"Like many young girls in Zimbabwe, Hope was the victim of a widely held belief that if a man with HIV or AIDS rapes a virgin he will be cured of his disease. This so-called virgin myth, perpetuated by Zimbabwe's traditional healers, has led to the rape of hundreds of girls, according to UNICEF. Some of those victims are too young to walk, much less protect themselves."
Condoms really won't help here, will they?
Betty Mokani, who was raped as a 14-year old by her uncle, started an organization called Girl Child Network Worldwide, to provide a haven for the tens of thousands of girls who are abused in this way.
"PRESIDENT BUSH AND THE First Lady are in Africa this week, visiting
five countries--Benin, Ghana, Liberia, Rwanda, and Tanzania--that have
benefited from his $15 billion initiative to combat HIV/AIDS. There is
something to be said for a program that confounds liberals,
libertarians, and radical Islamists."
"....Consider the fact that before the Bush effort, barely 50,000 people
were receiving U.S. assistance for HIV/AIDS treatment. Today, five
years after launching the initiative, the President's Emergency Plan
for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has treated nearly 1.5 million people
scattered across 15 countries in Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean. It is
likely that U.S.-funded anti-retroviral drugs have prevented more than
10 million new cases of mother-to-child HIV transmission. "
I loved the photo that was on Drudge a day or two ago, with the young Tanzanian women dancers wearing skirts and halter tops made of fabric with George Bush's image on it. I found other photos at Reuters, but not as memorable as that one. The traditional African fabric is (according to Yahoo News) called "kanga." I would love to have some of that fabric! Maybe some enterprising Tanzanian folks will offer it over the internet.
"Canada’s largest city, Toronto, is currently playing host to many of the world’s most influential movers and shakers as the world’s largest international AIDS conference gets underway.....The general flavour of the conference, however, was made abundantly clear during (Bill) Gates’ opening remarks, where the thousands of delegates violently booed one of the rare mentions of abstinence and sexual fidelity as possible solutions to AIDS, and enthusiastically cheered for latex, pharmaceuticals, and increasing acceptance of prostitution and hard drug use."
"Dr. John Idoko (of Nigeria) now treats nearly 6,000 HIV-positive patients. He has expanded his clinic three times in five years, and his waiting room once again is too crowded....The major reason for Idoko's success is the Bush administration's AIDS program, which in the last three years has sent billions of dollars to Africa and helped save the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. When I moved to Africa three years ago, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR, was just getting off the ground. As I return to Washington this month, the $15 billion program is just hitting its stride, and many Africans believe it has become the single most effective initiative in fighting the deadly scourge....Only you wouldn't know it in America-or Canada, or Europe, for that matter-given the tenor of the AIDS debate in Washington and the nature of the international media coverage."
Donnelly delves into the many criticisms leveled at the Bush administration's AIDS program, including its ABC policy (abstinence, being faithful to one's partner, and failing that, using condoms) and funding faith-based organizations. Never mind that the ABC program is a small part of the overall program to fight and treat AIDS. Secular progessives want nothing to do with notions of abstinence or faithfulness. Steven Lewis, the UN special envoy on AIDS in Africa referred to Bush's push for abstinence programs as "incipient neo-colonialism." Puh-lease! Back on the ground in Africa, there is a different mood:
"In Africa, the kind of polarized debate that dominates Washington policy circles is rarely heard. Among those working on US-funded AIDS programs, there's a sense of energy and optimism and a belief that they are making history. Every week, faith-based and secular groups, encouraged and funded by US AIDS specialists, are finding new ways to treat people, prevent new infections, and care for the ill....Pragmatism rules. Two years ago in the southwestern African nation of Namibia, Lucy Steinitz, a Jewish Brandeis graduate who was then the head of Catholic AIDS Action, told me that US officials sought out faith-based groups because of common sense: Churches were running many of the country's hospitals and clinics already. The same is the case in many African countries."
Hello! This is another example where the Bush administration has implemented an effective program which is showing real successes, but you rarely hear about it. Kudos to John Donnelly and the Globe for this article. Read the whole thing!
Uganda will proceed with the use of the pesticide DDT to control malaria, despite threats by the European Union that it could lead to its agricultural exports being locked out.
"We have to kill malaria using DDT and the matter has been settled that DDT is not harmful to humans and if used for indoor-insecticide spraying. It's the most effective and cheapest way to fight malaria," Mr Muhwezi (Ugandan official) said.
The application of DDT now bears no resemblance to how DDT was used in the 40's and 50's in the U.S. DDT is applied with a wand sprayer to indoor surfaces, not aerial spraying with crop dusters.
The e-mail notes that "Dr. Ohtmani represents a leading figure in the mainstream moderate Islamic thought and activism." The PJD, however, on its website states that its goal is to establish an Islamic state in Morroca, where sharia law governs all aspects of life. The Party advocates a total ban on alcohol in Morroco, segregated beaches for men and women , phasing out the liquor industry, and establishing Islamic banks. Mustapha Ramid, a senior party leader, said the PJD would like Islamic sharia law -- including cutting off thieves' hands -- to be applied in Morocco. "Long-term, we want sharia applied completely," he said. Rabbah also said he found it "incredible" that some young Moroccan women wear revealing clothes.
An IslamOnline article from March reports that "Othmani and other party officials are expected next month to begin trips to France, the United States and other countries to drum up support for the PJD's program." Hmmm, now why exactly would a Morrocan politician come to Cambridge to drum up support for his party? This seems unusual to me. What sort of support - financial? political pressure from Muslim advocacy groups to the US government? I encourage people to attend this event.
"Al-Qaeda's leader is also upset about growing international isolation of the Palestinian government....as proof of a "war by crusaders and Zionists against Islam". Puhleeze, Osama. A far bigger occupation that has historically been far more brutal continues: Arab Muslim occupation of black land in Africa and their gross human rights violations towards black populations on and off over the past 1,400 years. The invasions, the slave trade, the 'Arabization' campaigns, etc. Such that the Arab world's largest city is in Africa, not the Middle East. Arab Muslims occupy vast tracts of land in Africa and have declared war on black folks - atrocities that far surpass anything Israel has done to the Palestinians - for centuries."
Smoking. I wondered when I would hear criticism from a Black American about the Arab Muslim treatment towards Africans over the centuries. I've never understood why Black Americans would turn to Islam, the religion that began a brutal African slave trade for hundreds of years before the Europeans did, and continued for another 150 years after the end of the European/American slave trade.