miércoles, octubre 12, 2005

Guatemalan indians refuse aid

This is the type of headline you will see most if you go to Google and search for "where to give aid to Guatemala". Of course this continuous implication that Guatemalans, and all Latinos, for that matter, are dimwitted berrinchosos enfuriates me. This is most certainly not the time for the gringo media to keep pushing false ideas and rhetoric. As for aid to the victims of the storm, there are two sites to go to to offer support, and one of those seems quite questionable to me, which is why I did not post it. By the way, the UN still hasn't gotten its shit together with regard to helping Guatemala, focusing instead on Pakistan, which of course is a worthy cause, but the attitude of my employers so far is probably the most frustrating thing I've encountered here yet. If you go to the website of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, you will find the Pakistan tragedy emblazoned on the front page, while Guatemala's tragedy lies somewhere in the back pages if it is there at all. UN staff have acces to the UN "News Centre", and I did see some updates there about aid from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UNICEF and the UN Population fund being rushed to the region, but even that highllighted El Salvador instead. I had to actually go to the Americas section and scroll down about three articles before I got to that one.

I just want to make clear in this posting that Guatemalan indians are refusing aid from the country's military because they very understandably have no confidence and/or trust in them, for it was that establishment that routinely massacred indians during the civil war, and it is the government that has for decades pushed policies that perpetually subjugate them. Honestly, would YOU readily accept assistance from the very people who traditionally have been violently opposed to your existence and that of your people?

1 comentario:

Kawa Mek dijo...

I am glad that you mentioned this, because I was annoyed by the same news item.

Who knows what the costs of the army's presence will be? Certainly the people of Santiago have every reason to avoid contact with the military. And they have no reason to believe the military would respect the dead when digging up corpses, which is not something you should take very lightly in an indigenous community.