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DIDGE - The View From Down Under

An Aussie’s ridgy-didge view of world affairs and popular culture.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Red Crescent: Falluja is a humanitarian disaster

The aid agency the Red Crescent has said the Iraqi city of Falluja faces a humanitarian disaster after US Military attacks on the city.

US troops have taken over the hospital in Falluja, stopping citizens from gaining medical treatment. A young boy died from a snake bite, which would have been easily treatable had access been allowed to the hospital. A pregnant woman and her child also died because there were no doctors.

Foreign reporters are saying the smell of death hovers over the city as countless corpses line the streets.

The Red Crescent said the most needed supplies to the city were food, water and medical aid.

In more shocking developments a nine-year-old boy was hit by shrapnel, however his parents were unable to take him to hospital and he died hours later of blood loss. But that’s not the worst of it. Since going outside was so dangerous the boy’s family had to bury him in their garden. The Red Cross says there are thousands of people, including senior citizens, women and children who have not eaten or consumed water for days.

But of course this is all about killing evil terrorists, like women, children and babies. A shocking BBC report featured an irate Falluja mother. She said Bush deserved to be punished for his crimes against her country. She pointed to her wounded child and a baby, who had a leg amputated, and asked, “Are these children terrorists?”

Another horrific story tells of a family’s home being destroyed by a US Army bombardment. The mother and her three daughters were all killed.

And there is a question on my mind. The US Army can release death tolls of US soldiers and insurgents, but how come no civilian death toll? Are they too afraid to tell the world how many innocent people they’ve murdered?


Further reading:

Fallujah Residents Desperate for Food, Water, Aid
No food. No water. No help. As fierce fighting casts a pall of smoke over the rubble-strewn Iraqi city of Fallujah, thousands of Iraqi families remain cut off from desperately needed supplies. “It was terrible. We had no water or electricity. I even saw dead bodies lying in the street and a US tank rolled over them."

Eyewitness: Falluja battle scars
For four days now there have been bodies lying in the streets. It is starting to become a serious health risk. I spoke to an officer who had been a little way out from the base and he said that cats and dogs are now starting to eat these bodies. It is a quite horrific picture which I'm drawing but that is what awaits the people of Falluja when they come back.

A city in ruins, sky thick with smoke: 'let's kick ass ... the American way'
'I guess there are some good people - it's jus' that we don' have nothin' to do with them,' mused a marine as he and his colleagues sorted their kit and cleaned their M16 assault rifles. 'I see the little kids in the cars and I feel sorry for them, but when they turn 16 they're evil.'

US denies need for Falluja aid convoy
A convoy of food and medicine brought by the Red Crescent on Saturday was not allowed into the city because the US Army did not think any Iraqi civilians were trapped there. Some residents still inside the city, contacted by Reuters yesterday, said their children were suffering from diarrhoea and had not eaten for days. Much of Falluja has been destroyed and hundreds of thousands of residents are refugees but the attack seems only to have deepened the city's anger and antagonised much of the Sunni minority.


When the smoke has cleared around Fallujah, what horrors will be revealed?
"There will be nothing left of Fallujah by the time they finish. They have already destroyed so many homes with their bombings from the air, and now we are having this from tanks and big guns."

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