While Gaza is lavished with attention, money, and weapons for a vastly exaggerated “crisis” that is of Hamas’ engineering and staging (those poor people have to smuggle in luxury cars!), tens of millions of Muslims are suffering in Pakistan after the floods — hungry, wet, and under the threat of outbreaks of cholera and dysentery. The response from Islamic nations in the Arab world? Beyond lackluster, while the U.S., Britain, Japan, and other non-Muslim countries bend over backwards.
The question for the Muslim governments of the petrodollar-glutted Gulf: Are you racists, regarding the needs of your non-Arab brethren as less important, or would you just rather be waging jihad?
An update on this story, though it’s not so much an update as it is more of the same. “Islamic nations snub UN plea to help flood victims,” by James Bone and Zahid Hussain for the Times Online, August 17 (thanks to Sr. Soph):
Islamic nations are shunning a United Nations appeal for the worsening Pakistan floods, amid tensions with President Zardari.
Western countries have rallied to Pakistan’s aid, with the US and Britain the leading donors in the drive to raise $US460 million in the first 90 days. Hillary Clinton, the US Secretary of State, is expected to attend a special meeting of the UN General Assembly on Thursday to show solidarity with Pakistan, diplomats said.
Not a single Islamic nation appeared yesterday on the UN’s latest list of donors, despite efforts to reach out to them.
The US had pledged $US62million, followed by Britain with $US26 million, bringing current commitments to $US204million – less than half of the UN’s goal.
Japan came third with $US13 million, followed by lesser pledges from 18 other countries. The World Bank promised a $US900 million loan.
With 20 million people affected by the floods, the disaster has touched the lives of more people than the Haiti earthquake earlier this year, the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, and the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami. UN officials lament, however, that the aid response is falling short. “The response so far has been strong but we do need for it to be sustained and continue,” said Nicholas Reader, a spokesman for the UN’s humanitarian co-ordinator.
Mr Reader noted that Islamic nations such as Saudi Arabia had traditionally given aid directly to Pakistan rather than through the UN. “The money we track is … given to the multilateral process and given through UN appeals,” he said. “It does not track the money that is given bilaterally.”
Analysts blamed Riyadh’s strained relations with President Zardari for the apparent indifference of the oil-rich Saudi Government. “King Abdullah has never liked Mr Zardari, for various reasons,” said a former Pakistani diplomat.
“One is Mr Zardari’s closeness to the Americans. His being a Shia may also be a factor.”…