Drought: Misery as Somalia buries its dead

2011-07-28 11:36

Mogadishu - Beside a rubbish dump in war-ravaged Mogadishu, Osmail Moalim Abdi cries at the grave of his one-year-old son, another child fallen victim of an extreme drought gripping the Horn of Africa.

"My son here, Isak, is the fourth of my five sons I have buried," he said, bowing in grief over the simple grave.

"All of them died from hunger, and I was not able to help them."

Abdi, 42, fled his village in southern Somalia's Lower Shabelle region, one of two areas affected by famine, seeking food and water in the conflict-torn capital.

An estimated 3.7 million people in Somalia - around a third of the population - are on the brink of starvation, and millions more in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda have been struck by the worst drought in the region in decades.

Many in Somalia are fleeing to neighbouring Kenya and Ethiopia, but up to 100 000 people have arrived in Mogadishu in the past two months, according to the UN refugee agency UNHCR.

In July, around a thousand people arrived every day into the Somali capital, already struggling with over-crowded camps.

Funeral arrangements

"We are receiving a large number of displaced people every day, and they need urgent assistance as soon as possible," said Muhudin Hasan, a Somali government official.

The United Nations has called for massive action to support the 12 million people affected by drought, and its World Food Programme began airlifting supplies into Mogadishu on Wednesday.

But fighting broke out in the city on Thursday as government forces backed by African Union troops launched an assault on strategic areas held by hard-line Shabaab insurgents.

Access to support for people like Abdi remains hard.

Without money, he could not even afford proper funeral arrangements for his children.

Instead, he had to scrape a metre-deep grave in an empty area, close to a rubbish dump beside Mogadishu's airport.

"Friends helped me dig a grave," he said, tears rolling down his cheeks.


His entire wealth of 60 cows in his village of Toratorrow died three months ago, leaving the family with nothing to support them, forcing them to move to Mogadishu.

But the three-day journey on foot through the parched scrubland to the capital ended in tragedy.

"I lost two of my children on the way from the village, because the days of travel were without food and hardly water to drink," Abdi said, adding that another son died on arrival in the city.

UN officials say the drought has killed tens of thousands of people in recent months, forcing hundreds of thousands to walk in search of food and water.

But the situation inside Mogadishu, where al-Qaeda-inspired Shabaab insurgents continue to battle the Western-backed government, is no better.

Aid workers say they are hopelessly overstretched.

"Many are dying of malnutrition. We estimate six or seven children are dying each day," said Mohamed Roble, a health worker with a local aid agency, describing the situation at the camp for displaced people where he works.

Little hope for the future

"This is a disaster but we are not getting assistance to cope with it," he added.

Even when people are able to obtain the food and water being distributed, they often lack even the most basic containers to carry it, the UNHCR warned.

Instead they haul food and water away in plastic bags, the agency said.

"I could do nothing as my children starved to death in front of my wife and me," Abdi said.

"It would have been better that I died before them, so that I would not have to witness the tragedy in my family," he added.

He has little hope for the future, only a faith that "God will help me be strong."

"My wife does not sleep but just cries most of the time, which makes me so sad every day," he said.

"We have only one child left now and he is very ill, and we don’t know if he is going to make it."

  • Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 11:50

    Ahmed Mohamed Mahamoud Silanyo has money to wage war but he can't feed and water his people, sad

      Pulverturm - 2011-07-28 12:07

      Oh please, he can't keep his own Pirates in check! Seriously, I feel NOTHING for those people. I used to be a huge humanitarian, but all I get in return is a fat bottom lip and the other hand comes out for more!

      Currie_Mafia - 2011-07-28 12:51

      Africa is Africa's own worst enemy !

      Marcell - 2011-07-28 13:01

      How can he feed so many children? The UN should print on the bags: DON'T BREED WHAT YOU CAN'T FEED!

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:04

      Theoniel, Somalia is a historically Arab country, who said anything about white people?

      Dal68 - 2011-07-28 13:14

      Africa is a continent of users, SA is following suit, no contributers, just users.

      Mattewis - 2011-07-28 13:31

      As usual the drought gets the blame. It's funny that South Africa also has a very similar arid to semi-arid climate, and up to the ANC misrule we were a net exporter of agricultural produce! Because Africa is Africa's own worst enemy, Verwoerd proposed Apartheid so at least Africa could have been well fed while b!tching about the oppression of white colonialism!

      Robyn du Trevou - 2011-07-28 13:36

      Theoniel Bosman - there was no apartheid in Somali and kenya, do you know what you are even talking about. you cannot blame an entire race for drought! but not even for the poverty when their own government will not support them.

      Blue - 2011-07-28 13:40

      @ Robyn du Trevou I believe he was only being sarcastic

      Anton - 2011-07-28 13:42

      The damage this drought in North Africa has done to ................ South Africa !!!!! People outside of this country, would read most of these comments in disbelieve... Not even 10 SWC, would bring the goodwill back, we had just over one year ago !!

      Theoniel Bosman - 2011-07-28 14:10

      People I'm joking, due the fact that Apartheid is being blamed for everything these days....SO PLEASE CHILL!!!

      EDI2000 - 2011-07-28 16:26

      Don't know what all the fuss is about, it's just natural for a land to cut the population of any species man or animal when it cant sustain it. One of the first things you learn in high school biology is that any given area has a K-capacity., which means that famin or war, desease or any other natural disaster wil happen to put the balances and checks back in their places. TOO MANY PEOPLE NOT ENOUGH RESOURCES simple as that, no biggie

  • chaka - 2011-07-28 11:56

    This is so sad but in the same breath I am going to ask "why do they keep on having children if they know that cannot feed them"?

      Peaceful - 2011-07-28 12:59

      You are all sick excuses of human beings. Karma is an amazing thing, watch and learn, the world turns in circles and what you sow you always reap, no matter how long that may take.

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:05

      I'm just saying, kids have nutrients, they can't feed their kids, they need nutrients

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:06

      @peaceful, you're a sick excuse of a hippie

      Peaceful - 2011-07-28 13:14

      @ Daemos1 You presumne to label me because I am not a sick bastard like you. I am not a hippie, I just still have compassion for life you sicko.

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:29

      you're the onle labelling people buddy, and I quote "You are all sick excuses of human beings" if you really believed in karma, you wouldn't be hrling random insults, go burn some incense.

      Peaceful - 2011-07-28 13:43

      You call me a hippie because I can't bear to watch innocent children starve to death and then hear heartless people joke about their parents eating them ??? I could recommend a good therapist that may even be able to help you grow a new heart Daemos1.

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 14:22

      @peaceful, survival does make the extreme necessary. In Haiti they were ripping out the gold teeth of the dead... so I suppose eating a child thats already doomed to ensure the further survival of your species is a necessary step forward. what happened on everest lol

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 14:27

      No, I'm calling you a hippie because you're one of thos karma nuts. and who said I was joking about them eating their kids It's a viable solution but it will never happen.

  • Mad man - 2011-07-28 11:57

    All because of USA and Britain. Blood suckers

      Pulverturm - 2011-07-28 12:05

      In what way is the USA and Britain responsible for this? Because they didn't hand out relief fast enough? Seriously, f*ck Africa, I vote that Europe and America stops ALL relief effort here.

      Pictureof - 2011-07-28 12:08

      I agree Pulver, hand over African Charity to Zuma , Mugabe and Gaddaffi. their sum total IQ is genius and they have all the answers.

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:09

      Madman, I agree, they should never have gotten involved, in any way, & let nature take its coyrse. It is the western liberal policies that are hampering natures efforts in eradicating the rubbish from this planet, with their pathetic aid schemes.

      edd - 2011-07-28 12:10

      I agree. The western countries must all boycott Africa. No more food, no more humanitarian help, no more doctors without borders, no more import of western vehicles, no more sharing of technology. The world is a better place without this continent...

      Eric West - 2011-07-28 12:12

      DABOSS247365 - spot on!!

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 12:15

      edd, take your medication. For the rest of you who are wondering about why the west keeps extending aid to Somalia, aside from their large reserves of uranium and largely unexploited reserves of iron ore, tin, gypsum, bauxite, copper, salt and natural gas, there is also possibly oil for them to drill.

      Mnr. Smith - 2011-07-28 12:18

      Mad Man you have the stupidest senseless comments ever! Did you know that Somalia is the only African country that were never colonized? Exactly how is the West to blame for this???

      Staalbal - 2011-07-28 12:36

      Hmm, Somalia never colonized - Maybe that is the reason the place is such a F up.

  • lollie sue - 2011-07-28 12:02

    This is sad very sad

  • daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:03

    Well, you outbreed your resources, this is what happens. You scream Allah & blow up your infrastructure while other nations build theirs, this is what happens. You spend all your resources on fighting each other & a non existant foreign enemy as opposed to investing in your people, this is what happens. Anyone who has ever been in somalia, or even seen how they behave when they stay here (Stab each other over a blanket) will say good riddens to bad rubbish.

      Eric West - 2011-07-28 12:15

      Exactly!! Have you noticed that no Muslim countries have contributed any aid to these feckers? I wonder why that is?

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:35

      Because as full of it as the muslims are, they are not afraid to call a spade a spade, & they will never invest in what will never provide a return. They know that any aid to that place is a complete & utter waste or resources on a completely lost cause.

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 12:55

      There are muslim countries who are members of the U.N.and the world food programme (UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, etc) The U.N. is providing aid to Somalia your point is invalid.

      Kenpachi - 2011-07-28 13:58

      and to think SA is a mass importer of Somalians,..mmmmmmm when the whites are gone it gonna be BBE "Black Brother Enemies"

      Claire - 2011-07-29 10:38

      So I take it from your sh#t comment that those innocent children asked for this to happen to them? why dont you stop stereotyping people not all Somali people are bad, why dont you just say all non white people are criminals and all white people are racists?

  • Jeff - 2011-07-28 12:06

    That Steers was awesome..

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:07


      Eric West - 2011-07-28 12:16


      VargVikernes - 2011-07-28 12:26


      edd - 2011-07-28 12:38


      Pulverturm - 2011-07-28 13:16

      LOL, that was a liiiiiiiiiittle bit heartless :)

      Grab - 2011-07-28 14:24

      I'm still trying to get that Kentucky out from between my teeth.LMIMP!!!

  • VargVikernes - 2011-07-28 12:07

    So there has been exactly zero progress or evolution since the last time we were subject to photos of starving kids with flies crawling on them. Once again everyone else has to run to help them. Enabling behaviour leads to zero effort. Now we just need some idiot liberal western pop singer/actor to make it a pet cause, like Geldof, Clooney, Gere etc. Charity breeds a complete lack of impetus to do for anything themselves as long as the liberals are there to adopt their uselessness as their cause du jour.

  • edd - 2011-07-28 12:08

    South Africa in 10 years......

  • Smooth Sailor - 2011-07-28 12:14

    as terrible as this famine situation is- why have so many children? its as if these poor children are born to die. where is the responsibility. if you live in the worst country in the owrld- dont breed. if you cannot feed yourself- how will you feed 5 sons?

      Rusty - 2011-07-28 12:23

      As these children are dying of starvation, the women will be knocked up and give birth to more children who will die... What are these people doing????

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:37

      An eagle raises one chick, but that chick has a 90% chance of making it to adulthood due to the care invested by the parents. A fish lays 10 000 eggs, & only 5 stand a chance to get to maturity. The more you breed the less care you can afford per unit the more are destined to die. end of story.

  • Smooth Sailor - 2011-07-28 12:17

    sad sad times. prayers go out to everyone suffering, and to all the kind humanitarians doing everything in their power to assist.

  • TRiP - 2011-07-28 12:22

    But Africa will not lift a finger to help its own. That is because black life is at its cheapest in the regard of African political leaders. Black lives are nowhere as invisible as they are to African leaders. African leaders do not see black people - especially not when they die. Over the past few weeks President Jacob Zuma has been running a spirited campaign against the Nato bombing of Libya's Muammar Gaddafi. He has travelled the world, drumming up support for this dictator, a man who has been in power for an astonishing 42 years. Read it and weep.

      Kenpachi - 2011-07-28 14:04

      You forgot Zuma's support for Mugabe,..

  • theratlady - 2011-07-28 12:28

    At the end of the day , regardless as to who is to blame, its the children who always suffer. My heart goes out to these poor babies starvation must be a painfull and unpleasent death. My question is how come the parents always seem to survive and make it through the droughts and the children dont, is it because the parents are incapable of giving up their portion of food and water so that their kids can live.

      Peaceful - 2011-07-28 13:02

      Because children are more vulnerable and require more nutrition and water to sustain life. Sick comment theratlady.

      Pulverturm - 2011-07-28 13:19

      Peaceful, I think the question was quite a valid one actually!

      Peaceful - 2011-07-28 13:29

      @ Pulverturm Children dehydrate at a far quicker rate than adults and because they are growing, require more nutrition on a daily basis. Adults require only liquid for long periods to sustain life as their muscles and existing fat supplies ( mostly around internal organs) will sustain them for far longer periods.) I do not believe that a parent will eat their children's food and watch then starve to death.

  • daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 12:41

    The sooner we accept that life is brutal, the better. let them die, & we will only watch them die once. feed them, & we will watch some die, & the remainder breed so we can watch more die when it happens again. This is a Somalia problem, not a african or a world one. full stop. face the reality of life people. If any money is to be donated anywhere, that should be done to first raise our own out of poverty, uplift our own communities, before trying to help across the planet. Charity starts at home. & this is home, not somalia.

      MNM - 2011-07-28 12:54

      So let's just watch them starve to death because if we help they might have more children who will die later? That's the most idiotic thinking imaginable.

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 13:06

      MNM, yes, pathetic statement indeed. but what do we say when earth population hits 20 billion, no space left for anyone, & 75% of these infidels then suddenly demand us to share our resources? let them fend for themselves, as we have all had to. the strongest will emerge while the weak will perish, keeping the balance correct.

      device - 2011-07-28 13:13

      @DABOSS247365,I agree that life is brutal however we as humans do have to be brutal, the beauty of being human is that we see beauty and potential in the most torrid of times, regardless of the situation. Secondly I disagree that this is only a Somalian problem. The war in Somalia may be a civil war but not a single weapon being used there was made in that country, the entire war has been funded initially by superpowers playing cold war politics and then by criminal weapons manufactures after the end of the cold war, furthermore the 12 million or so people affected by this drought are not going to stay in Somalia, they are going to leave, firstly to neighbouring country's such as Kenya and then to the rest of the world including SA. this will put a significant pressures on these governments. with regards to "raising our own out of poverty" let me tell you that i work for an NGO in cape town doing poverty relief and most of the funds we get come from overseas countries, your narrow parochial view that countries exist in isolation and have to take care of their own problems completely on their own is so out of touch with the reality of our globalised world that it is laughable.

      MNM - 2011-07-28 13:16

      I understand your point but it's inhumane to say let's just watch them die, especially the children. They are the innocent victims and the ones who suffer most.

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 13:31

      @Device, I am well aware of how the global society works, but that is where the laugh lies in the long run. everyone keeps on meddling in the affairs of others, without having resolved their own issues first. This is where a massive part of the problem lies. All this trying to be nice never, ever gets you nowhere, as nobody will ever learn unless they do so by experience. Europe & america have had their wars, had their depressions, their fights, their crimes & their era's. Now let Africa have its own. stop meddling, in any way. stop selling weapons, but stop giving food, & let it balance out the natural way. This liberal lesftist system has messed softened us up & damaged society just as much as any other extreme system. Look no further than Malema. It was the UK & US who championed sanctions against the previous regime to aid the ANC in it's fight against apartheid. The elders in the ANC know this, yet you have Malema, cursing the existance of the very nations who helped he's forefathers achieve the freedom he currently has. The west has one fundemental flaw. They cannot keep their dam paws to themselves, & are forever meddling. Find me 1 place this has ever worked.

      Kenpachi - 2011-07-28 14:06

      If the pirates starve then they cannot hijack the ships hehehe,...To thin to carry the AK

  • Malemawoodworkproject - 2011-07-28 12:50

    Dearest, deepest, darkest Africa, If you continue to have too many children, you will never be able to pull yourself straight. It is common logic to have less children, so that you can feed and educate those children. The UN food AID is such a scandal, the west feels so guilty for creating the capitalist system that they send a bit of corn down to the Horn, but alas, it only delays the inevitable. Kind Regards, Julius-the-carpenter

  • birdman - 2011-07-28 12:55

    Somalia brought you "black hawk down, pirates, gangs of heavily armed thugs, and now they need the West's help - I say to the UN - Spend your money on people who deserve your help!

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:09


  • Charlene Pretorius - 2011-07-28 12:58

    This really is very sad, but still this guy has lost 2 kids and originally had 3, WHY???????????? Why have kids you cant afford and its too late to say you should have died instead. You made them without thinking and now you cant care for them, the kids are the ones i feel sorry for. Irresponsible people that cause suffering like this.

      Lacri - 2011-07-28 14:16

      There wasn't a famine at the time he had his children. How stupid are you?

      Jackelinn - 2011-07-29 04:48

      @Lacri True, there wasn't a famine when he had them. However, as tragic as the deaths of innocent children from starvation are (and yes, contrary to the opinion several posters on here, the death of children is ALWAYS a tragedy), isn't a known fact that Somalia is one of the most unstable regions in the world and is prone to drought and famine? If this gentleman is 42 (i believe the article states?), it means that he was 23 during 1992 famine and 37 and 39, respectively during the 2006 and 2008 Horn of Africa food crises, which both affected Somalia. By now, shouldn't he have had a pretty fair idea of the economic prospects in Somalia and as Charlene points out, taken this into consideration when having children?

  • me - 2011-07-28 12:59

    all of these comments from you well fed happy people is absolutly disgusting, regardless of who has done what and that these people shouldnt be having more children blah blah, i want each of you to look at your children (if oyu have any) and think how you would feel burying them in a meter grave - you should all be ashamed of yourselves, and as for the steers comment go f%ck yourself you heartless pig!!!

      MNM - 2011-07-28 13:04

      Couldn't have said it better myself. Glad to see some sanity prevails.

      Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:12

      self infliction

      Ulrich - 2011-07-28 13:15

      I agree! I wish I could help!

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 13:36

      Big words guy... 2 things though: 1. What have you done to help them? 2. Does the steers joke change anything? Yes, it does, it made a few laugh. as for the somalis, neither here or there, they still the same as they were before it.

      me - 2011-07-28 16:32

      oh wow DABOSS247365 what perhaps have you done for them besides throw insults around the room! oh and im sorry the steers joke im so glad you had a good old laugh about children starving!!!! and im not a guy im a women that is why they are big words!

      MR67 - 2011-07-28 18:58

      At least have some sympathy, people....I wonder how easy it would be for you to make snide comments if your country was engulfed by civil war and you were scrabbling to find scarce food and water. Remember Bob Geldof's Band Aid effort from 1984 when George Michael was singing "Thank God it's them instead of you....". 'Nuff said.

  • julie.snyders - 2011-07-28 13:01

    PLEASE, PLEASE Supply then with FOOD and BIRTH CONTROL. MIX the CONTRACEPTION with the maize.

      Vlooi - 2011-07-28 13:04

      Mieliepap in a condom?

  • Johann - 2011-07-28 13:04

    Where are these colonist when you need them! Africa will always burn and always be hungry , and you are next.

  • Thanduxolo - 2011-07-28 13:05


      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:13

  • ANCockup - 2011-07-28 13:05

    Think I will order pizza.

      VargVikernes - 2011-07-29 09:42


  • Buic - 2011-07-28 13:05

    • Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect. • We are a part of the earth and it is part of us ~ Chief Seattle

  • Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:11

    As much as most of you will say I am heartless, its their own fault. Stop them breeding. Every news report that is shown show that they have 3-4 children hanging onto the mother. Sterilize the womens and all men should have vasectomies. This will stop the children that are left from starving. The more you have the less food for the next person surely if they have brains..hmmmmmm they will realise this.

      Buic - 2011-07-28 13:24

      Is it really birth control ? or is it lack of guidance from other humans who care about the human family ?

      daboss247365 - 2011-07-28 14:25

      @Buic, what crap, who the hell was guiding the rest of the planet?? they must just learn. if they refuse then that their problem, as they can see now.

      Buic - 2011-07-28 16:03

      @DABOSS247365 I was asking so thanks for your answer.

  • onmyway - 2011-07-28 13:13

    THis is soooo sad. May God bless these people and provide for them!

      VargVikernes - 2011-07-29 09:43

      Yeah, leave the food aid, god is on it instead. Great comment.

  • Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:15

    Sorry the whole of Africa is like this, from Zimbabwe right to the top (SA will follow shortly) and why because what ever land the blackman owns he cannot make it run. Plant Vegetables, become self supportive but each picture that is shown what are they doing. Sitting on their backsides holding 3-4 children each. Why must the white people always help, where are the blackman that actually will help. You sow what you reap.

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 13:31

      you need a hug ne, just turn to the person next to you and ask for a hug. have some faith, humans will prevail over their own faults eventually.

      Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:35

      I am not a hugger sorry unless I know the person

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 14:29

      your loss, hugging strangers should be an olympic sport

  • Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:27

    Maybe they should have eaten the 60 cows and his children wouls still be alive

  • Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:28

    My wife does not sleep but just cries most of the time, which makes me so sad every day," he said BUT NEXT YEAR SHE MAY BE PREGNANT AGAIN..EISH

  • manketu melato - 2011-07-28 13:31

    Its hard 2hear dis story I think abt mi son.I pray dat pls God help them they are yo children.

      Ingie - 2011-07-28 13:34


  • Robyn du Trevou - 2011-07-28 13:39

    3,7 mil dying here, if not more, whilst over 90 mil americans are classified as obese..

      Daemos1 - 2011-07-28 15:51

      Maybe they should eat the americans

  • Claire - 2011-07-28 13:55

    We are all African at the end of the day... and to see some of the comments being posted here it is totally disgusting... you should all be ashamed yourselves imagine if that was your kids dying???

  • koos.kroep - 2011-07-28 14:05

    Save these people again, so they can starve again ? This is like the US printing money to resolve their debt crisis, only these people breed children and not print money unsustainably. The planet is hopelessly overpopulated and occurences like this is going to become more commonplace. The 270 000 dead in the Indonesia tsumani is a good example of this.

      koos.kroep - 2011-07-28 14:07

      Human tradegy or just nature running it's course like it has done for millions of years.

  • Mz A - 2011-07-28 14:08

    Ingie, you should just shut the hell up if dont have anything better to say. You make as if you feeding that family. Imagine drought had to hit SA and all of our country's kids were dying? Would you still have a mouthful to say then? Where the hell is sense of compassion?

  • Nichola - 2011-07-28 15:25

    This is terrible you can not control were you are born and in to what circumstances, this could have been anyone of us. We should all be grateful everyday and try to live as best as we can and do the best that we can for our fellow human beings in the short time that we have here on earth.

  • FerretGee - 2011-07-28 16:12

    It never ceases to amaze me how, given all the famine in Somalia, how these people still find time to procreate. Surely the last thing on your mind when you are hungry and destitute, is having a shag? Whilst one feels for the children, one can't help thinking how these people are their own worst enemies!

  • letsee - 2011-07-28 16:26

    I'm ashamed to be an African. What is the AU doing about it? Can't the AU solve Africa's problems? If not why does it lecture to other countries?

  • Larkie - 2011-07-28 23:03

    Jesus... calling other human beings animals because they don't look like you or have your privilege. Do you think these children ask to be born in a country suffering from drought? Do you think you DESERVE to have been born in the global north? You don't deserve anything - you are lucky and you should be grateful. If you are grateful, you do what you can to help. Big words, I know - and guess what? I'm taking my white, Ivy League educated ass to Africa to work at a rural clinic. I don't deserve my education any more than the millions of brilliant kids in Africa who are bared access because of where they happen to have been born. All I can do is work to bring social justice. On another note, why do starving people have so many children? Here's why - A) because they don't have access to birth control B) child mortality is high regardless of access to food and parents have to have enough children to support them in old age. I shudder to think of what you people are teaching your children. Want to know how to get the US out of this recession? Stop letting uneducated religious zealots with low IQs breed. Problem solved.

  • Jackelinn - 2011-07-29 05:05

    Many of the posters state that one of the factors aggravating the situation in Somalia is the fact that the birthrate is so high. In response, other posters have resorted to name calling and insults, stating that these posters are callous, ignorant and heartless pigs, among other things. The posters pointing out Somalia's extremely high birthrate are not stating that take pleasure in watching children starve to death or rejoice at the misery seen in Somalia or anything of the sort. They are merely stating that Somalia's high birthrate is aggravating the current situation in Somalia and has done so in past famines and and is an issue that should be addressed in order to tackle the current famine and truly help the people of Somalia. Why is it wrong for them to bring this up? I mean, isn't helping Somalia address the various problems facing the country and getting to the root of the problems better than merely doing damage control (simply providing food aid)?

      Anton - 2011-07-29 05:19

      Jackelinn, There is nothing wrong bringing this up. The problem is that many use this as an excuse, not only for themselves not to donate to a charity helping these starving people, but far worse, advocating others to do the same. And to tell these people not to have children, or less, just does not make sense. Many of these starving people have NEVER known hunger. Where do you draw the line ? Do you go and tell young couples in New Zealand not to have kids, as there is a big chance they will eb hit by anotherr earth quacke ?? ( This comment is not to critize you, but merely wanted to make a point )

      Jackelinn - 2011-07-29 05:34

      @ Anton I agree with you that many people are just too lazy or miserly to donate and are simply making excuses for there lack of donation. However, you said that many of the people starving in Somalia have never known hunger? The famine of 1992? I'm pretty sure most of the adult population in Somalia was alive then and likely experienced the famine. Anyhow, my point is not that people should not donate to help the people of Somalia. My point is, aren't there other, more sustainable and long lasting means of helping the Somalis than just food aid, such as education, teaching them about sustainable agricultural practices, and the like? After all, as the Chinese proverb states "give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

      Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-29 05:38

      But you see in order to prove that "overpopulation" is the problem, you need to show that the earth doesn't have the resources to provide for the current and projected populations - and that the current problems AREN'T caused by unequal distribution. I'll wait for your evidence that the earth doesn't have enough resources to provide for the current population and even one half again as big. I look forward to the solid scientific argument you're going to provide. Birth control doesn't make it rain or render the land fertile. This is probably going to go over your head now, but people do not starve because there is not enough food, but rather because they can't afford it. Ever wondered how industrialised nations get continually larger yet don't suffer food shortages? Or how famines only occur in poor countries? The world is easily able to feed its current population,but hey, if that lets you sleep at night...

      Jackelinn - 2011-07-29 05:53

      @ Kunta-Kinte Is the asinine and condescending tone really necessary? Get over yourself. As far as birth control making it rain or making the earth fertile. I don't believe I stated that anywhere in my post. In regards to the drought and inhospitable climate, did you miss my statement about teaching the Somalis about sustainable agricultural practices and work with the terrain they have? You also stated that people do not starve because there is not enough food, but rather because they can't afford it and that famines mainly occur in poor countries and not industrialised nations? Wouldn't helping Somalia build wealth-creating structures through education help them become an industrialized nation and help alleviate some of that poverty, as opposed to ONLY providing food aid.

      Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-29 06:10

      Blaming famine and poverty on a supposed overpopulation crisis avoids the real issues here: political crisis and ongoing war in the Horn of Africa combined with the growing frequency of extreme climate patterns. Here is a link to an interesting (though very badly edited!) study by Flinders University in Australia, which concludes that overpopulation is not to blame for African poverty. It concludes: Although Africa has experienced high levels of population growth, the region is not overpopulated. It has here been argued that population growth is a consequence rather than a cause of underdevelopment, famine and environmental degradation. These problems are not related to how many people there are, but rather to consumption levels and resource distribution. The West, and not Africa, is then responsible for such problems, and should be held accountable, but it is exactly this accountability that neo-Malthusian tries to avoid. It tries to avoid it by blaming the weakest link, poor (black) women.

  • Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-29 05:15

    Doesn't take long before the over population Malthus disciples descended onto the hasn't fukcin rained in some parts of the Horn for 6 fukcin years, this has nothing to do with over population, or lack of education, or contraceptives.. This is a typically Eurocentric solution to an African problem. An individualistic, Malthusian demand for population control is hardly going to make waves in a culture where children and the extended family are of paramount importance - not just socially, but economically. (It's cheap and simplistic to blame "religion" for this, too). It also overlooks the fact that population density in eastern Africa is very low by global standards. Under normal circumstances, eastern Africa should be able to support a growing population with no difficulty. This is generally a fertile and agriculturally productive region. But these are not normal circumstances. I haven't seen such a large concerntration of stupid caucasians concerntrated in one place than on these threads. The ignorance would be shocking, were it not for the fact that racism pumps adrenalin into the brains of its victims with unusual aplomb.

  • Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-29 05:51

    Have any of you Einsteins here given any thought as to why families have more children in some parts of Africa? If you knew there was good chance that several of your children would die from disease, conflict or hunger, yet you needed those same children to sustain you in your old age (in absence of state pension), would you not keep procreating too? Also, as we've seen throughout history the more stable and prosperous a country gets, the faster the birthrate falls, as people realise that they don't need to have more children as an 'insurance' policy. The population of the UK is predicted to rise from 62m to 74 million in the next 30 years (one generation). Given that they can't produce enough food to feed their population as it is now, where do you think it will come from? There's a lot intellectually laziness on this thread.

      Anton - 2011-07-29 09:07

      Kunta-Kinte, Although you talk the biggest load of garbage when it comes to Libya, there are some subjects, where you actually talk a lot of sense. But your tone......It is soo disturbing. You are like a dictator yourself!! Anybody who disagrees with you, is dumb and stupid. There is only ONE clever person here, and that happens to be you........ Get your feet back on the ground, try to be just a tiny humble,learn to listen to others, and you might just find that some will try to understand what you got to say !!!!!!

  • Kunta-Kinte - 2011-07-29 10:54

    Ingie - July 28, 2011 at 04:15 Report comment Sorry the whole of Africa is like this, from Zimbabwe right to the top (SA will follow shortly) and why because what ever land the blackman owns he cannot make it run. Plant Vegetables, become self supportive but each picture that is shown what are they doing. Sitting on their backsides holding 3-4 children each. Why must the white people always help, where are the blackman that actually will help. You sow what you reap. xxxxxxxxx Only when the last tree has died and the last river been poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realise we cannot eat money. " When we Indians kill meat, we eat it all up. When we dig roots, we make little holes. When we build houses, we make little holes. When we burn grass for grasshoppers, we don't ruin things. We shake down acorns and pine nuts. We don't chop down the trees. We only use dead wood. But the white people plow up the ground, pull down the trees, kill everything. ... the White people pay no attention. ...How can the spirit of the earth like the White man? ... everywhere the White man has touched it, it is sore." Indian proverb

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