Saturday, May 10, 2008

Two US ships loaded with supplies, doing nothing

If you see a man drowning, you don't call up his government to ask for its permission to save his life, do you?

The Financial Times reported that the US has "two naval ships conducting disaster response exercises -- and loaded with fresh drinking water and temporary shelters -- two days' sailing from the disaster area." I imagine the ships are offshore by now.

It is insane that these ships have yet to provide assistance. This is but one example of foreign life-saving equipment and personnel sitting idle nearby while Burmese people die.

I do not agree that a UN Security Council resolution is required for foreign countries to render assistance to Burmese in distress. I believe the time has come for the people of the world to demand that the US, France, and Britain -- and any other countries with assets in the vicinity of Burma -- take action to help victims, irrespective of what Burma's rulers -- or Chinese and Russian diplomats at the UN -- say.

It is time to demand that our own leaders take action to save Burmese victims of the cyclone. Because it's the right thing to do.


  1. I agree that this sucks, but setting a precedent of unilaterally ignoring a nation's sovereignty is not in anyone's best interest.

  2. I think ignoring the wishes of the Burmese junta is almost certainly in the best interest of many Burmese cyclone victims.

    Individual human beings, not states, are the primary sovereign entity. In distress they have a right to receive help that is offered, including food, water, and medical attention. This principle is reflected in many laws.


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