Wednesday, September 01, 2004

No Joy in Mudville

The wind has been snuffed from my snide sails.

I wanted to come in this morning, and write a bitchy post about the Bush twins making utter fools of themselves with their ill-suited teen banter, and how you'd never have seen Chelsea pull such a stunt upon her graduation from college because she respected herself as an accomplished young woman.

But frankly, I don't have the heart. Because I pulled up the Post on-line this morning and was greeted with this:

And right now, there are maybe hundreds of children huddled in a gym on a long, sleepless night while heavily armed thugs stomp around them, threatening to kill 50 children for every one of their fighters who is killed. A mere 20 children will be slaughtered for the wounding of a fighter. Children have been spotted up against windows - "apparently being used as human shields."

There's a lot to be said. About the string of attacks, about the sources and contacts and motivations of these groups. Russian security services need to have a good hard look at themselves, and there's foreign policy to consider. All that must be done, but maybe I'm not cut out for that kind of thing, because I can't stop thinking about the kids right now.

I keep thinking back to the last time we watched this macabre production - when Chechen militants stormed Moscow's Dubrovka theater, taking 700+ hostages. Remember how that ended? Remember how the security services sent a nerve gas into the theater that was meant to incapacitate the militants, but killed scores of hostages? I know they won't make the same mistake again, but the inkling of a chance that we might have to see photos of dozens of children's bodies piled up outside their school makes me utterly heartsick.

And so this cycle continues. Atrocity, retribution, rage, and atrocity again. I see no good end to any of this.


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