Diabetes, anaemia, high blood pressure – side effects of a humanitarian diet
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PUSL.- The humanitarian (food) aid that has been reaching the Saharawi refugee camps in the Hamada (desert of death) for more than 4 decades is based on clearly insufficient quantities for survival but also on a set of “foods” based solely on fat and carbohydrates. A diet that could be considered an emergency has become permanent for more than 4 decades.
According to information gathered from several families and confirmed by administrative staff from a wilaya (municipality) the aid consists of: wheat flour, oil, lentils, rice and sugar. This is the basic food basket, the rest may or may not arrive.
I will not dwell on quantities or rather “lack of quantities” but on the fact that hundreds of thousands of people for decades have been forced to survive on a carbohydrate basis.
Some who visited the camps and were not curious to find out what was going on in the host family will tell you that they ate yoghurt, vegetables, fruit and meat. This is true, but this food has to be bought and while the “visitors” receive this kind of food, most families do not have access to it and meat is something they eat once a week, if that. Fruit, vegetables and yoghurts are a luxury.
At the same time there are campaigns to fight diabetes, one of the most common diseases in the camps, and a fortune is spent on medicines for the disease. Once again “humanitarian aid” is in the front line of the fight, at least as far as medication is concerned, and once again in insufficient quantities.
Anemia is another disease that we constantly hear about and that is also related to food.
Blood pressure problems usually accompany diabetes in Saharawi patients.
These Sahrawi refugees would not need a microgram of aid, thus saving donors millions, if international law were respected and Morocco had to leave the Saharawi territories which it occupied militarily in 1975 and which it occupies and exploits illegally to this day.
According to the NGO WSRW, referring to the occupied territories:
“Since the turn of the century, the Dakhla plantations have been flourishing. From 2003 to 2005, about 150 ha of agricultural infrastructure was in use. By 2010-2012, the area had increased to 841 ha. By 2016, about 963 ha was in use. Read the WSRW research note “The expansion of plant infrastructure in occupied Western Sahara 2003-2016”.
( wsrw: https://wsrw.org/en/news/agriculture)
Every aspect analysed in the refugee camps lays bare the mega business of “aid” and the perverse side effects not to mention a lack of ethics on the part of the international community that forces a people, owner of natural wealth and human capabilities, to live in exile or under a bloody occupation.
To speak of a permissive and slow genocide in the case of the Saharawi people is no exaggeration.
An entire people has been pushed into forced impoverishment both in the camps where employment possibilities are obviously scarce and reduced to the reality and difficulties of an exile, and in the occupied territories where there is an economic, social and political apartheid of the Saharawi population.
The intentional lack of medical assistance in the occupied territories and the lack of means in the refugee camps combined with extreme atmospheric conditions and an impoverished diet are yet another factor in the long list of elements which lead Sahrawis to chronic illnesses which could be avoided.