“…To arms citizens…”

From the French revolution in 1789 against Louis XVI’s monarchy to the Russian revolution in 1917 against Nicholas II’s tsar regime, hunger was the fertilizing ground for revolutions to break out!

The contempt of each ruler at the time, as an answer to the common people’s misery was their mistake and the trigger that accelerated their falls from their thrones.

Raj Patel, activist and former analyst for the leading institutions like the UNO, the World Bank and the World Trade Organization, is ringing the warning bell on the economical and social status of under developed and poor countries such as Haiti, Burkina Faso, Morocco, Cambodia…

stuffed and starvedIn his last book, “Stuffed & Starved: The Hidden Battle For the World Food System”, he underlines the discrepancies between the “westernized block” and the countries that barely can afford the term of GDP to describe their economies- Mainly agriculture-based economies.

Since the colonies time, industrialized countries used their strong determination to maintain the economic gap, ensuring the poorest to be their agricultural produce providers. Bush with his free trade agreement to be ratified by the Congress, will force poorest countries to lower their tariff barriers for the USA to dispose of more competitive prices.

According to Patel, 33 countries are on the verge of social revolutions, food riots exploded already sporadically in Africa, in the Middle-East, in South America and in Asia. No continent is safe.

These outbursts have a common denominator, the sudden and brutal increase of the international food prices that impact directly their economies and therefore their standard of living. They significantly rose up to 50% in West Africa to 300% in Sierra Leone. It’s a pandemic phenomenon.

Commodities such as wheat, corn, rice, sugar cane are the ones to speculate nowadays. Because of the climate changes (unpredictable harvests), of the increase of the oil price and the infatuation for biofuel, the price of those commodities followed the curb of the demand, leaving aside populations who depend on them on a daily basis.

800 million people were statistically numbered as starving in the world, being as disdainful as former crowned heads Marie-Antoinette or the Romanov family were, and the indigents will soon knock at our doors and sing loudly “…To arms citizens, form your battalions, march, march…”!

Don’t tell me that I did not warn you……

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To hear an interview with Raj Patel on Democracy Now, click here. Patel’s blog featuring his new book Stuffed & Starved is here.

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