I just opened my email this morning to find this quote in the Global Development Briefinf Newsletter:
"It's either some colossal cluelessness or remarkable indifference to that reality that would somehow try to equate raising one's hand with a diamond on it as a promotional counter-measure to the effect of the film."
-- Edward Zwick, director of Hollywood film Blood Diamond, attacking a campaign to get film stars to display gems at awards events. The US diamond industry is donating USD 10,000 to African charities for each star raising a hand with a ring at events including the Oscars. Zwick, whose Africa-set film highlights the issue of illegal diamond profits funding wars, called the move a "charitable bribe" and "distasteful." The World Diamond Council (WDC) said so-called "blood diamonds" made up less than 1 percent of new diamonds, compared with 4 percent in the late 1990s. Conflict diamonds have been linked to armed struggles in Sierra Leone, Liberia, the DRC (Congo) and the Central African Republic.