Sunday, September 11, 2005

Timid Red Cross?

Digby says of why the Red Cross didn't enter NOLA to render assistance
Irrational fear of the mob was the reason the Red Cross didn't enter the city.

Didn't the Red Cross used to enter war zones with no absolute reassurance they wouldn't be killed, as well?

Oh, it's the International Committee of the Red Cross, not the American Red Cross. Says Michael Ignatieff in Crimes of War Project
ICRC representatives, known as “delegates” work with national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies in the field, and most of their local field workers come from the national societies. Institutionally, however, the ICRC looks on the national societies warily, believing that some of their leaderships are either corrupt or excessively partial to the policies of the local ruling elites.
...
Since its creation, the ICRC has been trying to stay true to its mission of being “first in and last out” of any war zone.
...
The ICRC sometimes pays the price for its staying on. On December 17, 1996, in an ICRC hospital near Grozny, Chechnya, masked assailants scaled the wall of the compound and using pistols fitted with silencers executed six Red Cross personnel in their sleep. But the ICRC still refuses to post armed guards inside hospitals or as escorts for their convoys.

Too bad we didn't have the ICRC in NOLA. Or at least a Clara Barton.

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