We watch the NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams nearly every evening, and both of us agree we’re sick and tired of seeing Anne Thompson telling us nightly about that day’s condition of the Gulf situation, telling us how many gallons of oil are daily spilling into Gulf waters, telling us how many miles of coastline are now fouled by the oil, showing us too many oil-slimed pelicans and turtles and clams, counting out the ships skimming oil and the workers scraping tar balls from otherwise pristine sand beaches. And now we’re getting daily flashes about the capping and killing efforts. For over a hundred days, night after night, week after week, Anne Thompson there with her sad news, delivering it in the same smiling style, standing on the same Louisiana dock or boat offshore. Sorry, Anne. You’re probably a very nice woman, but we don’t want to see you anymore. Ever.
Last week’s Time cover showed the world an example of the barbarism of the Taliban in Afghanistan. A young Afghan woman, otherwise lovely, with jet black hair, satin skin, ebony eyes, looked out at us, at the world, with an accusatory stare. Her nose was gone, leaving an ugly red socket in the middle of her face. The background story described her as having fled from her in-laws, who had beaten her regularly. The husband found her and, with Taliban approval, cut off her nose and ears, then left her there on a mountainside to die. That rational Afghans can still condone or overlook such acts of atrocity stuns me. On Sixty Minutes, an Afghan anti-Taliban spokesman called the Taliban “forces of darkness.” Yes, forces of absolute evil that we need to defeat, the world needs to defeat. Otherwise, we all might soon be dead or noseless.