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January 6, 2005

Some Disaster Victims Are More Important Than Others

Folks affected by floods in Mozambique got pledges of forty cents per person. Chechyns in 2003 got forty dollars per person. And those affected by the tsunami have been pledged six hundred dollars per person.

Actually, they don't even get that much. Most donor nations don't bother fulfilling their pledges, and a lot of the "money" they do give is in the form of loans. (I don't consider a loan - regardless of the interest rate - to be a true contribution, do you?)

The silver lining to all this is that private donations actually do arrive. As of Wednesday, $700 million was pledged by individuals and private firms.

While I agree that tsunami relief efforts are important and worthwhile, it's frustrating that the coffers of the world aren't open year round. People don't seem to mind that victims of ethnic cleansing in Darfur are dying of starvation; or any of the other dozens of problems across the world.

"Aid Promised Is Not Always Delivered: The U.N. urges donors to make good on their pledges. Sometimes, only part of the help arrives - years later." by Maggie Farley, LAT

Posted by cj at January 6, 2005 12:04 PM

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