UNICEF latest - 0.5 million infant deaths annually in US-occupied Iraq & Afghanistan
by : Dr Gideon Polya
Sunday December 18, 2005 - 01:10
As we approach Christmas Day, thoughts turn to mothers and infants and the joy, hope and magic of new human life. However we cannot ignore the reality in a First World-dominated world of about 55,000 avoidable deaths and about 35,000 under-5 year old infant deaths that will occur on this Christmas Day due to deprivation- and malnourishment-related causes.
More specifically, we should consider the mothers and infants of war-wracked countries and in particular the countries currently violently occupied by the largely Christian countries of the US-led Coalition. The latest UNICEF data (12 December 2005) indicate that on Christmas Day 2005, some 1,300 under-5 year old infants will die in the Coalition-conquered Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories.
The latest UNICEF data on post-invasion under-5 infant deaths (12 December 2005; see: http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry...) are shocking: in 2004 the under-5 infant mortality was 122,000 in Occupied Iraq, 359,000 in Occupied Afghanistan and 1,000 in the occupying country Australia (noting that in 2004 the populations of these countries were 28.1 million, 28.6 million and 19.9 million, respectively). This data indicates an Iraqi post-invasion under-5 infant mortality of over 0.3 million, about 122,000 such deaths per year or 334 daily (i.e. exceeding the death toll from the horrendous and evil 9/11 atrocities every 9 days). About 90% of these deaths have been avoidable.
The post-invasion avoidable mortality (excess mortality) in the Occupied Palestinian, Iraqi and Afghan Territories now totals about 0.3, 0.5 and 1.6 million, respectively, while the corresponding post-invasion under-5 infant mortality now totals 0.2, 0.3 and 1.4 million, respectively (see Senate Inquiry submission #112: http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/commit...). Most of these deaths were non-violent - thus Iraq Body Count (see: http://www.iraqbodycount.org/) currently estimates that 27,000-31,000 Iraqis have been killed violently post-invasion (out of an estimated 0.5 million post-invasion avoidable deaths). UK-US state terrorism - described by Bush-Blair supporters as “democratic imperialism” but by others as “democratic tyranny” or “democratic Nazism” - has come at a horrendous human cost, with a total under-5 infant mortality now totalling about 0.5 million each year in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories.
Whether a person dies violently (e.g. from bombs or bullets) or non-violently (e.g. from deprivation- or malnourishment-related causes) the end result is the same and the culpability the same. The Ruler is responsible for the Ruled. Thus the Geneva Conventions (1949) demand that the occupier of a country acts “to the fullest extent of the means available to it” to preserve the health and life of subject civilians (see Articles 55 and 56: http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/92.htm):
“Article 55. To the fullest extent of the means available to it, the Occupying Power has the duty of ensuring the food and medical supplies of the population; it should, in particular, bring in the necessary foodstuffs, medical stores and other articles if the resources of the occupied territory are inadequate ...
Article 56. To the fullest extent of the means available to it, the Occupying Power has the duty of ensuring and maintaining , with the cooperation of the national and local authorities, the medical and hospital establishments and services, public health and hygiene in the occupied territory, with particular reference to the adoption and application of the prophylactic and preventive measures necessary to combat the spread of contagious diseases and epidemics. Medical personnel of all categories shall be allowed to carry out their duties ...”
The US-led Coalition has failed appallingly in its duty to preserve civilian health and civilian lives in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories as required by the Geneva Conventions for the protection of civilians in time of war.
The above data clearly indicate that the members of the US-led Coalition are complicit in passive genocide, mass murder and egregious war crimes in Iraq. Accordingly, they should be indicted before the International Criminal Court - arraigned, tried and punished. Violence, terrorism, war and war crimes are utterly abhorrent to decent folk.
The World Tribunal on Iraq, headed as spokesperson by the brilliant humanitarian writer Arundhati Roy, has charged the UK-US-led Coalition with war crimes over Iraq (see: http://www.worldtribunal.org/main/?b=91). Indeed in October 2004, after writing to the 2 dozen top Law Officers of Australia, I wrote to the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court requesting that the Australian Government and its Coalition allies be charged with war crimes over the illegal invasion of Iraq and the horrendous post-invasion mass mortality (see: http://www.newscentralasia.com/modu...).
More recently, the 2005 Nobel Laureate for Literature, British playwright Harold Pinter, in his acceptance speech entitled “Art, Truth and Politics” (delivered by videotape on 8 December 2005; see: http://www.countercurrents.org/arts...) accused US President George Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair of war crimes in Iraq. After detailing the huge human cost of decades of violent US interventions in Central and South America, Harold Pinter described the invasion of Iraq as “an act of blatant state terrorism” and called for the arraignment of Bush and Blair before the International Criminal Court, declaring: “How many people do you have to kill before you qualify as a mass murderer and a war criminal? One hundred thousand? More than enough, I would have thought.”
As we feast and celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace on Christmas Day, we will know that on this day some 1,300 under-5 year old infants will die through UK-US passive genocide in the Occupied Iraqi and Afghan Territories - and that thousands of Iraqi and Afghan mothers and fathers will be weeping over the needless and cruel loss of priceless new life.
The 1957 Nobel Laureate for Literature, Albert Camus, in a 1946 essay entitled "Neither Victims nor Executioners", clearly stated a fundamental moral imperative for decent citizens of the world:
“Over the expanse of five continents throughout the coming years an endless struggle is going to be pursued between violence and friendly persuasion, a struggle in which, granted, the former has a thousand times the chances of success than that of the latter. But I have always held that, if he who bases his hopes on human nature is a fool, he who gives up in the face of circumstances is a coward. And henceforth, the only honourable course will be to stake everything on a formidable gamble: that words are more powerful than munitions.”
Peace is the only way but we are INESCAPABLY OBLIGED to INFORM OTHERS about man-made mass mortality of fellow human beings - silence kills and silence is complicity. We cannot walk by on the other side. As Edmund Burke famously stated: “All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing.”
Author credentials: Dr Gideon Polya published some 130 works in a 4 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (Taylor & Francis, New York & London, 2003), and is currently finishing writing a book on global avoidable mortality (numerous articles on this matter can be found by a simple Google search for "Gideon Polya" and on his website: http://members.optusnet.com.au/~gpo...).
Nelson Mandela Will Live On As A Beacon For Social Justice
Thursday 12 - 17:54by Brian McAfee
Why Andy Shallal Should Be Mayor of D.C.
Thursday 12 - 09:24by David Swanson
Kerry’s Coup from Mediator to Antagonist
Wednesday 11 - 12:13by Nicola Nasser
Australia spies on itself and the world for UK, Israeli and US state terrorism
Wednesday 11 - 03:26by Dr Gideon Polya
Statement of the South African Communist Party on Nelson Mandela
Monday 9 - 11:48by South African Communist Party
THE REAL LESSONS FROM THE DEATH OF NELSON MANDELA
Sunday 8 - 21:07by JOHN CHUCKMAN
FBI’s search for ‘Mo,’ suspect in bomb threats, highlights use of malware for surveillance
Sunday 8 - 18:55by Craig Timberg and Ellen Nakashima
FBI can secretly turn on laptop cameras without the indicator light
Sunday 8 - 18:46
ELDER ABUSE BLOG HACKED!
Sunday 8 - 06:21by Monica Post
Mandela: "Our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians"
Sunday 8 - 02:46by Dr Gideon Polya
David Swanson in Portland, Oregon
Saturday 7 - 17:29by David Swanson at Laughing Horse Books
The Problem of Human Egos
Friday 6 - 15:14by Richard John Stapleton
THE TRUE WAR ON CHRISTMAS
Thursday 5 - 01:17by David R. Hoffman, Pravda.Ru Legal Editor
Insurgency Responsible for Civilian Plight of Syrians
Wednesday 4 - 10:52by Nicola Nasser
Huge child abuse by pro-war, pro-Zionist, Australian Coalition Governments
Tuesday 3 - 15:10by Dr Gideon Polya
why we don’t really need more taxes
Tuesday 3 - 13:40by ART
letter of december to the President Obama
Monday 2 - 13:47by kakine
10 More Years in Afghanistan
Saturday 30 - 22:27by David Swanson
Obama’s ‘Big Prize’ to Earn Nobel Peace Prize
Wednesday 27 - 10:12by Nicola Nasser
TRUTH IN THE REAL WORLD—THE JFK ASSASSINATION
Wednesday 20 - 21:21by Richard John Stapleton
Syria, Egypt Reveal Erdogan’s ‘Hidden Agenda’
Wednesday 20 - 10:37by Nicola Nasser
DISHONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY
Tuesday 19 - 12:56by David R. Hoffman, Pravda.Ru Legal Editor
Demonstrate against Drones
Tuesday 19 - 09:07by London
THE CBS WHITEWASH OF THE JFK ASSASSINATION
Sunday 17 - 21:34by Richard John Stapleton
TIME WOUNDS ALL HEELS: WHAT TORONTO’S ROB FORD FIASCO IS ABOUT AND WHAT WE CAN L
Sunday 17 - 21:32by JOHN CHUCKMAN
THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT—NO GAIN WITHOUT PAIN
Friday 15 - 16:25by Richard John Stapleton
All Drone Politics Is Local
Friday 15 - 09:35by David Swanson
International Anti-War Conference: speakers and sessions announced
Thursday 14 - 09:02by Stop the War Coalition
Sorry, Venezuela haters: this economy is not the Greece of Latin America
Thursday 14 - 08:59by Mark Weisbrot
A VAST WASTELAND OF EFFORT SPENT: AMERICA’S RAMPAGE THROUGH THE MIDDLE EAST
Wednesday 13 - 19:27by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Committees of Correspondence: To Defend Freedom and Secure Good Government
Wednesday 13 - 16:36by William John Cox
Libya almost Imploding, Status Quo Unsustainable
Wednesday 13 - 09:32by Nicola Nasser
Michelle Bachelet Favored to Win in Chilean Presidential Election
Tuesday 12 - 23:41by Brian McAfee
Paying the Toll On the Economic Highway
Friday 8 - 16:45by William John Cox
120 reasons Australians should dump pro-war, pro-Zionist, US lackey Coalition
Friday 8 - 10:21by Dr Gideon Polya
Slavery Isn’t a Thing of the Past
Thursday 7 - 11:01by Nicholas D. Kristof
Drones from the Other Side
Thursday 7 - 10:33by David Swanson
6.6 Million Children Under the Age of Five Died Last Year Mostly from Easily Tr
Thursday 7 - 01:53by Brian McAfee
HOW AMERICA LEARNED TO PLAY GOD
Wednesday 6 - 19:14by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Saudis Fight a Lost Battle against Change
Wednesday 6 - 08:22by Nicola Nasser