Friday, January 19, 2007
By Colin Brown
The desperate plight of children who are dying in Iraqi hospitals for the lack of simple equipment that in some cases can cost as little as 95p is revealed today in a letter signed by nearly 100 eminent doctors.
They are backed by a group of international lawyers, who say the conditions in hospitals revealed in their letter amount to a breach of the Geneva conventions that require Britain and the US as occupying forces to protect human life.
In a direct appeal to Tony Blair, the doctors describe desperate shortages causing "hundreds" of children to die in hospitals. The signatories include Iraqi doctors, British doctors who have worked in Iraqi hospitals, and leading UK consultants and GPs.
"Sick or injured children who could otherwise be treated by simple means are left to die in hundreds because they do not have access to basic medicines or other resources," the doctors say. "Children who have lost hands, feet and limbs are left without prostheses. Children with grave psychological distress are left untreated," they add.
They say babies are being ventilated with a plastic tube in their noses and dying for want of an oxygen mask, while other babies are dying because of the lack of a phial of vitamin K or sterile needles, all costing about 95p. Hospitals have little hope of stopping fatal infections spreading from baby to baby because of the lack of surgical gloves, which cost about 3.5p a pair.
Hush now, little one ...
Layla Anwar An Arab Woman Blues - Reflections in a sealed bottle...
...Since you love economics and you count so well when it comes to figures, dollars and dimes, let us do together a simple calculation. -In the 13 years of sanctions from 1991 to 2003, a conservative estimate places the number of dead Iraqi babies to 500'000 .(and the price was well worth it according to M.Albright, your democrat.) -Since 2003 , another conservative estimate is 260'000 dead Iraqi kids due to lack of medical care and a health system in total chaos. -Amongst the official figure of the Lancet report of 650'000 Iraqis dead, let's assume that at least 10% of that number were children killed by violentacts. So that makes around 65'000. (knowing that Iraq has a big youth population). -In the latest census by the UN, which was not taken into account when the Lancet report came out, 34'450 (plus) were killed due to violence. Assuming again a mere 10 % were children, that brings my calculation to3'400.(...) So a quick summing up will give us a total of : 829'300 Iraqi children Dead. (...) As for the very progressive left and the rest of the apparatchik, well what can I say? They are already dressed in black chadors, beating on their chests, thumping on their heads, wailing in advance, for a improbable farfetched attack on some other country... They have turned their attention from the scene of the crime. Too much for you darlings? A mirror of your impotence or of your sellout? 800'000plus, Iraqi Children dead. I congratulate you. Let your new patron give you 800'000plus, medals as proof of your dedication for peace on earth...
Meanwhile, my Iraqi little ones , die softly, make no noise, we don't want to disturb the slumbering consciences...Hush now, slip quietly, ever so quietly...into Death.
Postscript : I just read that a petition has been online for that crippled Iraqi dog mentioned in my previous article (see also comment section). A dog is more "neutral."See what I mean now ?!
Soldiers taunt crippled dog in Iraq - * May be disturbing to some*
continua / continued
U.S. "Cure" for Health Sector Worse than the Disease?
Pratap Chatterjee, IPS
While some critics of the stumbling rehabilitation of Iraq's health care system focused on the failure to deliver basic infrastructure and supplies, others questioned the whole U.S. approach. Unlike other poorer countries, which focused on mass health care using primary care practitioners, in the 1970s, Iraq had developed a Westernised system of sophisticated hospitals with advanced medical procedures, provided by specialist physicians and financed by oil revenues. A July 2003 report by UNICEF and the World Health Organisation noted that prior to 1990, 97 percent of the urban dwellers and 71 percent of the rural population had access to free primary health care; just 2 percent of hospital beds were privately managed...
continua / continued