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International Red Cross Sucks

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I've always been brought up with the idea that the Red Cross is the best and most helpful and giving organization out there for the needy. Then after 9/11 there was talk of fiasco's in all of the charitable organizations. Even the Statue of Liberty fund was corrupted. The Red Cross stood out front though in corruption and it's getting worse as stories like those below continue to pour in.

WSJ Editorial (requires subscribing, see Armies of Liberation, where Jane as the whole thing)

Once upon a time, the International Committee of the Red Cross was a humanitarian outfit doing the Lord’s work to reduce the horrors of war. So it is a special tragedy to see that it has increasingly become an ideological organization unable to distinguish between good guys and bad. That’s the unfortunate conclusion suggested by three years of open ICRC hostility toward U.S. conduct in the war on terror. The latest salvo was Tuesday’s front page story in the New York Times quoting from an ICRC report complaining about the detention conditions and interrogation practices used on Taliban and al Qaeda prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Tipped by: Armies of Liberation, who has the full story and some comments.

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Posted by Digger on December 2, 2004 01:26 PM (Permalink)

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The American Red Cross is no better the thugs in
NewYork! They use part if not all our money for everything other than what it was ment for.The red cross should be shut down!They lie and will let those people in need down!They put the screws to the families of 9-11 and they are doing it again with the tsunami aid! The US goverment needs to investigate the thugs and rip open and show to the public what they have been doing.Dont give the the American Red Cross!It wouldent surprise me it they have ties to terrerism and or drugs in some kind of way.I hope they are exposed to the public and we can see ther true ugly faces of deception! Please help and email the redcross and tell them what you think.

Posted by: Ggreen on January 3, 2005 08:00 AM

I have always considered the American/International Red Cross to be on a pedestal just as a see the Salvation Army ... honest, efficient and beyond political/ethical challenges. I hesitated not one minute in donating money after the disater of Dec 26. Now both as a new employee in a community based non-profit blood center and in searching the internet, I am hearing rumblings that has shaken and cracked the pedestal holding up the Red Cross. I hear of misappropriated moneys and blood collection zealousness that resulted in 10,000 units of blood being outdated ... what a tragic loss. What gives? Can anyone help me here?

Posted by: Thomas on March 22, 2005 04:40 PM

The Red Cross are Nazis.
Prohibiting homosexual men from giving blood?
I have trouble containing my rage whenever I see the Red Cross pouting for money, volunteer work and/or blood. They have the nerve to complain about there being a shortage of blood when they base the probablility of blood being contaminated with HIV on the giver's sexuality.
Not to mention all the money they spend on frivolous cocktail parties and 5 course dinners every month or so (this is the Australian Red Cross) on money dontated given to them with the intention of helping out those affected by the Boxing Day tsunami and any other major disaster.

I'll never give a cent to any Red Cross organisation, and the sooner everyone else stops the better.

Posted by: kako on September 1, 2005 02:06 AM

I would like to see Congress revoke the charter of the ARC. I tried to champion this cause after they screwed the american public with 9/11. We need to watch them closely to see where the millions for Katrina wind up.

Posted by: Jim on September 4, 2005 11:24 PM

someone needs to out them as being an incompetant organization. The volunteers are what keep their credibility at a high. They turned me away yesterday as I finally had to show up at their doorstep to help with Katrina Relief. They said they are overflooded with volunteers which is ridiculous - maybe if they got some people off the phone taking money and put people on the ground to help others, they might have some room. Absurd.

Posted by: drea on September 8, 2005 11:26 AM

The Red Cross is the charity people turn to because it is the one which gets the work done. I do not understand all these insults towards an organization that is built upon volunteers--where 95cents of every dollar goes directly to the victims of disaster (name many charities that can boast that?).. Yeah, you see the Red Cross come to the forefront in major disasters, but what about every day disasters--house fires, flood, etc. The Red Cross is there.

Hmmm. ask military personell how they feel about the Red Cross? Maybe you didnt know that they will actually pay for a military funeral-- yes, this happened in my town.

So please tell the 200,000 people from Katrina in Red Cross Shelters being fed 3 hot meals a day, getting care from Red Cross Nurses and Doctors, being provided all their medicines, etc. that this charity is inept.

Posted by: Ryan on September 8, 2005 09:15 PM

Ryan there's a huge difference between the International Red Cross and the American Red Cross. Some above have questioned the American Red Cross as well, but the main part of the post was in regards to the International Red Cross and the corruption within it.

Posted by: Digger on September 9, 2005 08:12 AM

Being a military brat, I grew up with the Red Cross. They did some wonderful things back then, but my own experiences with them in the field at various disasters has removed any admiration I may have had for them. Their volunteers are uniformly inept. It does not surprise me to hear that they wanted Katrina evacuees staying in hotels to physically move out so they could process them back in. I know how chaotic things can be in a situation like this, but if you are trained for this you should be able to get the job done. After seeing how bad they are in the field, it bothers me to see so many people saying donate to the Red Cross

Posted by: Mike on September 9, 2005 06:55 PM

The American Red Cross is nothing but a bunch of greedy corrupt individuals profiting from the misfortunes of others. They are NOT there for people in need during large disasters. They constantly misappropriate funds and spend frivilously on their own needs....not the needs of people they are supposed to be helping.Look back at 9/11 and hurricane Andrew and now hurricane Katrina. You will no doubt hear of their deliberate negligence and unaccounted for millions( I would add incompetence to the list but that suggests they dont know what they are doing...they know exactly what they are doing...stealing and spending on themselves ie.Cocktail parties at the Ritz Carlton ) Did you know that the "President"
of the American Red Cross makes a salary in excess of $400,000 yearly and those funds are paid out directly from donations!!!!!!!!!....When I donate money I will donate to those in need...I'm not paying to put a new wing on the president of the ARC's vacation house.......and if your smart you will do the same!

Posted by: Rob on September 10, 2005 11:07 PM

The Red Cross - American and International - is a franchise. That pretty much says it all if you think about it. They pay their monthly fees up the line to operate and keep their franchise. Their volunteers ARE (on most part) very honest sincere giving people. The paid employees and directors know the truth - they are a franchise and are there to make as much money as they can. They do NOT pay out 90% of their funds - unless the are "fortunate" to have a major disaster. Then 10%, like now, would be a Huge some, but I'm sure they will pull out more than that for their own use. Look into your local Red Cross chapter, look at their financials - question each line. They usually pay out less than 10% !!! of what they take in. They have things listed like medical and other items that look like they are for the public but they are actually benefits for the director and employees. This is too bad that everyone is supplying the greed of the Red Cross, when, like the volunteers, we all want to help. Pick another way or another group to give your money to. During 9-11 they siphoned off millions to build a huge blood bank. Sounds good right? But blood is another major fund raiser for the Red Cross, they make $65 a unit. Many hosptials won't buy from the Red Cross any more. Yes, they are always seen right out there in their outfits helping out (volunteers usually who don't know of the greed) and Red Cross is there for a local home fire. The put the family up for a night, give them some toiletries and clothes (the hotel often discounts the rate, K-Mart and others help with the other items). The Red Cross is maybe out $250 in a really bad case. How many families have they helped in your area? 8 in my area, with donations and income reported of almost $300,000 and less than $2500 paid out for support! I sent an email to Michael Moore about looking into this but I haven't heard anything. One Wild Excessive Wealthy Franchise.

Posted by: Jim on September 12, 2005 07:41 PM

Amazingly, no one I know has been able to get through to them to apply for assistance. Even at 3 am, the 800 number is busy. The constant busy signal is occasionally replaced with a terse message "we're busy, call back" I've gotten that one 3 times. We even drove 80 miles to Brookhaven MS, where they had been open. By the time we got there, there were no more tickets, so they gave us a card to call the 800 number. ARRRGH!! Amazingly, it took less than a minute to get a human on the donation line though. Thanks for nothing, Red Cross. Are you now under FEMA management?

Posted by: Peanut on September 16, 2005 04:04 AM

Last november my house cought on fire I contacted the red cross to get much needed aid for myself and my three children.They spoke to me as if I were some petty begger,and seemed as if they did not want to help me.I hung up on them in tears and felt so humiliated I swore to myself I would nevr seek charity again,I am usually the one who gives.We moved to Mobile Alabama after our fire only to be apart of another disaster hurricane Katrina.Once again I found myself in need of help because my husband lost his job and all of his tools due to the storm we are flat broke and disaster relief is impossible to get ofn any kind.I sucked up my pride and drove 100 miles away to seek help from the red cross in pensacola FL only to be turnded away.Iwent to the head quarters to see what I could do for help and the red cross told me to call 1-800-get-money I am serious.I finally got the correct number to call for aid and I have been calling for over a week all hours of the day and nightonly to get a busy signal or a message that says they are having technical difficulty call back later.I do not trust the red cross at all I believe its all just a show the little bit they hand out and they keep the rest.I don't understand why they make it so difficult for the people who are suffering and the act as if their personal money.I don;t understand how they can pick up on the donation line but have technical difficulties on the aid line.I am giving up on recieving any aid from the storm the red cross has degraded me twice in less than a year and have been of no help to me in tese disasters.I know that I will never give to the red cross because I have seen first hand that the money does not go to the people who desperetly need it.If any one out there feels compelled to help for storm relief give to the spca they actually care about helping.The red cross has already recieved 600,000,000 in donations for Katrina and I have only met one person who has recievd aid.Something is very wrong

Posted by: michelle on September 18, 2005 02:47 PM

my experiences with the Red Cross have been totally different and quite the opposite in my community. They helped our neighbor, very generously I might add, with hotel accomodations and cash for clothing when they had serious smoke damage from a minor fire.

I don't think anyone is "getting rich" at the Red Cross. They truly are doing the work of angels in Louisiana, Mississippi, etc. I know it is mostly the volunteers though.

I think the fact that the Red Cross employs people is a good thing. It's jobs! Look for every one employee there are hundreds of volunteers. And that one employee, at least those that I know that work for the Red Cross don't make much more than $35 K a year and works insane hours doing so (no overtime)

Now for the president making $400,000. I think that is a very modest salary for a CEO, non profit or not for such a huge job. she manages almost 1 million volunteers and thousands and thousands of employees. Many of the non profit heads are being paid comparable salaries.

All the watch dog org's rate Red Cross (and Salvation Army) as tops for charities. Could they be wrong? I think people here are right on judging due to their personal experiences. Mine has been favorable, others have been horrendous.. but I think we have to look at the big picture and judge a charity accordingly. I know I will be doing more research into the Red Cross and all of the charities I support, to make sure they are truly helping others.

Posted by: Blogger on September 19, 2005 10:00 PM

the other day i went to a 6.5 hour training to go to louisiana as a volunteer. let me tell you: the training is a disaster itself. apparently no one trains the instructors on how to prepare volunteers for relief work. most of my "classmates" left the day-long session bewildered.

what's more, that was my second visit to this american red cross chapter (stockton, ca). most of the administrators i dealt with both days had a mightier-than-thou attitude that made me feel about two inches tall. the instructor was highly insulting and scoffed at many of our questions.

i realize that this is a busy and difficult time for the red cross. however, i couldnt help but notice that while my instructor emphasized the importance of empathy towards disaster victims she treated us, potential volunteers, like idiot schoolchildren.

i was really excited about the Red Cross. Now, i'm looking for another group to work with.

Posted by: maddy on September 22, 2005 11:39 PM

I love this site. This is my frst time posting. I just want to comment that the red cross gets fully reimbursed for all of the lodging they get for people. That is why a writer here wrote about how the red cross wanted people to leave their hotels so they can process them. They probably wanted to get credit for the rooms so they reproccessed the people.
Years ago my grandparents who lived through the depression and that big hurricane we had up on Long Island said the Red Cross would come in with a doughnut and that was about it. And they always treated minorities like second class citizens. The way they seem to be treating Gays now. They divided the blood supply by race.
The Salvation Army on the other hand was very good and would give people meals and and all sorts of help. The red cross is a first responder that is all. They use none of the money people donate to rebuild, get medical care etc. It is a crime that any time I go to most web sites the home page is asking for donations for the red cross. So these folks don't even have work to get donations, while other smaller, better charities don't have that same advantage. I wonder if the Red Cross is paying these company's to put their names on the home pages?

Posted by: Marble on September 28, 2005 11:50 PM

"Their volunteers are uniformly inept. It does not surprise me to hear that they wanted Katrina evacuees staying in hotels to physically move out so they could process them back in."
They did that because they get fully reimbursed for lodging. They evacuees were probably sent there by someone other then the Red Cross, but the red cross wanted to get credit so they reprocessed them back in. It is a crime.
My grandparents told me that the red cross would come in with doughnuts and coffee and that was it. They lived through that big hurricane we had up on Long Island eons ago. They said they treated minorities like second class citizens. Like the wa they are treating Gays now. They divided the blood supply up along racial lines too. On the other hand they always loved and donated to the Salvation Army. The red cross is just first responder, none of the money people donate go to rebuilding. One the disaster is over they are gone. They have gotten 2 billion dollars to date, with all of the money being fully reimbursed for housing the evacuees, how much can a few million doughnuts and cups of coffee cost?
As I go around to various web sites most have home pages urging us to to give to the red cross. How much money is being used for advertising? After the mess downtown on and after 9/11 and the publicity surrounded it. I have to think donating money to the donut king is about as wise as donating money for the research of the Loch Ness Monster.

Posted by: Marble on September 29, 2005 12:09 AM

This was my first exp. with the Red Cross and I hope my last. Katrina was a horrible thing to go through but we were luckier than most. Here in Mobile, AL most of the "people in line" really didn't need the money but some of us did. After 2 weeks of calling the 800# at all hours of the day and not being able to get through on the local line my mother ended up in Pensacola for help. She was greeted with open arms, took her information and was told that her voucher would be mailed to her. A week later the Red Cross made the announcement that from that point on they will only let you have the money after an inspection of your house. Three weeks later she called them because she hadn't received anything and was told "Mrs. S if you didn't lose you house totally you won't get anything". That because people were taking advantage of their services. Well my goodness it took them 6 weeks to figure this out and only took the Salvation Army 2 weeks to shut their doors. FEMA only helps if you lost everything and have no insurance. What's the point of donating to the Katrina fund if only the people in LA are getting the money. Wave, Ms was ignored for 4 weeks after the hurricane and they were completely wiped off the map. This experience has put a lot of things in perpective for me, it all depends on where you are from and the color of your skin. Mine is too light and I don't see how they think a divorce mother of 2 who can't get child support because the dummy won't pay is suppose to put their lives back together because no one will help.

Posted by: Dana on October 19, 2005 09:50 PM


The American Red Cross - the thieves that they are - still has over $300,000,000 from funds collected by them for tsunami relief. I have just returned to the states after two years of tsunami relief volunteer work and I am sick and need help. The Red Cross has plenty of money but as they told me “ we do not help AMERICANS”. Who the hell gave them the money - Americans did - and they will not even talk to me on the phone.

What is the RED CROSS doing with this money - How much interest is that money receiving - what are their plans for the funds - why have they not used this money after 28 months - and why do they not help Americans that have been physically, emotionally, and financially devastated?

The US government did nothing for AMERICANS that were destroyed by the tsunami - NOTHING. I cannot even get my senators or congress people to answer my mail - why they is no help? The USA spends hundreds of billions on IRAQ, billions on helping Katrina victims, 70 billion a year on Illegal aliens, and wastes billions every year but not one dollar to help someone that has devoted many years of their life to helping others.

The worst part of being in the tsunami was returning to the USA and finding out that I am screwed. President Bush, in his tsunami speech, promised “compassion and generosity” but then he is a liar, as I have seen no compassion from this government.

Forgotten Victims of the Tsunami

After ten years of teaching Geography at USF and ten years of teaching Astronomy at Hillsborough Community College, Professor Aruffo wanted to help other people in the world. He sold his condominium and moved to Thailand to volunteer in the Burmese refugee camps in Thailand - little did he know that his life would take a disastrous direction. A year before the tsunami he moved to Phuket Island, Thailand to live and he volunteered with World Vision International in Phuket.
He was also the director of an environmental organization that he founded, Coral Reef Institute. He assessed and monitored the coral reefs in the Andaman Sea as a volunteer Team Scientist for Reef Check. His favorite volunteer service was teaching Thai children and teachers to speak English. Three months before the tsunami, while on vacation, he was hiking to Base Camp on the side of Mount Everest - in the peak of health and energy. A month before the tsunami his students were on the beach with him involved in an environmental beach clean up. A month later on December 26, 2004, the tsunami struck - on that day, his life took a downward direction.

The tsunami struck and bodies were strewn all over the beaches and people and bodies trapped in basements. Boats were overturned and people were trapped. While most tourist scrambled to leave the tsunami zone after the tsunami, Aruffo stayed for the long clean up and recovery effort. Henry Aruffo is a PADI certified rescue and wreck diver instructor and volunteered to retrieve bodies and stop the oil and gas leaks from overturned boats. He was swimming in the putrid waters of death. Little did he know that these waters might eventually end or shorten his life. Aruffo and his team were involved in over 60 bodies being recovered - many of them young children and babies. A sight he will never forget but hopes to someday.
Within a few days, he was unable to walk from the massive ear infection. Today he has permanent partial loss of hearing in his ears.
He was able to work full time for a year - devoting 50 - 70 hours a week to environmental and social recovery. He was a Tsunami Team Relief Leader for World Vision International - a humanitarian Christian organization devoted to helping people and children in economically disadvantaged countries. Some of his students in his English classes were lost in the tsunami and he devoted his time to helping those that survived.

His second case of Dengue Fever (Break Bone Fever) came 9 months after the tsunami - his bones still ache from the fever. His first case was when he was working in the Burmese refugee camps in Northern Thailand, two years earlier. His eyes sockets and bones all felt like they had been broken and there is no cure. A first case of Dengue fever can be severe but a second case can be fatal and there is no vaccination for Dengue Fever. He thought he was going to die he was in so much pain.

He found out he had contracted hepatitis from being in the putrid, bacteria infected waters as his liver swelled and caused more discomfort. He has not slept a decent night’s sleep since the tsunami - he is seeing a sleep doctor and awaiting a further sleep testing when funds become available. Right after the tsunami, he had violent nightmares about being trapped under the water, diving in a basements searching for survivors. During one rescue attempt, he was forced to disconnect his scuba gear in a flooded basement when it became tangled in the hanging electric wires connected to dead body floating above him, trapped in the same wires. After a while, his body just stopped allowing him to sleep to avoid the having nightmares.

After a year, major depression set in with what his doctors diagnosed as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He continues to this day in a major depression even with medications and treatments. He returned to the states when he started having suicidal thoughts, his depression was so severe. Now, he survives one day at a time.

His eleven “adopted children” at the Tsunami Orphans ‘Happy Home’ in Phuket miss him but he had to return to the USA for medical treatment. To the children and teachers in Phuket, Professor Aruffo was their Champion. His children made a poster and took photos of themselves asking him to get better and come home to Thailand soon. Their sign said “we love you Professor Aruffo, get healthy, please come home, we love you”. While he is attempting recovery here in the USA, he worries that his children have no one to teach them English. He promised he would return soon but his treatments may take up to 48 weeks once treatments begin. He promised his eleven-tsunami orphans that he would help them all speak English and to tutor them so they would all be able to get into university or trade school. He wanted them to have something positive to look forward to, a good life, even though their life had not started good by losing their families to the tsunami disaster.

Now he stays in a small rented apartment in Saint Petersburg, isolated and alone, trying to recover from his two years of tsunami volunteer service in Thailand. He is not half the man he was before the tsunami. He worries about paying his mounting medical bills without insurance. While hurricane, tornado, and flood victims get some assistance from their government - there is no help for a forgotten victim of the tsunami. Now after years of distinguished volunteer service in Thailand, he returned home to Florida sick, tired, abandoned, and seeking any government assistance. In Thailand, he was given a medal for his efforts in the Tsunami Relief Operation. Here in America that medal will not buy his groceries or pay his medical bills. His response from the government was negative - both Florida senators sent form letters, Kathy Castor, his congressperson did not follow up on his requests. President Bush did not even send a form letter. He continues to pay his mounting medical bills. He is unable to work from depression, pain, his brain is confused by the medications he is taking, and his savings are dwindling.

He contacted the American Red Cross and they informed him that they still have not spent over $300,000,000 collected for the tsunami relief fund but that they do not help American victims of the tsunami. He is angry with the America Embassy in Bangkok that did nothing for American survivors while watching the European countries come to the immediate aid and assistance of their citizens.

A month before he departed for Thailand, the USF Alumni Association honored Aruffo with the Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award for his dedication to USF and the world community. He showed true dedication to the world community with his volunteer tsunami service and has demonstrated that he was, indeed, worthy of such an award. Now he is a socially withdrawn with major illnesses and just trying to financially survive back in the expensive USA.

There are probably other stories like this one. Survivors and volunteers of the tsunami are scattered all over the world. Many suffering for their service to humanity - each wondering when the nightmares and the illnesses will end - wondering when the smell of death will get out of their noses - each surviving in their own way. They are the forgotten and ignored victims of the tsunami. Proud to have helped in such a noble cause but now suffering in their own dreams and in pain. They were there when others needed help now they have none when they need help.

Posted by: Henry aruffo on April 25, 2007 11:56 AM

As a Red Cross "volunteer", I am trying my best not to be fed up with the degrading attitude of national officials toward volunteers. They treat us like the lowest of the lowest paid illegal alien. The Logistics group appears to be among the worst, especially their tech group. Don't even bother to try with them. You will get pooped on anyway.

Posted by: red on May 3, 2007 07:15 PM

When you donate, you have NO IDEA where your money is actually going. They have cut services to nil, run there organization on the backs of their good hearted volunteers while they attend functions for photo-ops. Now I understand they are running out of money in the midwest.

They need to be investigated. They have been recently hacked, they have terrible systems for accounting for money (your money)and they answer to no one. This organization has long since lost its true purpose. It needs to be made accountable. They are not what you think they are.

Posted by: Janet on June 18, 2008 02:55 PM

i just found this site today, wish i would have 3 years ago.after a couple days after hurricane katrina our city had no power, no stores were open, no way to get any thing. i was told the red cross was set up in a parking lot so we went ther with my neighbor. my neighbor could not stay in her house because she had afew trees go through it. well the red cross told us we could have our choice between a banana or a apple and thats all they could help with. so then we went to the local red cross office they had alot of things stacked up every where, we saw alot of baby items and asked if my neighbor could have some diapers and baby nessities for her baby. THEY TOLD US NO. we told them what happened to her house and they knew their was no way to get theese things since no stores were open. they said sorry theese things are already accounted for.they are heartless jerks

Posted by: cindy on September 12, 2008 06:35 PM

I constantly hated the red cross... today for a school event, i went to help out and woke up as early at 6am in the morning and end up all tired in 12.30pm in the noon, not only that they didnt thank me for the help and instead give me attitude and somehow fined me...
All i can say is that red cross are the most pathetic dung i ever seen...

Posted by: Jackson on January 10, 2009 01:00 AM

yes...really bites the big one!!! :(

Posted by: suprmommy3 on February 10, 2009 08:37 PM

When I worked for the red cross in Australia, every week they would dump hundreds of books, they had no room for.
My friend took them to the local libary, and they were very happy to receive them, instead of seeing them dumped.
When he told the red cross, he was fired on the spot.
He was told, we give nothing to anyone.
Also the red cross fly militia to Australia to betrained by our army, see East Timor.

Posted by: mark on December 5, 2010 07:54 PM

Whenever they go to a disaster zone they do the work but start asking for donations immediately like they have not enough

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