Saturday, October 31, 2009

Lack of Water in Gaza, Dick Cheney's Alzheimer Experience

Mikhail Gorbachev
Guatam Adhikari
Mona Sarika

"The more Taliban feel hemmed in by the Pakistani military presence around South Waziristan, where the Taliban has strongholds, the more they fight back like cornered animals," - Haroon Rashid

oh, that rough beast...

The Middle East and Africa is in the middle of a drought, and there isn't enough emergency food and medical supplies to go around, what with the wars and all. Israel is being accused of rationing more water to Israelis than to Palestinians: "Israel is denying Palestinians adequate access to clean, safe water while allowing almost unlimited supplies to Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank, human rights group Amnesty International has said.

"Swimming pools, well-watered lawns and large irrigated farms in Israeli settlements... stand in stark contrast next to Palestinian villages whose inhabitants struggle even to meet their domestic water needs," the group said in a report released on Tuesday.

Amnesty said between 180,000 and 200,000 Palestinians in West Bank rural communities have no access to running water, while taps in other areas often run dry. Israel is already tying to limit the amount of water it has agreed to send on to Jordan, and the Sea of Galilee is drying up at a rapid rate.
"Israel allows the Palestinians access to only a fraction of the shared water resources, which lie mostly in the occupied West Bank"  -  Donatella Rovera, an Amnesty researcher

In addition to lack of potable water, in Gaza the aquifer is being polluted by sewage and a rising level of seawater: "Gaza's aquifer and only natural freshwater source is "in danger of collapse," the UN is warning. Engineers have long been battling to keep the densely populated strip's water and sewage system limping along.

But in September the UN Environment Programme warned that damage to the underground aquifer - due to the Israeli and Egyptian blockade, conflict, and years of overuse and underinvestment - could take centuries to reverse if it is not halted now."

The situation is similar when sewage plants in the US would dump water into the ocean and rivers, killing fish and making the area uninhabitable. So what if a few surfers became ill? But the rising nitrate levels can have serious consequences: "Another concern is the blood disorder dubbed "blue baby syndrome", which is associated with nitrate pollution.
It results in low oxygen levels in an infant's blood, which can cause breathing trouble, diarrhoea and vomiting, and in extreme cases, loss of consciousness, convulsions and death."

With over 90% of Gaza's water supply unfit for humans, Israel has responded typically to the accusations: "Israel's water authority called the report "biased and incorrect, at the very least" and said that while there is a water gap, it is not nearly as big as presented by Amnesty. The authority said Israel had met its obligations under the Oslo peace agreement but said the Palestinian authorities had failed to meet their own requirements to recycle water and were not distributing water efficiently." 

Over half of the Gaza population are children, and this policy may constitute genocide. If all of the Palestinians have to evacuate Gaza because it will be too toxic to live there, the diaspora will provide another excuse not to create a Palestinian state within Israel, and cancel any peace talks indefinitely. Mahmoud Abbas has already gone along by not even bringing this problem up, instead he continues saying that there cannot be any peace talks unless Israel stops creating more settlements in the West Bank, despite the efforts of Hillary Clinton. Hmmmm, maybe we've found a great place to ship nuclear waste instead of off the coast of Somalia... Remember, take two steps backwards and call it progress...

lou dobbs disease...

It looks like Dick Cheney is entering the first stages of Alzheimer's, or, as it's now being called, Lou Dobbs Disease. The interviews of Cheney by the FBI over the Valerie Wilson case, where she was outed s an intelligence officer of the CIA. Comment on what the released interview contained was: "Mr. Cheney had displayed “an astonishing inability to recollect even simple facts.”

"Mr. Cheney said in the interview that he could not recall how or when he had learned of Ms. Wilson’s identity and that he could not recall discussing it with Mr. Libby. Mr. Cheney denied knowing who, if anyone, at the White House had talked to the columnist Robert Novak about Ms. Wilson’s identity. He said he did not know of any reporters who might have been given this information before it was disclosed in Mr. Novak’s column on July 14, 2003." Ahh yes, the old I don't know what you are talking about defense. This is so lame that it's no wonder that the prosecutor said:
"There is a cloud over the vice president"

In interviews with Scooter Libby, who took the fall for Cheney and did time in prison, gave a very different account: "But Mr. Libby, the vice president’s chief of staff at the time, gave a sharply different account of Mr. Cheney’s behavior in July 2003. Mr. Libby offered a detailed account of Mr. Cheney’s role in authorizing the intelligence report to be shared on July 8 with Judith Miller, then a reporter for The New York Times.

He testified under oath in March 2004 that Mr. Cheney had thought it was “very important” to get out the information in the report that Mr. Hussein had tried to acquire uranium, saying “the vice president instructed me to go talk to Judy Miller to lay this out for her.” He also sid that Karl Rove was another of Robert Novak's sources.

 I find it amazing that America lets this man get away of blatantly lying and hangs on every word and that of his confused daughter. They must be invited to the talk shows for the entertainment factor, knowing the storm that will follow each appearance. It certainly isn't in the search for truth. That's Hollywood...

good-bye mr. dobson...
Now that our own James Dobson will stop broadcasting his radio show for Focus on the Family in February, perhaps he will try and get his therapy license for the State of Colorado. There certainly is no law against broadcasting free advice, just a there is no law preventing you from buying his books. It remains to be sen if rebroadcasting his old shows will be the same cash cow for the Focus organization...

The view from Colorado during the past two days:

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