Helping the vulnerable in Syria


Sir, – The article by Annie Sparrow “Ireland can help UN to stop Assad manipulating humanitarian aid” (Opinion, June 26th) seems to be part of a well-orchestrated effort to prevent international humanitarian aid reaching vulnerable Syrian people, traumatised by civil war, terrorist militias and foreign military intervention.

While the initial protests against Assad in 2011 did have justification, the involvement of Isis and al-Qaeda terrorists forced many Syrians to abandon their opposition to the Assad government.

US support for the overthrow of the Assad government led to military intervention by Russia and Iran, who feared that their countries might be the next US target for overthrow. The Syrian government has regained control of most of Syria, but all the Syrian people are now in urgent need of humanitarian aid.

A similar crisis occurred in Iraq during the US driven sanctions in the 1990s leading to the deaths of almost half a million Iraqi children. When then US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was asked if these children’s deaths were worth it, she replied, yes they were.

A medical doctor such as Annie Sparrow should not be advocating withholding of humanitarian aid from very vulnerable people. She describes the Syrian situation as “(a)rguably the world’s worst humanitarian crisis”, but she focuses only on those opposed to the Syrian government, ignoring all those killed and traumatised by opposition forces.

A far more serious humanitarian crisis has been ongoing in Yemen, where the US is actively supporting the Saudi bombardment. The UNRWA UN organisation providing vital support to the people of Gaza is now facing a similar crisis because the US withdrew its contribution to UNRWA’s funding.

Dr Sparrow seems not to have written any articles in support of the humanitarian needs of the suffering peoples of Yemen and Gaza, indicating her article is primarily political. Ireland and other independent countries must reject US efforts to deny humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable members of humanity. Too many children have died already. – Yours, etc,


Castletroy, Limerick.