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Tens of Thousands Evacuated, 25 Dead So Far

River Sava Has Not Crested Yet

Chance for Europe, Washington to Show If They Really Have a Humanitarian Heart

VIENNA, Austria, May 18 – Ever heard of a “river tsunami?” I have not. Not only last night when I first received the news that my sister and her family from Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia, were forceODBRAMBENI BEDEMd to evacuate by the fast-rising Sava river waters.

How fast?

“At one place, the river rose about 18 feet in 20 minutes,” a nephew from Belgrade told me. He was the one who first reported the news to me.

Flooding is the worst since weather records have been kept in Serbia (since 1887). As of Saturday night, more than 20,000 people had been evacuated in Sremska Mitrovica alone, a town of about 100,000 in which my parents lived when I graduated from high school.

“It is very, very bad,” my nephew summed up his detailed report about the flooding.  He has been never prone to use hyperbole.

Screen Shot 2014-05-18 at 6.02.11 AMYou can see just how bad things were two days ago from this aerial photo.

And the worst is yet to come. River Sava has not crested as yet. That is expected to in the Belgrade region on Monday or Tuesday (May 19-20).

So the rescue workers and volunteer citizens are fighting to protect Sremska Mitrovica and other Serbian towns from the raging river (see the photos below).

  sremska-mitrovica5-Biljana-5-17-14 Screen Shot 2014-05-18 at 6.03.49 AMsremska-mitrovica1-Biljana-5-17-14

This is what I posted last night on Facebook about the flood:

I interrupt our Vienna travelogues with this emergency broadcast.

Over here in Vienna, we have had three days of non-stop frigid rain, along with strong winds. But elsewhere in Eastern Europe, things are much worse. 

I just heard that my sister and her family, for example, have been forced to evacuate their home in Sremska Mitrovica (former Sirmium, Roman Empire capital). They have moved temporarily to Austria where my sister’s elder daughter lives.

The flood levels of the river Sava have now reportedly exceeded the historical highs. There are at least 20,000 people who have been evacuated from this town of about 100,000 alone. 

Please pray for their safety and recovery after the rivers recede.

Chance for Europe, Washington to Show If They Really Have a Humanitarian Heart

And to my nephew in Belgrade from whom I first heard about the flood catastrophe, I said this:

Thanks for this elaborate explanation. This will be now a God-given opportunity for the rest of Europe to show its humanitarian face, if there is one still left, and rush in emergency supplies and reconstruction help for Serbia. Up until now, they have been largely destroying the country allegedly for political reasons. Now we will see if what sort of a heart Europe really has.

Keep me informed. There is always a reason for everything that happens. And everything is a lesson.

And the lesson here will be derived from what kind of a humanitarian response Serbia receives from Europe and the rest of the smug and touchy-feely  “international community.” Over the last two decades, Washington and Europe have  done much to destroy that country, and precious little to help rebuild the lives of the survivors of their assaults and inhumanity. Now God is giving them all a chance to show if they have a humanitarian heart.

Let us pray… for the people and all sentient and inanimate beings in Serbia…on this Sunday, May 18, the year of the Lord 2014 AD.

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