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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 8/23/10

Washington Orders Shahbaz Airbase Saved, not Pakistan's Flood Victims

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Washington Orders Shahbaz Airbase Saved, not Pakistan's Flood Victims - by Stephen Lendman


With 20 million or more people affected, about 12% of the population, the equivalent of 37 million Americans, Pakistan's devastating floods are truly of biblical proportions, described by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as worse than anything he'd ever seen, saying:


"Thousands of towns and villages have simply been washed away. Roads, buildings, bridges, crops - millions of livelihoods have been lost. People are marooned on tiny islands with the floodwaters all around them (without food, sanitation, medical help, or shelter). They are drinking dirty water. They are living in the mud and ruins of their lives. Many have lost family and friends. Many more are afraid their children and loved ones will not survive in these condition."


One fifth or more of Pakistan is under water, the US equivalent of Texas, California, New York, Illinois, Michigan, Florida, and Oregon combined, what's unimaginable in America and would never be tolerated without massive emergency aid.


Yet the Pakistani-based News reports that:


"Hundreds of thousands of people including children, women and aged men have been trapped on the rooftops of their houses as floodwaters with 5-feet depth has blanketed entire districts."


They won't survive without help. Deadly disease outbreaks are feared. Already, reports of cholera are surfacing, suggesting perhaps a much wider scale problem than verified.


Unknown numbers have perished, perhaps thousands, likely tens or hundreds of thousands before it's over. Yet aid so far donated has been pathetic, America providing token relief only, hardly enough to matter, Washington's usual response to great need, even emergencies, the way Haitian earthquake victims were treated, still on their own and out of luck eight months after their disaster.


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