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Sunday, January 24, 2010

More on Israel's operation in Haiti

Here's a Time Magazine report that mentions Israel's field hospital in Haiti.
Jean Marc Loremas, 46, carried his niece more than a mile from their home in the La Plaine area of Port-au-Prince to a sparsely populated industrial zone. There he nodded to two foreign guards in olive green fatigues and about a dozen semiambulatory earthquake victims who were already lined up on various pallets, crutches and canes before pounding on a metal sliding gate. "Shalom?" came the response as the eyehole shot back. Loremas explained his needs, and soon an Israeli doctor came out to examine the woman's broken femur.

Eight hours later, they were still there waiting for treatment, but Loremas knew that his 18-year-old niece Richline was one of the lucky ones. Like his little sister, whom he had deposited at the same field hospital the day before, she would be getting the best care possible in earthquake-ravaged Haiti. The Israeli hospital can treat only about 100 people a day, but it is the paramount medical center operating in Haiti in the aftermath of the Jan. 12 earthquake. It receives the cases that other hospitals find difficult and cannot manage. Upon entry, patients are photographed, and then they and their electronic records are digitally tracked around the tent complex with bar-coded bracelets. Ninety percent of those in Israeli hands have complex crushed limbs and bones — crush syndrome. But given the severity of the injuries and the conditions in apocalyptic Port-au-Prince, the hospital has had an amazing success rate: of the more than 400 people treated by Jan. 19, only eight had died.
And some small world syndrome from CNN's Anderson Cooper.
Medical professionals in Haiti are struggling to help critically ill patients with limited resources. We've heard horror stories about doctors forced to substitute vodka for rubbing alcohol, and use hacksaws for amputations. These dramatic and desperate images are described by some as "civil war medicine." However, this is not the situation at an Israeli-run field hospital in the earthquake-ravaged Haiti.

Located on a Port-au-Prince soccer field, the facility has operating rooms, an intensive care unit, a pediatric ward, and even a pharmacy. The technology is as sophisticated as most Western hospitals: it has x-ray equipment, respirators, monitors, and incubators that have sustained at least two pre-mature babies born since the earthquake.

How did a country that has never experienced a major earthquake respond so quickly and efficiently? To find out more about Israel's response in Haiti, I spoke with an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) officer. The man on the other end of the phone sounded familiar – a New York accent, distinctly from Queens – and the voice of my old friend from summer camp years ago.

The following is what Captain Barak Raz told me about Israel's operation in Haiti.
Read the whole thing.

And consider this from the Miami Herald:
Israel's enemies have succeeded in drawing a monstrous image. They have painted a nation of blood-thirsty, amoral beings -- an ugly caricature seeking to delegitimize the country. Sadly, this image has taken hold in much of the world, with the ultimate result of pushing away the chances for peace and reconciliation. Supposedly unbiased reports that accuse Israel of deliberately trying to kill Palestinian children; television programs that show Israelis as baby snatchers and organ traders, all of these fit in with the libels that have plagued the Jewish people across the centuries.

A more subtle version of the same approach ignores the life-and-death risks Israel faces with each step it takes towards the creation of a Palestinian state.

Again, this is not to say that Israel cannot be criticized. In fact, nobody challenges Israel more energetically than Israelis. The country engages in anguished introspection. Its armed forces enlist ethicists and philosophers. Its political, social and religious leaders constantly discuss the ethically appropriate response to enemies who operate inside a baffling framework of morality -- encouraging their supporters to blow themselves up among civilians and promoting an ideology that openly declares their intention to destroy the state of Israel.


Israeli rescuers, experienced at recovering the remains of terrorism and war victims, risked their lives crawling into unstable buildings to dig out desperate survivors. Crowds in Haiti chanted their thanks to Israel. A grateful mother named her new baby ``Israel.''

While the harshest critics of Israel's morality, the countries that have done their best to smear Israel, did not lift a finger to help Haiti. Israel, a land smaller than New Hampshire, sent hundreds of emergency workers, one of the largest contingents. When other countries started packing, Israeli said they will stay there at least another month.

Israel's demonizers will concoct sinister reasons for Israel's good deeds. You can count on that. Israel's response to Haiti's plight shows the country's true face -- a face its enemies don't want you to see.
Read the whole thing. Any chance the world will love us back after this? I'm not holding my breath.... You should see some of the comments I deleted tonight on the kids taken off the plane at gunpoint post.


At 3:35 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

What can one say.
It honors you as a people,prejudice will be around for still many generations to come just like there were pogroms in Polen and the ex soviet union of Jews as baby snatchers who would drink the blood of those babies.They should teach all children during history classes how this hatred towards the "Jewish people" started ,down the alley of history while the Jewish people were allowed to deal with money matters ,for the Catholics couldn't ,thus picturing the Jewish people as evil money lenders.
It was easyer to persecute them than to compensate or honor their debts.
And ignorance and persecution go hand in hand together.


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