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The Paradise of Seasonal Birds and the Birth Place of Civilization Become…

The Paradise of Seasonal Birds and the Birth Place of Civilization Become…

Posted February. 17, 2003 22:23,   


The BBC quoted the report by an international bird protection organization, `the Bird Life International,` and reported on the 16th that if the Iraqi War broke out, it would create a massive environmental disaster just like the Gulf War in 1991.

Iraq is one of the 5 biggest habitats for winter seasonal wading birds (such as cranes and plovers), and it also is the stopover for hundreds of thousands of plovers in spring and fall. The Mesopotamian swamp in southeast Iraq, which has the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, is the habitat for thousands of kinds of birds; therefore, it is the ecological thesaurus and the living lot for the Ma`dan natives, who continue the 5,000-year old Mesopotamian civilization.

According to the report, the 15,000km2 wide Mesopotamian swamp was almost destroyed due to the ravages of war in 1991 and only 50 km2, which is only 0.3% of what was used to be, is left. Therefore, it had a bad influence on the global biological diversity from Siberia to South Africa. Bandicoot-rats (big rats with maximum body length of 28cm) and otters were almost exterminated, and most of the Ma`dan natives lost their foundation for living.

The report worried, based on these analyses, in case of another war in Iraq, it would give sufferings to people and ecological system even after the war due to massive destruction of environment.

The report cited the followings for typical predicted damages; △pollution due to oil lick and fire on oil wEls, △pollution by radio active, chemical, and toxic materials due to weapons of massive destruction or bomb droppings, △destruction of wild ecological system and habitat due to massive movement of refugees, and △vanishing of different vegetations, extermination of indigenous plants, and destruction of desert.

A Bird Life official said, “During the war in 1991, the largest amount of oil in the history was flown out to the ocean, and 560km-long coastal line was polluted, so all of the ecological system in the coastal mud was destroyed,” and “if oil is flown out, especially, wading birds and water birds would be in danger.” The head of this organization, Dr. Michael Rends scolded the wide insensibility for environment by saying, “The destruction of environment by wars have been ignored or hidden because of troubles themselves.”