compassion fatigue…

“Compassion fatigue” happens whenever there is a long-running news story that shows no signs of resolution. Listeners can become bored by even the most compelling story, if it seems never to change. Journalists are challenged to report the story in ways that must keep the interest of the audience without ratcheting up the drama to the point of distortion.” Jeffrey A. Dvorkin

Abu Ghraib abuse photos ‘show rape’

i feel sick. unless there’s a trial, there’s no way to try and make this stop. we r still in iraq and in afghanistan (possibly in pakistan). there r still detainees who have been incarcerated with no trial in sight. we have to deal with this now!

Photographs of alleged prisoner abuse which Barack Obama is attempting to censor include images of apparent rape and sexual abuse, it has emerged. Full article.

pakistan’s missing peace

“Obama knows that resolving Kashmir is a critical piece of the “Af-Pak” strategy; he even mooted a renewed push for negotiations during his campaign for president. But in office he has been faced with a massive Indian lobbying effort warning that his special envoy to the region, Richard Holbrooke, would be shunned by Delhi if his brief included Kashmir.” Full article.

film review: the house of sand

directed by andrucha waddington, “the house of sand” was shot in brazil’s northern state of maranhão with its pristine beaches, lagoons and sand dunes. the landscape is so stunning and otherworldly that it conflates into mood, theme and character. the film’s soundtrack is a constant lament of howling wind, washing over ever-shifting sand. it is overwhelming.

the characters in the film could have been dwarfed by the beauty and vastness of their surroundings but real life mother and daughter fernanda montenegro and fernanda torres are superb. in a tale that extends over 60 years they move seamlessly from youth to old age, playing three generations of daughters and mothers. dragged from the city into this remote part of brazil by her husband, a pregnant young woman and her mother are left to fend for themselves after the husband dies in a freak accident. they turn for help to the runaway slave community that inhabits a tiny fishing villages nearby.

throughout the film, antithetical forces are at play – the urge to leave and change one’s destiny vs the acceptance of one’s fate, the desire to experience the unknown vs the comfort of what is familiar, isolation vs human civilization, victorian etiquette vs abandonment to natural impulses, youth vs old age, nature’s dominance vs man’s resilience.

the film feels more like an ancient fable, set in a dreamland of luscious white sand and glittering water, where time can only manifest itself through the gradual aging of the characters. there is something ethereal and poetic about how it looks and something vast and cosmic about how it unfolds. the ending is perfection.

the house of sand