Archive for the ‘somalia’ Category

By Dr. Mercola

african child Poor African Countries Get Vaccines but No Food or Clean Water

As one of the world’s most well-known and respected voices, Microsoft founder Bill Gates has a unique opportunity to call attention to important social issues and make a huge impact worldwide.

Unfortunately Gates, through his foundation, has been partnering with not only biotech giant Monsanto to hoist genetically modified seeds on third-world countries, but also with Big Pharma, to whom he pledged $10 billion to provide vaccinations to children around the world.

This is billed as a humanitarian effort to save lives, but what children in developing countries need is healthy food, clean water and better sanitation.

These are the keys to preventing the spread of infectious disease, and they are being wholly ignored by the likes of Bill Gates and other vaccine proponents – at the children’s expense!

The Aftermath of a Bill Gates Vaccine Campaign …

An American family, the Gianelloni’s, visited a village in Uganda shortly after a Bill Gates vaccine campaign swept through and discovered what Bill Gates’ money does for hungry, sick children – essentially nothing.

The family found that the children were starving, living on one meager meal a day. Their only water source was the same stagnant stream that they bathed in. They had no sewage or sanitation. But, thanks to Gates, they were now vaccinated against measles and polio. Never mind that the most pressing epidemics in the area were actually Yellow Fever, malaria, HIV/AIDs and diarrhea …

Worse yet, one little girl who had received a measles vaccine two weeks earlier was now suffering with the measles as a result! After this blogger left, thanks to her and the mission group that arrived with her, the village had a water tank and clean water system, a cow, and a year’s worth of rice and beans. You can probably understand why the blogger made this comment about Gates’ “philanthropy”:

“I don’t care who you are or what side of the vaccine philosophy you fall under, there is no logic in the world that can explain that going into a remote village and giving children who only eat one meal a day and have never had clean drinking water, a vaccine. 

Seriously? Think about it. Can you imagine walking up to this precious little girl and saying ”I know you are starving, but here is a measles vaccine instead. I promise this will make you much healthier than food or water”. It’s a scary day when simple logic no longer exists.

Food & Water, nope. Vaccines, yep. And innocent children suffer the consequences. It’s absurd.

Food, Water, Sanitation is What’s Needed to Help Prevent Disease

The most vulnerable of the world’s children are those in the poorest countries where death and disease are often a result of malnutrition and lack of adequate sanitation and clean drinking water. In many third-world countries, children are often battling some sort of infection 200 days out of the year. Vaccines can be devastating to these already immunosuppressed children, as well as to adults, because vaccines often weaken and confuse the immune system, which ultimately increases the recipient’s susceptibility to the very infectious diseases vaccines are designed to prevent.

Nonetheless, emerging vaccine markets like third-world countries will soon outgrow developed markets by hundreds of billions of dollars. Emerging markets are areas of the world that are beginning to show promise as a profitable venture for many products, including vaccines. And emerging markets – primarily in developing countries in Southeast and Central Asia, and Africa – have been on vaccine makers’ radar for quite some time.

One reason that vaccine makers are interested in these parts of the world is that that’s where most of the world’s deaths from major infectious diseases occur. The only problem has been that, until recently, making vaccines for undeveloped countries with no money to pay for them was not exactly a profitable goal for vaccine makers.

Concerned that developed countries would have little or no resources for addressing serious infectious diseases if vaccine makers continued their pull-out, the World Health Organization and the G8 – the top developed countries in the world – responded with a plan for enticing vaccine companies to stay in the business. That plan was called Advance Market Commitments (AMCs).

AMCs Guarantee Drug Company Profits

Under AMCs, developed countries make legal, binding agreements to purchase vaccines that are needed in low-income countries. The purchase guarantees a bottom line for the manufacturers. In return, the manufacturers promise to sell those vaccines at reduced prices in the countries where they are most needed.

The idea is simple: “rich” nations sign legally binding commitments to purchase and/or finance an AMC vaccine once it’s ready for market. In return for the guaranteed market and income, drug companies promise to sell the new vaccine to “poor” countries at vastly reduced prices.

To speed up the process, the World Health Organization “prequalifies” AMC vaccines in an approval process that slices years off the time it normally takes a vaccine to make it to market.

Unfortunately, legally binding, advance market commitments to purchase vaccines that are mostly needed in third-world countries could backfire on developed countries that don’t need – or want – certain vaccines.

For instance, HPV (human papillomavirus) statistics show that HPV causes 4,000 deaths from cervical cancer per year in the United States, compared to 274,000 worldwide, 88 percent of which are in developing countries. So why were the HPV vaccines Gardasil and Cervarix — which have known safety issues — introduced in the U.S. and Europe, first, instead of going straight to where they’re needed most, if not to help sell huge quantities of the vaccine at premium prices, in anticipation of it becoming an AMC?

Even Gates and a Leading Vaccine Maker Admit Clean Water is Key

Malaria is another one of the top neglected diseases that world health leaders want to address with AMCs, but the ability to resist diseases like malaria requires a strong immune system, and for that, you require good nutrition, clean drinking water, and sanitation. If we want to help people in other countries to lower their malaria rates, and rates of other infectious diseases (like infection-associated diarrhea, which is one of the most common, and most preventable causes of death among children in the developing world) it would be wise to focus on these basics first.

Infectious organisms are more likely to penetrate the bodies of malnourished children due to inadequate vitamin C, which causes their skin to break down more easily and facilitates the entry of bacteria and other pathogens. The same is true for vitamin A deficiency, another common third-world problem, which results in increased susceptibility to infection and which could be rectified in individuals for pennies a day. Also, the living conditions of third-world children are often so poor that they are exposed to inordinately large numbers of pathogens, from which they have little defense.

In order to eradicate infectious disease from a nation, you also have to first address compromised immune systems. If you hit immune suppressed children with a potent, adjuvant-loaded vaccine, you’re far more likely to create new disease, not eradicate it.

With all of the billions being poured into vaccines to “save” the children, how many water purification systems could have been built? How many sanitation facilities? How many rations of meat and fresh produce?

Even Bill Gates himself has admitted that vaccines alone don’t eradicate disease. In a Wall Street Journal article about the resurgence of polio in African countries, Gates said that’s why he is revamping his disease fight to incorporate health, hygiene, and clean drinking water programs into vaccination programs.1 Polio spreads, after all, largely through feces-contaminated water, so ignoring that major risk factor while trying to eradicate the disease is ignorant, to put it nicely.

What’s really interesting is that at least one major vaccine maker has also echoed these sentiments, as evidenced on the front page of GlaxoSmithKline’s presentation to shareholders in June 2010:2

“With the exception of clean drinking water, vaccines are the most cost-effective public health measure,” GSK said.

What if, just what if, the same amount of money that has been spent on vaccines over the past decade had been spent on sanitation facilities, toilets, healthy food and clean water instead?

What You Can Do to Make a Difference

Increasing numbers of vaccines are being introduced not only in third-world countries but also in the developed world, and it’s simply not wise to blindly depend on the information coming directly from the vaccine makers’ PR departments, or from federal health officials, agencies or foundations that are mired in conflicts of interest with industry …

No matter what vaccination choices you make for yourself or your family, it is a basic human right to be fully informed about all the risks of medical interventions and pharmaceutical products, like vaccines, and have the freedom to refuse if you conclude the benefits do not outweigh the risks for you or your child.

Unfortunately, the business partnership between government health agencies and vaccine manufacturers is too close and is getting out of hand. There is a lot of discrimination against Americans, who want to be free to exercise their human right to informed consent when it comes to making voluntary decisions about which vaccines they and their children use.

We cannot allow that to continue.

While it seems “old-fashioned,” the only truly effective actions you can take to protect the right to informed consent to vaccination and expand your rights under the law to make voluntary vaccine choices, is to get personally involved with your state legislators and the leaders in your community.

THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY.

Mass vaccination policies are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level, and it is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights will have the greatest impact.

Signing up to be a user of NVIC’s free online Advocacy Portal at www.NVICAdvocacy.org gives you access to practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community. You will get real-time Action Alerts about what you can do if there are threats to vaccine exemptions in your state. With the click of a mouse or one touch on a Smartphone screen you will be put in touch with YOUR elected representatives so you can let them know how you feel and what you want them to do. Plus, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have all the information you need to make sure your voice is heard. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Right now, in California, the personal belief exemption is under attack by Pharma-funded medical trade organizations and public health officials trying to get a bill (AB 2109) passed that would require parents to get a medical doctor’s signature to file an exemption for personal religious and conscientious beliefs. Watch NVIC’s 90-second public service message and learn more about what you can do if you are a California resident.

Internet Resources

To learn more about vaccines, I encourage you to visit the following web pages on the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) website at www.NVIC.org:

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment by doctors or state officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Ingredient Calculator (VIC): Find out just how much aluminum, mercury and other ingredients are in the vaccines your doctor is recommending for you or your child.
  • Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) on MedAlerts. Search the government’s VAERS database to find out what kinds of vaccine reactions, injuries and deaths have been reported by patients and heath care workers giving vaccines.

Find a Doctor Who Will Listen to Your Concerns

Last but not least, if your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to punish those patients and parents, who become truly educated about health and vaccination and want to make vaccine choices instead of being forced to follow risky one-size-fits-all vaccine policies.

If you are treated with disrespect or are harassed in any way by a doctor (or government official), do not engage in an unproductive argument. You may want to contact an attorney, your elected state representatives or local media, if you or your child are threatened.

That said, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents. It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate and connect with a doctor who treats you with compassion and respect and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child, and isn’t just competing for government incentives designed to increase vaccination rates at any cost.

Read the entire article here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/08/06/healthy-foods-not-vaccines.aspx

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HARDA = Horn of Africa Relief and Development Agency.

FAMINE IN HORN OF AFRICA

What is HARDA doing??

HARDA is working with our on the ground partners whom, as you can see from the photo on the left, are distributing food aid right now. Dr Mohamud Sheikh, an executive member of HARDA, has been using his holiday to help with our initial aid effort in Northern Kenya, thanks to a very generous donation from Muslim Aid Australia. He reports “we fed up to 5,927, buying only essential food stuff to increase the number of people that we can reach. We provided Corn meal (maize flour), Oil and Beans – the common diet of the people. The community elders were so pleased that we dd not leave without feedng anyone who turned up for food”.

Help urgently needed

The United Nations declared a famine in parts of Somalia. Famine is declared when a number of preconditions are met. These include when hunger rates among children rise above thirty precent and many people are unable to get food and other basic needs. The UN believes that it is likely that tens of thousands have already died, the majority of these being children.

And the famine is spreading with the Horn of Africa experiencing its worst drought in sixty years. UN officials have said more than eleven million people are in need of food aid.

What can you do??

Please HELP those in such desperate need. Each life is precious and each donation helps preserve a life!
100% of what you donate is going directly to those in need, providing much needed food to those heading to the camps and to those outside the camps who are dying so close to help.
The pictures and stories coming out of these regions would break your heart; and we have so much in comparison to their need!


Donate to HARDA’s HORN OF AFRICA FAMINE AID APPEAL | www.harda.info

Twitter: @AussieActivist

HARDA (Horn of Africa Relief and Development Agency) is holding our Family Wellbeing Day this Saturday, October 30th at Auburn Park, Macquarie Rd, Auburn NSW from 10am to 3pm.

Building Resilience – Good Friends help us bounce back!

There will be Jumping Castle, Animal Farm, DJ Prince 2000, Celebrity Soccer Player, Novelty Races, Halal BBQ, Drumming Workshops, Hip Hop Workshop, Information Stalls and Much More!

All are welcome to this FREE Event. for more information visit HARDA Website or call 02 8762 4225 or email harda@harda.org.au

As reported on IRIN News: NAIROBI, 4 January 2010 (IRIN) – Thousands of families have fled Somalia’s central town of Dusamareb, the regional capital of Galgadud, after a weekend of fighting between Islamist groups killed dozens and left many others injured, locals told IRIN.

On 2 January, Al-Shabab attacked Dusamareb, 500km north of the capital Mogadishu, and captured it from Ahlu Sunna Waljama’a – a traditional Sufi group – for a short while before being forced out again.

“Our estimate is that between 6,000 and 7,000 families [32,000 to 42,000 people] have fled and are now displaced,” Sheikh Abdirahman Gedoqorow, a religious leader, told IRIN on 4 January.

Most of the displaced are scattered across rural villages and towns in the region, he said.

Gedoqorow said those displaced were facing difficult conditions due to insufficient assistance in the areas to which they had fled. “There is no one out there helping them and the area has been ravaged by drought.”

He said the displaced “desperately” needed shelter material, food and water, the most urgent requirement.

Rising death toll

A local leader estimated that 50 people had so far died in the fighting and at least 80 had been injured. However, a journalist, who requested anonymity, said the death toll was likely to be higher.

“The majority of those who died were from the invading [Al-Shabab] group,” the journalist said.

The two groups have been battling for control of the country’s central regions since Ahlu Sunna Waljama’a routed Al-Shabab from the area in December 2008.

The journalist added that Al-Shabab had since been reported to have left the area. “They are nowhere near Dusamareb. They took a beating on Saturday [2 January].”

Dusamareb, a town of about 40,000, has in the past three years hosted thousands of displaced people from Mogadishu. “Whether residents or IDPs, almost 80 percent are now displaced,” the journalist added.

Read the full report via IRIN Africa | SOMALIA: Thousands displaced by clashes in Galgadud | Horn of Africa | Somalia | Conflict Refugees/IDPs | News Item.

NAIROBI, Jan 5 (Reuters) – The U.N.’s World Food Programme (WFP) has suspended its work in much of southern Somalia due to threats against its staff and unacceptable demands by al Shabaab rebels controlling the area, a WFP spokesman said on Tuesday.

“Unacceptable conditions and demands from armed groups have disrupted WFP’s ability to reach many of the most vulnerable people in southern Somalia,” Peter Smerdon told Reuters.

via Reuters AlertNet – WFP suspends operations in much of southern Somalia.

Somali pirates have seized an Indonesian chemical tanker with 24 crew members in the Gulf of Aden, maritime watchdog bodies reported.

The Singapore-flagged Pramoni was captured while en route to India – the third vessel since August to be taken in the region patrolled by foreign navies – said Andrew Mwangura of the East Africa Seafarers Assistance Program.

It marked the first attack by Somali pirates this year.

Among the crew of the 20,000 deadweight-tonne Pramoni heading toward Kandla are 17 Indonesians, five Chinese nationals, a Nigerian and a Vietnamese, said Mr Mwangura, adding that the sailors were safe.

The European Union’s Atalante force confirmed the news, saying: “The ship’s master reported on VHF that the ship was hijacked and all the crew are well. The ship is presently heading south towards Somalia.”

On Monday, pirates seized the St James Park, a UK-flagged chemical tanker with a crew of 26 from nine different countries, while Yemeni authorities said the same day that a Yemeni freighter with 15 crew members had also been taken.

Since the end of the summer monsoon season allowed pirate attacks to resume three months ago, Somali pirates had abandoned the Gulf of Aden for the wide open seas of the Indian Ocean, venturing as far as the Seychelles and beyond.

The latest capture brings to at least 12 ships and around 270 seamen currently held by Somalia pirates.

Somali pirates seize Indonesian chemical tanker – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).

n Kismayu town, 500 kilometres south of Mogadishu, the authority of al-Shabaab, the strongest Islamist movement opposing the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), issued orders to be observed by the people.

Sheikh Ibrahim Hassan, the Public Awareness Officer of the Authority, announced through a local Radio, Al-Andalus that male inhabitants in Juba regions including Kismayu must grow beards, shave moustaches and shorten their trousers to above the ankles.

Sheikh Ibrahim stated that all adult men in the area ought to comply with the directives within three days, effective December 19. Any opposition to the orders would bring punishment.

Although al-Shabaab (youth in Arabic) rules many parts of southern and central regions of Somalia, the Juba regions with a long border with Kenya appear to have attracted the full authority of the movement.

On December 10, the administration recently appointed by al-Shabaab at Dhobley border town, next to Liboi in Kenya’s North Eastern Province introduced restrictions on a number of social aspects. All businesses are to close during the prayer times that are observed by Muslim faithful.

Da’ud Hassan Ali, the new administration’s Defence Officer, had announced that anybody found running a business as the muezzin calls for prayers would be penalised.

“When the muezzin calls the worshippers to prayers, not even a single person is allowed to wander in the streets,” said Mr Ali. The next target had been the female lot. Women had been ordered to cover their bodies from head to toe with extra heavy clothing.

“This is the notation of Islam on women,” said Ali. “They should not fail to observe the dress code,” he added.The Al-Shabaab officer indicated that his administration had allocated a place for smokers and Khat (miraa) chewers to buy and consume the commodity. “No one is allowed to sell or consume the stuff in public,” remarked Ali.

In October 2008, the Islamist authority in Kismayu banned khat flights to Kismayu. The mind-stimulating commodity used to come from Kenya and its chewing is very popular, especially among male Somali adults.

The latest orders involving beards, moustaches and trousers as imposed on men generated heated reactions.

Opponents insist that only a nationwide, stable Islamic rule can issue such directives. Their view is that al-Shabaab or any other authority in Somalia is not very permanent. Hence, could not introduce decisions with lasting effects.

“Some of the instructions given by al-Shabaab are so personal that even an Islamic State could not introduce,” commented Mr Aw Ali Husein Garweyne, a moderate Islamist in Mogadishu.

“Our Prophet Mohammed gave us the faculty to use some of his examples like beard and moustache, but never made it mandatory,” he added.

According to Aw Ali, some of the directives being enforced by al-Shabaab cannot be justified by the Islamic books of reference. He cited the Jihad, suicide missions or single dress rule as example.

Even President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed of the TFG recently labelled un-Islamic the strict dress code enforced by al-Shabaab. He noted that Islam only tells women to cover themselves properly, locally known as asturaad, without dictating specific type of clothes and design.

Addressing the city council in Mogadishu, President Ahmed joked that the Islamist militants even want to know the underwear of women to note whether they match their standard. “It is neither religious nor cultural to ask about underwear,” said the president.

Meanwhile, tittle-tattle has recently been circulating that a woman was killed at Yakhshid district in North Mogadishu by al-Shabaab. The owner of a teashop at a mechanical garage, her crime was to have had a radio and listening to Radio Mogadishu, a government controlled broadcaster.

“Only in service since October this year, Radio Mogadishu is indeed fast becoming popular.

On Sunday December 27, Sheikh Ali Mohamoud Raghe alias Sheikh Ali Dhere, the Spokesman of Al-Shabaab held a press conference in Mogadishu.

He stated that listening to Radio Mogadishu amounted to a crime and anybody found tuning to the station would be treated like being a government partisan.

“Radio Mogadishu has an un-Islamic agenda,” said Sheikh Raghe. “Listening to it is like directly helping the enemy of Islam,” he said. Al-Shabaab’s statement looks to have had an immediate negative impact because more people are now curious to listen to the radio.

To make matters worse, the government decided to expand Radio Mogadishu’s coverage area by broadcasting through a satellite, reaching listeners in Africa, Asia and Europe.

Continuing his argument, Aw Ali says that neither growing beard nor trimming the moustaches is mandatory. “They are the best way to appear, but not necessarily compulsory,” remarked Aw Ali. “I believe these people are working for gaalo (non-Muslims) to spoil our religion,” said the manager of a teashop in South Mogadishu. According to other sceptics, al-Shabaab is imposing orders and restrictions in order to show their power to command.

allAfrica.com: Somalia: Al-Shabaab Orders on Radio and Beard Cause Confusion.