Our world is very diverse. It has paradise corners: the great Alps, the relaxed Bahamas, and all kinds of Bali – everyone can find a paradise to their liking. But there is also a real hell, created exclusively by human hands. Some local circles of hell on earth will be discussed.
Kidney village in Nepal
A small and impoverished mountainous country, Nepal is famous in narrow circles of extreme tourism lovers. The country is so poor that the sale of postage stamps is one of the most significant sources of revenue for the budget. Most of the inhabitants are Hindu, and India’s historical and physical proximity has given rise to a similar caste system. Almost 10% of Nepalese are of the untouchable caste. Deprived of the opportunity to work and receive education, these people attracted the attention of illegal organ dealers.
There are entire villages in Nepal where the main activity is growing buds. Human kidney. Someone sells their organs deliberately because they see no other way to change their lives. Others take similar measures out of ignorance. Illegal traders take advantage of the illiteracy of the population, assuring that the cutout kidney will soon grow back, and there are two kidneys – one, in any case, will remain. Those who are more intelligent can get $ 500 and sometimes $ 1000 for a kidney – unthinkable money for Nepal. But most of the victims (namely, the victims of the regime and the caste system) sell organs for a penny, exchange them for a few sheep or a new bed.
Gold mines of the Philippines
The island state of the Philippines is one of the most amazing places on the planet. More than 100 million people live on 7,000 islands; the country is named after King Philip II of Spain, whose colony was until 1898. Then, for another 50 years, the Philippines belonged to the United States, and today the islands are famous for their president Duterte, who declared war on drugs.
A couple of weeks after the declaration of war, several thousand hucksters and ordinary consumers were liquidated, another half a million surrendered or went to cooperate with the police.
Drugs are not the only problem in the Philippines. Despite their relative prosperity, some regions are plunged into poverty and “plunged” – literally. People living in remote areas are forced to mine gold to feed themselves somehow. It looks like this: a narrow well 15–20 meters deep is dug – and the seekers dive into it. From the equipment – a mask and a rubber hose through which air is pumped from above, manually. 6-8 hours underwater is a typical working day for such a diver, for which he earns a few pesos.
This money is enough for food to continue looking tomorrow. If the rubber hose is damaged, the diver will die; if the air is pumped not intensively enough, the diver may die; if the mine becomes too deep and twisted, the diver can become entangled and die. Prolonged exposure to cold water without a wetsuit itself can be fatal. This gold is called “Dead Gold of the Philippines.”
City of scavengers in Egypt
Egypt has an ancient history, a majestic Sphinx, and mysterious pyramids, one of the cradles of human civilization. But Egypt is very different: one is tourist, with chic hotels and fashionable boutiques, the other is every day, with its rhythm of life, business districts, and industrial zones. There is also a third Egypt, in which a separate caste of Zabbaleens lives – they are practically like the untouchables in India.
Manshiyat Naser is the outskirts of Cairo, also known as the City of Scavengers. This is not just a dirty suburb, but a whole system, a way of life that 40 thousand people live on. In 1969, the city government of Cairo ordered all garbage collectors to be concentrated in one place. These people are singled out in a special social group, or caste – “Zebbaleens.” Scavengers collect, sort, and dispose of waste. Recyclable materials that can be sold are stored directly in homes; food waste goes to feed the pigs, and what cannot be sold or disposed of is burned on site. One can imagine the aromas and general flavor in Manshiyat-Naser.
Zabbaleens’ clothes are always dirty and thoroughly saturated with the spirit of a landfill. Because of life in constant unsanitary conditions, the very concept of “disease” loses its meaning. After all, it becomes something integral; it becomes a part of the way of life.
Echoes of the war in Cambodia
The once-mighty Cambujadesh, with its center in majestic Angkor, occupied the territories of present-day Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia. Gradually, the power evaporated, and the former empire turned into a colony of France. Then there was the Japanese occupation, then – the bombing of the United States, finally – the civil war and the years of the Pol Pot dictatorship.
During the civil war, the Cambodian intelligentsia was almost destroyed; a man with glasses was considered an enemy because glasses are evidence of his erudition, which means that the “virus of bourgeois knowledge strikes him.” Such people cannot be built into the new system and therefore should be destroyed – this is how the leadership of the Khmer Rouge reasoned. In total, up to 1/5 of the population was destroyed.
Today, Cambodia is Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville and the most mined country in the world. Over the years of wars and conflicts, several million mines were left scattered across the country. They are all waiting in the wings. Every year more than 1,000 people find these “gifts,” exchanging them for their own lives and limbs.
The digital concentration camp in Xinjiang
Xinjiang is the largest region in China, with one of the largest deserts in the world, Taklamakan. The Great Silk Road passed here, the Uighur people live here, who profess Islam and are ethnically closer to the Turks than to the Han people (80% of the population of the Celestial Empire).
China is the first country to bring the dystopian scenario to life. At the moment, however, only in one Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. “Total control” are two words that fully describe the state of affairs in the region. Every 20-30 km, checkpoints are on deserted highways, “bunches” of security cameras at every kilometer. Cameras can recognize the car number and the driver’s face. There are several million surveillance cameras on the streets of Xinjiang cities.
According to the local police, they only need 7 minutes to find any person. Huge and completely uncomfortable retraining centers have been created, especially for the Uyghurs. China is actively fighting Islam, prohibiting the reading of the Koran and any other attributes. Children should not be given Arabic names, and men should not have long beards.
Artificial intelligence has been introduced into the security system of Xinjiang, which divides society into “safe,” “normal,” and “dangerous” citizens. The assessment is based on factors – from age and gender to religion and criminal record. Once on the list of “dangerous,” a person loses the opportunity to use public transport, get a normal job and even make purchases in supermarkets. In the event of any incident, he will first of all be interrogated. To obtain a passport in Xinjiang, you must take DNA samples; any internal telephone conversations are tapped, and calls abroad are a pretext for interrogation and downgrading.