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WATCH: Victim of the WWF (World Wildlife Fund)

WATCH: Victim of the WWF (World Wildlife Fund)

ZEMBLA – Onderzoeksjournalistiek

Documentary published on May 24, 2019

New Documentary: Victim of the World Wildlife Funds

 

“ZEMBLA investigates the collateral damage of the World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) battle for nature conservation. ZEMBLA discovers that WWF promotes birth control programs that include contraception and even sterilization for men and women.

The fight against poachers is getting grimmer all the time. ZEMBLA travels to India, where local inhabitants are wrongly accused of poaching, are being tortured and sometimes even killed. On camera, guards from Kaziranga National Park state that they are allowed to shoot unwanted people.” [Source] [Running time: 39:52]

India: Destroying Biodiversity, The Devastating Social Impacts of GMO “Killer Seeds”

Arun

Arun Shrivastava: 3 Dec 1951 – 19 Dec 2015
HIS WORK WILL GO ON & WILL BE SHARED
SOON TO BE PUBLISHED; 2016. EXPOSE ON NGO’s

Arun’s greatest work that exposes the NGO’s and their criminality. He was doing the most important expose and research about world wide role of NGO’s. It would have changed completely the way we talk about NGO’s. It was of MONUMENTAL global significance and he was not far from completion of this work.”

Andrew Korybko: “What Arun was doing right before his passing was remarkable – he was assembling a team of investigative researchers to document all physical proof (he was very adamant that it had to be verifiable and not connective analysis) of NGO illegal activity all across the world. Russia, India, China, you name it, that’s what he was doing. He was also a exposing the Vatican’s role in all of this. It’s such a tragedy that he left us, but it is imperative that his family and those physically close to him that were involved in the project save his work, continue it, and publish it. It is truly his legacy and must absolutely see the light of day, God willing.” (Andrew Korybko, 20 December, 2015)

+++

Global Research

March 11, 2014

by Arun Shrivastava

GMO-India

India’s Prime Minister’s approval of GM food and Environment Minister Moily’s disregard for rules, illegally permitting open field trials of 120 food crops will destroy India at the genetic level, namely its biodiversity. In an election year Manmohan Singh is leaving behind a scorched India. A blind, deaf, dumb and bigoted Prime Minster said ‘the government should not succumb to unscientific prejudices against GE seeds and foods.’ [1]

Manmohan Singh said,

‘use of biotechnology has great potential to improve yields.’ [2]

Actually this unscientific, prejudiced and utterly spineless PM backed a failed technology. Behind his rise to infamy and many treasonous acts since 1991 is conspiring with the US Government and the European Globalists who want to cull the global population to about 1 billion, not even sparing their own people. His desperate effort to release GMO food crops will turn India into a dead land with sterile population within a few decades.

While Manmohan Singh will go down in history as the most treacherous man that ever occupied the position of Prime Minister, his Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and the Environment Minister Veerappa Moily will disgrace historiography provided historians survive. 

There is nothing ‘unscientific’ or ‘prejudiced’ when people oppose genetically engineered [GE or GMO] seeds and foods. The opposition is grounded in solid verifiable science. As early as 2003, when the first ever Bt cotton crop was harvested in Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra, Gene Campaign evaluated the performance of Bt Cotton. [3] These studies proved that GE seeds don’t increase yield. Either Singh does not understand science or can’t read; he only follows US and NATO orders like their puppets in 30 other countries.

The Impleadment to ban GMOs was backed by 6.5 million farmers through their respective associations. It was admitted by the Supreme Court in April 2007 and contains a long list of hard scientific evidences. [4]

Members of the Technical Experts’ Committee [TEC] appointed by the Supreme Court to assess the biosafety of GMOs concluded that GE seeds should not be allowed in India. The sole dissenting voice in TEC was of Government imposed scientist CD Mayee. Dr CD Mayee is an industry lobbyist and has the dubious distinction of actually knowing well in advance that Bt Cotton crop would never match the yields of non-Bt organic or non-Bt inorganic cotton. This industry lobbyist became a key member of the approvals’ committee and squirmed his way into the TEC. His was the only dissenting note! This man is a disgrace to science.    

Cutting across party lines the Standing Committee on Agriculture in Parliament unanimously and unequivocally concluded that GE seeds and foods are dangerous to human, animal and environmental health and directed the Government of Manmohan Singh to ban GMOs. The 400-page report was submitted to Parliament in October 2012. [5]

Perhaps Manmohan Singh reads only unscientific and prejudiced reports of agriculture biotechnology lobbyists headed by Sharad Pawar on behalf of Monsanto and other multinational corporations like Dow, Syngenta, Bayer, etc al. Even Satan would be ashamed of Pawar, India’s ‘perpetual’ Minister for Agriculture. Time is ripe that his kin and he be consigned to the dust bin of history for ushering a dreadful historical period in Indian agriculture.

Four UPA rogues – PM Manmohan Singh, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Sharad Pawar and now Moily – have destroyed India’s farmers and agriculture system, paving the way for Western multinational corporations to take over India’s farmlands. To these rogues’ list one more name should be added – Raghuram Rajan – the present Governor of the Reserve Bank of India, chosen for his proximity to global banksters. He is the first Governor who ever said that ‘farmers drag the economic growth rate down.’ What does Raghuram eat for breakfast? Genetically engineered Kellogg’s cornflakes in pus laced American milk? Or, reconstituted foods from the advanced labs of global food companies that often contain sanitized and reconstituted human and animal shit? Does he even know that he is presiding over a central bank that can suck the life of 8,000 years of agriculture and food history?

 A short history of what happened

GMO foods already here: India never approved the sale of GMO food crop seeds but as early as 2001 an independent food testing laboratory confirmed that 21 out of 30 samples sent from Delhi’s grocery stores had tested positive for GMO contamination. The desultory tentative moves by the Supreme Court, from 2005 to now, have already ensured poisoning of India’s food. In fact, the Standing Committee on Agriculture in Parliament under the Chairmanship of Basudev Bhattacharya, MP, did a far better job than any expert in the Ministry of Agriculture and Department of Biotechnology. Foods exported by the American and European companies are on Indian grocery shelves, and, given the evidences, contaminated and poisonous. Oil from cotton seeds is used as food and feed; Bt cotton seeds have already entered our food/feed chain.     

Food and Nutrition Security [FNS]: It is also important to note that years ago the Supreme Court appointed NC Saxena and Harsh Mander as Commissioners to report on the progress of various state governments’ performance on Food and Nutrition Security [FNS] issue following a Public Interest Litigation filed in 2001. Not once have Saxena or Mander mentioned in their reports to the Supreme Court that food and nutrition security of India will be utterly compromised by GMOs of criminal multinational corporations.   

International concerns

The potential for misuse of recombinant DNA technology was anticipated as far back as the early 1970s. In 1975 a group of about 140 leading scientists, lawyers, doctors, primarily biologists, and microbiologists [microbiology was an emerging field then] met to discuss the biosafety hazards and draw up a voluntary guideline to ensure the ethical use of recombinant DNA technology. The Asilomar Conference was organised by Paul Berg who had worked with Dr Sanger and Dr Gilbert, early pioneers in recombinant technology; all three Nobel laureates. However, it was Berg who anticipated the dangers. Around the same time microbiologist Dr Pushp M Bhargava had expressed his fears and concerns on the potential for misuse of agriculture biotechnology. Dr Bhargava was one of the experts in the TEC.

Until 1979, the US Patent office had consistently refused to grant patent on life form. An Indian, Dr. Ananda Chakrabarty, found a method for directed evolution of Pseudomonas bacteria, also known as oil eating bacteria, at General Electric Company’s [GEC] facility. GEC applied for protection but the patent office refused until the case finally reached the Supreme Court. In the (in)famous Diamond versus Chakrabarty, perhaps influenced by big money because the case was fought for many years, patent was granted by the US Supreme Court (Diamond v. Chakrabarty), in a 5-4 decision [with serious dissenting notes], on the logic that “a live, human-made micro-organism is patentable subject matter under [Title 35 U.S.C.] 101. Respondent’s micro-organism constitutes a “manufacture” or “composition of matter” within that statute.

The judgment paved the way for patent on life forms. [6] A key sentence in the judgment is “While laws of nature, physical phenomena, and abstract ideas are not patentable, respondent’s claim is not to a hitherto unknown natural phenomenon, but to a nonnaturally occurring manufacture or composition of matter — a product of human ingenuity “having a distinctive name, character [and] use.”

 On this premise the court accepted that Chakrabarty’s innovation was unnatural, an unknown natural phenomenon, a product of human ingenuity, having a distinctive name, character, and use. However, this decision opened the floodgate of life form patenting and widespread misuse of biotechnology in agriculture because companies like Monsanto, Bayer, Syngenta, Dow Chemicals and others could use exact same principles to claim patent right on their innovations now known as Genetically Engineered or Genetically Modified seeds. The raison d’être is that their seeds are a product of their ingenuity has ‘a distinct character and use [application]. They can claim that they have invented “an unknown non-natural event, a product of human ingenuity, having a distinctive name, character and use” and get patent protection.

Seed theft starts on a global scale

Ag-biotech firms knew that they can’t create life form. They needed natural seeds to modify and engineer for patenting.  From that time onward systematic globalised theft of indigenous seeds started. The first large scale theft of seeds in India was done by Swiss company Syngenta that stole 19,000 rice varieties collected by Dr Riccharia, a case known as ‘The Great Gene Robbery’ in which another ‘ever-present’ crony scientist Swaminathan was implicated. And some years ago Dr Mangla Rai, who actually believes in Vedic farming, personally deposited millions of India’s natural seeds at Svalbard Seed Vault which is controlled by a conglomerate of biotech seed corporations and Western Governments.     

Unknown, non-natural, even product of human ingenuity!!! Is GMO a non-natural, unknown event, product of human ingenuity, requiring patent protection? Can any company create a seed in the laboratory? If they can create an unknown, non-natural seed that is a product of human ingenuity, why are they stealing seeds from all over the world? Obviously, they can’t create a new seed type but they can create a new genetic sequence but is it non-natural and unknown?[A1]  If they can create a genetically engineered seed which is “unknown, non-natural and a product of human ingenuity, and by what standard it is “substantially equivalent” to natural seeds? If it is not, why has no company done serious biosafety studies?

What is the track record of GE seeds? 

The natural and known seeds produce healthy foods, do not harm the environment, and do not destroy human and animal health. If they had, human civilization would be extinct long ago before this current bunch of plunderers was born of their depraved, sub-human ancestors through inter-generational trait transfer.

What is the track record of GE seeds?  In late 1990s Dr Arpad Pusztai, head of the Rowett Institute, UK, was asked to test GM foods on animals. He found that GM foods destroy normal functioning of vital organs. Around the same time Dr Irina Ermakova of Russian Academy of Sciences also started her studies on rats and found that the offspring of experimental rats were half the normal size compared with those of the control groups, with severe vital organ malfunction. In 2013 Dr Irina Ermakova came out powerfully and said “It has been proved that, not only in Russia but also in many other countries, GMO is dangerous. Methods of obtaining the GMO are not perfect, therefore, at this stage, all GMOs are dangerous.She further said that “one of the techniques uses tumor-causing soil bacteria” and thatconsumption and use of GMOs obtained in such way can lead to tumors, cancers and obesity among animals. [7]

Using 20-year database on yields from GMO seeds, Dr. Doug Gurian-Sherman proved that the yields actually dropped and says “hard-nosed assessment of this expensive technology’s achievements to date gives little confidence that it will play a major role in helping the world feed itself in the foreseeable future.”[8] 1.2 billion Indians should repeat these lines for the benefit of Manmohan Singh.

Don Huber with 55 years of experience as plant pathologist proved that the ability of the roots of GE plants’ to absorb vital nutrients from the soil is seriously compromised. Huber went on to say that GE crops are destroying the agriculture system. [9]

Now, this is something Dr KP Prabhakaran Nair had warned of GMOs over a decade ago, but he was ignored because his scientific analysis was ‘inconvenient truth’ to the agriculture biotechnology janitors who masquerade as scientists. [10]

A Russian study [2010] by Dr Alexander Surov proved that by the third generation the offspring were infertile. [11] Educated Indians should ask Manmohan Singh, “Is this what you want to do to us?”

Seralini studies, first of its kind over the normal life cycle of rats, which is about 700 days, showed massive malignancies and vital organ failure. This research conclusively proved that experimental animals did not complete their normal life. The experimental rats he used have a life cycle of around 700 days. Up until 90th day, his team did not observe problems with GMO fed rats. From 90th day onward his team observed tumours. Now, 90th day out of 700 days is 12.85% of the entire life-cycle. Average human life is about 80 years. So, if a person eats GM food now, the onset of severe and cataclysmic health impact would show after about 10 years. Since there is no labelling in countries where GMOs are approved as food, there can be no traceability. Evidence is based on traceability. Since there is no traceability, culpability for premeditated murder or genocide can’t be established.

That is why all GM seed companies are bribing political leaders, bureaucrats and regulators to prevent labelling around the world including India. Does the Manmohan Singh gang named above understand this simple scientific fact? [12] What health catastrophe the USA is facing right now with obesity, cancers, diabetes and other degenerative diseases where GM foods were introduced in the 1990s without biosafety studies?

And this is most recent. Egyptian scientists carried out three studies and concluded that (a) GE foods were not equivalent to natural foods, (b) GE diet caused significant changes in body and organ weight indicating toxicity, and (c) histopathological examination showed severe impairment to vital organs and ‘examination of the testes revealed necrosis (death) and desquamation (shedding) of the spermatogonial cells that are the foundation of sperm cells and thus male fertility.’ [13]

The latest bad news came last week. GM foods are nutrition deficient. [14] This is the first time that we have clear scientifically validated evidence that GM foods are deficient in vital nutrients. GM soy, non-GM soy grown conventionally [using chemicals] and organic soy [with no chemicals] were tested. Organic soy was found to be far superior; GM Soy was found most nutrition deficient. The three sources of soy were tested on ‘35 different nutritional and elemental variables to characterize each soy sample.’[15]

The scientists whose works I have cited are neither ‘unscientific’ nor ‘prejudiced.’ In fact, as young scientists, they seriously believed that genetic engineering technology will serve humanity in a novel way. Some of the best scientific minds were attracted to this emerging discipline in science and technology. Little did they know that the field of ‘Eugenics’ that developed in the USA, was actually legalized, was tried on a  mass scale in Nazi Germany on Europeans, Germans, Jews and ethnic minorities and would be renamed ‘Genetic Engineering’ or ‘Biotechnology.’ Majority of scientists had no clue of the real dark agenda of agriculture biotechnology.

Perhaps Manmohan Singh, Sharad Pawar, Veerappa Moily, Montek Singh, and Raghuram Rajan are all part of the global conspiracy of mass culling of the ‘poor, coloured and useless eaters,’ exactly as desired by Henry Kissinger in his National Security Study Memo 200 in 1974, and earlier by the Eugenicists in the USA with first colossal trial in Hitler’s genocide in Europe.

Who is unscientific and prejudiced?

The citations show that GMOs neither increase yield nor nutrition in food. On the contrary, GMOs have adverse effect on plant and soil health. Most significantly, GMOs trigger lethal diseases and cause sterility in those who regularly ingest these foods. Premature mortality is the norm rather than exception.

Judge for yourself who is unscientific and prejudiced.

Manmohan Singh, Sharad Pawar and Veerappa Moily are not the only ones who genuflect to the eugenicist brigade. The emerging neo-fascists known as Aam Aadmi Party’s [AAP] think tank includes senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan who has fought the anti-GMO case in the Supreme Court since 2005. When his party won the December Delhi state election and formed the Government he could have banned GMOs in Delhi. That act alone would have won the hearts of millions across the world. Instead, Prashant did not even have the guts to respond to a simple letter asking him to clarify his stand on GMOs. The reason is not far to seek: AAP is almost entirely funded by CIA’s ‘civilized’ front Ford Foundation.

It is the same foundation that laid the groundwork to break USSR up. The break-up of India was planned even before India became independent in 1947. Perhaps the young goons brought up on foreign funds want to straddle over a dead India. The issue of GMOs is a cosmological event with which they have nothing to do although they all eat three meals every day. Or perhaps they are already been made tolerant of the Ford Foundation, UN-Framework Team and USAID nation-destroying Monsanto Roundup and Ready nation destroying herbicide.

These seeds are “engineered to kill,” patent protected, highly profitable silent weapons. The global war of globalists is being fought by other means, by eliminating the survival options. It’s the same old colonial strategy. But the political class and the NGO brigade of India has been genetically modified to remain silent on vital issues.       

[Arun Shrivastava was a journalist based in South Asia. An accredited management consultant, Arun was also a highly experienced researcher and writer. He studied in India and England and returned to India in 1989, after a brief stint as senior officer with Economic Development Unit of Birmingham (UK). From 1989 to 1994, he taught Strategic Management and Long Range Planning to MBA students at International Management Institute in Delhi.]

Notes

[1] http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/PM-brings-hope-for-scientists-over-introducing-GM-food-crops-in-India-after-safety-trials/articleshow/29812575.cms

[2] http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/at-science-meet-pm-pitches-for-gm-crops/article5648525.ece

[3] http://www.genecampaign.org/policy_for_GM_Crops.php

[4] An Impleadment was admitted by the Supreme Court of India in April 2007 signed by Dr. Krishna Bir Chaudhary and Arun Shrivastava which was supported by around 6.5 million farmers.

[5] “Cultivation of Genetically Modified Food Crops,” Committee on Agriculture, 37th Report, August 2012. Summary of the report: http://www.gmwatch.eu/index.php/report-on-gm-crops-and-food-security-from-india-s-parliamentary-standing-committee-on-agriculture

[6] Full judgement: http://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/447/303/case.html

[7] http://rt.com/news/gmo-ban-russian-scientists-293/

[8] Failure to Yield-Evaluating the performance of Genetically Engineered Crops; Union of Concerned Scientists; 2009;  http://www.ucsusa.org/assets/documents/food_and_agriculture/failure-to-yield.pdf

[9] http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/sign/dr_hubers_warning/

[10] http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2711

[11] http://voiceofrussia.com/2010/04/16/6524765/

[12] http://www.gmoseralini.org/faqs/    

[13] http://www.gmwatch.org/index.php/news/archive/2014/15260-another-rat-feeding-study-shows-gm-bt-corn-toxic-to-mammals

[14] http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/compositional-differences-soybeans-market-glyphosate-accumulates-roundup-ready

[15] Food Chem. 2014 Jun 15 ;153:207-15. Epub 2013 Dec 18. PMID: 24491722  by  T Bøhn, M Cuhra, T Traavik, M Sanden, J Fagan, R Primicerio

Other Works of Arun Shrivastava

Arun Shrivastava: “It Holds No Water”, 30 July 2004.
http://www.indiaenvironmentportal.org.in/content/35654/it-holds-no-water/

Arun Shrivastava: “Depleted Uranium is “blowing in the wind”,2 March 2006
http://www.globalresearch.ca/depleted-uranium-is-blowing-in-the-wind/2057

Arun Shrivastava “Mass Suicides by Indian Farmers, Shape of Things to Come”, 11 September 2006
http://www.globalresearch.ca/mass-suicides-by-indian-farmers-shape-of-things-to-come/3204

Arun Shrivastava: “Genetically Modified Seeds: Women in India Take on Monsanto” , 9 October 2006
http://www.globalresearch.ca/genetically-modified-seeds-women-in-india-take-on-monsanto/3427

Arun Shrivastava: “Biotech GM Seeds Buccaneers destroy India’s Rice Economy”, 21 December 2006
http://www.globalresearch.ca/biotech-gm-seeds-buccaneers-destroy-india-s-rice-economy/4230

Arun Shrivastava,: “The Power of Corporate Greed in Himachal” April 2007
http://hillpost.in/2007/04/the-power-of-corporate-greed-in-himachal/1859/

Arun Shrivastava, The Massacre at Nandigram, 21 November 2007
http://www.opednews.com/articles/genera_arun_shr_071121_the_massacre_at_nand.html

Arun Shrivastava: “Sustainable Development and the Vulnerable”, 4 May 2008.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/sustainable-development-and-the-vulnerable/8887

Arun Shrivastava: “The Death of Rice in India” , 11 July 2008.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-death-of-rice-in-india/9562

Arun Shrivastava: “ For Whom the Bell Tolls”, 15 March 2009.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/for-whom-the-bell-tolls/12717

Arun Shrivastava. “Poverty and Food Insecurity in the Developing World: For Us, Tolls the Bell”, 7 May 2009.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/poverty-and-food-insecurity-in-the-developing-world-for-us-tolls-the-bell/13527

Arun Shrivastava (with John Kaminski): “Second Israeli state emerging in India
‘New Jerusalem’ movement eyes takeover of three eastern states, near center of opium production.” 19 August 2009.
http://johnkaminski.info/pages/the_next_chapter/second_israeli_state_emerging_in_india.htm

Arun Shrivastava: “Asia’s Rice Culture Threatened”, 20 November 2009.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/asia-s-rice-culture-threatened/16199

Arun Shrivastava: “The Neo-Liberal Invasion of India”, 28 April 2010.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=ARU20061009&articleId=3427

Lead Author Arun Shrivastava: “Natural Resource Management In South Asia”,
Pearson, Delhi 2011

Arun Shrivastava: “Was 911 Necessary?”, 3 September 2011.
http://www.salem-news.com/articles/september032011/911-necessity-ar.php

Arun Shrivastava: “The Attack on our Seeds”, 11 January 2012.
https://bharatabharati.wordpress.com/2012/01/11/the-attack-on-our-seeds-arun-shrivastava/

Arun Shrivastava: ” Depleted Uranium Contamination: A Crime against Humanity “, 26 March 2012.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/depleted-uranium-contamination-a-crime-against-humanity/29974

Arun Shrivastava: “INDIA’S URBAN SLUMS: Rising Social Inequalities, Mass Poverty and Homelessness” 8 May 2012
http://www.globalresearch.ca/india-s-urban-slums-rising-social-inequalities-mass-poverty-and-homelessness/30756

Arun Shrivastava: “The Political Crisis in Nepal”, 19 June 2012.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-political-crisis-in-nepal/31494

Arun Shrivastava: “Nepal Privatized and Sororized”, 16 July 2012.
http://nsnbc.me/2012/07/16/nepal-privatized-and-sororized/

Arun Shrivastava: “US Soldiers in Nepal on China’s Tibet Border, On a Reconnaissance “Humanitarian Mission”, 22 September 2012
http://www.globalresearch.ca/us-soldiers-in-nepal-on-chinas-tibet-border-on-a-reconnaissance-humanitarian-mission/5305643

Arun Shrivastava: “Towards a “Colored Revolution” in Nepal? Foreign Interference Triggers Political Chaos”, 11 October 2012
http://www.globalresearch.ca/twards-a-colored-revolution-in-nepal-foreign-interference-triggers-political-and-social-chaos/5307747,

Arun Shrivastava: “From nutrition-dense to nutrition-deficient: Decline in food quality & corruption of science”, 24 November 2012
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2561

Arun Shrivastava: “India’s anger exposes gormless leaders and media”, 31 December 2012
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2624

Arun Shrivastava: “Hard Choices for Nepali People”, 17 January 2013.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2644

Arun Shrivastava: “India’s Genetically Modified Seeds, Agricultural Productivity and Political Fraud”, 31 March 2013.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2741
http://www.globalresearch.ca/india-genetically-modified-seeds-agricultural-productivity-and-political-fraud/5328227

Arun Shrivastava: “The Himalayas-Once Moaning, now Groaning”, 18 May 2013
http://hillpost.in/2013/05/the-himalayas-once-moaning-now-groaning/79018/

Arun Shrivastava: “The Himalayan floods: man-made disaster”, 22 June 2013.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2844

Arun Shrivastava: “9/11: Year 12+, Obama continues the colonial wars… and Syria is not the end”, 13 September 2013.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=2948

Arun Shrivastava: “Manmohan Singh’s Atomic Pile”, 22 September 2013.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/AuthorProfile.aspx?pid=577

Arun Shrivastava: “The Japan-India Nuclear Energy Deal “, 22 September 2013.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-japan-india-nuclear-energy-deal/5350939

Arun Shrivastava: ““Color Revolution” in Nepal: The World Converges to “Observe Elections”, 16 November 2013.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/color-revolution-in-nepal-the-world-converges-to-observe-elections/5358385

Arun Shrivastava: “Kejriwal deception and the energy conundrum”, 3 February 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/AuthorProfile.aspx?pid=577

Arun Shrivastava: “India: Destroying Biodiversity, The Devastating Social Impacts of GMO “Killer Seeds”, 11 March 2014.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/india-the-devastating-social-impacts-of-gmo-killer-seeds/5372919

Arun Shrivastava: “Leaving a Scorched India”, 12 March 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3134

Arun Shrivastava: “ Seeds of Destruction: The Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation”, 9 April 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3303

Arun Shrivastava: “India Elections 2014”, 5 May 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3188

Arun Shrivastava: “Exploring energy options for resurgent India”, 11 June 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3229

Arun Shrivastava: “Mangal Pandey strategy for food and nutrition security”, 9 July 2014.
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3258

Arun Shrivastava: “Ban GMOs in India immediately”. 20 August 2014
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=3303

Arun Shrivastava: “Weaponization of the Food System: Genetically Engineered Maize Threatens Nepal and the Himalayan Region” 17 April 2015. (written on 24 April 2012)
http://www.globalresearch.ca/weaponization-of-the-food-system-genetically-engineered-maize-threatens-nepal-and-the-himalayan-region/30512

WATCH: WWF SILENCE OF THE PANDAS | A Journey into the Heart of the Green Empire

HectorLaurenceWWFDorteWWFJasonClayWWF

Above: Three of many individuals creating mass-misery and ecological devastation via WWF. Clockwise: Dr Hector Laurence – WWF Argentina (also president of Agricultural Association AIMA and Director of two GMO companies (Morgan Seeds & Pioneer), Dörte Bieler – WWF spokesperson for Germany, Jason Clay – Senior Vice President, Market Transformation.

The WWF is the largest environmental protection organisation in the world. Trust in its “green projects” is almost limitless. Founded on September 11, 1961, it is the most influential lobby group for the environment in the world, thanks largely to its elitist contacts in both the political and industrial spheres and to its ability to walk a constant tightrope between commitment and venality.

This film will dispel the green image of the WWF however. Behind the organisation’s eco-façade, the documentary maker uncovered explosive stories from all around the world. This documentary reveals the secrets of the WWF. It is a journey into the heart of the green empire that will hopefully shatter public faith in such so-called conservation groups forever. [Synopsis below video.]

A film by Wilfried Huismann, Germany, 2011

Synopsis:

The WWF, the most famous and powerful environmental organization worldwide, is facing accusations of working too closely with industries that destroy the environment and of ‘greenwashing’ dubious companies. The Fund allegedly collaborates with companies that deforest jungles, displace farmers, destroy the habitat of animals and contaminate the environment, German journalist and documentary maker Wilfried Huismann reveals.

BOLIVIA: “THIS IS A COP OF CLIMATE CHANGE NOT A COP OF CARBON TRADE”

December 4, 2012

Censored News

 
UNBALANCED NEGOTIATIONS AND VERY PARTIAL VISIONS
Bolivia continues the fight against carbon markets, and the bias that prevents the voice of developing countries from being heard

By Plurinational State of Bolivia
Censored News

DOHA, Qatar — 4 December 2012 — During the plenary of Cooperation Actions of Long Term (ACL), or table of financing that summarizes the prospect of this working group, the text of conclusions has been proposed, which supposedly reflect the positions and proposals of countries forming part of the working group.

However the Vice-Chancellor of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, Juan Carlos Alurralde said, “The text was imbalanced and did not include the position and proposals of developing countries, since it was not adaptation, transfer of technology, attention to disaster, or financing that were the fundamental agreements in Bali,” said Alurralde.

“Ironically in the document are the mechanisms based on the carbon market, and exclude the proposal uploaded for Bolivia, the mechanism of no market within financing, a topic of great concern for those who support this proposal, countries such as China, Cuba, Egypt, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, India, Iraq, Iran, Malaysia, Mali, Sudan, Venezuela and others,” said the Vice Chancellor.

“These had not considered the proposal to not market, by the Facilitator, who is Chilean. This concerned the Vice-Chancellor, since no one wants to think that there is some sort of discrimination or bilateral rematch, to an issue such as the sea that is bilateral.”

“However it is very evident that the facilitator of the ACL has overlooked entirely the proposals to not market, that’s why Bolivia with a very strong position going to trace the theme and raise the formation of working groups that raise profound decisions, and does listen to the voices of the world” pointed out Alurralde.

Regarding the actions to be taken by Bolivia, the Vice Chancellor noted that: “Bolivia has a very strong visible voice and together with the countries that worked on the proposals to not market, will hear criticisms to the head of the ACL group and the respective claim to the facilitator, to organize in working groups that make listening to the voice of our countries to the world and this Conference negotiators, urged the Vice-Chancellor.

BOLIVIA: “THIS IS A COP OF CLIMATE CHANGE NOT A COP OF CARBON TRADE”

UNIDAD MADRE TIERRA Y AGUA / MINISTERIO DE RELACIONES EXTERIORES ESTADO PLURINACIONAL DE BOLIVI
DOHA, Qatar — December 4th

The day of the COP inauguration, a conference about CARBON TRADE took place facilitated by Nicholas Stern. The event had the presence of ministers and other authorities of different countries. Surprisingly the center of the discussion was how to allow developed countries that are not going to be part of the second commitment period of KP to have access to market mechanisms of the same KP that they deny to be applicable to them.

Another central issue was how to solve the crisis of the carbon market. Half of the 100 billion dollars to be provided for climate change by 2020 would come from carbon credits, commented Mr. Stern. The collapse of prices in carbon market is a menace to financial provision for climate change, expressed Stern. A dynamic debate took place in the event in order to bring solutions to the carbon crisis.

This debate is beginning to dominate the agenda of discussion in COP18, pushed by developed countries. Are we going to allow this COP about climate change to become a COP of carbon trade?

That was a question raised by Juan Carlos Alurralde the Vice Chancellor of Bolivia, who was present in the conference. When he took the floor he expressed the following words: “… Carbon markets are not a solution to the climate change crisis… Instead of discussing one of the instruments for supporting mitigation actions, which is carbon markets.; I repeat: ONE of the instruments which effectiveness is still pending of analysis, but from our view is a complete mistake, instead of that, we should discuss the structural elements of a comprehensive response to Climate Change Crisis.
It’s seems that developed countries are more interested in the carbon markets business that in the ultimate goal of this conference which is the structural solutions for this planet and future generations Carbon markets are just business for some but a bad solution for Mother Earth, facilitating developed countries not to make real domestic reductions.

We have to say that at least four realistic predictable risks are linked to the application and generalization of carbon markets: 1. Double counting implying an additional 1,6 Gigatones (GT) to the atmosphere. 2. Non aditionalities with an increase of 0,4 GT Gigatones 3. The use of the carry over which implies 11 GT 4.

The opening of opportunities for creating bilateral trading carbon agreements without accounting for the rules, monitoring and regulation. We came from very far to try to find solutions and alternatives to bring the opportunity to future generations to live with dignity in this planet, and definitely the Carbon market mechanisms are not the solution…”

Minting Money in an NGO Way

by Anant Kumar

Global Minds

August 9, 2012

We want to open an NGO

In the past five-six years, many people, friends, and students showed interest and contacted me to take my advice about opening a Non Government Organisation (NGO). Most of these people were doing well in their life but their hearts were crying to help people and bring change in the society. They were moved by the poverty, illiteracy, etc, (as expressed by them) and determined to open an NGO to serve the people.

In reality, these people’s hearts were crying to bring changes in their own lives. They wanted to properly utilize their connections. The real motive and drive behind opening NGOs were interesting and it may be summarised, ‘if you do not own an NGO, please register one; if you are unemployed or an entrepreneur, register an NGO or many NGOs because it’s easier to set up and requires no investment in comparison to an industry’. Despite my advice and suggestions (do not open an NGO), most of these people opened an NGO which forced me to rethink ‘what was that strong drive which was stronger than my advice’. I thought to explore and examine the real motive behind it which is discussed below.

NGO

Motive behind opening an NGO

People are opening an NGO because it is a business with sure profit. Most of them were having contacts and were eager to use it. In their opinion, “if one has contacts at a right place, opening an NGO is one of the easiest ways of minting money”. One can mint money in an NGO way if either of the following is true. If you know a powerful person (a politician or a bureaucrat) so well that he will do business with you, if you know some non-resident Indian (NRI) whose heart is bleeding with love and care for India, if you have impressed the international funding agencies, or if you are a powerful person like a politician or a bureaucrat. “Many politicians cutting across party lines and bureaucrats are managing the affairs of NGOs. They run NGO by proxy (in the name of their wife, relative, or friends) while in service and take charge of the organisations after retirement”.   By opening an NGO, one can run a parallel government with the patronage of politicians and senior bureaucrats which can be inferred from the observation by the Panchayati Raj Minister of Odisha that:

at one point of time, it was desired by the Planning Commission to encourage NGO participation in the socio-economic development process with the hope that there will be healthy competition between the government agencies and voluntary organisations. But finally, it has been observed that the NGOs are running a parallel government with the patronage of senior bureaucrats. A new regulatory mechanism has to be thought of to make the NGOs accountable”.

Many NGOs are against this government move to enact the legislation to ensure their accountability and transparency and introduce a measure to involve the elected representatives in their working.    Many heads or owners of NGOs are making profits with a catchy tagline – not-for-profit organisation. The NGO head’s lavish lifestyle, houses, property, foreign trips, and expenses on children educations makes thing complicated and contradicts their claims of social service. Financial management systems in most of these NGOs are weak which permits to mint money by improper ways such as less payment to staff whereas on paper they show full salary (cash back system with every salary cheque under the umbrella “contribution to the organisation” for welfare of employees). Sometimes, one staff is assigned to manage two or more programmes with two appointment letters but they get only one salary as other program’s salary has to be refunded in cash to the organisation. Alternatively, in many NGOs, staff work in projects and salary goes to the head of the NGO whose designation and roles were elaborated in project budget. For most of the government project, there is fixed share and commission by NGOs which goes to politicians, bureaucrats, and other officials. To influence the monitors or evaluators, even money and women are used by few organisations. In few organisations, two parallel financial management systems are in practice, one for themselves (in the name of General Fund) and other for the donors and auditors. Hence, it is difficult to find faults in their financial management system.

Many organisations are easily luring or impressing the donors by showcasing their work without doing anything. There are good numbers of consultants available to develop proposals, write reports, case studies and documentaries which can be sold to donors. Besides, nowadays many awards are also available which one can buy or manage for their organisation. One does not need to worry about transparency and accountability, particularly in respect of the funds received from various sources. One can spend a sizable portion of funds in personal asset building, air travel, and purchase of vehicles. Even most of the training opportunities, fellowships, conference participation and foreign trips are attended by the head of the family and their members. There are instances where donors have sponsored international fellowships and foreign trips to family members or for the senior bureaucrats. Although these trips are shown as training programmes, the real intent is to oblige the bureaucrats so they can grant a project or make a policy in donors or an organisation’s favour.

Under Societies Registration Act (1860), there is a mandate to have seven members in the governing body of the organisation having no blood relation to promote representation of diverse sections of the society. However, to defy this clause, many organisations heads have made their daughters-in-law or other family members the board members who are part of the family but not having direct blood relation. Mostly treasurer posts are confined within the family members and majority of the board members are kept out of fence and everything revolves around one or two members. Rest of the members remain silent signatory to validate the board decisions which they hardly aware of.

If one owns an NGO, they do not need to worry about their children’s career. Just transfer the special skills and prepare them to inherit the NGO. For instance, an NGO in Jharkhand, established in the beginning of 1970s, now is in the process of transferring the leadership to their sons. Interestingly, despite the fact that many staff have devoted decades in the same organisation but they will not get the leadership, title and ownership. In another organisation in Bihar, after the death of its secretary, his wife became the secretary, as his son was minor. After attaining 18 years of age, her son took over the secretary position. It shows that most of organisation’s leadership rotates in the family and board are customary and ornamental without having the real power. Similarly, one need not worry about dowry. According to a study “Expanding Dimensions of Dowry” carried out by the All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), “Several middle and upper income group families interviewed said that they were trying to organise an NGO for the prospective bridegroom because that is what he had demanded!” The AIDWA study has revealed that this trend is not limited to economically marginalized classes. The study says: they specifically demand NGOs that have been registered for three years – the eligibility criteria for overseas funding.

This situation is not only prevalent in Bihar, Jharkhand, or Odisha, the state of Uttar Pradesh also has the culture of giving dowry in the form of NGO. There are NGO owners who want to employ professionals to run their NGOs and earn money for them. These new professionals think that they are helping underdeveloped community but soon they realize that they have become the part of the “system”. Biswanath Dalei, a lecturer in a private college in Balasore, Odisha, is a harried man – running around to get an NGO registered within a month’s time. “Definitely, he is not in a tearing hurry to be of service to society. The fact is that his future son-in-law is demanding an NGO as dowry in lieu of Dalei’s inability to give Rs 100,000 in cash”. Nowadays, NGO buying and selling is increasingly emerging as a good business and one can buy an NGO in 10-20 thousand depending on how old it is or having FCRA or not.

Conclusion

The paper does not mean that all NGOs are money making entity. Many NGOs have set up examples of transparency. But there is still a long way to go. The only way to stop these people to become the part of minting money in an NGO way is to make strong legislation and monitoring body. Misuse of hundred and fifty years old Society Registration Act is common where anyone and everyone can register an NGO. Society Registration Act needs a thorough review and amendment. The existing legislation and monitoring bodies for NGOs are weak and powerless. There is a need of strong accreditation body to monitor and regulate NGOs to improve transparency, governance, and accountability. The government and planning commission needs to relook their policy on NGO partnership. The Government should also take the responsibility of the development of its people and should stop transferring their responsibility to NGOs in the name of public-private-partnership.

Acknowledgement:

Author is thankful to all those who shared their experience, provided relevant information, and helped in developing this paper. Their names are not mentioned as it might hamper their career.

 

Disclosure: The commentary is based on author’s discussion with various NGO staffs and development professionals. The views expressed in this paper are not against any individual or organisation. Therefore, name of NGOs are not mentioned in the paper.

(Photo © DR)

Opinions voiced by Global Minds do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Global Journal.

NGOs Disappear With Money Meant for Afforestation

New Delhi, May 1, 2012

Making a mockery of the government’s afforestation programme, many non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have disappeared with crores of tax-payers’ money released by the government for planting saplings.

Image for representation purpose onlyOut of 560 projects sanctioned to voluntary agencies between 2003 and 2008, proponents of 537 projects vanished midway with the first and second instalment of funds amounting close to Rs 30 crore without showing any evidence for completion of the work.

Only in 20 projects — 3.57 per cent of total projects costing Rs 1.79 crore — were all the three instalment of grants released as agencies could submit documentary evidence in support of their previous work.

“The possibility of misutilisation (of fund) or fraud is not ruled out as a majority of the voluntary agencies neither came back to the National Afforestation and Eco-Development Board for the next instalments after the release of first instalment nor furnish utilisation certificate or progress reports,” the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament said in its report.

Population Control: UK Aid Funds Forced Sterilisation of India’s Poor

, May 13, 2012

Tens of millions of pounds of UK aid money has been spent forcibly sterilising Indian women. Many have died being mistreated, causing outrage from those who suspect Britain simply wants to curb the country’s population for alterior motives. RT’s Priya Sridhar has the details of this controversial programme.

Using NGOs to Coerce Nations

by Sandhya Jain

Source: The Pioneer

May 8, 2012

Western nations fund NGOs operating in developing countries to influence policy and subvert institutions. India does not need foreign-funded NGOs.

Non-Western nations have long known that non-Government organisations, ostensibly set up to provide humanitarian services to citizens in their respective countries, such as against the police or other public authorities, fighting poverty or environmental degradation, are funded by foreign regimes to serve their agendas. They are, in that sense, a tool of coercive diplomacy, or war by other means.Some weeks ago, Egypt, front-runner of the aborted Arab Spring, clamped down on foreign NGOs and refused to licence eight US civil groups, including the election-monitoring Carter Centre, prior to the presidential poll. Under Egyptian law, NGOs cannot operate without licence.American NGOs, called ‘quangos’, tend to focus on promoting democracy abroad, an euphemism for electing Governments that serve American interests. Last month, the UAE decided to shut down the offices of an American ‘quango’ run by the Democratic Party but mainly funded by the US Government. Observers said the move was engineered by Riyadh and other capitals that felt the ‘quango’ was interfering in their internal affairs, and hence urged the UAE to close it.

Many capitals view ‘quangos’ as intrusive of national sovereignty. By grooming ‘democracy activists’ — recall the Coloured Revolutions in former Soviet republics — they create the environment for US-desired changes to occur. The decision by the UAE and other Gulf countries to curtail the functioning of German and US foundations is likely to usher in a new system whereby entities directly or indirectly funded by foreign Governments will be allowed to function only under negotiated agreements and can no longer operate as they please.

The National Endowment for Democracy, closely associated with the Reagan Administration, was conceived as a tool of US foreign policy by its founder Mr Allen Weinstein, a former professor, Washington Post writer, and member of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a neo-conservative think-tank whose members included Mr Henry Kissinger and Mr Zbigniew Brzezinski. The NED’s first director, Mr Carl Gershman, was candid that it was a front for the CIA. From its inception in 1983, the NED’s annual funds are approved by the US Congress as part of the United States Information Agency budget. Its activities include funding anti-Left and anti-labour movements; meddling in elections in Venezuela and Haiti; and, creating instability in countries resisting imperial America.

Freedom House, set up in 1941 as a pro-democracy and pro-human rights organisation, is engaged with the Project for the New American Century, and much of the war-mongering in Washington, DC. The Bush Administration used it to support its ‘War on Terror’. The US Government provides 66 per cent of its funding via USAID, the State Department, and the NED. Freedom House leapt into the Arab Spring, training and financing civil society groups and individuals, including the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, and grassroots activists in Yemen.

The Bush Administration also compelled NGOs to serve its imperial agenda. In 2003, USAID Administrator Andrew Natsios said the NGO-USAID link helped the Karzai Government to survive, but Afghans did not appreciate this. In Iraq, he wanted NGO work there to show a connection with US policy. It is difficult to be more explicit.

The politics of charity

Aid is not designed to bring the wretched of the earth out of poverty but to pacify unrest in the donor country’s domestic sphere

Sreeram Chaulia | The Asian Age

Feb 22, 2012

Foreign aid is both a sop to the liberal conscience of the donor state’s domestic society as well as an instrument of indirect control over recipient states. The motivations and effects of aid are frequently ulterior and detrimental, notwithstanding the altruistic rhetoric. These ugly realities were reified recently by two prominent cases, one in post-revolutionary Egypt and the other in economically growing India.

Egypt’s military-dominated interim regime is prosecuting 19 American citizens working for “pro-democracy” NGOs linked to the two main US political parties. They are facing charges for taking unauthorised foreign aid and undermining Egyptian sovereignty by funding street protests, which have become ubiquitous since Hosni Mubarak’s downfall in February 2011.

The three American NGOs in the line of fire — the National Democratic Institute, the International Republican Institute and Freedom House — have a reputation of channelling partisan US government aid to alter internal political processes of countries that receive aid. Since they are organisations serving American strategic interests in the name of advancing human rights and civil liberties, the Egyptian authorities have a valid reason in investigating their activities.

But what’s interesting here are the shrill cries that emanated from the US Congress in response to Egypt’s filing of legal suits against the NGO employees. Last week, there was an uproar on Capitol Hill exhorting the Barack Obama administration to deny vital military and development aid to Egypt, which is the fifth-largest recipient of American largesse. At stake is $1.6 billion of aid that Washington annually gifts to Cairo and which is now the lifeline for the transitional Egyptian state.

Egyptian civilians, who are disillusioned with the revolution and fear falling under a fourth successive military dictator since the 1950s, know that the US has leverage over Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, head of Egypt’s ruling military council, and his officer ranks owing to their dependence on Washington’s aid. As the anti-military sentiment has risen into a mass fervour on the streets, the fact that the US was not using the aid card to force the Army to hand over power to civilians had, despite the charade, been frustrating activists. But sadly for their cause, not even the NGO arrests have pushed the US executive away from pampering the Egyptian military.

In the last few days, US Senators and representatives who had earlier demanded an end to the harassment of American NGO staffers have toned down their stridency on retaliation for the arrests. The key to this turnaround has to do with Israel’s fears that shutting off the aid tap will push the Egyptian military to abandon its three-decade-old peace treaty with Tel Aviv.

Foreign aid from Washington to successive Egyptian regimes since the days of Anwar Sadat is actually a bribe to perpetuate their entente cordiale with Israel — anger on the streets in Egypt against a sell-out on the Palestinian cause had to be salved through this form of payment from the US to the Egyptian military. Sensing Israel’s fear and the US’ vulnerability, the Muslim Brotherhood, which currently dominates the Egyptian Parliament, has threatened to “review” relations with Israel if the aid stops flowing from Washington. The Brotherhood and Tantawi’s officer corps know that in an election year, Mr Obama would not dare to weaken Israel geopolitically.

The outcome of this sordid game over aid is that the people of Egypt who are desperately striving for civilian supremacy and de-politicisation of the Army, are being cheated by the strategic aid policy of the US, which is nothing but a guarantee for Israel’s security. The NGOs who claim to be helping to democratise Egypt are playing their parts as cogs in this structural vicious circle.

The India-UK row over foreign aid is equally convoluted. Some British MPs, angered by New Delhi’s award of a major fighter jet contract to a French defence manufacturer, pressured the David Cameron government to cancel the £280 million worth of annual development assistance to India. If development aid does not buy lucrative contracts to Britain’s military industrial complex, they argued, Britain should stop its charity pretentions and suspend aid deliveries to India.

Following this muscle-flexing, it emerged from leaked memos that India was anyway not clamouring for British development aid. India’s then foreign secretary, Nirupama Rao, is said to have recommended that Delhi stop accepting British aid due to the “negative publicity of Indian poverty” promoted by UK’s DFID (Department for International Development). India’s finance minister Pranab Mukherjee bluntly remarked in 2011 that Britain’s aid was “peanuts” and was not welcome.

Yet, as in the case of the US and Egypt, the British government has not withdrawn its unsolicited aid to India owing to domestic compulsions. The justification for this puzzling act of unwarranted benevolence is that British ministers had painstakingly sold the policy of foreign aid to their electorates and that pulling the plug now on India would cause “grave political embarrassment”.

In other words, the myth that Britain is still a liberal saviour of suffering people of the world has to be kept up for a domestic audience that is suffering under the weight of a prolonged economic downturn. Aid is, thus, not designed to bring the wretched of the earth out of poverty but to pacify unrest in the donor country’s domestic sphere. This has echoes from colonial times, when workers at home were kept under leash by means of the civilising mission and the “white man’s burden” overseas — the propaganda in Victorian England about the supposed uplifting nature of British colonialism was couched in humanitarian aid terms and was a means to cover up the Dickensian gloom of factory labour exploitation.

Last year, China surpassed the World Bank as the world’s biggest development lender. Apart from the political leverage, market penetration and energy security that Beijing gets in return from Africa and Latin America, Chinese aid investments also serve domestic purposes. Beijing’s “chequebook diplomacy” keeps internal dissent under check by peddling the vision of a benevolent state whose foreign policy is empowering the world’s underdogs.

Charity indeed begins at home, but in a rather murky way. Aid has never pitchforked receiving societies out of poverty, although donor states and their allies routinely benefit from developmental loans and grants thrust upon the wary. Egypt and India would fare better if liberated from foreign aid and its entwining strings.

The writer is vice-dean of the Jindal School of International Affairs and the author of the recent book, International Organizations and Civilian Protection: Power, Ideas and Humanitarian Aid in Conflict Zones

http://www.asianage.com/columnists/politics-charity-832

 

 

My Jakarta: Sari, Ex-Activist

My Jakarta: Sari, Ex-Activist
Maria Yuniar | October 06, 2011

‘The Longer I Was Involved With the NGO, the More It Felt Like a Corporation’

Sari used to be an activist who would volunteer her time to campaign on environmental issues. For a while, she was actively involved in an international nongovernmental organization that was seeking to put the spotlight on issues that were important to her.

But she eventually became disillusioned with NGOs, fearing that too much of their money was being spent on staff,?and the issues on which they campaigned could be too easily determined by the whims of donors.

Sari — who has chosen not to give her real name — tells My Jakarta how greenwashing is changing the shape of activism in Indonesia.

Why did you first volunteer with a nongovernmental organization?

It was in 2008, during college. Back then, to finish an assignment, my lecturer urged me to gather information from an organization working on the issue I was writing about — the environment. I decided my report would be on the topic ‘what have environmental organizations done for the earth.’ That led me to become a volunteer for an international NGO that campaigned on the environment.

What did you do as an activist?

I was involved in projects on climate change. As volunteers, we tried to raise public awareness about the issue. We informed people about how the climate was changing and the impact that was having. It was exciting, and I didn’t feel like leaving the NGO even after I completed my report. But then, something ended my desire to volunteer for the organization.

What stopped you?

After being involved for a while, something started to bug me. I realized that there were many conflicts of interest in the NGO I was involved in. This happened in other NGOs as well. I sensed that the NGO was no longer working the way it was supposed to work. The longer I was involved with the NGO, the more it felt like a corporation.

Day by day, it became more profit-oriented and relaxed its idealism. It became less critical, and didn’t put effort into an issue unless it was attractive to potential donors. By the time I realized this, I’d graduated from university, so I decided to find a permanent job instead. My heart just couldn’t stay committed to volunteer activities anymore.

Can you provide any examples of wrongdoing?

When there were concerns about the palm oil industry in Indonesia, many environmental NGOs made it their No. 1 focus, because people would pay attention to it and the NGO could raise a lot of money from it. The same goes with climate change. The issue continues, but the NGOs stopped campaigning on it when the public stopped talking about it.

But isn’t that understandable, given NGOs need money for their campaigns?

That’s true, they do. There are NGOs that declare that they pay their workers from donations. But I know that sometimes more donor money is spent on human resources than actual campaigning, when it should be the other way around. The NGO I used to be a part of claimed that it didn’t have any relationships with corporations. But in reality, it maintained connections with companies that would give it donations when the NGO pursued certain issues. In my opinion, those weren’t independent donations but more like greenwash from the companies.

What’s greenwash?

It is when a party that is the cause of a particular problem gives a donation to an organization that tries to fix the problem. For example, a cigarette company that has destroyed the marine ecosystem, they’d give a certain percentage of their profit to help revive that ecosystem.

Can anything be done to help NGOs stay true to their objectives?

NGOs should only hire people aged between 17 and the early 20s, because people at that age are still pure and eager to express themselves without any conflict of interest. They’re still idealistic and naive.

What message do you have for those concerned about a social or environmental issue?

Anyone who wants to make a change can always start with him or herself, because you won’t be politicized and what you do is actually more concrete than shouting on the roads. I don’t mean to offend anyone who wants to get involved in volunteering with NGOs, but it’s hard to find a ‘clean’ NGO. I think if people seek to get involved in working on a social issue, it will teach you some priceless lessons in life.

Sari was talking to Maria Yuniar.

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/myjakarta/my-jakarta-sari-ex-activist/469775