Dufar on Google Maps

Two weeks ago Google and the US Holocaust Museum released an update to Google Earth that highlights the crisis in Darfur.

On the map you can zoom down into the different villages and see which ones have been burned.

I’m really glad to see this kind of thing happening because it makes it harder and harder for Sudan to claim nothing is happening

Technology has a wonder way of making things very transparent.

If you would like more information about the situation in Darfur please look at the Wikiepdia entry and www.savedarfur.org

My thoughts on the Virginia Tech shootings

I thought I would take a sec a reflect on yesterdays events. I know its a little off topic for this blog but at the same time I think its important and its been on my mind.

Last night I was watching news coverage on the events and they had this “expert” from NY talking about how this should have been handled like a terrorist attack. He was saying that the school should have been shut down right away as soon as the first bullets were fired.

That’s easy to say now. I’m sure the school responded as they thought was appropriate. I don’t think it handling it like a terrorist attack is the right thing to do either. Just look at what happened here in Boston a few months ago with the bomb scare. The city of Boston over reacted and created a huge mess.

My dad was, right Americans need to blame someone. I think blaming the school it to easy. In these situation you can ALWAYS do something better that MIGHT have saved more lives. But really there is no way for the school to know that this guy was going to start shooting people. Its not there fault he went psycho.

If you must blame someone blame this coward to senselessly attacked people and then took the easy way out by killing himself. I can just see it now. There is going to be an investigation into Virgina tech to see what when wrong.

I’m sure the school could have done something a little better but this guy was determined to kill people. He had it planned out. He chained the doors and had spare clips. I mean how do you plan for something like that? You can’t and trying to have some plan in place for an event like this isn’t going to help either.

What are you going to do have everyone in every school walk through a medal detector? No you train for the worst and pray it never happens. Its a tragedy and its horrible but sadly these things happen and they happen all over the world.

In fact I find it interesting that we as Americans are so upset about this when these things happen everyday in Darfur. If 33 people were killed in a tiny African village would anyone care?

I don’t really have a point. I just think the whole thing sucks. Its sad that these thing happen both here and around the world. My heart goes out to the family and students.

One a side not this is a pretty bad week in modern American history. Things that happened this week:

Columbine Shooting – April 20th 1999
Oklahoma Bombing – April 19th, 1995
Woca Texas Fire – April 19th, 1993

I’m not suggesting there is a connection its just interesting that they happened around the same time.

A Moment for Darfur

I want to take a moment and talk about the situation in Darfur. I know it might seam a little off topic for this blog but I think there are some connections and it is something that I feel needs some attention.

If you are not familiar with the situation in Darfur, the government of Sudan is committing genocide against the African people who live there. There are reports of government backed militia wiping out entire villages, mass killings, and a policy of rape. The is more detail on the Darfur conflict on Wikipedia.

The Holocaust Museum in Washington DC had a special section on Darfur when I was there last month. However I was not able to spend much time looking at it. I really didn’t know anything about the conflict until I downloaded this free NBC News Special from iTunes last night. Its about 30min long and provides a good overview of the situation. There are also some videos on YouTube.

I think its important to talk about whats going on because of the Human rights violations that are taking place. In El Salvador there were similar human rights violations such as the El Mozote massacre were 900 civilians were kill in an anti-guerrilla campaign. The scale in Darfur is much larger which makes it all the more important to bring attention to the situation. Its hard to believe that even after the Holocaust events like this still take place all over the world in places such as El Salvador, Kosovo and Rwanda.

I wonder in this day and age of technology, what if the people in Darfur were able to blog and tell the world about their experiences? I Think there might be a much bigger outcry by the international community. The real power of blogs and new media is that it gives everyone a voice and a chance to be herd. Since the people in Darfur do not have a voice I feel it is up to us to speak for them.

I’m not here to preach or tell what you should do. I know people are busy and don’t take the time to look into these things. I know I didn’t. I also know these situations are difficult to hear about. But now that I do know I’m going to find out what I can do to help.

Its worth looking into and I’ll leave the rest up to you…

If you would like more information about the situation in Darfur please look at the Wikiepdia entry and www.savedarfur.org