Friday, September 3

Can You Imagine?

I almost never post on current events, except for local ones. This is a sad day in Russia, though, and the story of the schoolchildren hostages tugs at me, begging for acknowledgment. Can you imagine what it would have been like for the parents waiting outside, not knowing what was happening inside? For the children? For the adults tending to the children?

Now the whole things has come to an end, very tragically, it seems, with hundreds of children dead and injured. From the BBC.
At least 150 people are reported to have died in a school in southern Russia where Chechen separatists had been holding hundreds of hostages.

Dozens of corpses were seen outside a local morgue, and the number of dead is expected to rise further.
There are glimpses of the terrible conditions endured by those held captive during the time of the seige.
Diana, another survivor, said people had had nothing to eat or drink.

"We were forced to urinate into bottles and drink our own urine through our shirts that we put over the top of them," she said.

Many of the children who ran to safety after Friday's explosions began were in their underwear, having been kept herded together by their captors in the late summer heat.
More horror:
Fellow hostage Zalina Dzandarova, 27, said two women suicide bombers had blown themselves up in a corridor of the school on the first day of the siege, killing some male hostages.

"The men terrorists told us afterwards that their sisters had conquered," she said.

Speaking to Russia's Kommersant newspaper, she supported Mrs Gadzhinova's figure of 1,500 hostages and added that there seemed to have been about 30 gunmen.

Ms Dzandarova said the gunmen had shot dead at least 20 people on the first day of the siege.

They killed those who had been wounded during the invasion of the school and also killed any men who tried to resist them, she said.

"Some of the wounded were taken out of the gym and finished off right in the corridor," the former hostage added.
What can I say, except "Can you imagine?" That, and "Lord, have mercy!".

[Update: Also blogging on this are J. Mark Bertrand, who wonders why this isn't the story of the day in U.S. news coverage, and Dead Man Blogging, who, like me, doesn't know exactly how to express his outrage, but goes on to make an important point about the wisdom of refusing to deal with terrorists even when the stakes are as high as they were in this case.

Update 2: Terry of Pruitt Communications blogged today on this topic as well. ]

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