Over Easy

(Picture courtesy of mhaithaca at flickr.com.)

In the tradition of the original Lakeside Diner, where Southern Dragon kept pups up to date on media and events outside the States, Thursday will be a glimpse into what’s going on in the world this week.

Bangladesh was horrified by the collapse of a large manufacturing building that housed scores of industries supplying clothing items to other countries.   The building had frightened workers by developing fissures, but workers had been sent back inside.

More than 1,000 people were injured when the site housing five garment factories on the outskirts of Dhaka imploded on Wednesday, allegedly after managers ignored workers’ warnings that the building had become unstable.

Flags flew at half-mast on Thursday as the shell-shocked country declared a day of mourning for the victims of the nation’s worst factory disaster, which highlighted anew safety concerns in Bangladesh’s vital garment industry.

(snip)

The disaster came less than five months after a factory fire killed 112 people and underscored the unsafe conditions in Bangladesh’s booming garment industry, the second biggest in the world.

Teachers in Mexico’s Guerrero State stormed local political offices and started fires to protest reforms legislated against claimed corruption in the educational system.

For several hours, masked protesters started fires and attacked the offices with pickaxes and sticks, spraying slogans on the walls.

The state governor has called for support from the federal government.

The reforms impose centralised teacher assessment and seek to end corrupt practices in the education system.

Those practices include the buying and selling of teaching positions.

Innovations to aid in the many afflicted areas of Pakistan are being concentrated in local assistance programs that answer needs outside influences have failed to meet.

To counter perceptions of western influence (the CIA’s connection with a vaccination scheme may have led to attacks on polio workers), the Rural Support Programmes Network and its member organisations draw funds from Pakistan’s federal and regional governments, international aid agencies, corporate sponsors and the beneficiaries.

The US government has acknowledged the difficulties in channelling aid effectively to the neediest in Pakistan and remains supportive, despite repeated attempts in Congress to slash billions from aid. But to continue the progress that is being made, everyone must chip in.

One sign that the needs of Pakistan are not being ignored is a recent decision by the European Union to allocate €42 million (Dh207m) in aid from a fund for five major global hot spots subjected to “long-enduring crises”. The EU acknowledged that “the only new crisis on this year’s list is the one caused by conflict and internal displacement in Pakistan”.

Turning from the courting of outside influences has resolved problems in areas that gain independence along with meeting local needs.

Never.Give.Up.