Thursday, January 14, 2010

Israel Aids Haiti; Arab Nations Ignore The Disaster

The tragedy in Haiti is mind-boggling in its extent. Countries around the world are mobilizing to offer assistance. The Canadian Press just reviewed the list of those who are offering assistance: of course the wealthier developed countries such as the US and many EU countries as would be expected, but also India and China as well as regional countries such as Mexico and Venezuela. And, of course, Israel.

Israel, though there are almost no Jews in Haiti aside from tourists.
Israel, though Haiti routinely sides with the most one-sided anti-Israel resolutions at the UN.
Israel, though Haiti is far away from the Middle East.

This is not a new phenomenon. Israel sent aid after the devasting Asian tsunami in 2004 , after earthquakes in India and El Salvador in 2001 and Greece and Turkey in 1999. This isn't just Israelis contributing donations, but also mobilization of the Israel Defense Forces itself to provide direct assistance.

One might expect that the Arab states, many of them awash in oil revenue, would offer similar assistance. A Google search for "Arab earthquake aid Haiti" yields a few teasers on news sites that on further investigation are hits from unrelated stories on those sites, so the net result is pretty much what the Arab nations are providing: next to nothing. This should not surprise anyone, given their relatively miniscule contributions to UNRWA to assist the descendants of their fellow Arab refugees from the 1947-48 war-- a war which the Arab nations encouraged, supported, and bear responsibility for the resulting refugee population.

Several American organizations are raising funds which will be funneled through IsraAid, Israel's consortium of humanitarian aid groups. You can make contributions to IsraAid via B'nai B'rith International or via the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (select "Haiti Earthquake Relief" from the dropdown menu).

Haiti's government has more important things to worry about right now, but I can't help but wonder whether, when the next viciously anti-Israel resolution comes before the UN General Assembly, their representatives will remember that Israel (and the worldwide Jewish community) responded to their desperate situation with immediate and unconditional aid. And the Arab nations? Maybe they'll offer the Haitians discounted leases at the new Burj Khalifa tower in Dubai.


  1. Great post!

    Typically the world remains disinterested when Israel does anything good. Unless the mainstream media can bash Israel, it just doesn't want to know.

    It's shameful.

    I'm just about to add you to my blogroll :) Love the name of your site!

  2. Amman, Jan. 15(Petra)--A second military airplane left to Haiti on Friday to help victims of the earthquake that hit the island on Tuesday. The plane, dispatched upon directives of His Majesty King Abdullah II, is carrying Jordanian medics and medical equipments used during disaster times. /Petra/AG

  3. DOHA/PORT-AU-PRINCE: Qatar yesterday sent a C-17 strategic transport aircraft carrying 50 tons of aid to Haiti as troops and planeloads of food and medicine streamed into a traumatised nation still rattled by aftershocks from the earthquake that flattened homes and government buildings and buried countless people.

    The head of the Qatari rescue team, Captain Mubarak Sherida Al Kaabi, said the team included 26 members from the Qatari armed forces, the internal security force (Lekhwiya), police forces, and the Hamad Medical Corporation.

    The team will provide its services in the devastated capital, Port-au-Prince, and other affected areas. It will establish a field hospital to provide medical assistance to the quake victims.

    The Haitian Red Cross said it believed 45,000 to 50,000 people had died and three million more — one-third of Haiti’s population — were hurt or left homeless by the 7.0 magnitude quake that hit its impoverished capital on Tuesday.

    The quake flattened buildings across entire hillsides and many people were still trapped alive in the rubble after two days, with little sign of organised rescue efforts. About 1,500 corpses were piled up outside the main hospital and bodies littered many streets.

    Planes full of supplies arrived at the Port-au-Prince airport faster than ground crews could unload them and aviation authorities restricted flights from US airspace for fear planes would run out of fuel while waiting to land.

    The influx of aid had yet to reach shell-shocked Haitians who wandered the broken streets of Port-au-Prince, searching desperately for water, food and medical help.


    Kuwait, January 14 (QNA) - Kuwaiti cabinet had ordered relief aid to be immediately sent to the Republic of Haiti which suffered a devastating earthquake which left thousands either dead or injured.
    Kuwaiti Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Roudhan Al-Roudhan said here Thursday that upon orders from the Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, it has been decided to send the aid, Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) reported Thursday.
    For his part, Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS) Chairman Barjas Al-Barjas told KUNA that Kuwait donated USD one million to help relief aid efforts in the earthquake devastated Republic of Haiti.
    Late Tuesday, Haiti witnessed a massive quake which registered at a magnitude 7.0.
    More than 100,000 are feared to be dead or injured due to the earthquake. (QNA) (


  4. well, I'm glad to hear that some of the Arab states are finally sending help. As of the day I wrote this post, nothing was forthcoming from them.
    Interesting that Jordan (a poor country) is helping--but still nothing from Saudi Arabia, Dubai,or UAE who possibly could spare a few minute's worth of oil revenue.

    At least the Telegraph (UK) mentioned Israel's help in passing (

  5. Great Youtubes: The IDF is saving lives in Haiti

  6. For those of you who have the misfortune of receiving Mazin Qumsiyeh's "newletter", todays anti-Isreal screed was worse than usual:

    Regarding the crisis in Haiti, according to Mazin:
    "Even Israel has mobilized its usual contingent of Israeli doctors
    and the mass Zionist media to show how humanitarian it can be (but tiny Qatar sent far more actual aid)."

    Tiny, OIL RICH Qatar.
    Forgot that part, didja, Mazin?

  7. "Khaleej Times Online > NATION
    Print this story Send to a friend ShareThis
    UAE Aid for Haiti

    17 January 2010
    ABU DHABI - The first plane of an air bridge ordered by the President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan for delivering urgent humanitarian assistance to Haiti’s earthquake victims will fly to the Dominican Republic shortly.

    A UAE Red Crescent Authority (RCA) team will leave to the Dominican Republic to coordinate and oversee field relief operations to ensure their prompt delivery to the affected population.

    In another development, the RCA is coordinating efforts with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to carry out humanitarian programmes that cater for the need of the Haitian front where the international aid agencies are facing logistic challenges in delivery of assistance.

    The RCA has announced that it had transferred funds to the IFRC in support of its relief operations 

    He said the RCA had set up an emergency room to receive humanitarian appeals and reports on the latest 
situation in Haiti. "

    Shame on the blogger for mixing politics into such a large natural disaster, and wasting our times. Aid is no competition. But if you want to play dirty, then make a search on Haitian history and its relations with France, the U.S. and Germany. Maybe then you will understand the current politics around this competition to help Haiti, especially between France and the U.S. The western world is paying back only a small percentage of what they owe to Haiti.

  8. In this CNN article, American doctors were amazed at teh efficiency of the Israeli team

    Families were "with their loved ones who they were so excited to see alive, only now to watch them die a slow, painful death from their rotting flesh because the infections are out of control and they need surgery," Dr. Jennifer Furin of Harvard Medical School said.

    "I've been here since Thursday. No one except the Israeli hospital has taken any of our patients," she told CNN's Elizabeth Cohen.

    Cohen visited the Israeli hospital and said it was "like another world," with imaging equipment and other machinery. "They have actual operating rooms, and it's just amazing."

  9. What do Alyssa Milano, Sandra Bullock, Lance Armstrong, Gisele Bundchen, the country of Senegal and — very possibly — you have in common?

    All — including you — have donated more funds to the Haitian relief effort than oil-rich nations like Saudi Arabia and Iran.

    That's right ... if you personally have donated money to help the earthquake-stricken people of Haiti, then you have contributed more money than the governments of Saudi Arabia and Iran, whose combined dollar donation is a big fat zero.


    Glad to see some Arab nations are finally helping, even if the numbers are underwhelming