Tsunami Resources

How bad was this quake? US Scientists think it may have made the Earth wobble.

A few resources that might have gotten overlooked regarding the Tsunami and relief efforts:

1) Google set up a page with links to sites set up to provide information and handle donations for victims throughout the region, as did Yahoo’s info page, and Amazon’s donation page. You can also donate your Airline Mileage to help Tsunami Victims. Lastly, the Tsunami help blog is provides a comprehensive list of ways to help.

2)  The Tsunami death toll now exceeds 115,000 160,000

Deaths by country:
    Indonesia: 79,940
    Sri Lanka: 23,015
    India: At least 10,000
    Thailand: 1,830.
        (Thai PM says toll could rise to 3,000 as 4,265 people are still missing).
    Myanmar: 90
    Malaysia: 66
    Maldives: 46 —

3) Several sites have gathered home videos of the Tsunami:

Austin’s Blog

They are truly frightening

4) Before & After Photos:

Khao Lak in Phang-nga province   
(Before & After photo side by side)

NYTimes, Interactive   
(select "Photos Impact" and then "Before and After" at far right)

Indian Ocean Tsunami Imagery Khaolak, Thailand 
(via globalsecurity.org)

Pakarang Cape
Before and After

Blue Village Pakarang Resort
Before and After

Sofitel Magic Lagoon Resort & Spa Khao Lak
Before and After

Tsunami Gallery
(from globalsecurity.org)

More Satellite Images of Tsunami Affected Areas

There’s 2 devastating B&A photos posted here: 

Before and After Photos

This site has even more Before and After photos


5) Major Natural Disasters (of the past few centuries)

Deaths           Event             Location         Year
3,700,000      Flood             China             1931
300,000         Cyclone         Bangladesh     1970
255,000        Earthquake     China             1976
170,000+      Tsunami         South Asia       2004
143,000        Earthquake     Japan             1923
139,000        Cyclone          Bangladesh     1991
100,000        Tsunami        Japan              1703
70,000         Tsunami         Portugal         1755
50,000         Earthquake     Iran               1990
31,000         Earthquake     Iran               2003

Sources: World Almanac, U.S. Geological Survey, Associated Press
via U.S. News & World Report, January 10, 2005, 

6) Tsunami Relief: Charity Efficiency and Transparency Ratings:   

Helps provide an overview of how much of your donations actually make it to the victims, using several rating systems.

Doctors w/o Borders, American Red Cross, American Jewish World Service and OxFam were all very highly rated.

Here’s where to make online contributions to the top rated charities:

American Red Cross (via Amazon)

American Jewish World Service   

Doctors w/o Borders


LASTLY, can’t we do better?  US ups Aid to victims from 15million to 35 million

How is it that US can find 300+ billion dollars for the War in Iraq, but cannot muster 1% of that amount to help out in SouthEast Asia?

Pardon my pique, but I heard this Karl Rove guy was supposed to be a PR genius — How did he blow yet another opportunity? Put aside for a minute the simple motivation to do what’s right, and look at this the way he looks at everything else — as a chance to change some views about us. For a billion or so dollars, the Mayberry Machivelli could have reaped a PR windfall for his boy and the US, whose rep in the world has never bneen lower than its been the past few years. 

I guess if it don’t help your guy elected, it dont matter all that much . . . Oh, well, another missed opportunity, brought to you by the Crawford gang that can’t shoot straight — unless its at Democrats.

  12/31/04  1:31 PM    U.S. announces $350 million in tsunami aid 


"The United States will provide $350 million in aid for victims of Asia’s devastating tsunami, a government official said Friday — a ten-fold increase over what it had previously announced and a sum that will significantly boost international funds pledged for relief.

The news will likely silence criticism of the U.S. aid effort that surfaced when Washington announced its initial aid package."

Color me silenced!

UPDATE:  1/3/05  11:31 AM    Three U.S. Presidents Urge U.S. Relief Aid

This is a brilliant move — it still looks like they are playing catch up, but its better than the prior appearance of indifference.

See, Karl, I knew you could do it!

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. kmsor commented on Dec 30

    Vis-a-vis Karl Rove and his “missed opportunity” it is easy to understand why this opportunity was missed. 1. There was no financial incentive. 2. They do not see it as an opportunity for Bush and GOP to further consolidate their stranglehold on power. 3. The people who are suffering are not white Christian conservatives and therefore merit little concern.

    In their opinions this will all be forgotten so there is no reason to trouble themselves nor interrupt “the leader’s” vacation.

  2. David Bennett commented on Dec 30

    Foreign aid is another 3rd rail of American politics. The perceptions are exceedingly odd, people think we should spend about 1% of GNP on it which is nearly 10 times what the government does, are convinced that we spend something like a quarter of our fed budget on it (I read this in the NYT (I think) yesterday) and so think if we just cut it down to 7 or 8 times what we pay (1%) we would have plenty of money for tax cuts, medicare etc. Like welfare the sums are figments of convenient fantasy.

    The good news is that when private gifts are counted the United States actually exceeds any other nation in percentage of GNP given.

    I am not particularly upset or surprised that the Bush administration started off with petty sums, it wasn’t brilliant PR but the money will grow. I am disturbed that huge sums promised years ago never came into being, we got the do good glory, but Africa will probably never see very much of the promised billions we use to congratulate ourselves.

    Unless of course the Christian right which is very, very very concerned and on balance very helpful in Africa starts pushing. Which it might.

    I don’t think any administration has shown much real dedication to the poor of this earth, a huge percentage of our limited foreign aid is political balancing, eg. places like Israel and Egypt. The Republicans as a group don’t like it, the Democrats were upset that we bought medicine for Iraqis, but some of our kids didn’t have it. The ungrateful, undeserving poor of this world is usually a successful theme.

    As for the Bush administration it seems to me one of those odd things you read of in more fringe social theory, yet not surprising, many regimes seem to lose touch with “reality” and to be carried off by strange forces not analyzed or admitted. It seems at the cusp of a ‘revolution’ in all areas the desired results are confused with what’s happening. People are not necessarily rational, institutions or groups are often delusional, it’s just like those tens of millions of people who literally believe the looting of tens of billions of Iraqi infrastructure was a few items taken from a museum, shown over and over.

    The radio jockeys will be up to say that the United States does more for humanity than anyone in the history of the universe including the aliens on the planet Zo, indeed Jesus is jealous, and that this complaining is a UN/French plot that ignores our saintliness and within those cultish circles it will be believed.

    And to a lesser degree the administration has fallen into this mind set. There is no pragmatic sense trhat whatever their flaws and despite fundamental differences one must try to have somewhat cordial business with those one is dependant on. The Chinese/Russian joint military exercises are a warning, but this isn’t the audience that the right speaks to, “they” are a different reality. Shut it out!

    I do believe however that this country has mechanisms and a national character that encourages rebalancing. I don’t think the problem is extreme by historical standards, except for the fact our power is extreme.

    Another charity is:


    They are medium sized, but have some projects in Indonesia. This is going to be one of the more difficult places to get aid to, India and Thailand will be more capable.

  3. mahdi commented on Jan 4


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