Author Topic: Stories That Restore Faith in Humanity  (Read 904 times)

Demolition Squid

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Stories That Restore Faith in Humanity
« on: July 08, 2015, 03:36:33 pm »
This seems much needed at the moment, in these bleak, terrible times.

http://www.theguardian.com/news/2015/jul/08/millionaire-who-rescues-migrants-at-sea

Quote
Catrambone was determined to start rescuing people in 2014 and had set a hectic repair schedule. “It cost a crazy amount of money,” said Cauchi. The boat was bought and repaired, for a total of $5.2m, by the Tangiers Group (and still sits on the company’s books) but would be operated by a foundation Catrambone named Migrant Offshore Aid Station (Moas). He hired Martin Xuereb as director in February 2014, after cold calling to invite him for coffee. “I am not in the habit of meeting for coffee with someone I don’t know,” Xuereb, now 47, told me, but he and Catrambone ended up talking for five hours. “I wasn’t expecting him to be so young. What hits you straight away is his vision, his perseverance and his determination.” No volunteers had done anything similar since 1979, when a group of Germans chartered a freighter named Cap Anamur to rescue migrants fleeing Vietnam. An attempt by the same group to rescue 37 people off Italy in 2003 ended with crew members put on trial for facilitating illegal entry into the country; they were found not guilty, and the migrants were deported.

...

The first call came through after four days, on 30 August. The Moas team quickly found itself involved in the simultaneous rescue of two migrant boats, including a wooden fishing vessel with 350 people – many of them families from Syria – that was slowly sinking. By the end of the rescue, water was flooding onto the main deck of the fishing boat, and many of the migrants were in the sea. So many small children were rescued that the Phoenix almost ran out of baby formula. “That was a shock for most of the crew,” Catrambone recalled. “We were a bit overwhelmed with the thought that this was really happening. These children and mothers were at the hands of the sea, at the hands of death.”

The Phoenix rescued 1,462 people in 10 weeks and helped a further 1,500 onto Italian navy vessels. (There were also lulls when the crew fished for bluefin tuna.) The Phoenix operates in international waters that start just 12 nautical miles from the shores of Libya – now one of the world’s most violent places, where two separate governments have only tenuous control over their territories. An American consultant hired to advise on security fretted that the ship’s unarmed crew was too close to Libyan waters, but Catrambone decided he was overreacting – after long periods working in Iraq and Afghanistan (and a narrow brush with death during a missile strike in Israel), Catrambone felt he knew how to calibrate risk; the success of his own business, he says, is based in part on the tendency of others to exaggerate danger. “We are not afraid to go where others are [afraid],” he told me. “We don’t need a military convoy to take us.”

Yes, this is a man who is a millionaire - who has profited from warzones, even. But he's invested millions of his own money and much of his own time into saving the lives of the desperate and unfortunate because ...

Quote from: Christopher Catrambone
“If you are against saving lives at sea then you are a bigot and you don’t even belong in our community. If you allow your neighbour to die in your backyard, then you are responsible for that death.”

And that's heartening, isn't it?
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Re: Stories That Restore Faith in Humanity
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2015, 03:43:49 pm »
This is, in fact, heartening. The idea of rich people using their money, earned on the backs of the less fortunate, to help other people? It would be nice if it caught on.
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”


Demolition Squid

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Re: Stories That Restore Faith in Humanity
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2015, 04:56:49 pm »
Quote
The Welsh government has raised eyebrows after responding to a Conservative politician’s formal question about UFOs in the Star Trek language Klingon.

Tory Welsh assembly member Darren Millar asked economy minister Edwina Hart whether any alien craft had been spotted over the skies of Cardiff airport since it was brought back into public ownership.

But the Clwyd West AM was surprised when he was given the reply: “jang vIDa je due luq. ‘ach ghotvam’e’ QI’yaH-devolved qaS.”

Which, in English, translates as: “The minister will reply in due course. However, this is a non-devolved matter.”

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jul/10/star-trek-welsh-assembly-ufo-question-prompts-dip-into-trilingualism-with-klingon

I really needed this today.  :lulz:

And one of my favourite comments in ages!

Quote from: WelshPaul
The Tories have no honour - they speak like Ferengi!
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 05:00:04 pm by Demolition Squid »
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Reginald Ret

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Re: Stories That Restore Faith in Humanity
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2015, 10:00:14 pm »
Quote
The Welsh government has raised eyebrows after responding to a Conservative politician’s formal question about UFOs in the Star Trek language Klingon.

Tory Welsh assembly member Darren Millar asked economy minister Edwina Hart whether any alien craft had been spotted over the skies of Cardiff airport since it was brought back into public ownership.

But the Clwyd West AM was surprised when he was given the reply: “jang vIDa je due luq. ‘ach ghotvam’e’ QI’yaH-devolved qaS.”

Which, in English, translates as: “The minister will reply in due course. However, this is a non-devolved matter.”

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jul/10/star-trek-welsh-assembly-ufo-question-prompts-dip-into-trilingualism-with-klingon

I really needed this today.  :lulz:

And one of my favourite comments in ages!

Quote from: WelshPaul
The Tories have no honour - they speak like Ferengi!
That got me smiling :).

Now I want to watch some Star Trek, Klingon usually doesn't do that for me.
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