Peggy Noonan’s written about the Tsunamis. Disturbances in the Earth: The biggest story of 2004 is also the oldest story in the world.

The biggest story of the year happened just as big-thinking journalists went on vacation after filing their “Ten Biggest Stories of 2004″ pieces. Life has a way of surprising us.

This is true, of course:

This reminded me of something Ronald Reagan used to say of all the conflicts in the world. He’d say that if the world were attacked by Martians tomorrow, we’d all come together, and it’s too bad we couldn’t manage to cut to the chase. This used to be taken as an example of his idiocy, but of course it’s true. We would all drop our local and ancestral hatreds to fight shoulder to shoulder against the common foe. Years later, in true Reaganesque style, Hollywood produced the blockbuster “Independence Day,” in which extraterrestrials attacked the earth and the world united in resistance.

(In a similar spirit, let me say that if Steven Spielberg went to the Mideast tomorrow, announced he was making a movie, and sent out a casting call for males age 12 to 30 he would immediately establish a new Mideast peace, at least for the length of the shoot. Because the only thing the young men there would rather do than kill each other is be a movie star. Hmmmm, a suicide bombing that raises my family’s status in the neighborhood or a possible date with Cameron Diaz, let’s see . . . Mr. Spielberg would also get a Nobel Peace Prize. I am actually not kidding.)

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