Unregistered User
Thu Sep 01 2005 08:38 AM
You are not alone

I live in France, but having spent some time in the USA I always kept in touch. Moreover, I feel NO and South Louisiana is a component of french history as well. For those who wrote here we never helped, I would remind from Lafayette and french volunteer troops giving a hand at a time when this country was being born. May be it was not so much, but from my history books I learned it was quite appreciated at the times.( I would like not to go into this debate anyway as I think more of myself as a world citizen rather than belonging to a specific country.)

I have been reading on this forums since Charley and not being a weather expert (although I learned a lot since) did not find any previous reason for posting.
This time after reading many posts about other countries not helping, I felt I had to drop my 2 cents. You have to understand that for most of people over here, they have been only informed through our local media who in the first days only talked about "NO being spared" and the usual two lines about some roofs blown up (Superdome, Hyatt and some spectacular scenes) and a few casualties. Only a handful of crazy guys like me who speak fluent english and spend part of their nights on the internet or watch CNN News grasped the scope of what was happening. I tried to spread the word around in a few internet communities over here, and relayed the heartbreaking video clip made by Kevin Cho found on Storm2K calling for help. I sent a few emails to official web sites to ask that something gets organised.

Since yesterday things have changed over here and we have now complete reports on radio and TV with special coverages. People are slowly realizing the dimensions of what happened and I can confirm you I heard officially on today's news here that France has said they have forces and rescue teams ready to go if the US need them (you have to understand we cannot just send them there if they are not invited and fit in the rescue plan, which can take a few days to get organized) Its also common in people's mind to think about the US as the richest country on earth. I am sure few realize that this area was not such a rich one. Problems come when you start putting people in categories (Americans are like this, Europeans are like that...) Having visited many countries for business purposes I know this doesn't stand. People are people wherever you go in all their differences.

This was just to say you are not standing alone in this disaster, I read also that european community is talking about dispatching some of its oil reserves if it would become necessary (looks to me that the official media are downplaying somewhat the impact on the oil business down there. Read somewhere today that 10s of platforms are missing - they could not find them from aerial survey - that the wells still standing need to be put back in place and sometimes redrilled if all is bent - and that it might take months to restore everything) It just takes some time for the message to come across -thanks to the internet things are speeding up as private people are quicker to react than governments.

New Orleans is (don't want to say was...) a very special place on this planet. I can tell you I do not sleep well since Monday, my nights are haunted by what's happening. This of course extends to the whole Gulf Coast as well. All my thoughts go to the people who have been affected by this, wish I could do more.

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