On the one hand, you have lifestyle activists and human rights campaigners who restrict their activities to the path of least resistence against Western Government and security force agencies and whose tough moral decisions include whether or not to accept massive donations from Gaddafi fils (they – and by that I mean, Shami Chakrabati – do, but manage to forgive themselves).
Or, when the step outside their comfort zone, they – and, by that I mean, the Fools Crusade, Viva Palestina – are sure to do so under the protective gaze of Syrian Baathist forces.
On the other hand, there are aid workers to the such countries as these activists cavil about. Andi Parhamovich or Gayle Williams or World Vision workers in Pakistan or Karen Woo and colleagues at the International Assistance Mission or Linda Norgrove or Khalil Dale to name but six. They work quietly and unceremoniously in zones where the threat of lethal violence against them is – as can be seen – intense, with or without lifestyle activists securing asylum for those who would direct this violence, such as Abid Nasser and Ahmad Faraz Khan.
Into the second more worthy group now come Medair workers, Helen Johnson from Britain and Moragwe Oirere from Kenya who, along with Afghan colleagues, were abducted in the same area of Afghanistan in which Karen Woo and her colleagues were murdered. This time, however, after some minor difficulties in reaching the cave in which they were being held hostage, the Gentlemen of Hereford managed to effect their release.
Johnson (shown above, on her arrival in Kabul) is reported to have said simply “thank you for saving me”.