Tuesday, January 19, 2010


I was away on business all last week and was not going to way in on the disaster in Haiti (or as it seems to be called in the great white north, High-Tie, I swear I can't make this stuff up). As I watch the scenario unfold in front of me like a bad TV miniseries, I cannot help but think how bad things truly are on the ground. I know from personal experience that the news media will exaggerate and sensationalize anything to get better ratings. They also report the truth from a very narrow perspective, this is why I wanted to avoid posting on this subject.

The title of the Fox News story: U.S. Troops Land in Haiti as Thousands Flee Capital for Safety, makes it sound as if the capitol has turned into something out of a Mad Max movie with looters and motorcycle gangs roaming the streets.
People in one hillside Port-au-Prince district blocked off access to their street with cars and asked local young men to patrol for looters.
It has gotten to the point where people are taking care of themselves, their neighbors and their loved ones. To my mind, this is the way things should be, numbers protect you from looters, and the other nasty crimes that seem to follow these disasters around.
Violence added to complications in places. Medical relief workers said they were treating gunshot wounds in addition to broken bones and other quake-related injuries. Nighttime was especially perilous and locals were forming night brigades and machete-armed mobs to fight bandits across the capital.

"It gets too dangerous," said Remi Rollin, an armed private security guard hired by a shopkeeper to ward off looters. "After sunset, police shoot on sight."

In the sprawling Cite Soleil slum, gangsters are reassuming control after escaping from the city's notorious main penitentiary and police urge citizens to take justice into their own hands

These times truly do bring out the best, and worst in people. Some take responsibility for themselves and their loved ones, others give up and wait for help to arrive, becoming part of the problem instead of the solution.
The port remains blocked. Distribution of food, water and supplies from the city's lone airport to the needy are increasing but still remained a work in progress, frustrating many survivors who sleep in the streets and outdoor camps of tens of thousands.
Pockets of looting and violence also are hindering a slow improvement in getting aid to victims

Obviously the system that is in place is only margainaly effective. Is there a solution? At this point, there aren't many good ones, aid has to be sent as quickly as possible, and the good people must police themselves to insure that they can hold out until that aid arrives.
This says nothing of the rescue efforts that are still ongoing. There people buried under the rubble that may still be alive, and we should continue to look for them until no hope of survivors exists. We did the same thing after the twin towers collapsed and we should do the same here. Teams from all over the world have arrived to help search for survivors, together, they all hope to make a difference.

Our soldiers are currently on the ground, helping the people and attempting to restore order, my only hope is that there rules of engagement are not so strict that they are powerless.

All images came from yahoo and can be found here. Go look, there is alot of them.

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