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September 3, 2004 9:40 PM   Subscribe

200 dead. In a time when terrorism is a major political platform and given that this event has had a bigger death toll than any other major terror activity since September 11, why is this not bigger news?
posted by dig_duggler (72 comments total)

 
how small a news is it?
posted by quonsar at 9:42 PM on September 3, 2004


I'd also like to point out that of the major 'mainstream' online news sources (cnn.com, foxnews.com, etc) the liberal New York Times that mefi users love/hate is the only one that I have found that has this as a lead story.
posted by dig_duggler at 9:43 PM on September 3, 2004


Fox is not a news source.
posted by ook at 9:45 PM on September 3, 2004


It's not bigger news because there's no way to scare Americans with the news. With no fear factor, it has no manipulation value.
posted by fleener at 9:46 PM on September 3, 2004


Furthermore, all indications are that this is al Qaeda related.
posted by dig_duggler at 9:48 PM on September 3, 2004


It's the front page of the Ny Times... it's been the top story on Google news for the last few days...
posted by xammerboy at 9:56 PM on September 3, 2004


Furthermore, all indications are that this is al Qaeda related.

Really? What indications? Everything I've seen says it's rebels from the area.
posted by mathowie at 9:59 PM on September 3, 2004


I had MSNBC on most of the day and, while the story was covered, it was definitely third (and then fourth) behind Bush and Hurricane Frances (the latter being understandable) and later Clinton's heart problems. I don't understand it, either; this is a horrendous tragedy on a near-September 11th scale that should put some level of fear and, even more importantly, human empathy into all of our hearts.
posted by elvolio at 10:02 PM on September 3, 2004


It led the evening news of a couple of the US "Big Three" networks. And now it's soon to be accused of being a newsfilter here. What more can you want.
Matt, a number of news sources are starting to mention an al Q connection. I haven't read the details, if there are any, that might verify the claim.
In thinking it over, it *is* odd is that the combination of terrorist events in Russia the past couple of weeks isn't being discussed even more. Let's see if the ADD-prone US media follows up on it, or if the more exciting and sexy hurricane season in Florida gets dibs.
posted by NorthernLite at 10:06 PM on September 3, 2004


What this highlights is how useless it is to lump all "terrorism" into a single category, and declare war on it. Chechen rebels have little in common with al Quaeda; Palestinian suicide bombers don't have any overlap with Aum Shinryko, or Basque separatists, or Contras or starbellied sneetches or whoever the next group of angry people is going to be, and whoever they're going to pick their beef with.

These groups all have completely different reasons why they're doing what they do. They each have completely different targets. And the way to peace in each case -- if there is one -- is going to be completely different. All these groups share is tactics, and even that only to a small degree.

Lumping the whole thing into one big boogeyman (and [on preview] knee-jerk labeling every event as an al Quaeda action) is counterproductive at best, dangerous at worst.
posted by ook at 10:14 PM on September 3, 2004


It made headlines here in Seattle the other day; maybe it's just that newspapers are loathe to repeat a story. More recently the RNC was occupying the front page.
posted by hattifattener at 10:15 PM on September 3, 2004


Mathowie, I've heard that 10 of the terrorists were Arab with ties to Al Qaeda as well. Controlled by a Chechen warlord and funded by Al Qaeda.

And this was the lead news item out here, ahead of Hurricane Frances.

It was, by all accounts, incredibly brutal. I read that the terrorists allowed 12 women to select one of their children to take with them when they were let go, leaving their other kids behind to a very uncertain fate. One man interviewed said he was kept in the same spot for three days and not allowed to go to the bathroom, he also shared the spot with three other people.

The conditions were awful, the terrorists were murdering bastards and I'm just glad they got three of them alive.
posted by fenriq at 10:16 PM on September 3, 2004


Let me rephrase, as I overstated. There are indications from most news sources that this is al Qaeda related.

Also, I realize that this is in headlines. But given that terrorism is such a major concern in the U.S., this should be THE lead story.
posted by dig_duggler at 10:19 PM on September 3, 2004


why is this not bigger news?

It didn't involve Americans.
posted by clevershark at 10:19 PM on September 3, 2004


B -B-B-but our president got rid of Al Queda! Weren't they hiding in a spider hole or something?
posted by ColdChef at 10:30 PM on September 3, 2004


I take it you just mean in America, cause it's been pretty big news here in the UK. All the news channels were running it pretty much constantly as the main story yesterday (haven't turned on the telly this morning, yet).
posted by digiboy at 10:35 PM on September 3, 2004


I take it you just mean in America, cause it's been pretty big news here in the UK. All the news channels were running it pretty much constantly as the main story yesterday (haven't turned on the telly this morning, yet).


It's just U.S. then.
posted by dig_duggler at 10:42 PM on September 3, 2004


Because the Bush Administration has been actively ignoring the entire Chechnya situation in return for Russia actively ignoring the enitre Iraq situation?
posted by falconred at 11:00 PM on September 3, 2004


FWIW it was the main thing I remember hearing on the radio (NPR) when I woke up (6a PT) - journos on sat phones describing children's corpses under sheets as bombs and gunfire echoed in the background.

The horrible mind picture stayed with me all day at work, so as far as I was concerned, it was big news.
posted by mwhybark at 11:04 PM on September 3, 2004


FWIW, it was (is) the lead story in Australia.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 11:07 PM on September 3, 2004


...
posted by dhoyt at 11:08 PM on September 3, 2004


Here in Utah, the school hostage story was front page news, with a large photo of a russian police officer carefully carrying out a baby.

The convention got some coverage too, but this story was clearly the focus.
posted by weston at 11:13 PM on September 3, 2004


Checking in here from L.A. to say that this was the very first thing I heard on the radio (NPR) this morning (and promptly started crying), and have heard regular radio updates for the past several days. It's vied for the lead coverage with two other major stories (the convention and the hurricane); yesterday I even heard a reasonably in-depth discussion of the history of the situation in Chechnya that lasted about a half hour on the radio. When was the last time that happened? Certainly not even during the theatre siege, to my recollection. Hell, my coworkers and family have been talking about it since the day it began. Maybe it's being treated as second-tier news in some parts of the states, but I just don't get this notion that it's being downplayed across the board. It is big news here.
posted by scody at 11:15 PM on September 3, 2004


Analysis: Is Al-Qaeda Operating Inside Russia? which isn't about this incident, but this is, Washington Times: Death toll in Russia exceeds 200 which says "Valery Andreyev, Russia's Federal Security Service chief in the region, said 10 Arabs were among 27 militants who were killed. The Itar-Tass news agency, citing unidentified security sources, reported the hostage taking was the work of Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev, who had al Qaeda backing."

The video looks awful, it was, by every account, truly a horrific situation. And yeah, the coverage out here is pretty good which has made my evening pretty bad.
posted by fenriq at 11:24 PM on September 3, 2004


The story has been all over the national US news since the hostages were first taken. It was also posted to MeFi yesterday, and discussed at length. Pictures and interviews have appeared on all the many national news sources most of us scour daily.

I realize it's fashionable to pretend the US media does not give proper coverage to international events, but in cases like this our coverage seems no more or less myopic than any other. Love the conspiratorial tone of the post, though.

Another item deserving of coverage: "Levels of hypochondria and contrarianism reach record peak on planet MetaFilter." Film at 11.
posted by dhoyt at 11:25 PM on September 3, 2004


I guess I didn't notice it wasn't big news. I get BBC World Service overnight (and am up late) so this has had my attention. Also, NPR has covered it quite in-depth.
posted by mortimer at 11:27 PM on September 3, 2004


Other than the hurricane, it's been the lead on most of the cable-news channels all day (and yesterday) each time that I've been watching. I don't think most major media outlets have been under-reporting it - but as far as the coverage, there were so many different accounts of how many held, how many killed, how many terrorists -- it wasn't until several hours ago that the "200 killed" figure began appearing, because until then, no one knew for sure.

And FWIW, most of the "brand-name bloggers" have been following the Russia story very closely, and soliciting donations for the victims, too.

ook:Fox is not a news source.
Nuts to you -- first of all, it is. Second of all, your statement does not make it true. Third, WOW! What a great contribution to this thread! (claps loudly)
posted by davidmsc at 11:28 PM on September 3, 2004


The story has been all over the national US news since the hostages were first taken. It was also posted to MeFi yesterday, and discussed at length. Pictures and interviews have appeared on all the many national news sources most of us scour daily.

I've seen this story everywhere I go for news online and off since it started. If you haven't, you're not looking.

/U.S. citizen
posted by Cyrano at 11:45 PM on September 3, 2004


I didn't realize it was so downplayed in the US... I use CNN as my default online news page, but I have it set to the international edition (link is on their homepage). it is and has been the top story there. I guess I need to remember that most americans don't take a proactive stance with their news gathering.

and this situation, is as close to a living nightmare as I can imagine... a serious test of my liberal/humanitarian ideals.
posted by hulette at 11:47 PM on September 3, 2004


They hate our freedom, that's why they attacked the RNC.
posted by Kwantsar at 11:48 PM on September 3, 2004


a). NPR is a great newssource. However, it is not at all representative of any news presentation in this country.

b). September 11. I heard about that til, well, last week at the RNC. This shouldn't be (given the current climate that everyone is stressing here) 2nd story news. That is my whole point. MeFi as much as we would like to think is not representative of our country. Cnn etc. , of course it's gonna be a piece, they have 24 hours to fill.

F'ing ask a person on the street what they think of the atrocities in Russia. Better yet, ask them what they think of Russia's version of September 11'th. And then look at the blank f'ing stare.
posted by dig_duggler at 12:03 AM on September 4, 2004


So you've found a way to totally evade condemning extremists who murdered a school full of children, yet reserve plentiful criticism for a US media which did, in fact, cover the story in its entirety. I guess feigning outrage is a bonafide lifestyle-choice for some. Good luck with that. Keep it off the front page, though, would you?
posted by dhoyt at 12:25 AM on September 4, 2004


F'ing ask a person on the street what they think of the atrocities in Russia.

I didn't have to -- I overheard people on the street talking about it. I overheard people in the grocery store talking about it. I took my nephew to the farmer's market tonight for dessert, and the guy who served us was literally in tears about it. I heard it covered exhaustively on AM radio while driving over there. My sister and I had to turn off CNN for fear of the kids seeing the coverage (the oldest one starts school on Tuesday and is nervous enough about it already, so we'd sort of like to avoid giving him nightmares.)
So yeah, there's all sorts of shit wrong with the media in the U.S., and all sorts of shit wrong with the way millions of people here manage to avoid finding out about the world. But that's a different kettle of fish entirely from your demonstrably false assertion that this isn't being adequately covered by mainstream U.S. media.
posted by scody at 12:46 AM on September 4, 2004


Not a big story? It was the lead story on the Canadian National news, and not just the lead story but was covered in several segments; the whole first 10 minutes of the show was devoted to it.

Are you saying (I suppose you are) that it isn't on the American news to such an extent? Bizarre. And hard to believe.
posted by jokeefe at 1:07 AM on September 4, 2004


So you've found a way to totally evade condemning extremists who murdered a school full of children, yet reserve plentiful criticism for a US media which did, in fact, cover the story in its entirety. I guess feigning outrage is a bonafide lifestyle-choice for some. Good luck with that. Keep it off the front page, though, would you?


I'm sorry. Discuss this freely. What motivated me to post was the overall horror of this that I felt was being neglected. I feign nothing and would never ever disrespect those who have suffered in this tragedy. I am mortified by the United States of America's lack of coverage and sympathy given the subject matter when we received so much after our suffering at the hands of terrorists. If we are covering this in 3 days (and I mean not a byline) get back to me about the entirety

For those from other countries go to www.cnn.com, or www.foxnews.com or any major news org here. You'll see what I mean.
posted by dig_duggler at 1:39 AM on September 4, 2004


Are you saying (I suppose you are) that it isn't on the American news to such an extent? Bizarre. And hard to believe.

As of about 1:45 a.m. PST, it is the top story on the following online editions of U.S. newspapers and outlets:

L.A. Times
New York Times
Washington Post
Wall Street Journal
Christian Science Monitor
Arizona Republic
Boston Globe
Dallas Morning News
ABC News
Associated Press

It is second only to Hurricane Frances on USA Today, and the top international story (below Frances) on the Miami Herald -- fair enough, frankly, given the size of the storm and the millions of people who are in its path. Other newspapers and outlets (such as CNN, the Chicago Tribune, the Rocky Mountain News, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and Reuters) list it prominently as their top international story as well. This was after CNN and the Tribune (and others too, probably) carried it as the top story all day (I know, because I was reading and watching CNN and reading the Trib today).

I have no doubt that it's not getting much billing in many local mid-sized and small markets (it's not even mentioned on the dreadful "St Louis Today" site that's replaced the old Post-Dispatch site, for example, and it's weirdly absent from the Philadelphia Inquirer). Local news is notoriously vapid, and FOX is notoriously biased and insular. Film, as they say, at 11.

I am mortified by the United States of America's lack of coverage
posted by scody at 2:07 AM on September 4, 2004


Damn, I hit post insteada preview. I meant to include a big, huge *sigh* after that last quote -- because in fact, it's the top or the second story on almost every major newspaper and news outlet in the United States as of right now, and yet there's still this bizarre insistence that it's just... not being covered here. Weird. And, as I said above, demonstrably false.
posted by scody at 2:11 AM on September 4, 2004


Also, for dhoyts sake, I take this time to condemn the extremists. I thought that would go w/out saying, but apparently not.

That's the kind of criticism w/out addressing the issue that is so popular nowadays.
posted by dig_duggler at 2:12 AM on September 4, 2004


Hate to intrude with facts, but....

The initial post claims "bigger death toll than any other major terror activity since September 11". I will now accuse the initial poster of what he claims is occurring in this story, and point out(duh!) that Bali had at least 200 dead also.

BTW, how ya been, stav?

Also,

ook:Fox is not a news source.
Nuts to you -- first of all, it is. Second of all, your statement does not make it true. Third, WOW! What a great contribution to this thread! (claps loudly)
posted by davidmsc at 1:28 AM CST on September 4


If I go to the Fox News website, and click on their main link to this story, it says;

"Friday, September 03, 2004
Associated Press
BESLAN, Russia"

which to me means that Fox News has no one reporting on the scene, or for that matter even in Russia.

AP is the news source in this specific example. Fox News is notorious for using other people's coverage to "source" their news product they sell. They don't have overseas bureaus, they have AP and Reuters and the internet. Save the money, if a story goes on long enough over there, they'll ship people to cover it, just like going to CO for Kobe, or Iraq for the war.

They don't need local experience to cover a story, especially when the news cycle moves so fast.

Now, I don't know if you need to apologize to ook, davidmsc, but you do have to admit that using this story, and the traditional definition of a news source, by no stretch of the imagination is Fox News a news source. It might be a news outlet(i.e. where some people read the news), but it is propogating other people's reporting from the scene, and contributing nothing of it's own to the story other than editorial desicions and outlets to eyeballs. A MeFi link to the AP story is functionally equivalent.

And the 191 dead on 3/11/2004 in Madrid is pretty close to the total(so far) in this attack, so bad on you 1.5 times original post.
posted by dglynn at 2:42 AM on September 4, 2004


BTW, how ya been, stav?

Been OK, mostly. Thank you for asking, friend.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:58 AM on September 4, 2004


320 and counting. And it looks like it will get a lot worse.

Blaming al Queda for this is sheer stupidity. In a semi Muslim provence of Russia, it's understandable if the current political climate has encouraged foreign Muslims to help their brothers fight, especially over a country that many consider to be Christian, despite their (officially) secular nature.

As far as I know, al Queda is anti American and anti America's allies. Hasn't Russia stayed out of the Iraq situation, and actively condemmed it? Attacking Russia would not be an intelligent move.
posted by twine42 at 4:16 AM on September 4, 2004


Crikey!


posted by uncanny hengeman at 4:33 AM on September 4, 2004


please don't post huge images in the middle of a thread
(especially when you're not hosting them yourself).
posted by jpoulos at 5:24 AM on September 4, 2004


You can view the front pages of newspapers around the world at the Newseum.
The Russian story is front page news in Iran, but in the lower half of the front page Bahrain and Malaysia.

New thought:
I have to wonder if I there was any other way of taking back the hostages. I can't image there was any way to negotiate this, and a body count was inevitable.

*picks up marbles and goes home*
posted by fluffycreature at 6:40 AM on September 4, 2004


it's the headline story in my local greensboro, nc paper this morning.
posted by glenwood at 7:04 AM on September 4, 2004


why is this not bigger news?

Oh no, you're wrong. I posted this in the other thread. And got some good replies from other mefi users.

It's funny. I was watching CNN last night and over the course of an hour they devoted about 15 minutes to an ex-President having a routine operation, about 20 minutes to a political convention that had finished nearly 24 hours before, and around two minutes to a seige that was still - at that time - going on.
posted by tapeguy at 7:10 AM on September 4, 2004


At least some are as astonished as I. I think some are misunderstanding that I'm not saying it's not being covered at all, but is not getting the coverage it deserves given the severity (and especially shocking to me given our country's disdain for terrorism).
posted by dig_duggler at 9:18 AM on September 4, 2004


It's top news by any measure -- online, tv, print. There's a lot going on from an American perspective -- a major storm in Florida, the end of the GOP convention, Clinton. On the NYT front page, though, Russia was THE lead story, two stories in fact. Of course, NYT has a correspondent in Russia; not all news orgs do.

Clinton is big news too -- in part because he was expected to be active on behalf of Kerry this fall. The day after a convention is the traditional day to assess how well the party did. At the moment, I see a news cycle that does not help Kerry much -- a popular ally in recuperation from surgery during the campaign, horrific barbarism by Al Qaeda connected terrorists in Russia (remember, they downed two planes there last week, too), and a week of lies and fearmongering that has essentially gone unchallenged. Interestingly, Kerry is on the NYT front page fighting back and Bush is nowhere to be seen, unusual if you think about it.

Of course, one wonders where people get news these days -- the networks are not as influential, and everyone is watching a different cable channel. I can't bear to turn on Fox, so perhaps someone could tell us what's leading the news there.
The Internet of course allows one to tailor the news to one's own whims, so I imagine there are people who think the top news of the week is Microsoft's response to iTunes.
posted by Slagman at 9:24 AM on September 4, 2004


I can't look at those pictures. It's hard to imagine the horror that Russians are going through today without comparing it to the WTC attacks. In that sense at least, we are all Russians today.
posted by faceonmars at 10:33 AM on September 4, 2004


Blaming al Queda for this is sheer stupidity. In a semi Muslim provence of Russia, it's understandable if the current political climate has encouraged foreign Muslims to help their brothers fight, especially over a country that many consider to be Christian, despite their (officially) secular nature...

As far as I know, al Queda is anti American and anti America's allies.


al Qaeda, however, may have become more an ideology and less an organization as it's been disrupted by war-on-terror activities. And part of that could as easily become anti-Russian imperialism as US or anti-French given the whole head-scarf hostage situation...
posted by weston at 10:45 AM on September 4, 2004


The Russian Embassy website is linking to this charity to
Help Beslan children. It is the same organization that handled contributions after the Nord-Ost Theater Siege.
posted by hulette at 10:48 AM on September 4, 2004


...all indications are that this is al Qaeda related.

Q: are non-US media reporting this as al-Qaeda related, or is it solely the US media that is making such a claim?

The answer may be revealing.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:59 AM on September 4, 2004


As of Sept. 4, A.M. the death toll is 322 - 155 of them children - with officials warning that it would rise still higher as workers searched the school's charred wreckage.

What I find upsetting is not the lack of news, but the inevitable blaming-the-victim-syndrome, already questioning how the Russians were wrong. Perhaps I am too simple of a person, but for me everything begins and ends on the individual human level. The cruelty of the attackers and the suffering of the victims is simply overwhelming and no political demagoguery, religious affiliation, or tribalism can justify it.
posted by semmi at 10:59 AM on September 4, 2004


What I find upsetting is not the lack of news, but the inevitable blaming-the-victim-syndrome, already questioning how the Russians were wrong.

Strictly speaking, no one is "blaming the victim" -- absolutely no one is blaming the murdered women and children of Beslan and their grieving families and neighbors for the unspeakable horror that's unfolded there. It is both natural and legitimate, however, to analyze the response by Russian security forces -- was the perimeter of the school, for example, properly cordoned off or not? Some reports indicate that this wasn't done, thus allowing some of the hostage-takers to flee the scene. Or why didn't Putin show up till after the siege turned chaotic, and only then in the middle of the night? Or how has his handling of the Chechen crisis contributed to the recent upsurge in terrorist acts?

Millions of people in Russia want to know the answer to such questions. They're not "blaming the victims" or "justifying the cruelty of the attackers" by asking.
posted by scody at 11:22 AM on September 4, 2004


Slightly to the sidelike, since when did people begin expecting news agencies to spoon feed them information; or more to the point of this post, enable personal outrage?

We call this the Information Age for a reason. Unless a story is deliberately being censored (almost worldwide), the news is out there, you just may have to look for it. That it doesn't feed the emotions you desire isn't the fault of news organisations and/or providers. Rather its thier fault when they do... (See FOX).
posted by Wulfgar! at 11:37 AM on September 4, 2004


the news is out there, you just may have to look for it.

Word. Half of people bitch about the slant of media coverage. The other half are apparently wondering when the media is going to come to their house and start turning the TV and radio on for them. I thought the "push" media idea already crapped out.
posted by yerfatma at 12:33 PM on September 4, 2004


It was front page news here in Fayettenam. Big photo spread of an injured child.


Any kind of ideology that would condone doing this to innocent children is straight from the pit of Hell.
posted by konolia at 12:35 PM on September 4, 2004


Um, just to add more noise, this story took up about 3/4 of the front page of the LA Times with a giant picture of Russian commandos helping one of their wounded guys get out of the way. Big 72 pt headline, "Russian Standoff Explodes." This has been front page for the past few days.

Clinton's heart surgery gets a picture and a single sentence in the "More Inside" box.

And this was in Keith Olbermann's Countdown last night on number 3 or 4, if I remember correctly.
posted by RakDaddy at 12:42 PM on September 4, 2004


come on, routine surgery for an ex-president, and a bad storm on the southern tip of our continent can hardly be considered in the same category as hundreds of children killed in a terrorist attack. It is obvious that Russia is far away from us both physically and mentally considering how this has been covered here. It is certainly covered, but it has certainly not permeated the cultural awareness the way other events have. Remember how coverage of the oklahoma city bombing felt? That was half as many victims, and only a handful of children involved (but remember what a big deal they made of the fact that any children were killed?) and it absolutely took over the press.

I'm not saying this is wrong - russia is far away, physically and mentally. But that is partly our choice, and is partly the result of how things are covered (there's a circular relationship to some degree)... I was in london a couple weeks ago, and viscerally the felt how much more international a city it is, and I would bet that the coverage of this feels different over there at the moment.
posted by mdn at 12:56 PM on September 4, 2004


I'm only saying this here because I can't think of a bettter place to do it.. the events in Beslan are horrendous, but don't forget that the people of Chechnya are suffering terribly day after day, just as they have been for years. Two wrongs don't make a right, obviously. Just remember that the news media has a tendency to focus on horrendous events that happen over a short space of time in a confined area.

And this has been huge news in the UK for days - Bush knocked it off the top for about five hours on Friday morning.
posted by ascullion at 1:13 PM on September 4, 2004


I was also surprised by the press coverage. Here in New York, it made front page of the Times and Newsday but was not the top article in either the Daily News or the NY Post (Clinton's heart attack was). Here's a quick breakdown of the front pages today here in New York:

NY Post: NY Daily News:
Newsday:
NY Times:
posted by TNLNYC at 1:37 PM on September 4, 2004


It's pretty much the whole front page of the Boston Globe.

I think we're showing which US papers are serious newspapers and which are daily versions of People magazine here.

Those of us who usually read serious newspapers are getting good information, IMHO.
posted by Sidhedevil at 2:29 PM on September 4, 2004


konolia: I agree.

Everybody else: yeah, it's about the coverage. Not.
posted by dash_slot- at 4:06 PM on September 4, 2004


It's not just a question of "getting good information", though. It's a question of whether we really identify with non-americans - if, as the poster above suggested, "we're all Russians today." I don't think that comes across in america. I have had CNN on all day (with the sound off) and it has been non-stop Hurricane Frances, with the little graphics, live reports, random unnewsworthy interviews to keep the topic alive, that happen when there's a "big story". When they do updates on other stories every so often, they report on this story, of course, but the point is that it has not pierced our national awareness in a significant way. Imagine if this had happened to an overseas school for americans in chechnya, at an embassy or something. Just think for a second how completely and utterly different this coverage would have been if those kids were american. Even if only some of them were american, for that matter.
posted by mdn at 5:14 PM on September 4, 2004


Might not be straight from the pits of hell, but going there, yes. I agree.
posted by psmealey at 6:18 PM on September 4, 2004


moscowhelp.org - Donate to the victims of the North Ossetia terror attack

The Foundation is a US 501(c)3 public charity and is managed by a group of volunteer activists in full accordance with applicable US charity laws.
All personal donations will be used solely to help the children who were injured in Beslan or whose parents died as a result of this terror act. ...
The Fund incurs no administrative or other expenses related to personal donations, except for nominal processor's fees to accept credit card payments. All money donated by individuals will be delivered directly to victims’ families.


Please donate. A massive number of children have been orphaned and injured in a low-income, war-torn region. This is a fund which will deliver financial help directly to those victims.
posted by azazello at 7:18 PM on September 4, 2004


twine42: you're about as wrong as you can be. Al Qaeda has a long association with the Chechen rebels. As you admit, the Chechens are Muslim. True, the Chechens are far more motivated by ethnic than religious concerns. However, you'll also recall that Al Qaeda came into existence fighting Russia (well, the USSR) in Afghanistan. Al Qaeda is a natural ally for the Chechens.

This crime is horrific. However, BushCo would do well to note in this case (as in the case of Israel) that the hardcore response to terrorists does not seem to dissuade them. Quite the opposite. I will not in any way excuse what was done in Beslan—but what Russia has done in Chechnya is also horrifying and shocking. Grozny had a population of about 1 million—now it is less (much less, probably) than 200,000. I'm not surprised that the Chechen terrorists are essentially insane.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:07 PM on September 4, 2004


Insane is doing the same thing again and again, but expecting a different result.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:17 PM on September 4, 2004


This wasn't reported until the bloodshed -- and I think that's the point trying to be made here. I heard about it the day it happened (in Russian) but didn't see widespread news until people were killed. Plus, there is a whole deeper level that hasn't been reported in the US, about how especially horrific this was because of the traditional celebrations to begin the school year. As others posted upthread, this just hasn't permeated the American consciousness because it's "on the other side of the world."
posted by somethingotherthan at 10:24 PM on September 4, 2004


This is a good, intelligent take on whether al-Qaeda were involved.
posted by ascullion at 6:56 AM on September 5, 2004


Give me a break. What is it that you want people to do... take a day off of work and build memorials in their front yards? Should we organize rallies and candlelight vigils? This horrible event is all over the news. What more do you want? People have lives to live. Some of you people are so ridiculous. Tell me what you're doing that so different and more appropriate to mourn this tragedy than the rest of us? Then tell me what the average middle to lower class working Russian father was doing on 9-11-01.
posted by Witty at 7:30 AM on September 5, 2004



posted by dash_slot- at 11:44 AM on September 6, 2004


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