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UN CHIEF WEAPONS INSPECTOR: IRAQ MAY HAVE HAD NO WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION

In a May 23, 2003 AP report, Hans Blix , the chief UN weapons inspector said he was starting to suspect Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction after all.

Blix noted that Lt Gen Amer al-Saadi, who officials say led Iraq’s unconventional weapons programs, surrendered to US-led forces last month

"The fact that al-Saadi surrendered and said there were no weapons of mass destruction has led to me to ask myself whether there actually were any," Blix said. "I don’t see why he would still be afraid of the regime, and other leading [Iraqi] figures have said the same."

A key US argument for invading Iraq was the claim that Baghdad was hiding its weapons of mass destruction, or programs to make them, from UN inspectors.

$ingapore joined the US-led war on Iraq as part of the Coalition of the Willing.

The nation-builder press, Mar 29 2003.

This is what Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong said: "The United States did not go into Iraq to destroy Islam. It is not in Iraq to hit out at a Muslim country. It is clear to everyone, unless that person wears blinkers, that this is a war to remove the weapons of mass destruction from Saddam Hussein."

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MANILA, PHILIPPINES TAKE A BOW




The nation-builder press, May 22 2003.


WHO declared the Philippines SARS-free on May 21, 2003. The Asean nation joins Vietnam and Canada as newly-declared SARS-free countries by the World Health Organisation. According to the Asian Wall Street Journal May 20, "All of the patients, including two Filipinos who are thought to have contracted the virus in Taiwan and $ingapore, have recovered."

To date there have been only two fatalities from SARS in the Philippines.




The nation-builder press, May 23 2003.

All-good no-bad $ingapore's deaths from SARS move up by THREE more to 31 from 28 three days ago.

To read more "take a bows," see below.

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THE COALITION OF THE BULLIED AND BOUGHT
Click here for Make No Mistake Part 1
Click here for Part 2
Part 3 [see below]




The nation-builder press, Mar 29 2003.

This is what Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong said: "The United States did not go into Iraq to destroy Islam. It is not in Iraq to hit out at a Muslim country. It is clear to everyone, unless that person wears blinkers, that this is a war to remove the weapons of mass destruction from Saddam Hussein."

TO DATE NO WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION HAVE BEEN FOUND. On Apr 28 2003, the Asian Wall Street Journal reported that $ingapore would be rewarded by the US for backing the Iraq War. A free trade agreement between the two countries was signed.



"After using the "good offices" of UN diplomacy (economic sanctions and weapons inspections) to ensure that Iraq was brought to its knees, its people starved, half a million children dead, its infrastructure severely damaged, after making sure that most of its weapons had been destroyed, in an act of cowardice that must surely be unrivalled in history, the "Coalition of the Willing" (better known as the Coalition of the Bullied and Bought) sent in an invading army!"
- Arundhati Roy (above) in New York City at The Riverside Church, May 13, 2003.

"Who is wearing blinkers?"
- The young, restless and cynical Mirror Of Opinion, May 26, 2003.

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ANOTHER 9,400 $INGAPOREANS JOBLESS



http://business-times.asia1.com.sg/story/0,4567,82147-1053547140,00.html?

The nation-builder press reported on May 21, 2003 that "the National Wages Council (NWC) has proposed an immediate wage cut for workers in SARS-affected sectors after announcing that Singapore's unemployment rate is likely to hit 5.5 per cent later this year."

So exactly how many more $ingaporeans are out of work this year? This is what the Asian Wall Street Journal reported May 20, 2003. "First quarter unemployment rose to 4.5% from 4.2% as the economy lost 9,400 jobs, more than double the 4,100 jobs lost in the fourth quarter, the ministry said." They join the 100,000 who have already lost their jobs.

Wage cuts. More jobless. And the cost of living just keeps getting HIGHER.


Really No Respite... click here for more

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MALAYSIA, TAKE A BOW
[when experience matters]



The Asian Wall Street Journal, May 12 2003.

This is what the small report said: "A World Health Organisation official said Saturday that Malaysia managed to curtail the spread of the virus partly because of the country's experience with tackling a deadly pig-borne virus four years ago.

"Joel Vanderburg, WHO's representative for Malaysia, $ingapore and Brunei, said Malaysia's struggle in early 1999 to contain an outbreak of the Nipah virus has given health officials here 'an advantage to be able to put things into action more quickly'."

To date there have been only two fatalities from SARS in Malaysia.


VIETNAM, TAKE A BOW
[when common sense counts]



The nation-builder press, Apr 30, 2003.

The report said: "Once officials in Vietnam became aware of the disease, they were open and quick to react... Vietnam... closed the French hospital [where the Chinese businessman with SARS was in] on Mar 11, quarantining everyone there. The move was crucial to slowing the spread of the disease...

"WHO spokesman Dick Thompson credited Vietnam's success to old-fashioned infection-control measures. 'You don't need a lot of high-tech equipment or space suits. What you do need is a very high level of political commitment and that was there from the beginning."

To date there have been only five fatalities from SARS in Vietnam.


TORONTO, CANADA, TAKE A BOW
[when steely determination wins]



The nation-builder press, May 16, 2003.

More than two months after the first outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome in Toronto, the city has been removed from a list of SARS-affected areas by the World Health Organisation. The WHO said it considered that the chain of transmission of the virus was

broken in the Toronto area, with no new locally contracted case for more than 20 days.

To date there have been only 24 fatalities from SARS in Toronto.


ALL-GOOD, NO-BAD $INGAPORE, TAKE A BOW
[where nation-builders are necessary to prop, prop, prop]



The nation-builder press, May 6 2003.

This is what the above report said: "A WORLD EXPERT on new diseases has labelled $ingapore's swift and aggressive measures against SARS as a 'model public health response'."

This is how the report described the world expert "who works at Atlanta's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention":

"Dr [Ali Shan] Khan, who got his medical degree with top honors in the US, is more comfortable discussing $ingapore's success than his role in the effort. 'My biggest contribution is helping people think of the broader aspect of the disease from a worldwide perspective', is about all he would say. That, and being a conduit for information. He has no use for personal questions, wincing visibly, preferring to let his 16-page resume of scholastic and career achievements represent him. They include a list of citations and awards, and work on exotic diseases like monkeypox and tick-borne fevers, as well as a long list of published works on infectious diseases.

"But is he married? 'Whether I am married or not is not relevant,' said the man who was otherwise very forthcoming and genial. Asked his age, and back came 'Why is that pertinent?' then grudgingly, 'you can say I'm 40.'

"The pain of his privacy being invaded was almost palpable for the Brooklyn-born doctor who is fluent in Urdu, a language he learnt from his parents. It was in sharp contrast to the enthusiasm with which he described the work being done at [$ingapore's] Health Ministry..."

To date there have been only 29 fatalities from SARS in $ingapore.


GOT TO FLY NOW
[See The National Carrier at http://www.bigomagazine.com/fooled/fooledT/fooledT2.html]



The Asian Wall Street Journal, May 13, 2003.

All their bags are packed and well-heeled $ingaporeans are ready to go. On Apr 26, 2003, $ingapore's national carrier, SIA, halved the prices of air fares to top spots around the world: London, Manchester, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Athens, Copenhagen, Paris, Rome and Zurich. School vacations begin June 6. 25,000 tickets have already been booked. Passengers must travel by JUNE 30, 2003.



The nation-builder press, May 14, 2003.

The above report said parents "are caught lying about kids' trips abroad; teachers barred from going to SARS-hit areas during June holidays." It also said "students who travel to non-SARS countries will have their temperatures tracked for two weeks." And those "who go abroad during the three-week [June holidays] break must hand in their passports when school starts on June 30." A primary school principal said: "Believe me, teachers don't want all this extra work. We just want to get on with teaching."

The nation-builder press, May 17, 2003.

The above report said that if foreign students in $ingapore want to "travel anywhere, they will have to reapply for their student passes before leaving and put up a refundable deposit of $1,000 each... The $1,000 deposit is to cover the cost of accommodation or medical screening if the student has to be quarantined on his return." Malaysian students in $ingapore do not need to put up the $1,000 deposit. This ruling, which takes effect on June 1, will "affect 37,500 foreigners at all levels and will remain in force as long as SARS is a threat."

"Sorry-lah. Die, die also must support the National Carrier first."
- The young, restless and cynical Mirror of Opinion, May 17, 2003.

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$INGAPORE LAUNCHES AUTHORISED SARS TV CHANNEL

From May 21 2003, you can tune into the new SARS TV channel, a partnership between nation-builders MediaCorp, StarHub Cable Vision and MediaWorks. Apart from nation-building updates on SARS, it will air re-runs of programmes about SARS by MediaCorp and MediaWorks. The channel will be available on cable and free-to-air TV. If America could have had only one channel during the Iraq War to dispense news about the war, think how much more informed we all would be.


THAI WORKER DEPORTED FROM $INGAPORE HAS SARS



This report from the Asian Wall Street Journal, May 15 2003:

"A Thai worker expelled from $ingapore for entering the city-state illegally is being treated for SARS symptoms, the eighth victim of the virus to be hospitalized in Thailand... The 32-year-old woman said that during her deportation hearing in $ingapore she was detained with 60 other illegal foreign workers, some of them with high fevers and coughs. The woman was deported from $ingapore on Apr 30 and was hospitalized in Bangkok after being found during a check at the airport to have a fever, said Wallop Thainuea, a permanent secretary at the Public Health Ministry." $ingapore's nation-builder press ran a slightly different report on May 14.

HOW SARS DEATHS ARE COUNTED IN $INGAPORE



A chart from the Asian Wall Street Journal, May 14 2003 was headlined "How SARS spread in $ingapore". In the chart there is a note. This is what it says:

"Cases and deaths are for transmissions that occurred in $ingapore as of May 11. They do not include cases which were 'imported', including a woman who died in $ingapore after contracting the disease in China."

$ingapore has reported only 28 people have died of SARS.

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FEVER IN HIGH PLACES



"You can screen a person when he leaves the airport but he can then develop a fever on the plane... Just because you find someone with fever, it does not mean the person is exporting SARS to you."

- Minister of State for Health Dr Balaji Sadasivan (above) in the nation-builder press, May 16, 2003.



The nation-builder press, May 17 2003.

THIS JUST IN...



The nation-builder press, May 19 2003.

The above report said that both Deputy Prime Minister Tony Tan and Home Affairs Minister Wong Kan Seng stressed that $ingapore "was extremely careful not to export SARS cases and stopped anyone with a fever from leaving or entering the country."

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GOOD STORY, NATION-BUILDER PART 3

[Click here for Part 1]

[Click here for Part 2]


The nation-builder press, May 8 2003.

The report stated that environmentalists in America had accused $ingapore of complicity in the smuggling of illegally harvested timber. The evidence was produced at a press conference just before PM Goh Chok Tong and President George W Bush signed the trade agreement.

TWO DAYS LATER...



The nation-builder press, May 10-11 2003.

Here's what the report said: "($ingapore's) AgriFood and Veterinary Authority said the perpetrators had been prosecuted in January... A local timber trader [not identified in the report] was prosecuted in January and fined $2,000 by the District Court for importing 120 tonnes of ramin illegally from Indonesia... The ramin was forfeited... and repatriated to Indonesia on April 25."

What Joy! $2,000 fines will definitely deter any future offenders. Aren't you glad the January court case finally got reported on May 8?

"What else has been going on that $ingaporeans have not been told?"
- The young, restless and cynical Mirror of Opinion, May 12, 2003.

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MAKE NO MISTAKE PART 3

Click here
for Part 1

Click here
for Part 2

The nation-builder press, May 12 2003.

The above report said: "The group directing US search efforts for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq is winding down operations without finding proof that former President Saddam Hussein kept clandestine stocks of outlawed arms...

"Army Colonel Richard McPhee said he took seriously US intelligence warnings on the eve of war that Saddam had given 'release authority' to subordinates in command of chemical weapons. But if Iraq had thought of using such weapons, 'there had to have been something to use. And we haven't found it,' he said."



The nation-builder press, Mar 29 2003.

This is what Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong said: "The United States did not go into Iraq to destroy Islam. It is not in Iraq to hit out at a Muslim country. It is clear to everyone, unless that person wears blinkers, that this is a war to remove the weapons of mass destruction from Saddam Hussein."


NO, LAH, IT WAS TERRORISM



The nation-builder press, May 12 2003.

This is what the above report said: "Terrorism is the more lasting threat to $ingapore than SARS. And this goes some way in explaining why the government chose to stand with the United States in its actions against Iraq."

"Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew said that the terrorism threat may not necessarily get worse now, 'but I don't think it is easy to squelch it because this has been 90 years in the brewing. The funding of all these religious schools worldwide, the working up of emotions, the hatred that they have generated... I don't think it will subside easily."

"Terrorism is the PAP's new communist threat. The ISA* will live long and prosper."
- The young, restless and cynical Mirror of Opinion, May 12 2003.
[*$ingapore's Internal Security Act.]



The nation-builder press, May 13 2003.

The above report says: "Yesterday's report, 'Terrorism threat will last longer than Sars,' quoted Senior Minister Lee Kwan Yew as saying the threat "has been 90 years in the brewing". What he actually said was "30 years in the brewing". We are sorry for the error."




Click here for more