Sunday, October 09, 2005

I JUST CHECKED the news again on the earthquake, and I almost fell out of my chair. AP says more than18,000 people were killed in the three countries affected.

I don't even know what to say. The scale of this is beyond imagining. And for Afghanistan especially, it's just unbelievable. That country has been torn apart by war for 25 years, and now this? When I start to let myself think about the chaos that country is in since the U.S. invaded, and how the Bush administration is certainly going to continue the military offensives and the killing and the bloodshed, I get so upset it's hard to be articulate. I wish that, as Americans, we could at least count on our government to use one of the few ways we have control over to mitigate the suffering. I don't know how Bush is going to justify continuing to arrest and torture local farmers, or how he's going to explain it when American troops continue to drop bombs and raid villages and forcibly search private homes and kill innocent civilians when Afghans are suffering the way they are now.

Obviously I feel just as horrified about the victims in Pakistan and India. In fact, I think most of the casualties are in Pakistan. It's just that when I think about Afghanistan, the fact that the U.S. is at war with that country, and now there's been this earthquake on top of that -- it just boggles my mind.

Can our government possibly do something life-affirming instead of life-destroying in the wake of this disaster?

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