Friday, September 15, 2006

Philippine Dengue upsurge:21 Dead 1,400+ cases in one Week

The news is something most people might take in as part of the normal season bursts of information about dengue until the tally becomes clear. There is a large number of people infected perhaps beyond official figures who choose not or cannot afford to go to the hospitals or doctors primarily in poor urban communities so these figures could be much higher than official ones.

It is not because anyone is deliberately trying to downplay this - it is because some people do not know what dengue is as to most people it seems like a normal high fever. I know of one case of in a high end subdivision near Ortgas center - not far from Wac-Wac golf and country club where in a home five cases came suddenly - and was thought to be only caused by season flu’s.

Dengue can be treated at home - but is best treated with medical attention and diagnosis - hospitalization is the only way the highest lecels of infection or when the deasase is at a critical level.

[]”….”Dengue cases up 1,447 in a week in Philippines People’s Daily Online, China -The Philippine Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday reported 1,447 new dengue cases and 21 related deaths a week after it sounded the alarm on the disease’s. …”[]

On the news Mike Enriquez is reading a report about a group of shops near a pair of schools the shops small sidewalk stalls were demolished- the center of controversy - the vendors items being confiscated by the MMDA. The demolition was based on reports the stalls were the source of Dengue mosquito’s. Understandably the situation became tense the stall owners defending their livelihood - the Government needing to clean up a source of the decease. Rightfully so - GMA7 led with te story on the newscast - Political issues can wait when a killer is on the loose like this. Whats needed is more information - no wonder they’re number one.

The Country’s tourism programs also face a major risk to the situation unless massive efforts are taken some countries may issue advisories on the destination some travel agencies and services have already raised alarms:

[] …” [3 dengue fever cases, infected during a group tour to the

There have been reports of Japanese travelers who visited dengue endemic countries, Philippines Travel* Substances Antibodies, Viral Immunoglobulin M

Travel Health Service Year 2006Philippines: Dengue fever. City health officer in Zamboanga City disclosed that there were a total of 125 Dengue fever cases registered, with 2 deaths - 28k

Reports in the past few days show the extent of the problem:

Rains bring out squadron of airborne killers
Manila Times, Philippines - Sep 10, 2006
the Philippines brings with it a variety of mosquito-borne diseases that pose a serious threat to the health of all Filipinos. One of these diseases is dengue
Being clean is dengue deterrent
Manila Times, Philippines - Sep 10, 2006
to Dr. Lyndon Leesuy from the Infectious Diseases section of the Department of Health, there were a total of 16,162 dengue cases in the Philippines in 2002.
Philippine health department raises alert against dengue fever
Monsters and, UK - Sep 10, 2006
can be checked at once.’. Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease that is endemic to the Philippines. Its symptoms are high fever that
Philippine Health Department Raises Alert Against Dengue Fever, Romania - Sep 10, 2006
can be checked at once.”. Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease that is endemic to the Philippines. Its symptoms are high fever that
Philippine health department raises alert against dengue fever
Raw Story, MA - Sep 9, 2006
can be checked at once.”. Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease that is endemic to the Philippines. Its symptoms are high fever that
Fogging operations worsen dengue spread: Philippine authority
People’s Daily Online, China - Sep 7, 2006
The Philippines‘ health authority warned on Friday that fogging operations against mosquitoes carrying dengue virus should be stopped, because the method could

Overall the dengue problem is something that is growing concern in particular because of the overall impact and spread of the disease is highest in the capital. It raises serious concerns about public cleanliness and effective basic services needed in a mega city like Manila :

Dengue/dengue haemorrhagic fever

- Impact of Dengue
- DengueNet
- Dengue activities
- Information resources

Dengue is the most common mosquito-borne viral disease of humans that in recent years has become a major international public health concern. Globally, 2.5 billion people live in areas where dengue viruses can be transmitted. The geographical spread of both the mosquito vectors and the viruses has led to the global resurgence of epidemic dengue fever and emergence of dengue hemorrhagic fever (dengue/DHF) in the past 25 years with the development of hyperendemicity in many urban centers of the tropics.

Transmitted by the main vector, the Aedes aegytpi mosquito, there are four distinct, but closely related, viruses that cause dengue. Recovery from infection by one provides lifelong immunity against that serotype but confers only partial and transient protection against subsequent infection by the other three. There is good evidence that sequential infection increases the risk of more serious disease resulting in DHF.

DHF was first recognized in the 1950s during the dengue epidemics in the Philippines and Thailand. By 1970 nine countries had experienced epidemic DHF and now, the number has increased more than fourfold and continues to rise. Today emerging DHF cases are causing increased dengue epidemics in the Americas, and in Asia, where all four dengue viruses are endemic, DHF has become a leading cause of hospitalization and death among children in several countries.

Currently vector control is the available method for the dengue and DHF prevention and control but research on dengue vaccines for public health use is in process. The global strategy for dengue /DHF prevention and control developed by WHO and the regional strategy formulation in the Americas, South-East Asia and the Western Pacific during the 1990s have facilitated identification of the main priorities: strengthening epidemiological surveillance through the implementation of DengueNet; accelerated training and the adoption of WHO standard clinical management guidelines for DHF; promoting behavioral change at individual, household and community levels to improve prevention and control; and accelerating research on vaccine development, host-pathogen interactions, and development of tools/interventions by including dengue in the disease portfolio of TDR (UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases) and IVR (WHO Initiative for Vaccine Research).


- WHO fact sheet
- Disease Outbreak News: dengue fever
- Disease Outbreak News: dengue haemorrhagic fever
- International travel and health: dengue

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Interesting spoof of Michael Moores 9-11 great stuff really.
In a strange way it tells the way some of the spin minds work
in this strange world of some documentary work.

The other one I like in a way is a attack - deserved in my opinion on the spin
players who seem hell bent on twisting what happened on 911.
Done by Penn & Teller...

One can look at a number of the strange tales spun by some made to entertain others to dis-inform and more just out plain strange sick humor to do another take on what happened. There is a lot that needs to be looked into I admit that needs looking into as to who was where and did what with whom. But this will probably be a movie soon… conspiracy breeds distrust and more and more is coming out. The spin… has begun in earnest I wonder how much more we can expect before the next US election.

A well put together explantion by Popular Mechanics discusses this in detail:

[] …Today, nearly five years later, hundreds of books and thousands of Web pages are devoted to the idea that the U.S. government encouraged, permitted, or actually carried out the attacks. These theories claim to be based on hard evidence. Popular Mechanics began researching the facts behind 9/11 conspiracy theories in late 2004 and published a cover story on the topic in March 2005. (That story is available here.) …”[]

Thursday, September 07, 2006

The Death of Steve Irwin is sad for many around the world but in strange sort of way you can tell that from his life that is the way he wanted to go. In this interview below he speaks about what and why he did the things he did.

There are thousands of tribute videos on youtube- google videos and elsewhere to this man who did so much for wildlife - he had his controversy who didn't - or doesn’t.
He was a 'fair dinkum' mate who helped the world bridge the gap between animals and people.

We interviewed Steve a few years back on Palawan at the CFI there - doing a story for the Inside story. We popped in with a group of people hopping off of a chopper jut outside the wire and walking into the office. Dr. Jerry Ortega was running the place then - Jerry gave us a proper scolding for spooking the crocs - our Air Force Pilots had given us a quick tour of Puerto Princesa.

Steve was a little subdued... but still even in the quick interview showed the flashes of what is seen on TV then, We later found out our chopper a big UH-1 Huey- had come at the worst possible time - breeding day at the croc farm. We never saw crocs move so fast- as well as a film crew hopping to get out of the way in the pens below! When the huge salt water crocs were being filmed!!! Here comes this 'other film crew' flying in on WHUP-WHUP-WHUP talk about spoiling the moment.

I know I have some video of the interview form my own camera - and other videos as well of Irwin from his short Palawan trip. This was circa 1993 - we still have pictures somewhere too. Not the best meeting – there were other we had… none as eventful as the other meeting.
I hope somewhere in the files of the Inside Story the video is there… If I remember Tita Fe and Ayen were really excited about the chance meeting and saved the tapes from the Inside Story somewhere.
The way Steve went seems to have been the way most people expected him to go- sad as the whole thin is- as a person who could like a Doctor Doolittle talk almost it seemed with the Animals and in the element they were in make people understand the others of our world we share it with.

The best tribute I have seen was on Jay Leno’s show where Jay said Steve was the best Ambassador Australia ever had. So true… Mr. Irwin will be missed… I watched a couple of shows on the Animal planet today. Listening to him as full of life he described the feeding habits of large croc t the Australia Zoo. He’s still with us… I hope they keep his shows on the air because it one of the best tools of education for children in a easy light hearted way for them to learn about the creatures history has taught us to fear.

I have to say Jay ‘s Ambassador analogy is wrong – Steve could have been or should have been the Peoples ambassador to Animals and vice versa.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Philippines Mass graves update:

The reports of a couple of days ago on the alleged existence of mass graves in Leyte and more reports of other sites across the country has the NDF saying they want charges filed on this issue.

Not unexpected - because afterall that there were purges is common knowledge from the 1980’s - a new purge however would be something new.

that deaths and killings have happened also is something many in the left as well as eight wing insurgent groups as well as former members also openly speak about. So if indeed some sort of charges are filed it may be for the best to once and for all get at the issue - or so says the NDF and other groups as well.

One thing though is clear -the existance of urban killing or death squads in many parts of the country - either from vigelante groups to other factions in the insurgency is something most people know about - it doesn’t take a major investigation to see - the bodies, the dead, the graves, the grieving - yes- there is a higher than normal level of targeted violence.

[] …” File charges on Leyte mass graves, NDF dares govt ABS CBN News, Philippines - By MARK IVAN ROBLAS, The Manila Times Reporter. Go ahead and file charges, the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) dared the government. …”[]

Some are trying to figure out this mess and seek answers to who and whom the blame should fall on for many of the attacks which have taken place.

Bohol Chronicle, Philippines - must be set up to unravel these so-called extra-judicial killings, per the Democratic Front (NDF) and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP). …[]

From across the country and across the globe the numbers of attacks and unsolved cases of killings often are seen as part of major reason for concern by human rights groups.

[]…” Murder spree fuels fear in Philippines
The Brunei Times, Brunei Darussalam - Previously, the Government blamed the rebels and their political wing, the Communist Party of the Philippines, for the recent surge in killings, ..[]

[] ..” Rights group accuses Palparan of 136 violations
Philippine Information Agency, Philippines - Sep 2, 2006
He said what the Karapatan tally confirmed was that the killings had been taking place long before his assignment in the region.
Philippine communist party denies military claims of mass grave of
International Herald Tribune, France - the current political killings and at the same time contrive a legal offensive against key personalities in the National Democratic Front of the Philippines …” []

Most of the information coming out comes from a report that came out in the associated press - which followed up by local media people in Leyte reveals more information:

[] ” …. August 26, troops from the 8th Infantry Division began digging a mass grave in Inopacan town where a hundred rebels and civilians were buried after they were ordered executed in the 1980s on suspicion they were military spies.
As of Thursday afternoon, the troops have so far recovered 65 skeletal remains from the mass grave. Quoting initial forensic tests, the military said three of the victims were women while another was below 18 years old. Armed Forces of the Philippines public information office chief Bartolome Bacarro has said the troops are also locating another mass grave in the general vicinity where 200 more victims of the purge were buried …[]

Overall the reports still has a long way to go … as to specifics and cases and evidence. it will be interesting to find out with each side pointing fingers who and when and where are chaged.

Earlier post: Mass grave found in Philippines: ‘killing fields’

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Times of India: Deathsquads ‘target’ manila moneylenders

India’s top newspaper is reporting that assassin like death squads have been killing moneylenders in a spree of violence that may fed by bad economic times fueling crime or what is suggested that a ‘group’ is marking Indian moneylenders for liquidation in the capital of manila. “The number of Punjabis killed in the Philippines has risen to nearly a dozen this year.” is the claim of the newspaper which is one of the largest in the subcontinent.

[] “… Two more Punjabis killed in Philippines

Times of India, India - JALANDHAR: Two more Punjabis, both in money-lending businesses, have been killed in the Philippines. …” []

If this is a ‘death squad’ related activity this marks the first report of foreign nationals targeted in the wave of killings of activists, journalists, and, government workers and soldiers gunned down in assassination style ‘liquidations that may bear the hallmark of a larger scale effort to target groups of people across a wide spectrum of Philippine society.

But what is strange is the targets, The mostly Punjabi money lenders - provide a major level of street credit to people who for the most part would never be able to get loans from banks or formal lending institutions.

It also marks the first foreign group aside from a pair of Americans killed in Cebu in assassin styled killings to be among those ‘hit’.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

“I bet they’re asleep in New York, I bet they are asleep all over America…”

Listening to lines from a wartime classic from the 1940″s Casablanca, Boogie says the line I use as my blog title- ironic its about 11pm in New York as I write this. Twelve hours ahead in time on my side of the globe - People are wide awake;

But here the ‘War on Terror’ is part of life. A day to day thing with battles won and lost - mostly victories so far - but still the fight goes on most of it beyond the scope of much of the world to understand- that in this global counterinsurgency versus Al Qeada and it’s allies and its minions that war rages on.

Philippine troops to launch major assault on Abu Sayyaf rebels in People’s Daily Online
Philippines to dispatch more troops to hunt down Islamic militants Raw Story
US Troops Hunting Down JI Bombers In Southern Philippines All Headline News

In the movie Casablanca, it was meant to awaken a sleepy isolationist centered America to the evil that was NAZI Germany - written prior to pearl harbor attack - the movie spoke in language all its own. Boogie goes on to say , “I bet they are asleep all over America” ,

In the pre-9-11 world five years ago at this time America was at sleep - isolated from the Jihad that much of the rest of the world esp. the middle east faced.

It was awakened by the WTC bomb attacks then slumbered - until the rude awakening of 9-11, Now five years afterwards, after the victories in Afghanistan, and Over the fast ‘blitzkrieg’ victory over Saddam’s government and his army that disappeared - it, America - went back to sleep on Iraq.

It is true to a large extent that the USA see’s itself as back in slumber mode in general- there was a mission accomplished- the formal fight versus the middle east’s largest Army and its worst dictator did happen.

But people feel asleep after that and did not notice the growing insurgency and Act 2 of the War - awakened to the sounds of IED and the insurgency.

It is in mid-sleep - somewhat awake in a nightmare of a Long and complicated war now that troubles many people. It has links and ties to many parts of the World beyond Iraq Afghanistan and elsewhere.

It rages on in small pockets here in Asia from Southern Thailand to small pockets of Indonesia to the campaign in Mindanao to arrests in Australia to rumors of small camps in West Papua or Irian Jaya - all the way back to the fight in the middle east the loast net and web of a underground fight that continues to rumble on…

Many in the West cannot really but fall asleep - thinking when they awake the new day will bring new peace and the sad shapes and images that show the battles of the conflict can be channel surfed away on morning TV.

“I bet they are asleep all over America…”, Boogie said it then so long ago- still today this statement is true.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Mass grave found in Philippines: ‘killing fields’

A wire report on the rebel purges of the mid to late 1980’s-1990’s is prominent in the news wires abroad. As ‘a alleged’ mass grave filled with “Hundreds of victims” was reported uncovered - some allegedly new - of people the military says were suspected of cooperating with the government was uncovered.

It is not a new story- one that is often under-reported - and often unmentioned by some in the international community who often prefer to highlight Governments alleged abuses whole downplaying those who may have supported or helped government from being victims - such as these here.

[]”…. MANILA, Philippines — Soldiers found mass graves believed to hold the remains of up to 300 people allegedly killed by communist guerrillas in the 1980s during a purge of suspected spies in the Philippines’ remote east, officials said Thursday”.…[]

There are numerous reports on alleged role of those in Uniform and of the Political group’s who are often thought of in these cases. Leading some in government to claim some in media take sides or work to tell only one side of the story.

[]…”Leftist murders spark fear ABS CBN News, Philippines Across the Philippines, masked gunmen on motorcycles have killed scores of left-wing community leaders and Ayunga fears he could be next….’{}

But all forms of this kind of violence by whatever side should be condemned in the strongest possible terms. had this report from about not too long ago - I repost it here:

News image

Special Report

About a Boy

…who lost his parents at age 5, grew up believing in the same revolutionary cause he knew they left him for… only to discover 20 years later that his parents were tortured and buried alive by their own Communist Party comrades on suspicion of being Deep Penetration Agents. —Winona Cueva

Another report deals with anger over ‘tax’ activities of the rebel group in another part of the Philippines by a Congressperson from a cause oriented groups.

[] …”Partylist solon condemn NPAs Philippine Information Agency, Philippine

Akbayan representative Loretta Ann Rosales stood in the plenary on Monday to condemn the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, whose latest …” []