The Earthquake in Sumatra was initially a very personal problem, my Uncle and his family live on Sumatra and I thought for over 24 hours that I might have lost almost 1/2 my family with one stroke. Fortunately they were on the other side of the island and were not harmed, obviously my personal feelings of relief are tempered by seeing the devastation and the deaths of many others who are all members of families even if not mine. It is heart-wrenching to see the pictures, so far away and yet still part of us. I am also saddened that whilst the Western coalition can drop megaton bombs on countries around the world the urgency to get aid to people after disasters seems not to be so prevalent. i am angry that Britain a wealthy country had only pledged £15 million (later increased to £50 million after it was announced that the British public had raised £25 million in a matter of days), I am also disgusted that the United States the wealthiest country in the world is sending an derisory £18 million and seems more intent on ‘organising a coalition’ to sort things rather than just getting on with it. Perhaps the South East Asians may have reason to fear US-led coalitions based on recent operations, a case of “timeo Danaos et dona ferentes” substituting Danaos with a Latin equivalent of Americans whatever that may be.

If you are searching for or have lost family in the earthquake or subsequent tsunami you have my deepest sympathies.

So that was 2004 eh, hmmm, rather turbulent emotions on that one too. It wasn’t as bad as 2003 and personally I think many of the foundations have been laid for the future but not without a lot of work and a fair amount of soul-searching. I hope everyone who stops by here will have a happy 2005.

Song Of The Day – Sneaker Pimps – Post Modern Sleaze

Original Comments:

Pimme made this comment,
I’m glad to hear that your relatives are safe. There’s nothing scarier than fearing that someone is dead!
It’s also worth mentioning that wild animals seemed to have escaped mass destruction due to their instinctual behavior. I was very worried about the Sumatran tiger population, which is highly endangered anyway.

Bush should donate his inauguration money to the cause, and have a quiet party like my last birthday was. (yeah, right–sweet dreams)!

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comment added :: 31st December 2004, 04:35 GMT+01
Lynne made this comment,
I’m lost for words on the tsunami thing. 😦
Let’s hope ’05’s a better year all round. I dunno about anyone else, but I could have done without the last four months of this year.

Ta for being a mate, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed our… (cough) interactions RB! Here’s to more of ’em, I say!

All the best to you and yours.

RG, Tribe & Menagerie

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comment added :: 31st December 2004, 13:21 GMT+01
A visitor made this comment,
£18,000,000 from the US government. If only they would put just 10% of what they spend on ‘saving’ the people of Iraq into helping the victims of this disaster. No oil ! No chance !

comment added :: 31st December 2004, 17:06 GMT+01
A visitor made this comment,
Good news on your family. A rough December for you, my dear. I like the idea of spending inauguration money on aid from Pimme. He’d be a mensch to do it. Which is why he won’t.
Happy New Year, Baron.


comment added :: 31st December 2004, 17:56 GMT+01
moog made this comment,
im so glad that you had tht good news about your family!! phew! my friends still have not heard about their loved ones.
i hope you have a better 2005 my friend! U2 could be on the cards! 🙂
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comment added :: 31st December 2004, 19:02 GMT+01
A visitor made this comment,
so glad your relatives are okay. it’s been horrible watching the news channel and seeing the state the tsunami has left some of the asian countries in. but like another cynical blogger said, these people will need help for much longer than the next couple of months. but the moment the next breaking story comes on, everyone would have forgotten about the tsumani, and we’ll be least bothered (as will our governments).
i hate the way its being covered in the news, by the way – a lot of the news sites say things like 110,000 people killed and then the box story is “british family feared to be wiped out”. the value placed on an american life, or a british life seems to be much more than that on the asians.

anyway, on a lighter note – i hope this new year brings you a lot of happiness, my twin.

sending you lots of love and hugs.


comment added :: 1st January 2005, 21:59 GMT+01
Rachel made this comment,
I’m glad your family remained unharmed! I can’t imagine believing that someone could be dead and not knowing for a while.
At the farm, we’re told that if there was ever a storm bad enough where the barn could be destroyed, by simply opening the paddocks, we could save them rather then trying to get them somewhere else, because of their instincts. They’d probably make out better then us in a natural disaster.

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comment added :: 2nd January 2005, 02:33 GMT+01
Jen Tate made this comment,
I know how you feel. We’re still waiting to hear from some of our relatives.
[Redbaron Responds – I sincerely hope the news is both good and quick in coming.]

comment added :: 3rd January 2005, 13:55 GMT+01
Diogenes made this comment,
I guess another side to this disaster is the way that poverty (especially lack of infrastructure) is going to make things worse in the coming weeks. There’s a push to get the Australian govt to set up camps for people here until the area gets back on its feet, but I can’t see that happening. But criticisms aside, our thoughts should be with the families of those dead and missing.
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comment added :: 4th January 2005, 08:07 GMT+01