Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Human life is cheap (Update)

It's ironic that just after the leak of Afghan war logs showing the United States and NATO's utter disregard for the lives of Afghan civlians, 152 people were killed today when an Airblue Airbus crashed today in the Margalla Hills of Islamabad. Six members of the Youth Parliament Pakistan and two U.S. Embassy personnel have been reported to be among the dead. Dawn News has posted the full passenger list on its website including the number for Crisis Management Cell (051-9211223-4) which provides more information about the passengers on board.

According to reports, bad weather is listed as the main cause of the crash but the details remain unclear. An official investigation is curently underway to determine the exact nature of the incident. The black box has also been retrieved although as Geo news is currently reporting Pakistan lacks the capability to analyse it.
The most disgusting thing about this incident was the behaviour of the Pakistani media. As both Ahsan and XYZ have pointed out, reporters from all of Pakistan's broadcast news organization showed an extreme lack of tact and sympathy for the victims and their families. The worst in my opinion, however was an asinine blogger claiming that the plane crash was a conspiracy to divert public attention from the fake degrees scandal rocking Pakistan's political elite.

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and the federal cabinet have declared today  as a "national day of mourning" for the victims of this tragedy. United States President Barack Obama also offered his condolences to the friends and relatives of those killed adding that the “The American people stand with the people of Pakistan in this moment of tragedy.”

I am counting my blessings right now. No one I know has been affected by this tragedy. But there are at least 152 families that have not been so lucky. My thoughts and prayers go out to them.

Update I: Another day, another tragedy. Dawn News has just reported that an additional 150 people have died in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and Northern Baluchistan due to flash floods caused by torrential rains.