Several of you wrote to enquire after the team, our extended team in India who were working on this project, and on a more personal note, about my family and friends. Thank you so much for doing so. Fortunately everyone is fine and well, and we are all extremely grateful. Our hearts go out to all the victims, their families, and Republic of India at large.
During this period, it was very interesting to read the comments and thoughts bubbling up from within the blogosphere, particularly from the Indian and South Asian bloggers. There was irritation and frustration with the Indian government for many reasons (including blatantly pointing the finger at Pakistan before any information had come out), the embarrassingly lacksidaisical/sluggish response of the authorities to the situation, and anger with the media for unnecessarily blowing things out of proportion and scaring the population that could do without it.
And then there were beautiful and feeling messages of sympathy, and a good kind of anger...general fatigue with violence and a common need for unity and patriotism. This I saw coming from all around the world - young and old, irrespective of nationality. Pakistanis, Bangladeshis (formerly Pakistanis) and Indians urged their governments NOT to jump to conclusions about the other...this wasn't about settling age-old scores, rather working together to find their common enemy. Muslims and Hindus from around the world reached out to each other across the internet to share pain. Where governments fail, technology and humanity will not (Twitter, and the use of mobile phones is proof).
I don't know if the terrorists realize this, but they are just shooting themselves in the foot everytime they do something stupid like this. I agree that there are a large number of idiots in the world, but there are (fortunately) a phenomenal number of good and intelligent people alongside who are getting increasingly aware of how desperately they need to wake up and help this aching world. Come on people, let's do this...
Global Development at its best perhaps...
Some great reading to support the above:
- How Twitter and Mobile Phones got real journalism out to the people
- ...and how they kept people out of danger.
- Have the problems from Kashmir spilled over to Mumbai?? Bloggers from around India reflect
- Academy Award winning director and proud Indian, Shekhar Kapur brilliantly captures first his bewilderment, then anger/frustration, and finally this call to action in a series of posts over the three days of attacks.
- A young Sikh man expresses his frustration and reason for hope.
- Should Pakistan be blamed before any evidence has made its way out?
- Pakistani bloggers unite with Indians against terrorism
- Criticism of the media and their coverage of the Mumbai attacks
- MOST RECENT: If you are more of a visual person, check out Arun Shanbag's excellent blog for photographs (over the past several days), captions, and his own sentiments as he was capturing these. His most recent pictures capture the resilience that personifies Indians. Life certainly goes on...