Prospect Heights, Brooklyn.. . .The

Prospect Heights, Brooklyn.

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The first news I had of the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in Africa was this e-mail. At the time it seemed extraordinary to get a first-hand account of a terrorist attack from a friend. Now most people I know can tell a similar story.

Date: Fri, 7 Aug 1998 13:53:11 +0300 (GMT+0300)
From: Shova <...@unep.org>
Subject: east africa under attack??

dear all,

just thought i should send you news of the explosions in this part of the continent. the first bomb exploded in nairobi, around 1030am. still on vacation, i was barely awake when i heard the loud explosion and saw the windows shake in my bedroom. i was on the point of passing it off as some car jacking episode with gunfire between police and car jackers, but thought it didn't sound right, because there was just a single explosion. immediately i got a call from my husband, in the UN, who informed me that a bomb had exploded in the co-op building in town...

soon, friends started calling, and then the local tv started a live broadcast. it wasn't a pretty sight. the bomb had exploded between the coop building and the us embassy on haile selassie street. there was much damage, reports now confirm 10 dead and 200+ injured. speculations were rife...was there a coup brewing?... the hospitals are now filling up with casualties, and they're requesting for blood from donors. people are not clear yet, as to whether the us ambassador was still in the co-op building or had returned to the embassy, next door. the us embassy has been damaged as well. the explosion was so strong apparently it blew off the bomb proof doors of the us embassy and these were later used as stretchers. apparently there was a car bomb that exploded outside the coop building as well. buses were hit by this explosion causing deaths. at the moment entrance to town has been sealed off, and rescue operations are still in progress...

and then sky tv broke in with news that there were 4 simultaneous bomb blasts in 4 african capitals, in kenya, tanzania, sudan and uganda. wow!!! east africa under attack? (although sudan would be north africa) the us embassies in all four capitals have been targeted... now there's widespread speculation of an external terrorist plot. it's too early to know the truth, yet. but we shall wait and see... i'm sure things will start getting clearer once the evacuation is over, and investigations begin.

in the meantime i do hope that we find peace soon, in the midst of unknown evil forces. have a peaceful, unexplosive day, won't you?


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What to tell your child.