needs to be leveled

This is like 9/11 on the whole island of Manhattan.

New York Task Force 1, the Fire Department rescue team that combed the wreckage at Ground Zero and Hurricane Katrina:

When you have your head in the hole, you forget where you are. You could be anywhere, really. And that person you’re looking for could be anywhere. It’s real simple though. You want to get them out alive.

It doesn’t matter if it’s manmade or natural.

Even if Haiti didn’t send anything monetarily in 2001, I’m sure they sent their prayers to us and it’s our turn now.

Not a lot left to be said, except build back better:

The scale of the disaster is coming into view. All of the clichés born of extremity came to mind…

First, rescue and relief efforts are far from over. Although for some they are too late, for others they are just beginning.

Second, in-kind donations are not really what is needed now; the only exception is Meals Ready to Eat.

Third, the Haitian government has been dealt a severe blow and not just to its buildings. If at a quarter to five in the afternoon an earthquake takes down not only the National Palace but also the Ministry of the Interior, the State Department, the Tax Bureau, and the Ministries of Finance, Planning, Public Works and Public Health, as well as the parliament building, you can well imagine the gaps.

Fourth…a different kind of urban planning and a long-term respect for the Haitian people’s wishes.

Finally, rescuers will get tired.