By any yardstick this is a big story. But not, to judge from today's front pages, as big as the NHS populating hospital wards with foreign nurses or slightly cheaper petrol. Indeed, the possibility of life on Mars is more compelling for the Telegraph than the real loss of life on Earth.
The Guardian alone cleared its front page for the massacre in Pakistan. The Independent and Sun came close with truncated puffs. Only six of the ten front pages here splash on the story - and one of those is the Daily Star having a pop at Russell Brand next to a picture of a woman in bra, knickers, stockings and suspenders. Very appropriate.
The Mail is unfathomable - a strip headline across the bottom (under a picture of Joan Collins) that is half the depth of the puff to a rant about the possibility that Wimbledon might not be on BBC television next year.
Ah yes, Wimbledon. The story that pushed the Sydney siege downpage on The Times's front yesterday. Another baffling news day.
Why don't our papers care about these children? Why didn't - and don't - they care about the girls kidnapped by Boko Haram last April. There were 276 of them. Stolen in the middle of the night from their school dormitories. It took the best part of three weeks for our newspapers to wake up to the story. Videos and a few escapes created a spark of interest, but it soon fizzled out. There were rumours that the girls were to be released six months after the kidnappings, but these came to nought. So here we are, 247 days later and 219 are still missing. Campaigners still tweet #bringbackourgirls, but what else is happening? They will probably feature in the 2014 retrospectives and that'll be about it until the anniversary next spring.
It wasn't always like this. Everyone gave saturation coverage to the children of Beslan ten years ago. We used to pride ourselves on our outward-looking attitude, mocking the Americans for being insular - "is there a bridge to London?" Now the whitetops and the Telegraph don't seem to care about the misfortunes of others unless they can pin a Union Flag to the story: British victims in the case of air crashes or the Ebola epidemic; "We're next on the list" alarmism when there's a terrorist attack.
SubScribe was surprised to see the Mirror dilute its front with the petrol story, an RAC prediction that could easily have been despatched to an inside page. The Mirror is the redtop with a conscience, the Sun the one with the heart.
Don't laugh. Try reading it.
It covers serious stories; it tries to explain foreign issues and political arguments in plain English. The advice given in its health and diet pages is solid and sensible. The "Something for the Weekend" section offers class arts coverage that isn't about Miley Cyrus twerking or a Kardashian bum.
And today it got the front end spot on. A thoughtful headline, a non-gory picture on page 1, immediately followed by a spread, relegating page 3 to page 5. Except it wasn't Rachel from Woking flashing her boobs. It was Naomi Campbell in underwear. Was the absence of bare breasts deliberate? Probably not, but it was fortuitous.
Elsewhere, the level of coverage of the Peshawar killings was dispiriting. Given the events in that part of the world over the past decade, there is no shortage of experts to analyse the events. But what about people on the ground? Everyone is paring back their foreign coverage, bringing home - or rather sacking - their foreign correspondents.
On days like today it shows.
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