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NEWS: 2.5 Million May Starve in Niger

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posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 11:19 AM
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Malnutrition Is Ravaging Niger's Children

Elkokiya, Niger - At sunset Wednesday, in an unmarked grave in a cemetery rimmed by millet fields, the men of this mud-walled village buried Baby Boy Saminou, the latest casualty of the hunger ravaging 3.6 million farmers and herders in this destitute nation.





At 16 months, he was little bigger than some newborns, with the matchstick limbs and skeletal ribs of the severely malnourished. He had died three hours earlier in the intensive care unit of a field hospital run by Doctors Without Borders, where 30 others like him still lie with their mothers on metal cots.

One in five is dying - the result, many say, of a belated response by the outside world to a disaster predicted in detail nine months ago.

Niger's latest hunger problem, like Baby Boy Saminou's tragedy, is more complex than it first appears. As aid begins to trickle into some of the nearly 4,000 villages across southern Niger that need help - the vanguard of a flood of food brought forth by television images of shrunken babies - the rich world's response to Niger's worst nutrition crisis since the 1985 famine is, in fact, proving too late for many.


"That is the bigger question that both Niger and the international community, everyone, needs to answer," Marcus Prior, the West Africa spokesman for the World Food Program, said in an interview in Maradi, the regional city where little Saminou died. "We feel that we've tried to raise awareness. But at the same time, this is something that's a recurring problem."

How many people need aid depends on the yardstick used. About 1.2 million of Niger's 3.6 million rural farmers and herders are described as "extremely vulnerable" to food shortages and in need of food aid, according to an assessment of Niger's crisis conducted four months ago by the United Nations, major charities and Niger's government. Of those, about 874,000 urgently need free food, the latest assessment concluded late last month, and that number could rise until the harvest is completed in October.

But that does not mean that nearly 900,000 people will starve; the vast bulk of the hungry will somehow survive. Most of those who do die will be young children. But even among those, most will not die of starvation. "Children will likely die from malnourishment, but a substantial proportion is probably dying from conditions related to poor water quality, or other non-food-related problems," FEWS Net, a famine warning service financed with United States assistance, reported late last month.

Source:
New York Times

There have been alot of news coming from Niger and also alot of posts concerning this Topic in this thread.

So this are the lates News coming from this Land of Starvation where One out of Five Children is Dying.

Whats Bothering me is, that this Problem has been PREDICTED in Detal NINE MONTHS AGO - and still not many people did "Move" and do something.



Much of this disaster was suspected last November, when experts monitoring Niger's farms found a 220,000-ton shortfall - about 7.5 percent of the normal crop - in the harvest of grains, especially the millet that is the staple of most people's diet.

By May, it had received fewer than 7,000 tons of food and one $323,000 donation, from Luxembourg.



This Images really Enrage me, when I read how many Gazillion's of Dollars are going to be spent for some Crappy Military Projects, that are Designed for Killing People - and on the Other side this Money or at least a small Part of this Money could be used to FEED these Children that Day everyday without anybody noticing it..

Global military expenditure and arms trade form the largest spending in the world at over $950 billion in annual expenditure, as noted by the prestigous Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SPIRI), for 2003.

www.globalissues.org...

[edit on 6/8/05 by Souljah]




posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 12:15 PM
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doesnt change the fact that you can only help those who are willing to help themselves... we have an interest in freeing iraq and warring with terrorists. Africa is a sewer for money that produces nothing but mobs of people sooo happy to see us, that they shoot down our helicopters and drag our pilots thru the streets.. you reap what u sow.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 12:53 PM
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Spliff


Africa is a sewer for money that produces nothing but mobs of people sooo happy to see us, that they shoot down our helicopters and drag our pilots thru the streets..


That's disgraceful. You're blaming an entire CONTINENT for the actions of a few men.

Absolutely disgraceful.

Have you ever been to Africa? Of course not. If you had experience instead of vitriol, we wouldn't be having this conversation.

Yes there are problems, but it's not just a sewer, and it does produce quite a lot more than people who shoot down helicopters. I have befriended two native Africans in the course of my lifetime, and both were honorable, kind, and compassionate human beings.

I pity you, because you still cannot understand the concept of individuality. Those are people over there, not numbers, not your enemy. And you'll never know them.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 01:12 PM
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Originally posted by WyrdeOne
The situation in sub-Saharan Africa is not going to get better, period. Desertification is the harsh reality, the primary cause, not apathy. Unless we irrigate the entire country, donate free seed, fertilizer, farm machinery, and maintenance crews, the people in that part of the world are always going to be behind the 8 ball everytime natural disaster strikes, since they can barely make ends meet at the best of times.


Well said. Assuming though that keeping Africa poor is not intended, and the world made a genuine attempt at a solution, I think it could easily be solved. All we need is a bit of technology, and some good old fashioned ingenuity.

I think part of the problem as well is how we actually go about farming. If one thinks about it there have not been that many advancements in commercial farming over, hmm, the last 6000 years. Our tractors are metal oxen, and the chemicals we dump into the ground simulate a yearly flood cycle from another time and another land. To feed the number of people that exist on this globe right now, a new approach needs to be taken

The fact of the matter is Hydroponic growing techniques produce similar amounts (if not greater actually) to traditional methods of cultivation. I do not know the feasibility of growing grain in hydroponics, but some new approach is definitely needed, and I think that would be a good place to start.Hydroponics is not going to be enough either though. Of mention here is the actual decrease in water nec for hydroponic production, eliminating all evaporative side effects of traditional irrigation techniques. This will prove to be of great importance when people realize that it wasn't oil they should of been paying attention to, but the water. (what where did the water go?)

With a decreasing amount of fresh water around the globe being virtually ignored, we will not be able to sustain crops for much longer anyways. Israel (who would of guessed) is actually the worlds leader in "brackish" cultivation techniques. Basically using water with a higher salinity than usual to grow tradtional staples. This is how they have made that desert bloom. With rising tides around the globe, I predict this will prove to be invaluable research.

IMHO- I think many changes to food production and cultivation need to be adapted on a global scale to begin with.

Africa though IMHO-could be a good place to start to implement such technology on a large scale, and act as a litmus test for the rest of the world. Combine brackish and hydroponic techniques, possibly with some new organic based fertilizers.

As I said though, with global population appearing to rise, a decrease in fresh water in general, and the desertification of the entire globe we will not be able to sustain traditional methods of food production for much longer anywhere let alone Africa. Strangely when I look at pictures from Africa I get the paradoxical feeling of looking into mankinds past, and looking into his future....all at the same time




[edit on 6-8-2005 by phoenixhasrisin]

[edit on 6-8-2005 by phoenixhasrisin]



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 01:17 PM
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how is it possible that en ENTIRE continent is unable to take care of themselves? When was irragation concieved? Theres no reason for starvation. These people need to help themselves. Im sure theres lots of good people there. but instead of holding their hands out for 20 years, why not STILL come here for the free education and whatnot, then bring that home and help their own.

Money wont feed anyone there.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 01:44 PM
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True money will not help the situation. First though the world must recognize that Africa as an entire continent has been expltoited at the hands of western nations for CENTURIES now. From Colonization all the way up to the corrupt western backed dictator's through the years that we are all familiar with , Africa has been literally raped, and those conditions fostered! Africa did not happen in a vaccuum.

Quit playing the historical memory loss game and acknowldge that the African problem was created, then perhaps once we deal with the actual problem something can be done. In the meantime it's BS and we all know it. Africa remains the way it is because that is just the way "they" want it to remain.

FACT-There is plenty of food, and land right now to feed everyone in the world.
FACT-The USA alone could feed most of Africa on what we feed our cattle.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 01:48 PM
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Originally posted by phoenixhasrisin

True money will not help the situation. First though the world must recognize that Africa as an entire continent has been expltoited at the hands of western nations for CENTURIES now. From Colonization all the way up to the corrupt western backed dictator's through the years that we are all familiar with , Africa has been literally raped, and those conditions fostered! Africa did not happen in a vaccuum.

Quit playing the historical memory loss game and acknowldge that the African problem was created, then perhaps once we deal with the actual problem something can be done. In the meantime it's BS and we all know it. Africa remains the way it is because that is just the way "they" want it to remain.

FACT-There is plenty of food, and land right now to feed everyone in the world.
FACT-The USA alone could feed most of Africa on what we feed our cattle.


When they were under colonial control, they had food didnt they? If you want to fault anyone, fault them! The land is theirs. They got money for guns, ammo and rockets, why not food? Why is it Americas job to keep babying them? We were a colony once to, remember! We fed ourselves. We irragated our deserts.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 02:00 PM
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I am not saying that the U.S should be held responsible for feeding them in any way shape or form. I do think though that we need to quit acting like the countries leaders have had ANY of their citizens interest at heart. The fact of the matter is; Africa, in all it's carved up glory has been run by one puppet regime after another. To act surprised that exploitation has been a result is farcical at best.

To go into the various means that this has been accoplished would be exhaustive right now. From the slave trade right down to todays constant theft of resources, Africa has been raped, and tied down to boot. To suggest that she is at fault for having not saved herself is beyond comprehension.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 02:13 PM
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phoenix,

Africa is nothing more than Americas gang problem multiplied by a 1000. Ok, so the french and english colonized them, so? Whats the excuse for the LAST 100 years?




FACT-There is plenty of food, and land right now to feed everyone in the world.
FACT-The USA alone could feed most of Africa on what we feed our cattle.


sounds like another hand out request to me. Let me ask you this. Forget the years of "oppresion", what have they done recently to help themselves? What? how much land have they irragated? How many of africas leaders are spurring any sort of economic growth? Why should we (america) help anyone who isnt willing to put forth any effort themselves?

Between the warlords and their "soldiers" the comparision between modern day africs and south central los angeles is very similar. Untill the people try to change things for themselves, why should we? We arent the world police are we? or ARE WE?

If we were allowed to go in there and set them up with governments, electricity and water, the world would say "ohh the evil americans" but if we refuse to just hand them money, then we are selfish americans. Whats China doing to help africa? Whats Saudi Arabia doing? Why is it left to us? Why not Brittan and France? Isnt it their fault after all?



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 02:56 PM
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spliff
Once again, you have uttered a completely indefensible, totally incorrect statement. If you don't know, that's okay, no shame in it, but take the time to learn. Most African nations have advanced by leaps and bounds in just the last 5 years, tripling food production in some places, reducing armed conflict drastically, increasing cooperation and trade with neighboring nations, brainstorming on solutions to their problems.

G8 Report - Glowing praise for progress made in Africa

Link

Scientists from many African nations have even taken the bold position of refusing GM foods, on the grounds that they are not in keeping with the shared ideal of increased self-sufficiency. Unprecedented unity of vision, and results to back it up. This stance may well give them an advantage in preventing plagues from wiping out crops all over the continent. The sameness of the GM food is its strength and its weakness, the Africans have made a choice to stick to natural food, and I bet good money that decision pays dividends before the end.

www.i-sis.org.uk...

Your continuing use of stereotypes, painting every African as a starving idiot beggar in the wasteland, is offensive, untrue, and unnecessary. I hope it's just because you don't know any better. But even that's not an excuse. Please educate yourself about Africa and its people before you speak on them again.

Africa is acutely aware of the problems facing the individual nations, the collective African consciousness has adopted 'Self-Sufficiency' as a sort of continental motto, you see it everywhere now. They have a goal that they're working towards, and their progress has been anything but negligible. Hot spots of violence remain, famine still stalks some places, but the majority of Africans are living in vastly superior conditions compared to a decade ago.

Every year more irrigation, more plantings, better food distribution, less reliance on aid, steady economic growth, and more solutions perennial problems. They see better growth and lower inflation numbers on average than many first world nations.

Once again, I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt, and assuming you don't know all this. If you know all this, and still choose to hold your position that no Africans can feed themselves, that Africa is a sewer, etc., etc..well, I don't know what else could be responsible but a deeply held prejudice against Africans resulting from over-exposure to negative imagery.

You should be congratulating the nations of Africa on their progress, not condemning them for problems they've largely surmounted.



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 03:43 PM
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Well the past 100 years can be attributed to those puppet governments I mentioned earlier. Also, as WyrdeOne pointed out, Africa has recently made many improvements in it's situation, and when one considers the meddling, and the amount of weapons we have dropped on that continent it is a miracle that they are even still alive. They truly do deserve praise.

After Africa is self sustainable then we will have to turn to the unfair exploitative economic policies that do not allow them to set foot on the global scene (economically speaking). Fixed price rates to keep American grain prices high, paying diamond miners pennies a day and other things like that must go. Just getting European companies out is not going to be enough if the world really does not want to "take care of Africa."

Also of interest to note: Most of the places where Africa is still having many problems can trace their woes to western influence and need not go back 100 years. Is it a coincidence that these problems linger mainly where natural resources are plenty? I do not think so.

The fact reamains that Africa is the wealthiest nation in the world when it comes to natural resources, always has been always will be. If Africa were allowed to grow and prosper it would truly be one of the richest places on Earth. Once companies like De Beers (sp?) stop their antics then we can get to business and get this African problem solved. Like I originally said though, I do not think anybody has any plans on saving Africa any time soon.

[edited for spelling]

[edit on 6-8-2005 by phoenixhasrisin]



posted on Aug, 6 2005 @ 03:59 PM
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Isn't a large part of the problem the stupid Water Agreements that the U.N. enforces?

For example, the Egyptian Government is legally the only Government able to use the River Nile for irrigation. However it carries more then enough water to be used by several African Nations.



posted on Aug, 9 2005 @ 07:45 AM
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Niger leader denies hunger claims

Niger President Mamadou Tanja has dismissed reports that his country is experiencing a famine.



"The people of Niger look well-fed, as you can see," he told the BBC.





He accepted there were food shortages in some areas after poor rains and locust invasions but said this was not unusual for his country.

Mr Tanja said the idea of a famine was being exploited for political and economic gain by opposition parties and United Nations aid agencies.

Source:
BBC News

Now, what's Wrong with this guy?

Did the Extreme Heat and the Sun BOIL HIS BRAIN?!?

"The people of Niger look well-fed, as you can see,"

Yes Mister President - we can see these Children that are WELL FED very well on this pictures...

What a MORON!







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