Madam was very pleased and relieved to read about the gunman who fired at our mission in Sarajevo today. He wounded a policeman but was fairly quickly subdued and taken into custody.
Why the pleasure and relief? Because - aside from the policeman whose injury is tragic, unnecessary, and deeply regrettable - no other innocent bystander (such as, for example, any NIV applicant) was hurt. Since the attack took place in mid-afternoon, perhaps the visa applicants had simply cleared out by then. Or perhaps the consular section takes the safety of its customers seriously, and assures that none are ever compelled to wait in that world-wide danger zone, on the sidewalk outside a US embassy. Madam has never been to Sarajevo, but the second possibility appears more likely than it might in another place, because Sarajevo's NIV backlog is only one day for all visa categories: the first sign of a thoughtfully- and humanely-run consular section.
If only luck and timing were responsible for the lack of civilian casualties, Madam hopes that the mission will take note and take more care. If it was deliberate policy that kept the innocent out of harm's way, respectful kudos are due to Anne-Marie Casella and her staff.