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This won't win me any fans..

Second story:

So the message here is - nutter who killed 33 people wrote a note. This is more important than 200 people dying in Iraq.

People have already said that the reason the Virginia situation is more newsworthy is because it's easier for other Americans to identify with the victims, and feel like it has some sort of personal impact on their lives.

"some 140 people were killed [..] in a food market"

So what, people can't identify with civilians who go to the market? Because a food market is such an alien concept, and we can't possibly imagine that being us? Or is it that it's Iraq, and people are always dying there? Because when last I checked, people being killed in educational institutions in the USA isn't exactly uncommon - surely we should be used to that too.

I just really fail to understand why American university students are in some way more special than people in Iraq, or indeed anywhere else that people get killed. To be honest, everything I've seen about US College Culture makes it seem alien to me. I don't get this whole fraternity / sorority thing, nor do I understand the bizarre sports-scholarship concept, or even what they're there to learn. When I went to university, I read Mathematics - so I, y'know, studied Mathematics. I don't get how the US system works, how you can just pick and choose all manner of pointless crap.

This isn't intended as a criticism of the US college system - just that I don't get what these kids actually do, so I don't see why I should feel any special affinity to them. On the other hand, I do know exactly what it's like to go shopping for food. Being killed while shopping for food is a scenario that I can identify with.

So I'll save my sympathy for the 200 dead in Iraq. Everyone else can play at being 'hokies', I'll stick with being an Iraqi.

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And yet the Iraq story is top of the UK version of the site.

Ah, but I never read the UK version of the site, because I don't want Western-biased news. Ironic, huh?

Blog-hopping, sorry for intrusion but-

I agree with you. Whether the media intended to or not, it has placed a premium on the lives of Virginia Tech students who shouldn't be considered as more valuable than the women and kids who died in Baghdad. It seems that for shooting and kidnappings to matter, they have to happen to Americans. Alan Johnston and the rest of the world will be passed over unless we put on the shackles of American citizenship, I guess.

Also, why do all the news reports refer to the killer as a South Korean native when he's lived in the States since 1994?

Christian union held a full day "event to mark a moment of reflection following the heartbreaking events earlierthis week at Virginia Tech University in the United States"

"During this time a short poem will be read and those in attendance will be invited to light a candle to commemorate those who have passed away. The aim is to provide a quiet space for staff and students to take some time to reflect on this terrible tragedy"

Iraq is just as far away and more people are dying... but what the hell. They aren't students, (majority) don't speak english and the almost certainly aren't christian... so why bother.

Also don't mention Darfur.

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