Ten Of The Poorest Countries In The World

Ten Of The  Poorest Countries In The World

“Once poverty is gone, we’ll need to build museums to display its horrors to future generations. They’ll wonder why poverty continued so long in human society – how a few people could live in luxury while billions dwelt in misery, deprivation and despair.” Muhammad Yunus

This is a hard one for me. Why have we always spent so much money on defense and war? I have never understood it. I believe for much less money than we have spent in my lifetime we could have provided clean water, adequate diets, sanitation services and basic education for human beings in the world. It is possible that would have solved both the refugee problem and the terrorist problem.

Decade after decade, politicians and international organizations have failed to tackle poverty in Africa. Nor have they been able to help generate growth or build basic infrastructure.  Some countries here struggle more than others. The cycle of poverty in Africa will unfortunately  continue without the help of the international community.

The Central African Republic is the poorest country in Africa and the world. They have been badly governed since they received their independence from France in 1960. It is plagued by fighting, coups and rebellions. Political instability has prevented the country’s development, despite an abundance of timber, gold, uranium and diamonds. More than fifty percent of the population is below the age of fourteen. Children that manage to avoid becoming internally displaced persons or child soldiers often never enter the educational system. There are terrible health conditions and an alarming food crisis. Violence has displaced 1.2 million people and most of the country is in urgent need of humanitarian assistance and  clean water.

There are two Congos. There is the Democratic Republic Of Congo and the Republic of Congo. The  DRC received their independence from Belgium and  The Republic of Congo received their independence from France in 1960. The DRC is neither Democratic nor a Republic. The extremely corrupt government rules over one of the poorest countries that is also one of the richest in natural resources.The world’s bloodiest conflict since WWll – The Great War of Africa has been fought almost entirely in DRC with over five million deaths. Kinshasa is one of the most dangerous cities in the world. The DRC is a country of human suffering on an unimaginable scale.

Burundi is considered the hungriest nation on earth. The unstable political situation continues to make things worse. Like much of Central Africa, Burundi is prone to natural disasters such as floods, hailstorms, drought and torrential rain which has contributed to the displacement of communities, the destruction of homes, the disruption of livelihoods and the further deterioration of food security. Burundi needs social and economic change and political institutions that are genuinely accountable to its people.

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 12.44.26 AM

Two civil wars in the last 30 years have decimated Liberia‘s infrastructure and led to widespread poverty.  The civil wars have left the country with inadequate roads, water and other basic infrastructure which has proved to be a significant barrier for economic growth.The wars also contributed to the over 250,000 Liberian orphans who frequently suffer from malnutrition and are sometimes completely abandoned. The lack of health care access often leads to high fatality rates. As far as education goes, only half of the Liberians are literate, and many Liberian children are kept out of school in order to help on their families’ farms. The good thing about Liberia is that it has the landscape, resources  and a new stable government available to make it a prosperous country.

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 1.01.05 AM

Life just gets tougher in NIger. Niger is more impoverished today than it was thirty years ago. Hunger is the biggest problem. High birth rates make it harder and harder to feed families.  Half the deaths of children under five are from malaria. Less than half the population has access to clean drinking water causing  typhoid and cholera. Any small crisis creates a humanitarian disaster. They need an international commitment to help develop the country and get it out of poverty.

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 12.45.53 AM

Poverty in Malawi is at a critical level. It is one of the  most impoverished nations in the world. Malawi was one of the worst hit countries by HIV AIds. There are over a million orphans due to Aids. As with other countries, lack of education, droughts, sanitation and corruption impede economic progress.

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 12.57.15 AM

Despite its  economic growth rates and the encouraging development progress made by the government in recent years, poverty continues to be severe and widespread in Mozambique. It ranks among the lowest in human development, life expectancy, and inequality. Rates of Malaria and tuberculosis are very high in Mozambique. Lack of improved water sources is a major issue for both urban and rural populations. More than half of Mozambicans must walk more than an hour to reach the nearest health facility. The potential is certainly there for Mozambique to capitalize on its many resources, but foreign assistance  may be the key to ensuring  Mozambicans are able to help themselves.

Screen Shot 2017-03-15 at 11.47.45 PM

Despite its rich natural resources,including diamonds and gold,  Guinea remains underdeveloped. Poverty and malnutrition have an enormous impact on children and young people in the West African country, where more than half the population is under eighteen years of age. Although Guinea has abolished school fees, learning materials  still cost money and many teachers are poorly trained. Children are dropping out of school and either looking for work in the streets or falling victims of child trafficking. As a peaceful country, it has become home to neighboring refugees increasing the poverty level.

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 12.53.41 AM 

Eritrea is one of the youngest independent countries in the world, but it is also one of the poorest.  It won its independence from Ethiopia after thirty years of war  in 1993. It has become one of the world’s fastest emptying nations, Droughts, conflict, malnutrition and disease  is  overseen by a corrupt dictatorship that has been accused of many human rights violations. Attention is focused on the Syrian refugees but far more Eritreans are fleeing. Perhaps that is why it has been included in Donald Trump’s Muslim ban.

Screen Shot 2017-03-15 at 11.49.20 PM.jpg

Madagascar’s poverty is due to political corruption, economic colonialism, lack of infrastructure, poor education system and environmental degradation. There are severe food shortages causing serious starvation and  acute malnutrition. Almost half of  the children under five suffer chronic malnutrition, the fourth highest rate in the world.  Severe water safety and sanitation are huge problems.  Madagascar is an island. There is no terrorism. There are no geopolitical interests.There is a need for an urgent priority list but Madagascar will probably never attract the necessary donor aid from the global community.

Fly safe and I did not take these photos.,

JAZ

Advertisements

Things I Have Learned In Thailand

Things I Have Learned In Thailand

“If your mind is happy, then you are happy anywhere you go.  When wisdom awakens within you, you will see truth wherever you look. It’s like when you’ve learned how to read — you can then read 
 anywhere you go.”  Phra Ajarn Chah (Thai Buddhist monk)

IMG_3040

Bangkok has the longest city name in the world; written out it’s actually: Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Phiman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit.

IMG_2839

In Thailand, it is  required to  stand for the national anthem when it is played (in the street, in the  cinema, in the airport, in the train station, in the bathroom or at the beach etc, (Phu Quoc island location of “The Impossible”)

IMG_0059

The first case of HIV Aids was reported in Thailand. Thailand has the highest prevalence of HIV Aids in Asia.

Thailand has one of the worst child sex trafficking records in the world.

In Thailand it is deemed impolite to ask someone their age or salary.

Thailand is home to the world’s largest gold Buddha, the largest crocodile farm, the largest restaurant, the longest single-span suspension bridge, and the world’s tallest hotel.

IMG_2746

IMG_2751

Several years ago, Bangkok was named the hottest city in the world by the World Meteorological Organization. Stay hydrated.

You can be jailed for not wearing underwear in Thailand.

Every Thai male has to become a monk  at some point in his life even if only for a short period, and at almost any age between completion of school and the beginning of a career or married life.  it is a period of about three months. The reason being is to do it for your mother so when she died she would hold on to your monk’s robe and go to heaven.

In Thai tradition,  touching the head is severely looked down upon. The Thai people believe that the soul resides in the head, which makes it an extremely sacred place that should not be touched.

The Kings head is on all Thai currency, therefore if you step on a banknote or coin, it is considered to be kicking the king in the face. They love this king. His face his everywhere.

IMG_3056

All Buddha images, no matter how small, tacky or ruined are sacred and should never be used as a backdrop for your photo. (Ayuthetta)

IMG_3258

In Thailand, the left hand is used for going to the bathroom and the right hand is used for eating and greeting. Unfortunately, I am left-handed so I am rude in Thailand.

IMG_2787

Thai boxing has a spiritual and ritualistic part.  There is music and sacred clothing decorated with Buddhist symbols, There are different significant bows and a dance. Then they try to beat the crap out of each other.

In Thailand, the children do everything for the parents.  They are grateful to them for being born, for  giving them  food , clothing, shelter and education. In America, the parents do everything for the children. They are grateful to them for being born and give them food, clothing ,shelter and education.

IMG_0060

The ‘King and I “ is banned in Thailand. Anyone caught smuggling in the “King and I” will be arrested.

The gold stupa in the Emerald Temple in Bangkok has a monkey and a giant on it to carry the world. Everyone must carry their own burdens in this world but the giant and the  monkey also carry all the human burdens.

IMG_2803

It is cheaper  to buy Chang Mai hillside tribe products in Chatuchak weekend market in Bangkok (biggest market ever)  than it is in Chang Mai.

Putting on sarong pants is more complicated than it looks. There are rules for the placement of the knots and folds. They are different for men and for women. Sexual orientation  is also shown by the placement of the knots.

IMG_3013

Ayutthaya was the old capital of the Thai kingdom  resembling a  graveyard of temples and headless Buddhas (beheaded by the Burmese in the thirteenth century) and ruins showing what it might have looked like.

IMG_3209

IMG_3143

IMG_3076

IMG_3129

Thai people  greet and bow in the traditional way with palms touching. Most people great each other in this way and say “sa wat de kah”   It is based on the ancient Thai  culture. They were always working in the rice fields and their hands were dirty so this became the most polite greeting.

Thailand is the only country in Southeast Asia that has never been under foreign control. Burma and  Malaysia were part of the British empire. Laos and Cambodia were under French control. (Putthaya)

photo-6

Condensed milk is a staple in Thailand and Thai coffee. You can find it in every Seven Eleven and in bulk at Tesco.

An ice cream sandwich in Thailand is ice cream between two pieces of white bread. They don’t serve bread with meals but rice instead.

Thai is a tonal language which means one word can have many meanings depending on how it is pronounced. Thai people think is very funny the way we pronounce Kwai in Bridge on the River Kwai. Apparently the way we say it, it means  male sex organ.

Thai people eat most of their food with a spoon in their dominant hand and a fork in the other. Chopsticks are only served for soup..

IMG_0061

95 per cent of the people are Buddhists.

IMG_3044

Thailand was called Siam until 1939.

Shopping at Siam Paragon and MBK are just like shopping in any other huge shopping mall.

IMG_3279

The first Thai massage school was started 417 years ago at the Pho temple in Bangkok. People today still learn the same techniques and the original drawings show that each part of the body has a meaning.

IMG_2859

In Bangkok, “best quality fakes” are near “best quality hotels.”  It does involve hidden stores behind other stores up staircases in back alleys  but one block from the Shangri La Hotel and Penninsula ferry stop.

In ballet, the shape of the feet is important, in Thai dancing it is the shape of the hands, the length of the fingers and if they are double jointed, that is the most important.

It is often nicknamed as the “Land Of Smiles,” because of the perceived gentleness of its people. The country is really populated by smiling, inviting, and receiving people. Thais are really gentle, polite, soft-spoken, friendly, and hospitable human beings. (great tour guide Gift  www.privatetourthailand.com)

IMG_3190

For more info go to Looking  For Buddha In Bangkok

https://havefunflysafe.wordpress.com/2012/07/14/looking-for-buddha-in-bangkok/

Sa Wat De Kah and Fly Safe

JAZ