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Take Action To Help Innocent Victims of Conflict

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Who is she?  What happened to her?  Could she ever overcome the loss of her mother during the Nazi attack on Poland?  Someone out there today might know the answer. Or she may just join a long list of forgotten victims of war.

The Nazis Strike. A child of Warsaw finds her mother – and weeps (National Archives 208-AA-295 K-1)
 
Today we can help innocent victims of war in Pakistan. They do not have to be lost in time.  What the group Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict (CIVIC) is advocating for is compensation for the losses victims endure.
 
Military conflict has raged in that country recently with the Pakistani government and the U.S. battling militant groups, including the Taliban and Al Qaeda.
 
Military strikes against these groups are often in areas close to civilians. There is no such thing as a precise, clean war. There will be innocent victims. Family members, livelihoods can be gone within seconds.  In Pakistan, CIVIC has documented many civilians affected by war, including numerous cases where parents have been killed.
 
No real compensation mechanism is in place to help the families. They are left with little recourse to restore their lives or recover their losses. Such treatment of innocent victims subverts the U.S. and Pakistani efforts to win hearts and minds in the struggle against extremists.
 
CIVIC says, “Many war victims are losing hope that the Pakistani government will make good on its promise to provide compensation…. Meanwhile, victims of drone attacks are completely excluded from Pakistani government compensation mechanisms and their losses are not publicly acknowledged by the US or Pakistani governments.”
 
What can someone do to help?  A two-pronged approach for writing a letter to your Senator and also the White House would be a good start. With winter fast approaching, Pakistan needs humanitarian assistance to recover from massive floods.
 
Hunger and malnutrition are escalating and there is low funding for the World Food Programme.  How does the country recover without food and the rebuilding of agricultural production?
 
You can urge elected officials to take action on this front, but also include help for those families impacted by military strikes. The innocent victims of war need to be recognized and receive the assistance they seek.
 

The U.S., the Pakistani government, and the international community can work together to relieve the suffering of war and flood victims. It’s the only road to peace in Pakistan.

 

Read about 7-year old Laiba, one of the innocent victims of the conflict in Pakistan.

 

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About William Lambers

William Lambers is the author of several books including Ending World Hunger: School Lunches for Kids Around the World. This book features over 50 interviews with officials from the UN World Food Programme and other charities discussing school feeding programs that fight child hunger. He is also the author of Nuclear Weapons, The Road to Peace: From the Disarming of the Great Lakes to the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, Open Skies for Peace, The Spirit of the Marshall Plan: Taking Action Against World Hunger, School Lunches for Kids Around the World, The Roadmap to End Global Hunger, From War to Peace and the Battle of Britain. He is also a writer for the History News Service. His articles have been published by newspapers including the Cincinnati Enquirer, Des Moines Register, the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Buffalo News, San Diego Union Tribune, the Providence Journal, Free Lance-Star (VA), the Bakersfield Californian, the Washington Post, Miami Herald (FL), Chicago Sun-Times, the Patriot Ledger (MA), Charleston Sunday Gazette Mail (WV), the Cincinnati Post, Salt Lake Tribune (UT), North Adams Transcript (MA), Wichita Eagle (KS), Monterey Herald (CA), Athens Banner-Herald (GA) and the Duluth News Journal. His articles also appear on History News Network (HNN) and Think Africa Press. Mr. Lambers is a graduate of the College of Mount St. Joseph in Ohio with degrees in Liberal Arts (BA) and Organizational Leadership (MS). He is also a member of the Feeding America Blogger Council.