Thoughts after One Week of Earthquake

  1. The whole country mourned at 2:28, and it is the first time I experienced – and maybe the only one in the recent history of China. That is very moving experience. When I lowered my head with all my team members in the lobby of the 18th floor of my office building, and standing under the sunshine, which pulled in from the glass roof 20 meters above my head, I saw the structure of the roof from the reflection of the tiled floor. I don’t really remember what I thought, but I know the picture has ironed deeply into my memory. I am sure even after few years, I still can recall this exact moment. Compassion makes people better, and to feel the pain of others as ours is so important for us to create a better world. Mourning and remember those who lost lives during all kinds of disasters is so important for us to continuously improve the world. I am just afraid that people will forget them very soon as we did for the Luoyang fire (in which about 400 people were killed)
  2. The central government is doing great during this event. If during the SARS, the government is completely unprepared of such disaster, during the snow disaster this Spring Festival, it is a good rehearsal of all the contingency plans, during this earthquake, we saw a much more mature modern government. Kudos go to them, and especially Premier Wen Jiabao – he did great.
  3. Media plays an important role in this event, especially state-run media CCTV, and Central Radio Station. Their 24-hour real-time broadcast helped a lot. It is again, the first time, and there are much breakthrough. It is rare that people like me and Wendy really sit before TV set instead of computer to get the latest information about the earthquake. It shows the positive contribution of the free information flow to disaster relief.
  4. Compassion shows more commonality than difference in this event. I am moved that before natural disaster, many countries and media paused the dispute and started to donate and help. In Shanghai (I always avoid using big words like "China" since I only experienced the situation in one city, and don’t want to take it for granted that I saw "China". In this sense, even Shanghai is a big word, which I’d better say "I"), after the 3 minutes mourn, I feel people are closer, since people realized there are more commonality between people than difference – the same will to help, and the same pain of compassion.

P.S. At night, spent one hour with Margaret Warner from NewsHour of PBS for an interview Internet space in China. At the end, via the program, I said, I do appreciate the concerns, help, donation, and all relief effort from the people in the United States and other countries to Sichuan in China. I did mean it. Thank you.

6 thoughts on “Thoughts after One Week of Earthquake

  1. very sad moment at 14:28 yesterday…

    everyone in china should remember it …

  2. Motorola continues to provide disaster relief support to China earthquake.

    Following the first announcement of donation valued RMB2 million in cash and equipment on 13 May and the grant from Motorola Foundation to International Red Cross, Motorola today announces to donate additional RMB5 million worth of cash, mobile communications infrastructure equipment, mobile devices and related field technical support and services for the disaster relief and recovery.

    To date, Motorola has donated over RMB7 million in cash, products and services. The second phase of donation includes RMB2 million in cash, of which the amount from China employees alone has reached over 1.65 million so far; and RMB3 million worth of equipment.

    Once again, we want to express our sincere appreciation to Ruey Bin Kao, president of China, and the local team’s immediate response and initiation to offer help and support to the affected area. The emergency response communications equipment and mobile communications infrastructure equipment that Motorola donated have already arrived Sichuan, and the mobile phones are also on their way. Our Motorola engineers are on-site in the affected areas working with our customers and partners to provide technical support. During this time when we are still coming to grips with this profound tragedy, we have been touched and are proud of what the employees, businesses and functions are contributing towards the disaster relief efforts.

    http://www.motorola.com.cn/news/2008/05/080513.asp

    http://www.motorola.com.cn/news/2008/05/080519.asp

  3. We had a similar experience here in the US, after 9/11. For at least a week after the tragedy, there were no entertainment shows on TV, no late night talk shows, etc. The whole country just watched TV news and prayed every night. There were great moments of unity, everyone lit a candle at the same time, moments of silence, people putting flags on their car, etc. Everyone became very patriotic, (we even had a boycott of French products, because many people were angry that they did not support us in the war afterward).

    There was one unfortunate downside of that time of unity in the US. Everyone felt so patriotic, there was widespread support to go to war against Iraq, because the government said and people believed that Iraq was involved in 9/11. Now many in US regret that decision.

  4. Unity and patriotism are the two most widely accepted and lest thought about concepts that almost everyone of us in China consider good. They deserve serious debate. A lot of bad things happened under the name of unity and patriotism already in the history. The U.S. attack of Iraq, the start of WWII, the Japanese invasion of China, the Chinese culture revolution, and the recent attacks on citizens that refuse to donate money or donated too little according to a ‘standard’. The wrong concept is most easily preached during the difficult times.

    It may not be a good time to write these words. But please be vigilant when everybody is talking about unity and patriotism and be courageous enough to say something different.

  5. It is admirable indeed how the people have stood strong amid the earthquake. As I watched the events on search and rescue, and plans to reconstruct Sichuan on CCTV, I got a glimpse of how a strong people, united furthermore by the disaster, do every thing to help one another.

  6. erm “thoughts after one week of earthquake” doesn’t sound quite right. I guess you meant “thoughts one week after the earthquake”

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