When I wrote my editorial yesterday (January 6, 2005), titled “My Unpopular Thoughts On The Tsunamis”.
Go figure that these thoughts were anything BUT unpopular. It appears that I’ve touched a raw nerve that more than just a few people find as sensitive as I do.
In retrospect, especially considering the letters I’ve received on that editorial, the correct title should have been: “My Politically Incorrect But Nonetheless Accurate And Popular Thoughts On The Tsunamis”.
I published one of the many letters I received on this topic. The letter writer is Stephen Eisenberg from Montreal, who puts a clear spin on an event that has grown beyond the tragedy. It’s worth the read in the Letters To The Publisher section found at the menu to the left of this article.
This horribly violent act of nature has given the planet an opportunity to galvanize itself in a manner that was never before conceived. Here’s a disaster, the scope of which no one could have imagined. And here is the world standing around for the first few days, in a daze, trying to figure out what to do while people were dead and dying.
Israel led the way with their almost instantaneous First Responders. The United States, also quick off the mark used their military might to bring in the “heavy guns” needed to evacuate and distribute the aid to where it was most needed.
In the meantime, Canada, with the Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART), skilled precisely for this kind of mission sat on the ground while Canada’s Prime Minister, Paul Martin, was trying to figure out which side was up.
And when Canada made the decision to respond, the DART group were fixed in-place because there were no transport planes available to fly the Team to the disaster zone(s).
Paul Martin stated for the cameras that Canada was a reliable friend and ally. I don’t know what he meant by reliable when Canada can’t dispatch a few hundred skilled people and their equipment who are willing, able and READY. That’s not reliable.
As for being a reliable friend. That’s another story. But I digress.
Had Canada had the wherewithal to dispatch DART the way the Israelis mobilized their First Responders, there would have been an awful lot of help on the ground literally within hours of the first wave.
There is no question that the UN is useless. They can’t stop wars. They can’t negotiate peace. They can’t stop genocides (even when they’re “protecting” the victims). They can’t find nuclear weapon’s programs. And they can’t help people in real need.
What they can do is occupy beautiful offices, be driven in expensive chauffeured cars, jet-set to elitist conferences all over the world, attend never-ending cocktail parties, pass all sorts of ludicrous resolutions introduced by banana republics and STEAL.
The UN is GREAT at stealing, lying and cheating. That’s what they do best. But that’s what the world needs the least.
This South East Asian disaster has shown the developed and civilized world how important it is for all nations who are wiling and able, to come together and create an International First Responder System without the worst the UN has to offer.
The USA has the military muscle (and everything else). Canada has the infrastructure teams. Israel has unique disaster relief technology and personnel. While many other competent countries can bring many valuable resources to the table.
International government to government (read no UN) cooperation and preparedness is the lesson of the Tsunamis.
The answer isn’t money, which any Phony-Bologna world leader can ante-up for great PR, especially when that leader knows his country will never pay-up.
It’s all about scrambling the physical resources, just the way fighter-jets are scrambled when there’s a threat alert. This is how the world must organize itself to respond to a tragedy anywhere and at anytime.
And we can do it globally. All we need is the will, the commitment and no UN.