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Posts for November, 2008

Tragedy In Mumbai

Jim Burroway

November 27th, 2008

It appears that this is India’s 9/11. Whenever news of this magnitude breaks, I prefer to go to the source. During the first Gulf War, I bought a shortwave radio and listened to broadcasts from the Middle East. During the subway attacks in London, we watched live coverage from London via BBC America. Now, my partner is watching CNN and MSNBC, but I’m impressed with some of the coverage available via streaming video direct from Indian broadcasters.

The most polished and professional coverage appears to be from India’s NDTV, which offers live streaming via the internet. They’ve been breaking developments long before CNN. NDTV however, focused their coverage at the Taj Hotel. To learn more about what’s happening at the Oberoi Hotel or the Jewish community center at Nariman House, IBN has provided better live coverage.

Both networks’ coverage is impressive.  IBN, CNN’s affiliate, was talking about Nariam House several hours before American broadcasters noticed that the Jewish center was targeted. And NDTV broke the story of the inflatable Zodiacs the militants used to storm the gate in front of the Taj, again several hours before the American networks. They’re both doing a good job, but of the two networks, IBN is less polished and much more excitable.

And it’s that excitability which concerns me. The first twenty-four hours were characterized by shock. But now, it’s turning to anger — anger at the attackers, and anger at the government, which observers charge hasn’t “learned the lessons of 1993.” That’s when thirteen bombs exploded around Mumbai, killing 250 and injuring 700 more. India has a sizable Muslim population. Will they become targets of that anger? What about Pakistan? This is an extremely volatile situation.

As we go about our Thanksgiving dinners and traditions, and as we reflect on the many things we are thankful for in 2008, please pause a moment to remember the people of Mumbai.