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April 10, 2003
Beyond Sanctions

A decade of sanctions has seriously damaged the overall health of the Iraqi population, and war isn't going to help. (Especially, I might add, if the USofA doesn't step up to the plate and do right by the Iraqi people after the shooting stops.)

And I don't mean in some halfhearted Bushite BigTalkNoMoney way, either. We owe them reparations, but if that word is too emotionally loaded, I'm willing to settle for rebuilding. And we should do it through the U.N., which means we need to pay our back dues and stop sulking because everyone didn't cheer when we decided to drop massive numbers of high-tech bombs on a small, underdeveloped country.

There's a battle going on between the Department of Defense, which wants to control all aspects of the relief operation, and other aid organizations like Oxfam and UNICEF, which also want to be in charge, because they feel that purely humanitarian operations should be kept separate from the military.
This isn't the way it reads in the national media, of course.

The DoD isn't making claims in the NYTimes or on CNN that they want to control aid efforts (Is this a part of the failed "hearts and minds" campaign?) but certainly it's something the medical community and the international aid community are aware of. (Eequires registration. Use peevish/peevish if you don't want to register.)

Posted by AnneZook at 10:23 AM