I haven't said much about the oil spill. I dislike intensely the way that the big O emphasizes the British Petroleum, when the company has been called BP for more than 10 years and probably the majority of its investors are American. Any direct responsibility lies with Transocean, the American company that owned and operated the well, but which is based in Switzerland for tax purposes. Though does my memory play me tricks or didn't the big O himself buy in to offshore drilling?
The loss of life and environmental damage pales into insignificance compared to the disaster in Bhopal caused by the American company, Union Carbide. The official immediate death toll was 2,259 and the government of Madhya Pradesh has confirmed a total of 3,787 deaths related to the gas release. Others estimate that 8,000 died within the first weeks and that another 8,000 have since died from gas-related diseases. Some 25 years after the gas leak, 390 tons of toxic chemicals abandoned at the UCIL plant continue to leak and pollute the groundwater in the region and affect thousands of Bhopal residents who depend on it, though there is some dispute as to whether the chemicals still stored at the site pose any continuing health hazard. Union Carbide is now owned by Dow Chemical Company. I notice today, that some Indians (but no Americans) have been sent to prison over the incident. The parent company washed its hands of the affair for 460 million dollars, less than half what BP has spent so far to clear up the mess in the Gulf. The mess remains in Bhopal and people are still dying.
I don't want to be anti-American, but perhaps BO should consider the words: pot kettle and black before being so disparaging.
I haven't said much about the Israeli attack on the Turkish ship. Both sides are milking it for all the propaganda they can get. Difficult to know whom to believe, but the Palestinians have a track record of manipulating the media during the war in Lebanon. However, I must say that I am enjoying the Wallender series of films in Swedish. Henning Mankell, Wallender's creator, was on board the ship as a 'peace protester'.
In the UK more people were killed by the vicious gunman in Cumbria. It now appears that the immediate trigger for his madness was his being dumped by his Thai girlfriend whom he paid to bring over. The man had a criminal record and was being investigated for tax fraud. It's a wonder that he had a license to own a shotgun and a rifle.