to never, ever go to the Maldives on holiday(123 Posts)
after reading this report...
china? had quite a few friends go on holiday so can't be that hard other than filling in the forms and paying the fee. we went to Hong Kong but that might be easier.
YANBU. DH and I have said we won't visit anywhere that children and women are treated as cattle/commodities. Unfortunately there are people who will still holiday in these places. If tourism almost halted then the powers that be would bloody intervene then. Always down to money.
Just to clarify, China is easy to get a tourist visa to if you have a British passport.
Agree. We all huff and puff and recycle our plastic and give to charity but the reality is we like our cars, luxuries and nice cushy safe lifestyle. Doubt we would really trade that to make the world a fairer, more equal and more moral place.
I really dislike the whole Saudi thing and our kowtowing to them. Basically if I was in charge of foreign affairs I would cut links to many places. probably a good job that i'm not really.
theodorakisses I am sorry I have just read further down the thread.
I was responding to this from Theodora
theodorakisses Yeah, you are so right Ladypessary...there is no prostitution in Thailand, I just made it up for the attention. I stayed in Pattaya from 8th -25th September 2011 at the Birds and bees resort. Obviously you are a much classier person who stays in a much classier Thailand than I did. jeez.
So take my response out of context as you obviously want and need to demonise me.
I just don't think that the ordinary people stand a chance against oil or arms. I agree though, it is never futile.
Certainly in the case of Saudi the British government (red or blue) will be far too afraid of the economic consequences of pissing the Saudis off too much. The UK has, after all, earned over 43 million over 20 years from the arms sold to them in the Al-Yamamah deals, and could well earn the same again in future. Apparently it's Britain's largest ever export contract.
So all the more reason for ordinary people to be outspoken in their criticism.
I also think it is fair to point out that the countries who sponsor terrible working conditions are not Saudi or the UAE, it's European/US multinationals who we all support if we buy anything that they produce. For example, M and S don't have to use Vietnam, Cambodia and Bangladesh (all have poor human rights and treatment of women) for making their clothes but they do. If you or I were to spend a day in one of those factories, would we ever support that firm again? So, because we don't and we trust a sturdy British brand as reflecting western values, it's ok. It is impossible to pontificate on one thing and not have to accept that we are all involved. And would I say a financially struggling family shouldn't buy their uniforms from Asda? No, because wealth, suffering and hardship are all relative and we can only try our best.
I see saudi and China as similar in being world players, rich and powerful but everyone is too scared to tackle them. That makes them incredibly powerful.
"Saudi Arabia is not promoting itself as a tourist destination to Westerners."
I don't really see that as a reason why Dubai should be criticised but the far worse rights of workers and women in Saudi should escape criticism. Dubai does respond to criticism from Western governments and make changes, albeit at a slow pace. The lack of Western interest in Saudi means the problem is all the more serious, and needs to be discussed.
Look at this horrific story - admittedly from ten years ago, but one wonders how many events from Saudi don't get noticed by Westerners.
"BsadLad I think people don't mention audi as there is no tourism there, and they don't allow people into their country on tourist visas?"
OK, how about the abuse in the rest of the Gulf, and indeed the UAE? Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Egypt (yes, I know it doesn't have a Gulf coastline but it is influential and very much a tourist destination)?
There are many marriages that have the potential to be unequal, it doesn't mean they all are.
The Birds and Bees resort is lovely, very family friendly (although in Pattaya) and is run by local people for local people but is 5 star, very comfy although I would say more 4 star. All of the staff are local people who are sponsored to study part time and work part time. Their shop sells amazing local crafts, especially the home made blankets. you can also choose to spend a day at a community project, I loved the toy library and spent a lot of time with them. since coming back, we have joined our school with their local primary and fund raise and penpal with them. Thailand is not just about sex indeed, it is nothing to do with the actual sex, it's about corruption, greed and exploitation but it is absolutely impossible not to object to the terrible corruption from the highest level. That said, I wouldn't judge anyone for going except for the middle aged men in socks and sandals dragging some poor girl around with him or the group of british "stags" we met who thought we would think they were really clever for going one step better than Prague.
I love Thailand, although of course am aware of the sex trade, to me its not the same as a country where the law promotes child abuse. I also think that the stereotyping has gone too far:
An outspoken English woman said some pretty disgusting things to my father in law when he was flying alone to attend my brother and sister in laws wedding in Thailand. He was mortified and really upset.
My BIL is completely head over heels in love with his Thai wife, and she him, who he met whilst living and working in Thailand. He has had no end of derogatory comments disguised as jokes from his english 'friends' about what kind of woman she must be. It's very hurtful.
And I refuse to think of a beautiful country like Thailand as nothing more than a sex industry and will continue to visit with my family.
Malaysia is run by the Chinese, really - you sure about that?
Theodora - totally agree with your last post about the spread of wealth. How privileged would our lives still be if we spread the wealth worldwide i wonder. I lived in Asia for some years, the shiny new cities are built by immigrant workers living and working under conditions we couldn't accept. Transported on the backs of open top trucks on motorways etc. (saying that, the local population do the same with their families and children). We had a Filipino maid who was supporting her family back home, many of see women leave their babies and see them once every two years - and not always then.
some places would just have nothing without the sex industry which is horrific. people are just commodities and if you're "above" them then you're raised to not give a fuck about them. dp went to Malaysia on a business trip and was really upset by it. The country is run by Chinese who exploit the malaysians. They were all 'provided' with complimentary prostitutes and dp had to sit in the room with one while she cried and pleaded with him to let her do something to him with real fear in her eyes.
It's pretty hard to get into China as well and they aren't great shakes in the human rights department either but we still choose to buy their products because they are cheaper.
BsadLad I think people don't mention audi as there is no tourism there, and they don't allow people into their country on tourist visas?
Pessarypam, please don't take it personally. I too get frustrated with MN and while I don't really agree with you, I don't want to upset or frustrate people. In the end, there is little to disagree on in this matter. So, please accept my acknowledgement of your feelings and apologies for any ill feeling, I think we were fairly evenly matched in our difference of opinion but I am so massively opposed to the culture of belittling and bullying on MN I am more than happy to accept criticise and concede if needed. have a lovely day.
The UAE are not the only countries who do this. Who do you think is building the education City in Kuala Lumpar? There are few countries who don't employ migrant workers to save on cost. I am not excusing the human rights in the Gulf (I live in Qatar) nor would I seek an opinion that I don't live here for any other reason that the money, good lifestyle and weather. However, until we look at why it is preferable for people to work for £200 a month as a cleaner in Saudi or Dubai, we need to look at why this is preferable. My cleaner is from Nepal, he goes home once every 3 years and believes he is lucky to have been given the opportunity to work here as a road worker. He sends enough home to support 3 families in his village, they absolutely depend on him. Recently one of his family was ill and he needed extra money to pay for the op (and, no, he wasn't ripping me off, he has lived with us for 6 years and we have visited his family twice).
My point is, why are there still villages where men have to leave their families for years at a time and work for peanuts, villages where weather and poor roads mean they still have an appalling mortality rate and a young man is burdened with being sent away to pay for the schooling of not only his own children but all of his sisters and cousins children. Why is it that they all have Blackberries and Skype to keep in touch but no access to a dentist? The balance of wealth in the world is not just down to the oil rich countries, we are ALL guilty of buying knickers made in Bangladesh, Primark throwaway clothes made in Sri Lanka and we don't really spare a thought for the invisible poor.
Saudi Arabia is not promoting itself as a tourist destination to Westerners.
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