The tragic shooting of 26 people – 20 of whom were young children – in Newtown, Connecticut dominates headlines the world over.
- The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation points out that one of the children believed to have been killed had just moved from Winnipeg.
- A number of Middle Eastern media outlets published an AFP (Agence France Presse) report quoting the condolences of Iran’s Foreign Minister.
- The BBC’s Scotland correspondent offers some lessons learned from the UK’s worst-ever school massacre that killed 16 children in 1996 in Dunblane, Scotland.
- Kevin Cameron, a Canadian trauma expert, explains to the Globe and Mail what kind of psychological first-aid the children who survived will need. And he offers a warning: in the days ahead, Mr. Cameron says, it’s important for police, school and health officials to keep a close watch for copycats. “We know that high-profile violence intensifies already existing symptoms in other troubled individuals,” he says. “We identified this post-Columbine and in other incidents.”
- But mostly the question all the foreign observers have is this: will this awful event be the tipping point in the gun control debate in the U.S.? Will this bring about a challenge to the NRA that the shooting of Congresswoman Gabbie Gifford and the massacre at the Sikh Temple did not? Here’s the concluding and representative reflection of today’s article from the German broadcaster Deutsche Welle.
The increase in gun ownership can certainly not be linked to the crime rate in the U.S., as the number of violent crimes has been declining. It’s the mass shootings that have most frightened the nation: April 20, 1999, Columbine High School, 13 dead; April 16, 2007, Virginia Tech University, 32 dead; November 5, 2009, Fort Hood, 13 dead; July 20, 2012, Aurora, 12 dead.
But even after such massacres, the gun lobby, led by the powerful National Rifle Association (NRA), has continued to stand behind the Second Amendment and reject legislative change. On the morning after the massacre in Newtown, the NRA reaction on both Twitter and its website was the same: silence.
For more world reaction to the Newtown shootings click to our latest coverage here.