Published On: Wed, Oct 20th, 2010

Chile Shows the Strength of a United Nation

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On 5th of August, 33 miners found themselves trapped within the San Jose Mine in Chile. Rescue workers tried to reach the miners but it was later understood how difficult this was going to be. It was realized that the rescue of the miners was going to be a major task, which led to the involvement of the Chilean government. And with each passing day, media interest grew and the rescue operation of the trapped miners developed into a major story around the world.

After 69 days of being trapped, all 33 miners were rescued within 24 hours. The major rescue operation was a risk but full credit to the Chileans for their bravery. Each miner was rescued one by one after a capsule was sent down, and carried each miner individually, to be reunited with family and friends. As the event unfolded, news channels from across the globe were all present, not wanting to miss a single moment of this extraordinary story. The Chilean President, Sebastian Pinera had camped outside along with others and was present throughout the entire rescue operation.

The President anxiously awaited the rescue of each miner and greeted each and everyone with a great deal of warmth and relief to see them safe. A great deal of credit should be given to the Chilean President for his involvement in the rescue. His cabinet had warned him that there were risks involved and if anything was to go wrong, all the responsibility and blame would lie solely with him. But Pinera went ahead with it, took the risk and it paid off in the end. Not only has it increased his popularity, it has also given his government a lot of credibility.

And the Chilean government made sure that all the action was being covered. The rescue team had a camera which was taking shots of what was also going on underground. But this entire operation was not about Pinera scoring points or the rise in popularity for his government. This entire rescue operation meant much more than that. Everything could have gone horribly wrong and all the blame could have been on President Pinera, due to his heavy involvement. The success of the rescue must have meant a great deal to the president on every level and not just for political gains. Shortly before the rescue operation took place, during an interview with the BBC news, the President was asked how much money was spent. To this he replied that a lot of money, but it was all worth it.

As each miner was brought to the surface, people were overjoyed and shouted pro Chile slogans. The happiness and relief of the people was evident on their faces, as they hugged and congratulated each other. The scenes were truly amazing and spirit shown by people of Chile very heartening. It simply showed how a crisis can bring a nation closer together, and this should be a lesson for all. What is also praiseworthy is the fact that Chile only ordered certain components from abroad. But the planning and actual rescue operation was carried out by Chile itself and it should be complimented for its hard work and dedication.

Each miner brought to safety was cheered. But the celebrations did not end after the 33rd miner was brought to the surface. People danced in the streets and Chilean flags were flying high. People were showing their pride at being Chilean. The party continued into the next day as well but the people were not tired of the celebration. One does not have to be a Chilean in order to understand the magnitude of the rescue operation. Being trapped underground for 69 days is no laughing matter and to successfully bring them all to safety would make any nation feel proud of their success.

All 33 men are back with their loved ones and are enjoying life once again. But the San Jose story shall never be forgotten. It will perhaps go down in history as one of the biggest success stories of our time. It had all the elements of an action film. It was gripping, exciting as well as a few anxious moments. There are even talks of a film being made, which shows the huge interest in this. All of that aside, the San Jose mine has taught some valuable lessons to us all. It has shown us all that we can overcome any crisis if there is unity and togetherness. And that anything can be overcome with a bit of hope, belief and faith. And above all, the people of Chile have taught us that a nation can face anything if the people stand united as one.

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