Archive for Humanitarian Aid

Not How It’s Done

Who you trying to impress, Israel?

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon on Tuesday announced that Israel has sent humanitarian aid to Syria during a visit to the Golan, reports AFP.

“We’ve sent food, water, baby food and other humanitarian products,” said Ya’alon, adding “we cannot remain idle when civilians are being confronted by a humanitarian crisis.”

The Defense Minister’s visit came after IDF soldiers were fired on from a Syrian army outpost on Monday.

We’ve already reported on the top secret program to treat the wounded from the Syrian civil war. Top secret because the patients would be at risk from their own countrymen if it was learned where they were treated.

This is how you treat your adversaries:

On Wednesday an unprecedented US court victory awarded $9 million in frozen Iranian assets to the families of 5 terror victims murdered in a triple suicide bombing in Jerusalem back in 1997.

The bombings, which took place in the capital’s busy Ben Yehuda street, was carried out by Hamas. Among the 5 murdered were three 14 year old girls.

Shurat HaDin (Israeli Law Center) began the petition in 2001 against Iran, which it claimed provided material and financial support to Hamas in conducting the attack.

The families will have to wait for the Iranian Defense Ministry to exercise its right to appeal, but the judge has already ordered the monetary transfer in their names.

Iran has been found to be the leading state sponsor of terror, and in 2012 the Islamic regime boosted its support of terror to previously unseen levels.

Bomb them, sue them, or appease them and give in entirely like a submissive cur—which would you do?

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Feeding Gaza

The gaunt faces and sunken eyes; the ribs protruding through the sagging skin; flies land on unblinking eyes, sipping the scant tears—how can you turn away from the human misery?

Egypt can’t:

An aid convoy entered the Gaza Strip via the Rafah crossing on Tuesday for the first time since the June 30 events which overthrew Muslim Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi.

Director of the Egyptian side of the terminal Sami Mutwalli told Ma’an that the convoy consisted of 100 tons of medicine, medical equipment and canned food.

The Rafah crossing has been the principal connection between Gaza’s 1.7 million residents and the outside world since the imposition of an economic blockade by Israel beginning in 2007.

Rafah has frequently been shut down or operating at reduced capacity in recent months due to ongoing unrest in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula and political turmoil resulting from former president Mohamed Morsi’s ouster by the Egyptian military in July.

A hundred tons! Wow!!! That’s, like, a lot of canned beets!

And it’s, like, less than 1% of what Israel shipped last month alone:

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I’m not sure how these figures make Egypt “the principal connection between Gaza’s 1.7 million residents and the outside world”, or how a projected one-point-five-plus million tons of goods this year can be termed a blockade, but that’s not important.

You rock, Egypt!

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Those Who Can’t Do, Pledge

I note that the wealthy oil states of the Middle East have finally kicked in some cash (or so they have announced) to help the victims of the typhoon in the Philippines. That’s great, really; when there’s actually anything to buy, the poor starving wretches will have beaucoup coin with which to purchase the Slim Jims and Hostess Cupcakes.

Israel’s help is more immediate:

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Since the IDF delegation to the Philippines landed last Thursday, the unit has treated over 370 wounded – 150 of them children – in a hospital in the city of Bogo.

IDF doctors at Bogo’s hospital have performed operations, used advanced medical equipment, and overseen 5 births – including one Cesarean section and one birth where the mother went into labor en route to the hospital.

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The move has left NBC reporter Nancy Snyderman in ‘awe’ of Israel’s humanitarian work.

In a special report, Snyderman noted her previous positive experiences with IDF teams, when she reported on the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti earthquakes. She remarked that Bogo is “the place we least expected”, as the city had not received as much media attention as other Philippine areas affected by the typhoon.

Snyderman also praises the IDF’s medical technology, which documents each patient by preserving digital copies of their medical files to prevent problems with filing mix-ups, language barriers, and a barrage of information flowing during a time of crisis. Also noting the IDF’s emphasis on security, she sums up her impressions of the IDF as being “Smart. Sophisticated. Secure.”

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This time, says Snyderman, she was blown away by an additional factor: the IDF’s choice of Bogo. More than just remote, Bogo was poverty-stricken before the typhoon; the IDF delegation is not only attempting to help in the aftermath of the crisis, but also to enact long-term change in one of the Philippine’s poorest urban centers.

“As I left, I walked away in awe of this group of doctors: physician humanitarians, and medicine at its very best,” she concludes.

Yeah, but how much money did the cheap bastards contribute?

PS: Much more at the IDF blog.

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Good Samarians

We’ve reported several times on how Israeli docs are treating Syrians wounded in the civil war.

They’re feeding Syrians too:

The purple plastic sacks fill two rooms in the otherwise sparsely furnished headquarters of a Jordanian NGO, awaiting distribution to Syrian refugees already lined up on the sidewalk.

They contain an array of staple dry goods — lentils, pasta, powdered milk, tea — as well as a range of hygiene products like soap and detergent, enough for 250 refugee families. But before the goods are handed out, one thing will be removed — the word “Jewish.”

Going sack by sack with a pair of scissors, an aid worker begins to cut.

“We don’t announce with trumpets that we’re Israeli,” the worker says. “There’s no need for that. Once you let that cat out of the bag, everything starts to blow up.”

The sacks are paid for by IsraAid, an Israeli nonprofit that provides disaster relief and humanitarian aid across the world. The group has provided medical care and psychological services following earthquakes in Japan and Haiti, and supplies food and other materials to refugees at two camps in Kenya.

IsraAid began working in Jordan early this year. Since then, the organization says it has provided approximately $100,000 worth of supplies to refugees who have escaped Syria’s brutal civil war.

If you think a world where the charitable have to hide their charity from those who receive the charity is worth saving… well, you’re more charitable than I am. A world that doesn’t know how lucky it is have the state of Israel among its nations is hardly worth saving. Good thing it’s not up to me, but to Him.

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Red Cross, Red Handed

The International Committee of the Red Cross looks upon Palestinian terrorists and shrugs. No big deal:

Earlier this month, Palestinian Media Watch reported on a ceremony in the Palestinian Authority celebrating the International Red Cross’ 150th anniversary. The official PA daily reported that the International Red Cross (ICRC) together with the Palestinian Red Crescent planted 150 trees bearing the names of “veteran prisoners,” meaning security prisoners who have been imprisoned for many years.

Following PMW’s report, the International Red Cross, in a letter to Weekly Press Pakistan – Canad, denied its involvement in the ceremony:
“Please note that ICRC was not present during the planting of the trees ceremony reported by your website.”

However, not only did ICRC not condemn the Palestinian Red Crescent’s glorification of terrorists in the ceremony, it chose to justify the use of ICRC money by the Palestinian Red Crescent. The ICRC issued a statement defending their right to use donor money any way they choose, even though the issue being raised was the use of ICRC money for terror glorification:

“Over the decades, the ICRC has provided support, including financially, both to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society and to [Israeli] Magen David Adom for their humanitarian programs. It remains the prerogative of the National Society to define its own priorities and activities and to allocate funds accordingly.”

The official PA daily wrote that “the International Red Cross and the Palestinian Red Crescent… planted 150 fruit trees that carry the names of the veteran prisoners jailed in the occupation prisons… [during] a ceremony called ‘My Honor is My Freedom’… to mark the 150th anniversary of their founding.”

The PA uses the term “veteran prisoners” to refer to those who have been in jail the longest, and in most cases these prisoners are serving life sentences for murder or multiple murders.

So the ICRC justifies the glorification of terror, but claims not to have been there. Though PA media (not the most credible news organ, I’ll grant you) names them as among those present.

But what’s that about the ICRC and the Magen David Adom?

After nearly 60 years of battling for international recognition, Magen David Adom (MDA), Israel’s first aid and disaster relief organization, was finally admitted to the international Red Cross federation. The decision was announced to applause in Geneva, Switzerland at the 29th International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent. Both MDA and the Palestinian Red Crescent were admitted simultaneously, and both members have full voting rights and receive funding for their efforts. Israel has been asking for membership into the Red Cross even before it became an official nation, but was barred from the organization because it objects to using a cross or a crescent emblem used by the other 184 members to identify its humanitarian workers. A new “neutral” symbol was adopted for Israel, the Red Crystal, which can be used during international operations in conjuction with the Red Star of David. Inside Israel, MDA will use the Star of David exclusively as it has done in the past.

That won’t offend anyone—except maybe Israelis.

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Bloodthirsty Liberal’s Law

I used to tout this tenet, which held that Israel and Jews tend to be the very victims of the crimes and slanders of which they are repeatedly accused.

But it got little traction, at least judging from the lack of comments to the many posts I wrote under the heading. It’s no less true today, but I think I need a different heading.

STOP TELLING YOUR EFFING LIES ABOUT ISRAEL! (How’s that?)

Israeli aid groups are providing humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees who have fled to Jordan and Turkey, Likud MK Ayoub Kara told AFP on Thursday.

“We have found a way, with voluntary organizations from Israel that are now on the borders of Jordan and Turkey with Syria, to provide humanitarian help to the Syrians who are there,” Kara said. “My advisers are also in Jordan to try to find a way to help the refugees in Jordan.”

He added that the volunteers do not represent the government, which, he said, is wary of giving the impression that it is aiding Syrian opposition groups.

“If we are part of the conflict, it’s a danger for all the region, all the world,” he said, highlighting the importance of such volunteer efforts.

“It is important for us that when there are big problems in our neighbor states, we are helping,” he continued.

Kara, a member of Israel’s Druze minority, said the governments of Jordan and Turkey “know about the work of the Israeli organizations.”

Israelis are helping Syrian refugees, though they can’t really go fully public with it, and the host governments know all about it.

And the likelihood that Syria, Turkey, or Jordan will ever express gratitude for the kindness shown? I’ll take never—who wants to bet? Anyone…? Bueller…?

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Invented People Sure Cost Real Money

Just not as many guilders:

Holland is reviewing its policy of funding the UNRWA agency for Arab ”refugees,” which treats them differently from other refugees.

In reply to a question from Speaker of the legislature Hans Ten Broke, Foreign Minister Uri Rosenthal said the government will “thoroughly review” its annual contribution of approximately $30 million, according to the European Jewish Press.

Holland is the sixth largest contributor to the United Nations agency, which was set up to deal with Arabs, most of whom were encouraged to flee Israel by Arab countries who promised they would quickly return after the anticipated annihilation of Israel in the War for Independence.

Canada last year decided not to renew its $10 million funding for UNRWA, which is financed mainly by the United States, Sweden, Norway and Britain.

“UNRWA uses its own unique definition of refugees, different to the UN’s. The refugee issue is a big obstacle for peace. We therefore ask the government acknowledge this discrepancy, which leads to the third-generation Palestinian refugees,” speaker Hans Ten Broeke was quoted as saying.

Technically, you’re not a refugee if you return whence you came:

Contrary to political correctness, Palestinian Arabs have not been in the area west of the Jordan River from time immemorial; no Palestinian state ever existed, no Palestinian People was ever robbed of its land and there is no basis for the Palestinian “claim of return.”

Most Palestinian Arabs are descendants of the 1845-1947 Muslim migrants from the Sudan, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, as well as from Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen, Libya, Morocco, Bosnia, the Caucasus, Turkmenistan, Kurdistan, India, Afghanistan and Balochistan.

Arab migrant workers were imported by the Ottoman Empire and by the British Mandate (which defeated the Ottomans in 1917) for infrastructure projects: The port of Haifa, the Haifa-Qantara, Haifa-Edrei, Haifa-Nablus and Jerusalem-Jaffa railroads, military installations, roads, quarries, reclamation of wetlands, etc. Illegal Arab laborers were also attracted by the relative economic boom, stimulated by Jewish immigration.

“Undocumented Arab laborers”, please. “Illegal” is so judgmental.

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Who Pays for Terrorism? II

Aggie asked the question earlier this morning and answered SA and UAE. But there’s another answer that you may like even less.

You do:

A law published in the official Palestinian Authority Registry last month grants all Palestinians and Israeli Arabs imprisoned in Israel for terror crimes a monthly salary from the PA. The Arabic word the PA uses for this payment is “ratib,” meaning “salary.” Palestinian Media Watch has reported numerous times on Palestinian Authority glorification of terrorists serving time in Israeli prisons. Following the signing of this new law, the PA is now paying a salary to these prisoners.

The PA has defined by law which Palestinians would be considered “prisoners.”
“Anyone imprisoned in the occupation’s [Israel's] prisons as a result of his participation in the struggle against the occupation.”
[Ch. 1 of Law of Prisoners, 2004/19, passed and published by the PA Chairman and Government, December 2004. The Prisoners' Centre for Studies,www.alasra.ps Accessed May 9, 2011]

In other words, all Palestinians in Israeli prisons for terror crimes officially join the PA payroll. According to the definition in the PA law, Palestinian car thieves in Israeli prisons will not receive a salary, but Hamas and Fatah terrorist murderers will.

How many hundreds of millions of dollars do the US, the EU, the UN, etc. pour down the sewer of Palestinian “society”?

How could we be surprised? I don’t think we are.

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Occupied and Loving It!

I seriously worry about this woman‘s safety. She may be in need of her own services very soon.

“There is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza.” So states categorically Mathilde Redmatn, the deputy director of the Red Cross in the Gaza Strip.

Palestinian children forced to eat cookies and pastries due to Israeli stranglehold and occupation.

Never mind.

“If you go to the supermarket, there are products,” she said, as reported on the IDF website. “There are restaurants and a nice beach.

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The problem is mainly in maintenance of infrastructure and in access to goods, such as concrete. Israel has the legitimate right to protect [its] civilian population, this right should be balanced with the right of 1.5 million people living in the Gaza Strip.”

She acknowledged that Israel has eased its closure on Gaza and has partially lifted export bans.

“Rocket fire from the Gaza Strip is against international law because it is directed at civilians,” the Red Cross official said. “We conduct confidential or bilateral dialouge with Hamas on the matter. As time passes, the dialogue also develops.”

She said that the Red Cross has also asked to meet with captive soldier Gilad Shalit: “When a person’s freedom is taken away, he deserves at least contact with his family. We will continue to ask but we do not have the capability to force anything on Hamas. Hamas’ refusal is based on security reasons. Hamas is afraid of the IDF’s advanced technological capabilities and believes that allowing contact will lead to the location of Gilad.”

So, while Hamass holds an Israeli citizen in violation of international law (and human decency), and while it fires rockets and shells indiscriminately at Israelis, the civilian population of Gaza lies on the beach, all fat and happy. That’s the truth of the situation.

Just wait till they see how poorly paid they are compared to their cousins working for the Jews in Judea and Samaria (see post below). Then you’ll really see some fireworks.

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Desmond Tutu Succeeded In Bringing Antisemitism To University of Johannesburgh

The faculty of the University of Johannesburg has decided to stop working with Ben Gurion University on water purification issues in South Africa. Too many Jews in Israel.

In a statement released on Wednesday, the university said “the Senate of the University of Johannesburg (UJ) today voted to allow its formal relationship with Ben-Gurion University (BGU) in Israel to lapse on 1 April 2011. This was one of two options put to the vote in the Senate, the second being to allow the formal relationship with BGU to continue and to develop bilateral relations with both BGU and Palestinian universities.

Sixty percent of the Senate (72 members present) voted to allow the Memorandum of Understanding with BGU to lapse, while the balance 40 percent (45 members present) voted for bilateral agreements.”

Ben Gurion University responded regretfully at the University of Johannesburg’s decision, saying that the South African university’s decision to sever the agreement designed to solve water contamination issues in a reservoir near Johannesburg will mostly hurt South African residents.

University President Prof. Rivka Carmi said that “the only losers in this decision are the people of South Africa.”

In the official letter, BGU said it is still committed to continuing ongoing water, health care, and sustainable development collaborative work with Palestinian researches.

The agreement doesn’t mean that individual academics at UJ wouldn’t be able to pursue academic collaboration with counterparts at BGU, but they would be carried out without formal institutional arrangements.

The vote followed a campaign launched by UJ in September 2010 with a petition signed by more than 250 South African academics, with the support of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, that called on UJ to cut ties with BGU over what they claim is the university’s active support for the Israeli military.

Last Wednesday, UJ held a debate entitled “The Politics of Water Research and the Ethics of Academic Engagement – Should UJ terminate its water research with Israel?”, to discuss whether or not to cut ties with BGU. The seminar discussed a report released the day earlier by UJ entitled “Findings on Ben-Gurion University of the Negev: Institutional complicity and active collaboration with Israeli military, occupation and apartheid practices.”

Speaking of apartheid, how many Jews will be permitted to live in Palestine? 0. How many live in Saudi Arabia? 0. How many are left in Egypt, after the expulsions, murders and property confiscations? How many live in Libya after the slaughters, expulsions and property seizures. How about Iraq, where there used to be over 125,000 Jews? Down to fewer than seven I believe.

The Left is deeply antisemitic.

- Aggie

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Bare African Cupboards

Show of hands, please: anyone care about African hunger? One… two… okay a couple of you.

Then I’ll just share this with you:

The 2010 Global Hunger Index (GHI) shows that eight out of the nine countries where hunger is increasing are from Sub-Saharan Africa.

Produced by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Welthungerhilfe and Concern Worldwide, the annual index is calculated for 122 developing and transition countries.

This year’s study shows that twenty-nine of them, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, have levels of hunger described as “extremely alarming” or “alarming”.

The study shows that the Democratic Republic of Congo had the biggest increase in hunger levels which rose there by 65%, while Ethiopia, Ghana and Mozambique have all shown an improvement over the last ten years.

Some countries achieved significant absolute progress in improving their GHI. Between the 1990 GHI and the 2010 GHI, Angola, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique, Nicaragua, and Vietnam saw the largest improvements.

So on BBC Africa HYS we’re asking why is Africa still hungry?

Sorry I didn’t tell you about it earlier. Maybe some of you have some good ideas. Me, I don’t really know, but I’d say a good start would be to stop everything we and they are doing now. Everything. It’s clearly not working.

Oh sure, maybe a few people would starve to death while we try to figure out a better approach, but that would be different how?

What if we—and I’m just talking out my backside here—gave American aid only to countries that met the basics of democratic institutions and civil liberties? What if we required the rule of law, transparency, and free market reforms?

I know we’d save a bundle, because practically no country in Africa or Asia (or other starving continents, if there are any) has any intention of meeting those alien, colonialist, imperialist criteria. But if any of them did, do you doubt that they’d be economic dynamos, able to feed—not to mention, clothe, house, and defend—themselves? I don’t. It’s not that hard. Not that hard to predict, that is—there’s ample evidence all around—but evidently a devil to put into practice.

But I would imagine there’s nothing harder than starving to death. So, they might want to give it a chance. There’s my suggestion, BBC.

This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

Oh well…

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Eat, Drink, and be Merry—Well, Drink

Long-time readers will recognize the sarcasm with which I approach this story of famine and grinding poverty. But they will be wrong: I really don’t care.

UN food agencies said yesterday that 166 million people in 22 countries suffer chronic hunger or difficulty finding enough to eat as a result of what they called protracted food crises.

Wars, natural disasters, and poor government institutions have contributed to a continuous state of undernourishment in the 22 nations, including Afghanistan, Haiti, Iraq, Somalia, and Sudan, the Food and Agriculture Operation and the World Food Program said in a report.

A country that reports a food crisis for at least eight years and receives more than 10 percent of its foreign assistance as humanitarian relief is considered to be in a protracted food crisis, the two agencies said — offering the first definition of the term in hopes of improving aid response to these nations.

Countries in protracted crisis require targeted assistance, with the focus not only on emergency relief but also on longer-term tools, such as providing school meals or implementing food-for-work programs, the report said.

Food for work? What a radical concept! But it could spread, leading next to shelter for work, medicine for work, car for work, flat-screen TV for work, Doritos for work, and all other manner of necessities and luxuries in exchange for productivity. And what kind of world would that be?

But just read this sentence again:

A country that reports a food crisis for at least eight years and receives more than 10 percent of its foreign assistance as humanitarian relief is considered to be in a protracted food crisis, the two agencies said — offering the first definition of the term in hopes of improving aid response to these nations.

If a country can prove itself a basket case for eight years, unable to feed its people and dependent on foreign charity, it qualifies for more charity. In other words, when presented with a failed model, double down. It is so typical of the liberal mind. If we only spent another million/billion/trillion/bajillion (Aggie’s word from yesterday), peace would rule, hunger would end, and Obama would reign forever and ever.

It’s just weird that such a world has never come to pass.

In another forum, we begin to find a hint about why:

Mr. Derbyshire — Regarding your post on NRO Tuesday afternoon, I can attest to the validity of the contention that well-meaning aid organizations often exacerbate the problem which they are supposedly there to alleviate.

In January of 1994 I was deployed to Mogadishu, Somalia with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, partly in response to the “Blackhawk Down” incident.

As part of our preparation we were given extensive intelligence briefings on the history and culture of Somalia. A little acknowledged fact is that there was no famine in Somalia prior to the U.N.’s arrival. To be sure, there were localized food shortages and hunger, but no widespread famine.

The famine began when the U.N. arrived and began giving away food. With free food available, farmers cold not sell their crops and so they stopped farming; the U.N. became the major source of food.

Once U.N. aid convoys were the only viable source of food, it was easy for the warlords to seize the unarmed convoys and food warehouses and monopolize the food supply. Presto, instant famine.

So ended my belief that the U.N. was anything more than a third-rate debating society. Incidentally, the northern half of the country was generally stable (and, I believe, remains so). They sought to break away from the south and form their own nation but were prevented by the U.N. They remain shackled to the the dysfunctional south to this day.

Good line about the UN being nothing more than a third-rate debating society. I’ll have to steal it some day—when I’m feeling charitable.

Another comment:

Mr. Derbyshire — I can speak with some authority regarding the motivations of those in the “helping professions” generally, having spent well over two decades working for non-profits, mainly government funded. I was politically perhaps a tad right of center at the start. I am now firmly well right of same.

If there was one characteristic of my colleagues that was consistent, and that I found ever more dismaying it was precisely that they needed our clients, likely more than our clients ever needed them. I watched in chagrin as, on those occasions that our work actually began to make a dent in the problems we were funded to ameliorate, they found a new population of clients who needed them, or alternatively advanced solutions that guaranteed failure to keep the clients dependent.

Again, I don’t care. The world has never been wealthier, yet never have more people been hungry. The stupider among us would decry the inequality of capitalism, but the real reason is that those perennially starved nations—Haiti, Sudan, Somalia—are addicted to a failed model of “humanitarian aid”. As so often, you get what you pay for.

War and natural disasters can knock a country off its rails for a while, but if it encourages a free market (through the rule of law, as well as through economic reforms), it will be restored. See Japan and Germany after war; USA for resilience after hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, wild fires, etc.

Sorry to be the one to break it to you, but sometimes starvation is a choice. Fine, don’t eat. See if I care.

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