Hunger in the 21st Century

This year, the Nobel Peace Prize committee has chosen to award the prize to the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) for its efforts to alleviate hunger and food insecurity for millions of people around the world.

They could not have made a better choice.

The chairman of the Award Committee “highlighted its role in boosting resilience and sustainability among communities by helping them to feed themselves.”

The scourge of war has always brought hunger in its wake, “and now, a global pandemic with its brutal impact on economies and communities, is pushing millions more to the brink of starvation,” the Committee said.

This organization has provided assistance to 100 million people in 88 countries around the world.

Unfortunately, this past spring, the U.S. Government stopped providing financial assistance to this organization, as it has done with other UN organizations.

It is probably hard for many in the United States and elsewhere, who struggle daily to eat less in order to lose weight, to realize that there is a hunger problem for so many millions of people on Earth.

However, this problem is real – and, in fact, it is also quite serious in America – the richest country on the planet. We just do not know it, or we know it and we do not see it because it makes us feel uncomfortable.

This is a strong condemnation of the authorities, but also of society in general.

Unfortunately, the poor and the hungry have no voice. They are often not able to vote, to influence the authorities in order to secure a plate of food.

Society treats them as if they are the problem. It considers them to be responsible for the situation in which they find themselves.

We do not have the humility and wisdom to think that each of us could be in this situation. An illness, for example, could lead us to poverty and even hunger.

And, of course, the rulers of the world do not take into account the devastation and famine caused by wars, which they often unleash – as is the case in Syria and a number of African countries.

And, of course now, with the Coronavirus nightmare and the financial catastrophe it has brought, the number of hungry people has multiplied.

Congratulations to the Nobel Peace Prize committee for their selection. Obviously, those who work at this organization deserve it, but the award also brings to the fore a great problem – a shame on humanity – world hunger.


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