BALANCE & HARMONY - NOT DESTRUCTION
by Betty Luks
The December 2004 issue of The New Times Survey re-presented a public address by Prince Charles, "The Civilised Society" to encourage us all in these most difficult times. Since then, peoples and nations have experienced the most horrible earthquake and tsunami, which claimed the lives of thousands of innocent people. Prince Charles' words take on a greater significance as a result of the aftermath.
" I have seen the same evidence of an attempt to impose an arrogant technology that seeks not to work with but to subdue Nature - what I think is best described as the Industrialisation of Life. And, as part of this, there is a growing, a common and disheartening inability to understand both the continuing centrality of that which is sacred, and the timeless importance of the traditional forms of understanding of our place in the world a search for harmony and balance to an emphasis on peace, not war, with Nature; and to the encouragement of those deeper principles of understanding by which we can experience a sense of belonging and meaning within a rapidly changing world, and which we have a responsibility to bequeath to future generations."
People of Goodwill would relate to the Prince's words as they too survey the man-made chaos and disorder in so many areas of Life. Powerful metaphysical forces have been unleashed on this world, and, it would seem, will be unstoppable till those forces have been spent. It must now be apparent to even the most blindly loyal voter, the world's politicians are but puppets in the hands of much more powerful forces than they themselves can control.
One of our colleagues in the UK posed some serious questions about the earthquake to me, triggering the realisation it may have been man-made. Most decent human beings would dismiss such an idea, finding it too horrible to contemplate. But is it? A number of reports have come in posing the same question. The India Daily has asked the Indian Navy to investigate the matter.
HUMAN HAND BEHIND EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI?
Balaji Reddy, India Daily 29/12/04 http://188.8.131.52/indiadaily/editorial/12-29a-04.asp
"It is time for Indian Navy to investigate!"
demand the headlines:
Another astonishing feature of this earthquake and tsunami is the amount by which the Kar Nicobar Islands have displaced. The level of devastation simulates a 10 or higher Richter-scale earthquake. Was this a show down by a country to show the region what havoc can be created? We do not have the answers to this. We know many courtiers, including India, are working on anti-gravity lifters and devices. No matter what, it can be an experiment that went out of control. If it is not, that is the best news. But given the level of devastation and given the fact India is a regional power in South Asia, (the) Indian Navy has the obligation to investigate and tell the world what they found."
NOT SO 'GENEROUS' AFTER ALL
According to a report out of Sydney by Alan Boyd, the monies 'donated' by governments to the tsumani devastated nations have very strong and restricting strings attached. Mr. Boyd writes:
"The world's wealthiest nations assembled a massive financial package for the 5 million victims of South Asia's tsunami. Meeting with their Asian counterparts in Jakarta, leaders of the United States, Japan, Australia and Western Europe pledged US$3.7 billion in immediate help and reconstruction funds for 13 affected countries. And more is expected as development needs are assessed.
The biggest contributors were Australia and Germany Canberra will split its aid between emergency relief and long-term development assistance, while Berlin's package will be spread over three to five years. Washington earlier pledged $350 million, and has also committed 13,000 armed forces personnel and an armada of naval vessels and helicopters for emergency operations."
One report the NTS received says the local people in the region south of the province of Aceh are worried the Indonesian military will use the mass-burials of tsunami victims as a smokescreen to hide the evidence of their continuing slaughter of the Aceh 'separatists'. Alan Boyd sees, "Comments by US Secretary of State Colin Powell and Australian Prime Minister John Howard reinforced the notion that while humanitarianism undoubtedly has played a part in shaping relief policies, it probably comes second to the time-honoured practice of peddling influence." In fact, some of the pledges of aid have been so extravagant the European Development Commissioner Louis Michel cautioned all the 'pledged' money might not be forthcoming.
"We have to be careful and not participate in a beauty contest where we are competing to give higher figures," he cautioned.
Sydney writer Alan Boyd explains: "Relief organizations have calculated that as much as 75% of foreign aid is directly tied to trade access or other economic and political strategies. Some comes with so many strings attached, including preferential tendering on contracts and the hiring of consultants, that only 30-40% of dollar value is ever realized."
United States' policy "dictates that much foreign aid be spent on costly imported medicines, weapons, agricultural produce or manufactured goods. Some European nations have a similar approach." In other words, the American government is subsidising sales of US pharmaceutical companies, arms manufacturers, farmers and manufactured goods industries. If that is their policy, okay. But stop blowing your own trumpet pretending to the world just how generous you are!
According to the US Agency for International Development (USAID), "US foreign assistance has always had the twofold purpose of furthering America's foreign-policy interests in expanding 'democracy' and 'free' markets while improving the lives of the citizens of the developing world."