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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

In The News:
Earthquake in Haiti Topples the City and Kills Many

I know this is a bit late, but it took me awhile to sift through all the available news and information.

Video from

There is a lot of news to wade through relating to the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that rocked the country of Haiti shortly at 4:53 p.m. yesterday.  Details about the worst earthquake ever to hit Haiti are still filtering in, but worst case scenarios are predicting the possibility of thousands dead.  The country is devastated and widespread structural damage is evident including severe damage to the country's power grid.  CNN spoke to people in the region:
Mike Godfrey, an American contractor working for the U.S. Agency for International Development, said "a huge plume of dust and smoke rose up over the city" within minutes of the quake -- "a blanket that completely covered the city and obscured it for about 20 minutes." (read the full article)
Worldwide support is swelling for Haiti amidst this travesty.  The Associate Press is reporting that the US and many other countries are offering assistance including mobilizing aid efforts, search teams and supplies.  Additionally, the international Red Cross and other aid organizations are already hard at work coordinating relief efforts.

"Haiti has moved to center of the world's thoughts and the world's compassion," said British Prime Minister Gordon Brown...

President Barack Obama offered prayers for the people of Haiti and said the U.S. stood ready to help. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the U.S. was offering full assistance - civilian and military - and a national organization of registered nurses called for nurse volunteers to provide care in Haiti.

Elizabeth Byrs, a spokeswoman for the U.N.'s humanitarian office, said it was working with independent aid agency Telecoms Sans Frontieres to get phone lines working again - a key element in organizing relief efforts.

Venezuela's government said it would send a military plane with canned foods, medicine and drinking water and provide 50 rescue workers. Mexico, which suffered an earthquake in 1985 that killed some 10,000 people, planned to send doctors, search and rescue dogs and infrastructure damage experts.

Italy said it was sending a C-130 cargo plane Wednesday with a field hospital and emergency medical personnel as well as a team to assess aid needs. France said 65 clearing specialists, with six sniffer dogs, and two doctors and two nurses were leaving.(read the full story)
As Haitian Americans brace themselves more bad news, heart-wrenching pictures of the devastation are beginning to surface.  Pleas for aid are being made by high profile personalities including Wyclef Jean (one of Haiti's most ardent supporters), exiled former Haitian president Jean Bertrand Aristide, and Pope Benedict XVI.   Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have also pledged their support.

Some of the most hard to accept news relating to this earthquake incident is that some experts were expecting it.  An October 2008 article on discussed the very real possibility of a hard hitting earthquake in Haiti's capital Port au Prince.  

This morning  first donations commitments were made.  The Inter-American Development Bank announced a donation of $200,000 and the American Jewish World Service announced that it is collecting donations to aid the country.  The Red Cross has also released $200,000 in aid for affected communities in Haiti.  Please be reminded, if you would like to make a donation or volunteer, please do so through a legitimate aid agency such as the American Red Cross.

Supporting those in need IS Activism.
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