This is what I woke up to. The Russian media are all over the hostage taking. Stating the obvious, Moscow is in shock. A female hostage has been killed. One of the things the Russian media is focusing on is foreign hostages in the hope that the world will pay attention.
Three Britons are reported to be among the hostages, along with seven Germans, four Americans, two Canadians, two Austrians and two Dutch citizens. Ambassadors from several countries are now at the scene.
I wonder if the cold war is still going on inside western heads. Russia has been soundly criticized for re-engaging in war with Muslim rebels. Bombing and kidnappings are the modus operandi of Chechna rebels, and 300 people have died in the past few years. Russian military have been ruthless in it’s two military engagements in the region. Up to this point, many western media have called the Chechans freedom fighters. On Google News at this moment, the Moscow story is at the top with 638 related, and some more US outlets. The sniper capture has 826 related. 700 innocent people are inside that theatre. This could have been Britian, Europe, Australia, Canada, the US. Right now it is Moscow. China< Another mine explosion in northern China has killed 15 miners. 29 are missing. With poor infrastructure, equipment and rescue training, approximately 4 thousand Chinese miners die each year. Australia Adelaide Australia is grieving again after a school bus collided with a train. US Sniper(s) Virginia/Washington/Maryland residents finally woke up to potentially hopeful news after 2 arrests were made in the sniper shootings. Daimnation cautions about media speculation, knowing there will be a lot of false information.
Now that the sniper(s) might have been captured – remember, we don’t even know for sure if these are the guys yet – we have to be careful about what news we spread. On 9/11, there were reports of a bomb outside the State Department and a fifth hijacked airliner, neither of which turned out to be true. We’re going to be saturated with information about John Muhammad and his stepson over the next few days, and some of it will almost certainly turn out to be specious.
Risk Perception Peter Maas looks at the psychological study of risk perception in relation to the US sniper. Frightened people can make dangerous decisions. I think it was Meryl Yourish that commented on the fact that authorities shut down schools, and parents sent or let their kids go to the mall. One shooting was outside a school and five in shopping areas. Ivory Coast Rebels in the Ivory Coast are setting up their own government in captured areas, which now take up about half the country. French troops are trying to keep about 20 thousand French citizens safe, while thousands of Africans have fled the region. The country has been the richest on the west coast, and encouraged an influx of foreign workers. Burkina Faso: 2.3m Mali: 792,260 Guinea: 230,390 Ghana: 133,220 Benin: 107,500 Niger: 102,220 Nigeria: 101,360 Source: 1998 census 3 Provinces now Ontario has joined Alberta and British Columbia in the fight with the federal government over the Kyoto Accord. Most Canadians think this is just to make the environment safer and it won’t affect them. The Federal liberals are determined to ratify the treaty. I suspect Nova Scotia and Newfoundland will join the three provinces soon. Academic Tempest An Anglican English major is taking the University of British Columbia to court, alleging discrimination on religious grounds. This is an interesting story dating back to 2000, and a microcosm of larger issues. Digital Photography Do you have a digital camera? The O’Reilly Network has 10 tips to make those photos better. Demotivators Jordon Cooper and IdeaJoy have linked up to Despair.com which has come out with it’s 2003 offering. Demotivators lets some air out of our cute, cliche little tires.(how’s that for a bad metaphor?) My personal favorite, indifference. Referrer Marketing If the discussion starting up over at Blogroots is true, it appears blogs are being targeted with a new kind of spam. Blog Quiz! I am 30% Internet Addict

I could go either way. Deep into the madness of nights filled with coding CGI-Scripts and online role playing games, or I could become a normal user. Good luck!