Monday, February 06, 2006

Forgotten in the mayhem - the Red Sea ferry disaster

In the mayhem that followed the publication of the now-famous cartoons, the World has (almost) completely ignored the awful tragedy of the Egyptian ferry, that sunk with the loss of 1,000 lives..
A thousand lives lost.. Tens of thousands of bereaved masses are left without any help or support.. Hundreds of families lost their bread-winners.. and the Arab World has erupted over some images, awful and horrid as they are...
This is a tragedy of enormous proportions.. Not only in terms of the tragic loss of human life (which, if news reports were to be believed, could have been easily averted), but also in what it demonstrates in lack of any concern on the part of the authorities to the value of human life, or the suffering of the survivors and the bereaved.
I dare say this official stance, and lack of any support for those who desperately need it would be typical of the attitude of Arab regimes.. Back in the 60’s, when Amin El-Hafez was President of Syria, a commentator dared confront him saying that a large number of civilians have been killed in Hama as a result of the Army’s response to an alleged insurgence in the City, his infamous reply was ‘So what?.. women can still bear many children…'( ...ﱟﺍﺮﻴﺜﻜ ﻦﺪﻠﻳ ﺀﺎﺴﻨﻠﺍ )
A response not dissimilar to that of the Egyptian authorities was dished out by the Syrian authorities in the aftermath of the Zeyzoun Dam disaster in June 2002. The Authorities, by and large, stood by, watching the misery of the helpless victims, and ‘bestowing’ on them $200 for those who lost a home (!!!) and a $1,000 for those who lost a loved one!... It was only after aid (mostly from Italy, through the UNDP) started arriving some 12 months later, that the victims of the disaster got some relief.. (Although, to be fair, a number of Arab businessmen, mostly from the Gulf states, have donated significant sums.. God only knows how much of that aid went into secret bank accounts...)
The Arab regimes are too busy feathering their nests, to worry about a few thousands distressed amongst their people...

9 comments:

Rime said...

Thank you for thinking of these poor, nameless victims while the world goes crazy over a few drawings.

In fact, I also thought of the Zeizoun Dam disaster and was angry all over again at the total lack of compassion (not to mention the complete responsibility) of the Syrian regime in that tragedy. These are the real travesties in our world and the ones that should be causing us offense.

elengil said...

I read about these on another blog and I'll repeat here what I said.

The prayers of this American go out to the suffering families. I am sorry that such a tragedy has happened. :'(

Abu Turath said...

Please read the following article in Islamica Magazine which is 3 pages long and forward it to as many of your friends and family members:

http://www.islamicamagazine.com/content/view/161/59/

Abu Turath said...

For an insightful and excellent artcle on the 'cartoongate crisis' read the following article by Imam Zaid Shakir:

http://www.zaytuna.org/articleDetails.asp?articleID=92

Anonymous said...

Robert.
I have always been a peaceful man, but after the Danish Cartoons riots of mindless, raging idiots, I could not help myself thinking, after reading about the red sea ferry disaster: 1400 muslims drowned, it's a start.
Robert.

elengil said...

1400 muslims drowned, it's a start.

That's right, cause obviusly those 1400, men women and children, were so deserving of death because some other Arabs decided to act like idiots.

Just like it was perfectly ok for Arabs to kill innocent people and burn embassies because one Danish idiot decided to print some cartoons.

Yes, I can see the scales balancing.

(note the sarcasm dripping from this post)

Rime said...

Well how very peaceful and manly of you Robert. It seems the mindless, raging idiots aren't just rioting.

The Syrian Brit said...

Robert,
You pathetic insensitive twit..
Your comments are not even worhty of a reply...

Don Cox said...

Isn't the whole point of the Anti-Danish campaign to distract the attention of people in the Middle East from problems at home? The ferry disaster is only one.