Sunday, 30 July 2017


The world is suffering from climate change. Every day we can watch the world weather report on BBC News to see rain bearing winds streaming across India, Bangladesh and Japan.

But not a drop is falling on Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen and Southern Europe. There are forest fires in Portugal and France while the Vatican has turned off the water in the fountains. Nations in North Africa are on the leeward side of the Sahara Desert.

Papua New Guinea is experiencing flooding rains daily with paths and roads flowing as rivers. The Bumbu River floods about twice a week fed by the thousands of small tributaries in the mountains behind Lae.

The country has an abundance of fruit and vegetables sold in town and roadside markets at cheap prices. No -one should go hungry. A family can be fed on a plastic bag full of vegetables every night.

Yet we read reports of children suffering from malnutrition that may result from lazy mothers giving the child money to go to the trade store for an evening meal of Coca Cola and Twisties.

Others give their families a daily meal of tinned fish and white rice. Parents in Yemen and Venezuela could not afford even this expense.

Papua New Guinea benefits from extensive rural areas and villages with hill sides of gardens. There is often enough produce for the family, village and town markets.

Now we read of deep problems in Venezuela faced with empty supermarket shelves and no flour for bread with a 600% inflation rate that brings slow economic strangulation. The President plans to solve the problem by suppressing the people not feeding them.

The question does arise as to the extent of the rural areas in Venezuela. Supermarkets may be empty but what of the village markets? 

Venezuela has depended on the sale of oil in a world faced with global warming from burning fossil fuels and now turning to solar and wind power. The problem will get worse until nations come to substitute their oil sales with other exports.

The world grieves for the small boy dying of incurable disease in England. There is no grief expressed for the thousands of men, women and children dying of cholera in war devastated Yemen.

Why can the world not gather funds to help the people of Yemen? There is an ongoing war in Yemen but the cholera is surely killing all sides to the conflict.

There should be a cease-fire until the pandemic is stopped. The outbreak will cause general genocide across Yemen.

The civilized world is selective in its grief. It was once said that a million people dying overseas is equivalent in grief to a thousand people dying in our country and two people dying in our street.

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