Katrina's Wake

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I am posting many pictures on the blog today. There is a mixture — the cold reality of the devastation here in New Orleans (search), as well as some "behind the scenes" of our coverage which are in some instances light. Click on the links in the photo box above to check out my photo essays.

The "behind the scenes" pictures depict us on occasion with a smile at each other. This does not mean that we don't feel great empathy for the people here and those who have evacuated. Rather it means that on occasion we try to make things a bit better for our colleagues with a few smiles, since it is hard to be a witness to such suffering and to be, in every instance, unable to reverse it. This is not easy. We are steeped in tragedy. As we travel the area, we want to cover our eyes — but that isn't our job. Our job is to have our eyes wide open and report to you what we see.

I suppose things are getting better, but we still see dead bodies along the street, which is hard to balance against any progress. The dead bodies, broken hearts and feelings of desperation by so many are so powerful that it is hard to figure out even how to measure progress. I can report that the military is working non-stop. I can also report that they really care about these people. I have seen more than one sailor or soldier get choked up and look away. I have seen members of the military providing hands on care — and even risking their own safety to help someone.

Being on the truck yesterday while the puppy from the roof was rescued was heartwarming. Suspecting bodies in all the closed up houses we drove past in a special military vehicle was... well, you can imagine. It was so quiet as we slid through the feet and feet of water.

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