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Re: [casi] Another thing to keep an eye on...

--- wrote:
> >Indeed - it's a matter for further research by the
> >scientific community. It does not need
> scare-mongering
> >by the press.
> I'm no fan of the press. Some difficulties with
> testing GMOs, however, is
> thinking of all the possible problems, and the
> political pressures
> (recall thalidomide and the monarch butterfly
> problem).
That's why we have NCBI BLAST.
Clearly this is an area that needs thoroughly
researching before its widespread use. I'm not trying
to say anything else.
I don't object to that research being done in the UK
or US. I don't object to that research being done in
Iraq (the way I see it - the majority of intelligent
thinking 'westerners' who go to Iraq end up on lists
like this sooner or later). They will also indirectly
help the economy over there (they've got to buy stuff
from somewhere).
> >never seen them in the press! All I tend to see is
> >"This is GM - isn't it awful." No attempt is ever
> made
> >to tell people the facts.
> We see a lot of that form the press, particualrly
> regarding Iraq.
> >Somebody has to make the decisions! Where do you
> draw
> >the line on what decisions the US can make? Surely
> you
> One easy to draw line is if an action is necessary.
> I've seen that Iraq's
> wheat crop is a bumper one this year, but harvesting
> it is problematic.
> If GMOs are planted by the US, who is pushing them
> worldwide, I can't see
> it being done for altruistic reasons.
I didn't know Iraq had a bumper wheat crop. At least
there is some good news at the moment.

> >would support a decision to repair the water
> treatment
> >facilities, no matter who makes it.
> >The decisions that are made are my primary concern
> -
> >who makes them is less important.
> I think who makes them (and why!) are quite
> important.
Considering the current humanitarian situation, I
couldn't disagree more!
If - as an example - the US/UK decided that it's
trrops were at risk because of the water supply and
sorted it out - I would be happy that it was being
fixed (and quickly). As long as it's fixed I don't
care who does it, I don't care why and I don't care
who makes the right decision (even if for the wrong
> One factor that
> runs through all of this is the agenda of the
> corporations. Even in the
> US there it is a struggle for the people to be
> involved, just with
> labeling. Science needs objectivity, and those
> profiting from the big
> corporations are hardly objective.
Those big corporations are doing very little research
on the subject (lucky that). Most is being done by
universities and released. Most research in
universities is objective.
The only work they tend to do is growing the actual
test crops.
> In Iraq there are a slew of decisions and work
> positions denied to Iraqis
> for reasons of politics and money. As far as GMOs,
> there are quite a few
> competent Iraqi scientists and medical people.
I don't disagree with any of this! But we can't expect
the US to act as anything but an occupying power (it
won't stop us trying to stop them), at least until the
inevitable large-scale rebellion.
> The Iraqis have done remarkably well running the
> country considering the
> conditions they have had to work under. There is an
> arrogance in the
> US/UK -- an attitude of "we know best" -- which is
> not only impractical
> in many areas but builds further resentment and
> artificial dependence
> (and US corporate profits).
This is another situation where we can put as much
pressure on the US/UK to change their attidue but we
cannot rely on being sucessful. We also need to try to
push them into making the right decisions while
they're in power (even if they make those decisions
for the wrong reasons)

Alun Harford

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