Our intent in setting up this blog was to focus mainly on political issues. However, there are natural disasters that are so enormous in their devastating effect that they are impossible to ignore.
The day after Christmas one of the largest earthquakes the planet has ever experienced (the 4th largest since we started measuring and recording them) hit the sea floor west of the island of Sumatra in Indonesia. The quake spawned a series of tsunami that traveled at hundreds of miles per hour across the Indian ocean devastating the cost lines of countries from Indonesia and Thailand to India and Sri Lanka to Somalia and Kenya! Sri Lanka appears to be the worst hit. The current death count is over 21 thousand but many of the worst hit areas still are out of contact with the outside world. Also, the waves roll in, destroy everything and then suck it all out to sea so many victims will never be recovered. In countries without good census data, the true death toll may never be known. Over a million people are known to be homeless so far. There are entire islands in the Maldives that have been completely out of communication since the tsunami struck.
Destruction on this scale MUST have a political effect in the countries involved. These are some of the poorest parts of some very poor countries. Regional economies have literally been swept away. Some of the worst hit areas of Sri Lanka are not under government control but are under the control of the infamous Tamil Tiger terrorist group. This will likely disrupt efforts to determine the extent of the damage and deliver aid.
The truly sad part is that Americans will likely never hear of this event again after a few days. Consider the American reaction to 9/11 in which 3,000 people died. That relatively minor event sparked years of paranoia, political debate, nationalism, war and a surge in religious fundamentalism.
Monday, December 27, 2004
Posted by Raised By Republicans at 5:56 AM