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Posts tagged: Haiti

How far can we go?

Good morning, Netizens…

Two days in and we are just now learning of the massive damage caused by the Chilean earthquake and tsunami waves. We should not be surprised given the similar damages in Port au Prince, Haiti, but the damages caused by the tsunami were more massive than we were originally told. It has taken that long for word to get out.

Photo: A local circus that was destroyed by the tsunami waves generated by a major earthquake is seen in the coastal town of Iloca, Chile on March 1, 2010.

REUTERS/Eliseo Fernandez

What makes this unique is that only days before the 8.8 earthquake hit, Chilean rescue workers were in Haiti, still helping clean up the damages there. Although mention of this has been made in several news wires, no one has mentioned whether Haiti rescue workers have returned the favor.

This brings to mind the question if we had a major disaster of this scope in the United States, would the nations of South America likewise render aid to us?

Another question is since the United States is currently deployed in Haiti rendering aid, and it appears that American aid is being sought by Chile, what would our nation do if yet another massive disaster struck in another country? Just how deep are our pockets?


Choose your disaster…

Good morning, Netizens…

A 6.1 aftershock has hit Haiti this morning, sending people screaming into the streets and endangering those rescue workers attempting to retrieve the dead and injured from beneath the rubble. At the present, there are no official reports of damage or reports of additional injuries from the region.

Have you ever been in a 6.1 earthquake? Since you’re reading this question, you obviously survived. Now imagine you are a rescue worker in Haiti working in the semi-dark perhaps 60-80 feet beneath the rubble attempting to reach a woman who is still alive. Suddenly the aftershock hits. Things begin falling around you in your makeshift tunnel, and you wonder if you will survive to rescue anyone else. A building, already in ruins across the street, disintegrates even further. Somewhere in a park where people are living in squalid tent cities, a baby cries. Disasters atop disasters.

Then we have Big Tajunga Canyon in Los Angeles where the hillsides burned last year. Yesterday they had drenching downpours, which usually preclude mudslides. Today an additional rainfall is predicted, and some sources suggest it could total another 5 inches. Evacuations have been ordered, and it seems only a matter of time before the mudslides cascade down the mountain destroying houses, impacting people’s lives.

Incredibly enough, they even had a tornado in Huntington Beach during yesterday’s storm.

Here in Spokane, we are so fortunate, and sometimes even during multiple disasters, we fail to see that.


The before and after of Haiti…

Good morning, Netizens…

Cartoonist David Horsey has never been particularly shy about speaking what he believes is the truth, and in this cartoon, he has illustrated the before and after of Haiti with exquisite anguish. Haiti was poor, empoverished, before the quake, and with most of its infrastructure in ruins, its leaders disorganized and people dying in the rubble, the abject misery of Haiti is little more than pitiful hands reaching upward toward the sky pleading for help.

People around the world, to their credit, have already begun a massive rescue effort, with ships and planes arriving as quickly as limited infrastructure can handle them. Still, there is not enough space to store the food, medical supplies and drinking water. The streets are littered with dead bodies, and more bodies buried beneath tons of rubble. People are still digging with their bare hands and raw implements, looking for loved ones in the tropical heat.

One cannot begin to assess the scope of the disaster. All we can do is wipe the tears of sorrow and compassion from our collective eyes and reach down beyond our reality and simply pray for Haiti.

Haiti was poor before the quake, and will remain poor for the foreseeable future. All we can do is reach out our collective hands and uplift those who had so little to begin with.


Quake devastates Haiti capital…

Good morning, Netizens…

[Photo Credit] The Haitian presidential palace stands in ruins in Port-au-Prince after a huge earthquake measuring 7.0 rocked the impoverished Caribbean nation.

(AFP/Lisandro Suero)

The entire world waits breathlessly for news from Port au Prince, Haiti this morning after yesterday afternoon’s 7.0 magnitude earthquake that left the capital city in shambles with most of its infrastructure laying among the rubble. After several hurricanes had already severely damaged the island, this monster of an earthquake has simply left an unknown number of dead and injured, while rescue efforts are underway to pull the dead and injured from beneath the rubble.

However, it is dark right now in Haiti, thus complicating rescue efforts. In most of the area there are no telephones, no cell service and power is out throughout the area. At least one of the area hospitals has collapsed and there preliminary reports of people screaming from beneath the rubble.

The United States has mustered a massive rescue effort, but they, too, are awaiting daylight before entering the disaster zone. The few pictures of the aftermath of the quake in the words of one seismologist familiar with the area is one of “death and mayhem”.

As always seems the case, whenever disaster strikes anywhere around the world, US-led efforts are underway. However, even they are waiting for daylight to see how badly things stand. Even our few pictures and images of Haiti all seem to be awaiting daylight.

For now, all we can do is await daylight and then perhaps the prayers for the dead.


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