RUMANIA: The Earth's Madness

Disaster announced its presence in Bucharest one evening last week with a long, moaning roar. The earth began to heave, and older buildings in the pleasant, tree-shaded Rumanian capital (pop. 1.7 million) shuddered and started to collapse. A major earthquake¬óregistering 7.2 on the Richter scale¬óhad struck. For six terrifying minutes, the calamitous shaking continued.

It was the worst quake to hit Europe in decades.* In Bucharest, at least 500 died and 2,600 were injured, and there were fears that the death toll in all of Rumania might reach into the thousands. The oil-producing center of Ploesti, 35 miles north of...

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