Mary Jansia, 26, thought the safest place for her 3-year-old daughter was on her shoulders. Thanaranjani, 28, swears that she never let go of her 4-year-old daughter. Bamini, 29, said she left her 6-year-old daughter and 6-month-old son alone for only five minutes.
The three women, who are all from northeastern Sri Lanka, are members of a group that may emerge as one more grim legacy of the tsunami that ravaged Indian Ocean coastlines on Dec. 26. An unusually high number of the victims appear to have been children, lost to epic waves that swept away the weak, the old and the young.
Unicef officials estimate that of the 30,000 people killed by the tsunamis in Sri Lanka, at least 10,000 were children. At the same time, Sri Lankan officials say the tsunamis created only about 200 orphans. Martin Dawes, a Unicef spokesman, said he believed that the number of children who had died would rise.
So begins David Rohde's Tsunami's Cruelest Toll: Sons and Daughters Lost on the front page of this morning's Times.
Doulgas Jehl's C.I.A. Report Finds Its Officials Failed in Pre-9/11 Efforts explains the latest accountability dance (haven't we learned by now that failure only results in praise from the Bully Boy?):
An internal investigation by the Central Intelligence Agency has concluded that officials who served at the highest levels of the agency should be held accountable for failing to allocate adequate resources to combating terrorism before the Sept. 11 attacks, according to current and former intelligence officials.
The conclusion is spelled out in a near-final version of a report by John Helgerson, the agency's inspector general, who reports to Congress as well as to the C.I.A. Among those most sharply criticized in the report, the officials said, are George J. Tenet, the former intelligence chief, and James L. Pavitt, the former deputy director of operations. Both Mr. Tenet and Mr. Pavitt stepped down from their posts last summer.
The findings, which are still classified, pose a quandary for the C.I.A. and the administration, particularly since President Bush awarded a Medal of Freedom to Mr. Tenet last month. It is not clear whether either the agency or the White House has the appetite to reprimand Mr. Tenet, Mr. Pavitt or others.
Also check out Robert D. McFadden's First Murder Charge in '64 Civil Rights Killings of 3:
The most infamous unresolved case from America's civil rights struggle four decades ago - the 1964 abduction and killing of three voter-registration volunteers by nightriders on a lonely rural road in Mississippi - was revived last night with the arrest of a longtime leader of the Ku Klux Klan, the authorities announced.
The suspect, Edgar Ray Killen, a 79-year-old preacher who, investigators say, organized and led two carloads of Klansmen on the night of the killings, was arrested at his home in Philadelphia, Miss., and charged with the murders of Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, Sheriff Larry Myers of Neshoba County said.
The sheriff said there would be more arrests in the notorious case, which helped to cement Mississippi's image as a haven of hatred and violence in the 1960's, when black churches, homes and businesses were firebombed and civil rights volunteers were beaten by white mobs. The case was the subject of several books and was dramatized in the 1988 movie "Mississippi Burning."
Maybe in forty years, America can have some accountability for the actions of the current administration?