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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Israel's disproportionate response

There's one incident that took place recently to which Israel has responded disproportionately. But of course, since paying attention to that response would result in praise for the Jewish state, most of the world is ignoring it. That disproportionate response is in Haiti.

Despite its small size, Israel sent a large contingent of highly-trained aid workers to quake-stricken Haiti. Two jumbo jets carrying more than 220 doctors, nurses, civil engineers, and other Israeli army personnel, including a rescue team and field hospital, were among the first rescue teams to arrive in Haiti. In fact, they were the first foreign backup team to set up medical treatment at the partially collapsed main hospital in Port-au-Prince. Yigal Palmor, Israel's Foreign Ministry spokesman said, "It's a large delegation and we're prepared to send more."

The international agencies that condemn Israel for its "disproportionate response" when it is attacked are not mentioning Israel's disproportionate response to human suffering. The U.S. has pledged 100 million and sent supplies and personnel. The U.K. pledged $10 million and sent 64 firemen and 8 volunteers. China, a country with a population of 1,325,639,982 compared to Israel's 7.5 million sent 50 rescuers and seven journalists. The 25 Arab League nations sent nothing.
But it's not just the field hospital. Last night, someone tweeted about giving an award to whoever is keeping CNN operating in Haiti. Well, guess what: It's the Israelis.
When devastation struck Haiti, Israel quickly dispatched its professional military relief team including evacuation and recovery experts aided by dogs from the Oketz ("Sting") canine unit and an extensive medical delegation that quickly deployed its fully operational field hospital in the soccer field of Port-au-Prince -- complete with surgeons and all, and a technical division that set up a communications and Internet network for coordination and video-conferencing with medical colleagues back home. The international press is also using the IDF network, as most other communications are down.
YNet reports on some of the praise that the Israeli rescuers have received.
ABC praised the Israeli mission which had assisted a birth using a complicated procedure. The network's reporter, himself a trained doctor, came across a woman on the point of giving birth. First he tried to assist, but when he got into difficulties he remembered the Israeli field hospital, called the Israeli consulate in New York and was directed to the IDF camp.

"I understood that they were looking for the Israeli mission," said Joel Lion, Israeli consulate spokesman. "I called the military attaché in Washington to get the address of the mission… then, via Blackberry, I managed to get the coordinates and direct them there."

When they arrived at the hospital, the young woman was taken in and eight hours later a healthy baby was born.

ABC reported extensively on the story, and even sent a letter of thanks to the Israeli representative in New York. "They were very moving moments. It was amazing to be party to saving life and bringing a baby into the world. And most amazing was that it was all directed via a cell phone," said Lion. "We will pass on the expressions of thanks to the doctors and the wonderful staff at the Israeli field hospital in Haiti."
Here's the ABC News story. Let's go to the videotape.

Disproportionate? I'm happy that's our response. I just wish more people appreciated it.

By the way, there are more pictures like the one at the top of this post available here.


At 2:50 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Face it ... the world has two options relative to this situation.

First, they could cheer Israel and the disproportionate Israeli response to a country in need. To do this, would require that they correctly abandon the narrative of an apartheid oppressive government and people, hell bent upon subjugating others and stealing territory that doesn't belong to it. That is, they would have to abandon a demonstratably false narrative, in order to render praise upon it. Moreover, they would need to attack Israel's enemies for sending no aid whatsoever. For contributing not one iota of support, not one dollar, not one doctor or nurse. They would have to heap derision and scorn upon the dishonorable way that Israel's enemies behave ... though this behavior is nothing new for Israel's enemies, its business as usual. They would have to admit that Israel is a force for good in the world, as they are doing good in the world, selflessly acting to help the helpless.

That is, the world would have to abandon a terribly injust narrative and viewpoint that bears no semblance to reality, and replace it with a narrative based upon reality. In doing so, it would have to admit it has erred. It would have to admit its bias. It would have to admit it was wrong.

Or ...

Second, the world could simply ignore the situation. Pretend it isn't happening. Defend the indefensible, maintain the status quo, call the rescuers and doctors and emergency service workers "oppressors" as they help to relieve suffering, find and treat victims, and feed the hungry.

Because to do otherwise would require that you admit you were wrong in attacking Israel, in lambasting it and accusing it of false crimes against a fake people. You would have to decide to act with honor and dignity, much as the people of Israel do when the imbeciles of the world attack them for being dishonorable and undignified in response. You would have to shed the dishonor of allowing the false narrative to guide your actions, while admitting that you were had by the false narrative.

Which do you think the world will do?

At 6:47 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

If CIJ still votes in the US, then this is relevant here. Can the IDF expand to help with this without being blocked by the USAID people? Dude. This is a view of the world. There's enough food for survival, but politics ends up deciding that some will starve.

USA Today
January 20, 2010
Pg. 5

Soldiers Told To Stop Handing Out Food

By Jim Michaels, USA Today

Food handouts were shut off Tuesday to thousands of people at a tent city here when the main U.S. aid agency said the Army should not be distributing the packages.

It was not known whether the action reflected a high-level policy decision at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) or confusion in a city where dozens of entities are involved in aid efforts.

"We are not supposed to get rations unless approved by AID," Maj. Larry Jordan said.

Jordan said that approval was revoked; water was not included in the USAID decision, so the troops continued to hand out bottles of water. The State Department and USAID did not respond to requests for comment.

Jordan has been at the airport supervising distribution of individual food packages and bottled water since his arrival last week. Each package provides enough calories to sustain a person for a day.

The food is flown by helicopter to points throughout the capital and distributed by paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division. At the tent city, set up at a golf course, more than 10,000 people displaced by the Haitian earthquake lay under makeshift tents. Each day, hundreds of people, many young children, line up for a meal.

Tuesday morning, the helicopters came only with water. Soldiers carried boxes of water in the hot sun and supervised Haitian volunteers who handed the supplies out.

At 3:55 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

No one will ever appreciate the good deeds of the Jews.

I'm sure Heaven does though.



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