August 18th, 2010
07:25 PM ET

In flooded village, fight for survival postpones grief

Reshma Jan, 10, stands near the brick rubble that fell on and killed her mother in Tanab, Pakistan.

Tanab, Pakistan - Reshma Jan remembers the flood as the waters that took away her mother.

It was nighttime, said the 10-year-old, and there was a lot of water and screaming. Reshma's father was trying to carry his ailing wife, as the waters swept away their home, built with mud and brick. It was the bricks, held together by mud, that collapsed on Reshma's mother.

"There was too much water," Reshma said. "We couldn't take her. She died."

There is no time for even a 10-year-old to grieve in the village of Tanab, in Khyber Paktunkhwa, even 20 days after the flood hit. It is survival of the living here, amid a landscape stripped bare. Dozens of houses are gone, piles of mud and debris left in their place as the waters receded. Wells filled with drinking water are now contaminated. Food is scarce: The only aid that has come is rice, which is what these villagers say they're grateful to be eating.

Wednesday, though, was a marked improvement for this village. Representatives of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees arrived and distributed non-food items like tents and blankets. But the aid is a trickle against a crisis that is only expanding.

"We think people aren't yet aware of how bad it is here," said Ariane Rummery. "People need to understand this isn't over yet. Much more aid needs to be sent in now. It's very frustrating because the needs are mounting every day. And we just don't have enough resources."

Addressing the possibility of international donor fatigue, Rummery said: "[The flood victims] are people like you and I. They're trying to feed their children. They're trying to find a dry place to sleep. We may be weary, but these people are more weary."

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Filed under: Pakistan
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. daniel

    my question-since were seeing so much mud and water and rain and alot of wetness – how are these folks sopposed to cook the dry goods aid organisations send in bulk ? -i know if you soak rise it softens -and i know peoples in africa use solar ovens -made of cardboard foil and plastic bags and black metal painted boxes maybe these would work to purify water after filtering by boiling and cook food -since i figure dry wood -if available if its non existant may be out of the question for use --i hope the pakisatnis are verry creative -survival may require it since most crops are grown in irrigated fields near rivers and streams near where the flooding happened – for those not victims of drowning disease-theft violence and sarvation or mal nurishment related illnesses may still take there toll over the next few months -sad –as for financial aid -except things imported alonmg with supply and demand – i would wish the world -america and europe – would consider sending small donations -per person from peoples to peoples – why because say $60 u.s. dollars in currency in poakistan if donated would feed a family of two or three a whole month because of the differences in values of money and wages -–my prayers are with the people and the military -not the traliban nor the govt nor the intelegence comunity –but the regular people and the gallant military –i thank the pakisatn /un forces for rescueing our delta force and marines tropops when they got trapped in mogadutshu somalia -in the and fought the taliban in the swat valley and the civilian tribes villagers that have been attacked by the taliban for wanting to help pakistans military or the u.s. in the tribal regions i wish the news could give credible reliable names of co."s and addresses and donation trnsaphering instructions -so other peoples knew who to donate to and how to donate -ecause time is not on the side of the affliced people there who are getting desparate and suffereing -daniel .

    August 18, 2010 at 9:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • JN

      Imran Khan has launched a flood appeal the detials below or you can go to the UNHCR or Redcross website and contribute to the Pakistan Flood relief.

      Imran Khan Flood Relief
      Account # 06027900799703
      Habib Bank Ltd.
      Swift: HABBPKKA
      Toll Free: 0800 00048

      August 18, 2010 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Liaq

      U r a star , your comments are great i hope every in the west think like you !!

      August 23, 2010 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  2. acmed Shams

    Maywe never forget how brutal and dictatorial the Taliban are and why US forces are so needed there
    Please watch this. Seriously.

    August 18, 2010 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • DaLe

      Pictures of stonings, cutting throats and suffering in general on one side, and pictures of planes dropping bombs on the other side, are quite a contrast, aren't they? Yet, they also are a lot alike, aren't they?

      August 19, 2010 at 1:35 am | Report abuse |
    • DaLe


      August 19, 2010 at 1:44 am | Report abuse |
    • juicy78

      They posted the video to show us tha they are pople and need our help and they have always needed us and was forced and turned. we need to help if we can please if you can afford it please do so it is horrible and this is like clean up for them a new start. we as americans need to show them even though you may hate us cause you don;t understand us we still love you.

      August 20, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  3. sadia

    why post such videos when we're discussing the floods in pakistan?

    August 18, 2010 at 11:35 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Yo

    These poor people look like humans but why dont they start behaving and thinking like humans. Stoning, suicide bombing , sheltering terrorists in civilian areas and killing people of other beliefs. Y cant pakistani army eliminate these supposedly few bad eggs. Oh is it bcoz the majority are like that and all this is fine in Islam.

    August 19, 2010 at 4:40 am | Report abuse |
    • juicy78

      Can we eliminate every murder in american all the rapiest come on we are more intellegant then that

      August 20, 2010 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. hinz

    All talibans are bred by US everything is impulsive.despite of creating good fame of US army there they r creating their brutal image by blind bombing upon innocent civilians.there was only on 9/11 in Pakisan and Afghanistan every week it the time comes to understand and negotiate to each other in spite of propagating hatred against each other.

    August 19, 2010 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Liaq

      U r absolutely right and the media of pak is not strong enough to hilight this issue and tell the world what you are saying ...

      August 23, 2010 at 12:26 am | Report abuse |
  6. Desiboy

    Funny that couple of retarded muslims butchering each other and non muslims are quick to put all of them in the same pile, Yest US soldiers killing people that have no family or lively hood to live for is considered Courage...
    Its sad how Media can paint a picture gone so wrong, and call a operation which was all about Oil and power a so called war on Terror. Funny where are the Weapons of mass Destruction that were in IRAQ yet today they finished the combat mission... more like the oil and minerals mission and getting anther pet in the middle east. Pretty Sad the World we live in were money hungry Corporations call the shots and setup up whcih ever country they feel they can earn the most $$ from., and blind its public to belive its "theory on things"

    August 19, 2010 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • syed

      September 23, 2010 at 2:43 am | Report abuse |
  7. Sarah


    September 11, 2010 at 11:21 pm | Report abuse |
  8. syed

    we appreciate everyone participating in flood relief compaign

    September 23, 2010 at 2:44 am | Report abuse |
  9. pak UAE

    September 23, 2010 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
  10. Appeal to Pakisatni at UAE
    Donate and get reward from ALLAH(SWT)

    September 23, 2010 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
  11. UAE Red Cresent and PAD Compaign in DUBAI

    September 23, 2010 at 3:06 am | Report abuse |