) have become leaders of our beloved country. I will not go into the details how corrupt our leaders are. Along with corruption they don’t care if poor people live or die. Zardari and his government have sold our country for few dollars and now our national interests are also on sale by him. When I think about the situation in Pakistan my heart really goes, looking at the necessity which Pakistani nation does not have, such as Sugar, Wheat flour, Electricity, Gas, jobs, clean drinking water and there is huge list of other necessities which Pakistani nation does not enjoy. However leaders of Pakistan have turned a blind eye to the problems of poor people. I always wonder that why Pakistan does not utilizes 18 billion people and produce various items which can later be sold in international market such as Airplanes, Fast Trains, Weapon technology and various other items. Leaders of Pakistan have pledged to neglect this nation and they are extremely busy filling their own pockets with stolen poor people’s money. I pray to God that the injustice vanishes soon and we see a real and authentic leader who can lead us through prosperity and happiness. I believe the leaders of Pakistan have failed to look after their country and they have failed to show care. We as a nation should unite together and raise against the ignorance we face today. Thank you

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