« | »

Burma Junta Rejects Aid From US Warships

From those humanitarians at the Associated Press:

Myanmar shuns aid from US warships; UN urges more relief

By JOHN HEILPRIN, Associated Press Writer

BANGKOK, Thailand – U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Myanmar to focus on saving lives, not on politics, after the military government on Wednesday shunned a U.S. proposal for naval ships to deliver aid to cyclone survivors.

The U.N. says up to 2.5 million survivors of Cyclone Nargis face hunger, homelessness and potential outbreaks of deadly diseases…

Before leaving U.N. headquarters, Ban said the world body had finally received permission from the junta to use helicopters to carry aid to stranded victims.

His announcement was not immediately confirmed by officials in Myanmar.

Myanmar’s state-controlled media said that U.S. helicopters or naval ships were not welcome to join the relief effort.

The New Light of Myanmar newspaper said accepting military assistance “comes with strings attached” that are “not acceptable to the people of Myanmar.”

The report cited fears of an American invasion aimed at grabbing the country’s oil reserves.

The United States, as well as France and Great Britain, have naval vessels loaded with humanitarian supplies off the Myanmar coast, waiting for approval from the junta. The article did not say whether the French and British supplies would be allowed.

The four U.S. warships in the region were seen as a major potential boost for the relief effort with the capacity to deliver supplies to inaccessible areas of the low-lying Irrawaddy delta, with 14 helicopters, two landing craft vessels, two high-tech amphibious hovercraft and about 1,000 Marines.

American military aircraft are already sending aid on about five flights a day from Thailand to Yangon.

Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said Wednesday that the four U.S. Navy ships off the coast of Myanmar will remain there in hopes that officials of the military junta might yet approve delivery of aid by U.S. helicopter.

Asked how long the ships would stay, Whitman said: “For now, we think the need is compelling enough that we ought to keep those ships there.”

The New Light of Myanmar gave no explanation why the regime was willing to accept aid flown on U.S. C-130 cargo planes, with U.S. military personnel on board, but would not allow the warships and helicopters to deliver relief supplies.

Myanmar’s xenophobic leaders appear to have long feared an invasion by the United States, a concern that some analysts believe prompted the junta’s abrupt decision in 2005 to move the capital from Yangon to the remote city of Naypyitaw, which is equipped with bunkers

Before leaving New York, Ban welcomed the junta’s “recent flexibility” in saying it will allow relief workers from the 10-country Association of Southeast Asian Nations — of which Myanmar is a member — to begin distributing aid…

The U.N. weather agency said the storm warnings issued by Myanmar to alert its population about Cyclone Nargis were sufficient and heavy loss of life as the storm hit was inevitable.

Warning times of five to seven days would have been necessary, said Dieter Schiessl, director of the U.N. agency’s disaster risk reduction unit. Such early notice is beyond the current state of weather prediction technology, he added.

Of course it was somewhat difficult to get past the first sentence:

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Myanmar to focus on saving lives, not on politics…

Do as the UN says, not as they do.

Though to be fair, it should be noted that the United Nations doesn’t focus on either as much as they do on ways to line their own pockets.

That is always job one with them.

Myanmar’s xenophobic leaders appear to have long feared an invasion by the United States, a concern that some analysts believe prompted the junta’s abrupt decision in 2005 to move the capital from Yangon to the remote city of Naypyitaw, which is equipped with bunkers.

But they’re not crazy. Not much.

Don’t they realize that they are beloved by the Democrats who rule Congress and their minions in the media?

Indeed, they are their model state. What they hope to someday achieve here at home.

And of course the UN feels the same way:

The U.N. weather agency said the storm warnings issued by Myanmar to alert its population about Cyclone Nargis were sufficient and heavy loss of life as the storm hit was inevitable.

Meanwhile, the UN is still investigating the Bush administration for its criminal handling of Hurricane Katrina.

It was ever thus.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, May 21st, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

9 Responses to “Burma Junta Rejects Aid From US Warships”

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.


« Front Page | To Top
« | »