imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

How British Charity Was Silenced On Iraq

by Silence of the Lambs Saturday, Nov. 29, 2003 at 11:06 AM

One of Britain's most high-profile charities was ordered to end criticism of military action in Iraq by its powerful US wing to avoid jeopardising financial support from Washington and corporate donors, a Guardian investigation has discovered.   Internal emails reveal how Save the Children UK came under enormous pressure after it accused coalition forces of breaching the Geneva convention by blocking humanitarian aid.

How British Charity Was Silenced On Iraq

By Kevin Maguire

The Guardian - UK

11-28-3

One of Britain's most high-profile charities was ordered to end criticism of military action in Iraq by its powerful US wing to avoid jeopardising financial support from Washington and corporate donors, a Guardian investigation has discovered.

 

Internal emails reveal how Save the Children UK came under enormous pressure after it accused coalition forces of breaching the Geneva convention by blocking humanitarian aid.

 

Senior figures at Save the Children US, based in Westport, Connecticut, demanded the withdrawal of the criticism and an effective veto on any future statements blaming the invasion for the plight of Iraqi civilians suffering malnourishment and shortages of medical supplies.

 

Uncovered documents expose tensions within an alliance that describes itself as "the world's largest independent global organisation for children" but which is heavily reliant on governments and big business for cash.

 

Save the Children UK, which had an income of £122m in 2002-03, boasts the Queen as patron and Princess Anne as president, plus a phalanx of the great and the good lending their titles and time.

 

The row over Iraq erupted in April when the London statement said coalition forces had gone back on an earlier agreement to allow a relief plane, packed with emergency food and medical supplies for 40,000 people, to land in northern Iraq.

 

Rob MacGillivray, the UK wing's emergency programme manager, released a statement which stated that the "lack of cooperation from the coalition forces is a breach of the Geneva conventions and its protocols, but more importantly the time now being wasted is costing children their lives".

 

Within hours of the statement appearing, the US wing was demanding its withdrawal. Emails sent to staff in Britain by Dianne Sherman, associate vice-president for public affairs and communications in Connecticut, headed "Save/UK criticises US military", expressed dismay and censured the UK operation.

 

Ms Sherman said the Americans were "really astonished at today's release, which went out without our prior knowledge, that attacks the US military".

 

Her email went on: "This is undermining all the great work we've done, much of it in collaboration with you. We'll have to see the consequences of how this plays out - including affecting our future funding from the government."

 

A number of less controversial "joint messages" were proposed by Ms Sherman, none of which criticised any aspect of the invasion or occupation. She instead wanted the UK and US groups to point out that humanitarian organisations were still not permitted access to most of Iraq, that delays harmed children and, on a positive note, that relief work was under way in Umm Qasr, Masul and northern Iraq.

 

"Safe, secure conditions must be created immediately to allow humanitarians to bring in essential supplies and expertise to the people of Iraq," was her alternative version.

 

Accounts published by Save the Children US highlight its vulnerability to political pressure from a Republican White House with "government grants and contracts" generating some 60%, nearly £71m, of its £119m operating support and revenue. The proportion is also high in the UK, where £60.1m - 49% - of the organisation's income is "grants and gifts in kind from institutional donors", including the government.

 

Ms Sherman copied her broadside to US executives including Ann van Dusen, the executive vice-president, Rudy von Bernuth, vice-president and managing director of its children in emergencies section, and Andrea Williamson-Hughes, corporate secretary.

 

When she discovered the London statement had been posted on the UK organisation's website, Ms Sherman also demanded the deletion of US press officer Nicole Amoroso's name as a contact, adding in a second email: "I would also strongly suggest that the press release be removed until we have agreed upon language of the release."

 

A well-placed source in the UK operation said "all hell let loose" over the US intervention, with telephone calls "flying across the Atlantic" and a series of high-level meetings called to discuss the crisis.

 

The removal of the US press officer's name was agreed to placate Connecticut but the source confirmed the Americans were also assured they would be sent all future UK statements on Iraq before they were issued.

 

According to the source, the UK wing toned down later statements to avoid offending the US side of the operation. A statement issued in London on April 25, for example, was cleared in advance with the US, the source said.

 

Headed "The war is not over for the children of Iraq", it made no mention let alone criticism of coalition forces. The looting of some hospitals was highlighted but not the widespread criticism at the time that troops were standing by and doing nothing.

 

Save the Children US concentrates on fundraising and is said by London insiders to be anxious to curb campaigning by the UK arm.

 

Ms Sherman was unavailable for comment until next week, her office said.

 

But in a statement to the Guardian, Save the Children UK said it had not retracted the release at the heart of the row but had removed the name of Ms Amoroso, saying it had been an error not to consult her.

 

Subsequent statements, it added, reflected the fact that the situation "had moved on" as medical supplies had landed in Jordan to be moved to Baghdad. "We do not agree news releases issued in Save the Children UK's name with Save the Children US or any other member of the International Save the Children Alliance," the London statement said. "Wherever possible we do share Save the Children UK news releases before they are issued with other alliance members working in the same area. If any changes are suggested by other alliance members to Save the Children releases, they are made or not at our discretion."

 

The tensions over potential donor influence are not limited to the Iraq crisis. Other internal emails and documents disclose how Save the Children UK was nervous about the reaction of a major donor company, Serco, which makes huge profits from outsourcing, when the charity prepared to criticise the impact of privatisation on children.

 

A number of staff were aghast in the summer of 2002 when a chapter critical of private finance initiatives, written for a report published ahead of the Johannesburg sustainable development summit, was deleted by senior figures in the charity just before it was printed.

 

There is nothing in the documents to suggest that Serco exerted any pressure, but according to the emails, the charity's staff were anxious not to upset it. One email copied widely in the organisation admitted "underlying tensions" existed between the corporate fundraising unit and campaigners arguing that PFIs in basic services did not benefit children.

 

Another warned that criticism of PFIs by the charity was "naturally making some of our corporate sponsors edgy", and the director general, Mike Aaronson, wanted a full briefing ahead of a meeting with a big private donor.

 

As the internal debate raged, fundraiser Helen Barnes warned she was in a "tricky position" with Serco, which ran hospitals, prisons and schools for the government. Although about to cease being a corporate member, the firm, she said, "is still keen to support us" as she argued against portraying it as a company operating solely for profit.

 

"Serco takes its social responsibilities very seriously and invests in the communities in which it operates," Ms Barnes said.

 

Serco, which is heavily involved in the defence sector, raised a total of £626,500 for the charity, as well as naming its yacht Save the Children in the BT Global Challenge race three years ago.

 

The charity's statement yesterday said: "At no point [in] the relationship did Serco attempt to influence Save the Children UK policy on any issue."

 

It continued: "We were able to edit most of the report to meet the required standard but one chapter required further work before it could be approved for publication. Because time was short we decided to drop this chapter to allow the rest of the report to be published in time for the conference."

 

Guardian Unlimited © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2003

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1095116,00.html

Report this post as:

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy