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Remembrance Week – Tsunami and After

Remembrance Week

It has been a year since the horrific tragedy of the Boxing Day Tsunami last year. This year has seen more than it's fair share of tragedy and disaster. The hurricanes, an earthquake in Kashmir, and hundreds of other disasters that never quite make international news. It is with the intention of reminding us that reconstruction of lives is not over in these places that World Wide Helps reminds us about the events of the year and the need for a Disaster Remembrance Week.

“During the course of the year, other disasters took their toll too. Most devastating of them: Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the South-East coast of the USA; and another enormous earthquake near Pakistan's border with India.

These disasters took their immediate toll, and, each time, the world tried to help. But as calamity piled upon calamity, there has been a certain amount of fatigue. Perhaps people's stock of goodwill has run low. Perhaps seeing too much suffering hardens us.

But, the fact is, the suffering from those disasters has not ceased. Parts of South Asia have still not recovered from December 26th, 2004. In the USA, normalcy hasn't returned to New Orleans. In Pakistan, thousands are still homeless, and may not survive the harsh Himalayan winter.

They need your help…. Can we harness that goodwill, that togetherness, that willingness to help once more?”

Crossroads Dispatches from Phi Phi Island writes

Later after the deputy prime minster has spoken, we file towards the bay. A six or seven-year old blond girl with a white sundress gently bows and places her palms into a triangular wai.

She lays a white orchid given to each surviving family member at the ceremony by the altar ledge fringed with flowers, photos, incense sticks and remembrances circling the banyan tree wrapped in rainbow colored sashes. Her mother stands behind with the jeweled bay stark in the background.

It's crucial at this point to remember that while we give by reaching into our pockets, we don't forget the smaller-less known causes. When you do give to the well-covered causes, please don't compromise your contribution to the other ones. Remember the victims, and recall the promises made by governments and aid agencies.

4 comments

  • Sri Lanka Remembers

    Even the waves once cruel to Sri Lankans by claiming more than 40,000 lives within minutes, joined the entire Nation as it observed two minutes silence sharp at 9.30 a.m. yesterday to remember the first anniversary of the tsunami tragedy.

    Sri Jinarathana Maha Vidyalaya, Peraliya, Hikkaduwa was turned into a place for a determined Nation to mark the first anniversary of the tsunami tragedy with a monument in the center symbolising the determined people who rose above the waves to rebuild the Nation.

    The half constructed houses, temporary shelters and barriers constructed to block the sea invading the land gave a clear picture how the Nation rose from the tsunami disaster as it marked the first anniversary.

    The souls of those who perished in the world’s biggest train tragedy would also have witnessed how the Nation remembered the first anniversary of the tsunami tragedy.

    Peraliya in Hikkaduwa was chosen by the State to remember the first anniversary of the disaster.

    The country stood still as bugles were sounded by the Armed Forces while President Mahinda Rajapakse bowed his head remembering those snatched away by the sea on December 26, 2004.

    The National flag was flown half mast as President Rajapakse placed floral tributes before the monument and joined the entire Nation to observe two minutes silence.

    Earlier, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian and Muslim religious dignitaries performed religious rites to bestow merit on tsunami victims.

    The entire Nation recalled how they rose from this disaster within days after the massive waves hitting the shores of the country barring all ethnic and religious differences, as songs of determination were performed at this State function.

    President Rajapakse gave new hope to the tsunami affected as he announced the launching of the Jaya Lanka programme to carry forward the task of building homes and other properties destroyed by the tsunami with new and greater energy.

    The event also recalled the memories of the days of this disaster with the presence of a large number of media personnel at the venue to witness how the Nation remembered the first anniversary of the tsunami.

    The presence of a large number of diplomats and political leaders gave much vigour to the occasion. The Opposition Leader was not present.

    President Rajapakse also gave scholarships worth Rs. 2500 per month to children who lost their parents in the tsunami.

  • Dear Tsunami Site:

    I am writing in regards to a childrens charity my neighbours daughter was involved in during the summer 2005. They took it upon themselves to set up a lemonaid stand and the results were quite remarkable, a few hundred dollars was collected for the tsunami aid fund.
    Although it is impressive to see such compassion taken on by children, I am discusted with Tory (Kirby’s) mother, the next thing you know her daughter went on the local news about their relief fund efforts.
    Then it was off to the Dr. Phil show?
    Although it was commendable Tory and her mother had an all expense paid trip to L.A. for the show, recieved thousands of dollars in gifts?
    I don’t understand, if her mother was such a giving person why wouldn’t she tell these sponsors to donate everything to the fund?

    D. Morrow, Barrie, ON Canada

  • Seven years ago, I spent two weeks in Bangkok. I fell in love with Thailand and her people. It breaks my heart to see all of the devastation from Malaysia to Madagascar. Thank you for the reminder that more help is needed. Know that you are all in my prayers and that I will continue to give in all the ways that I am able.

    Korp koom ka,
    JoAnna

  • human book

    List of racial discriminations in Malaysia, practiced by government as well as government agencies. This list is an open secret. Best verified by government itself because it got the statistics.

    This list is not in the order of importance, that means the first one on the list is not the most important and the last one on the list does not mean least important.

    This list is a common knowledge to a lot of Malaysians, especially those non-malays (Chinese, Ibans, Kadazans, Orang Asli, Tamils, etc) who were being racially discriminated.

    Figures in this list are estimates only and please take it as a guide only. Government of Malaysia has the most correct figures. Is government of Malaysia too ashamed to publish their racist acts by publishing racial statistics?

    This list cover a period of about 48 years since independence (1957).

    List of racial discriminations (Malaysia):

    (1) Out of all the 5 major banks, only one bank is multi-racial, the rest are controlled by malays

    (2) 99% of Petronas directors are malays

    (3) 3% of Petronas employees are Chinese

    (4) 99% of 2000 Petronas gasoline stations are owned by malays

    (5) 100% all contractors working under Petronas projects must be bumis status

    (6) 0% of non-malay staffs is legally required in malay companies. But there must be 30% malay staffs in Chinese companies.

    (7) 5% of all new intake for government police, nurses, army, is non-malays.

    (8) 2% is the present Chinese staff in Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF), drop from 40% in 1960

    (9) 2% is the percentage of non-malay government servants in Putrajaya. But malays make up 98%

    (10) 7% is the percentage of Chinese government servants in the whole government (in 2004), drop from 30% in 1960

    (11) 95% of government contracts are given to malays

    (12) 100% all business licensees are controlled by malay government e.g. Taxi permits, Approved permits, etc

    (13) 80% of the Chinese rice millers in Kedah had to be sold to malay controlled Bernas in 1980s. Otherwise, life is make difficult for Chinese rice millers

    (14) 100 big companies set up, owned and managed by Chinese Malaysians were taken over by government, and later managed by malays since 1970s e.g. UTC, UMBC, MISC, etc

    (15) At least 10 Chinese owned bus companies (throughout Malaysia, throughout 40 years) had to be sold to MARA or other malay transport companies due to rejection by malay authority to Chinese application for bus routes and rejection for their application for new buses

    (16) 2 Chinese taxi drivers were barred from driving in Johor Larkin bus station. There are about 30 taxi drivers and 3 are Chinese in October 2004. Spoiling taxi club properties was the reason given

    (17) 0 non-malays are allowed to get shop lots in the new Muar bus station (November 2004)

    (18) 8000 billions ringgit is the total amount the government channeled to malay pockets through ASB, ASN, MARA, privatisation of government agencies, Tabung Haji etc, through NEP over 34 years period

    (19) 48 Chinese primary schools closed down since 1968 – 2000

    (20) 144 Indian primary schools closed down since 1968 – 2000

    (21) 2637 malay primary schools built since 1968 – 2000

    (22) 2.5% is government budget for Chinese primary schools. Indian schools got only 1%, malay schools got 96.5%

    (23) While a Chinese parent with RM1000 salary (monthly) cannot get school-text-book-loan, a malay parent with RM2000 salary is eligible

    (24) 10 all public universities vice chancellors are malays

    (25) 5% – the government universities lecturers of non-malay origins had been reduced from about 70% in 1965 to only 5% in 2004

    (26) Only 5% is given to non-malays for government scholarships over 40 years

    (27) 0 Chinese or Indians were sent to Japan and Korea under “Look East Policy”

    (28) 128 STPM Chinese top students could not get into the course that they aspired i.e. Medicine (in 2004)

    (29) 10% place for non-bumi students for MARA science schools beginning from year 2003, but only 7% are filled. Before that it was 100% malays

    (30) 50 cases whereby Chinese and Indian Malaysians, are beaten up in the National Service program in 2003

    (31) 25% is Malaysian Chinese population in 2004, drop from 45% in 1957

    (32) 7% is the present Malaysian Indians population (2004), a drop from 12% in 1957

    (33) 2 millions Chinese Malaysians had emigrated to overseas since 40 years ago

    (34) 0.5 million Indian Malaysians had emigrated to overseas

    (35) 3 millions Indonesians had migrated into Malaysia and became Malaysian citizens with bumis status.

    (36) 600000 are the Chinese and Indians Malaysians with red IC and were rejected repeatedly when applying for citizenship for 40 years. Perhaps 60% of them had already passed away due to old age. This shows racism of how easily Indonesians got their citizenships compare with the Chinese and Indians

    (37) 5% – 15% discount for a malay to buy a house, regardless whether the malay is rich or poor

    (38) 2% is what Chinese new villages get compare with 98% of what malay villages got for rural development budget

    (39) 50 road names (at least) had been change from Chinese names to other names

    (40) 1 Dewan Gan Boon Leong (in Malacca) was altered to other name (e.g. Dewan Serbaguna or sort) when it was being officially used for a few days. Government try to shun Chinese names. This racism happened in around year 2000 or sort

    (41) 0 temples/churches were built for each housing estate. But every housing estate got at least one mosque/surau built

    (42) 3000 mosques/surau were built in all housing estates throughout Malaysia since 1970. No temples, no churches are required to be built in housing estates

    (43) 1 Catholic church in Shah Alam took 20 years to apply to be constructed. But told by malay authority that it must look like a factory and not look like a church. Still not yet approved in 2004

    (44) 1 publishing of Bible in Iban language banned (in 2002)

    (45) 0 of the government TV stations (RTM1, RTM2, TV3) are directors of non-malay origins

    (46) 30 government produced TV dramas and films always showed that the bad guys had Chinese face, and the good guys had malay face. You can check it out since 1970s. Recent years, this tendency becomes less

    (47) 10 times, at least, malays (especially Umno) had threatened to massacre the Chinese Malaysians using May 13 since 1969

    (48) 20 constituencies won by DAP would not get funds from the government to develop. Or these Chinese majority constituencies would be the last to be developed

    (49) 100 constituencies (parliaments and states) had been racistly re-delineated so Chinese voters were diluted that Chinese candidates, particularly DAP candidates lost in election since 1970s

    (50) Only 3 out of 12 human rights items are ratified by Malaysia government since 1960

    (51) 0 – elimination of all forms of racial discrimination (UN Human Rights) is not ratified by Malaysia government since 1960s

    (52) 20 reported cases whereby malay ambulance attendances treated Chinese patients inhumanely, and malay government hospital staffs purposely delay attending to Chinese patients in 2003. Unreported cases may be 200

    (53) 50 cases each year whereby Chinese, especially Chinese youths being beaten up by malay youths in public places. We may check at police reports provided the police took the report, otherwise there will be no record

    (54) 20 cases every year whereby Chinese drivers who accidentally knocked down malays were seriously assaulted or killed by malays

    (55) 12% is what ASB/ASN got per annum while banks fixed deposit is only about 3.5% per annum

    There are hundreds more racial discriminations in Malaysia to add to this list of “colossal” racism. It is hope that the victims of racism will write in to expose racism.

    Malaysia government should publish statistics showing how much malays had benefited from the “special rights” of malays and at the same time tell the statistics of how much other minority races are being discriminated.

    Hence, the responsibility lies in the Malaysia government itself to publish unadulterated statistics of racial discrimination.

    If the Malaysia government hides the statistics above, then there must be some evil doings, immoral doings, shameful doings and sinful doings, like the Nazi, going on onto the non-malays of Malaysia.

    Civilized nation, unlike evil Nazi, must publish statistics to show its treatment on its minority races. This is what Malaysia must publish……….

    We are asking for the publication of the statistics showing how “implementation of special rights of malays” had inflicted colossal racial discrimination onto non-malays.

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