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War & 0.9 Billion Under - 5 Infant Mortality

By Gideon Polya

06 December, 2004

At the end of each year at Christmas the World gives special reverence to Mother and Child. But how have infants been treated globally since 1950?

Below is a summary of under-5 infant mortality in virtually all countries of the world since 1950 calculated from publicly-available UN and UNICEF statistics, grouped geopolitically and expressed as a ratio with respect to the total 2004 population of each region [rounded-off values are given in millions (m)].

Overseas Europe (North America, Israel and Australasia) - 5.3m / 363m = 1.5%

Western Europe - 6.8m / 394m = 1.7%

Eastern Europe (including Armenia & Georgia) - 12.7m / 340m = 3.7%

Latin America & Caribbean - 51.9m / 517m = 10.0%

East Asia (including Mongolia) - 199.4 / 1544m = 12.9%

South East Asia - 70.9m / 551m = 12.9%

Pacific - 1.1m / 8m = 13.0%

Arab North Africa & Middle East - 46.7m / 300m = 15.6%

Central Asia, Turkey & Iran - 40.0m / 234m = 17.1%

South Asia - 281.5 / 1410m = 20.0%

Non-Arab Africa - 185.4m / 671m = 27.6%

The World - 901.8m / 6332m = 14.2%

The non-European World - 876.9m / 5235m = 16.8%

Australia - 0.2m / 19.9m = 1.0%

UK - 0.8m / 59m = 1.3%

Israel - 0.09m / 7m = 1.4%

US - 4.4m / 297m = 1.5%

Asia-Pacific countries with Australian post-1950 armed involvement (Korea,Malaysia, Indo-China, Papua New Guinea, Iraq, East Timor, Afghanistan & Solomons but excluding China & Indonesia) - 33.7m / 256m = 13.2%

Israel's immediate neighbours - 16.6m / 105m = 15.9%

Indo-China (Laos, Cambodia & Vietnam) - 13.2m / 103m = 13.6%

Iraq - 3.3m / 26m = 12.9%

Afghanistan - 11.2m / 25m = 44.8%

Considered country by country, post-1950 under-5 infant mortality throughout the World correlates with foreign occupation, neo-colonial "occupation", militarization, debt, economic exclusion, malignant interference, corrupt client régimes and war, variously imposed by First World countries, most notably the US, UK, France and Russia.

Of course, whether a child is violently killed or perishes from deprivation or malnourishment-exacerbated disease the end result is the same and the culpability the same. Further, the occupying ruler is responsible for the ruled.

The Right to Life

There are nevertheless some excellent outcomes in the non-European world, most notably that of Cuba - 0.3m / 11m = 3.1% - but it can be notionally estimated from this data that US hegemony and denial of Cuban-style, excellent literacy and primary health care in Latin America has deprived some 36 million infants under the age of 5 years of the Right to Life.

Remember the great words of Thomas Jefferson in the American Declaration of Independence: "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of

Participation as a junior "democratic imperialist" in racist, military-industrial complex-inspired, Anglo-American wars in the developing world has made White Australia complicit in collateral and consequential infant mass mortality so horrendous that it invites the kind of world economic boycotts and bans applied to the minority Apartheid régime in South Africa - and which may indeed be applied by an indignant World to the Anglo-American Coalition still devastating Iraq.

According to UNICEF (2004) the under-5 infant mortality in 2002 was 108,000 in Iraq, 283,000 in Afghanistan and 1000 in Australia.

War kills. Silence kills. Silence is complicity. Please inform everyone. Save the children.

Dr Gideon Polya published some 130 works in a 4 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (Taylor & Francis, New York & London, 2003), and is currently writing a book on global mortality (numerous articles on this matter can be found by a simple Google search for "Gideon Polya").

29 Dwyer Street, Macleod, Melbourne, Victoria, 3085, Australia
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