Sunday, September 04, 2005

Bunk Versus De-Bunk

Salvation Army (SA) Divisional Commander Major Dalton Cunningham:
"I don't think anyone could have predicted the geographical expanse and the massive destruction that was going to happen would be this huge."

National Geographic, 2004:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency lists a hurricane strike on New Orleans as one of the most dire threats to the nation, up there with a large earthquake in California or a terrorist attack on New York City. Even the Red Cross no longer opens hurricane shelters in the city, claiming the risk to its workers is too great.

George W. Bush, President of the United States:
"I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the levees."

Al Naomi, Project Manager, New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps, June 6, 2005:
"In fiscal year 2006, the New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is bracing for a record $71.2 million reduction in federal funding....I've been here over 30 years and I've never seen this level of reduction.... These projects are literally life-and-death projects to the people of south Louisiana.... The cuts mean major hurricane and flood protection projects will not be awarded..."

FEMA Director Michael Brown:
"We did not anticipate ... that there would be quite the numbers that we are dealing with, and that we would have the logistical problems that we're having getting those people evacuated."

LSU’s Hurricane Center, Summer, 2005:

From the simulation, officials estimate that a storm like Hurricane Pam would:
  • cause flooding that would leave 300,000 people trapped in New Orleans, many of whom would not have private transportation for evacuation;
  • send evacuees to 1,000 shelters, which would likely remain open for 100 days;
  • require the transfer of patients from hospitals in harm’s way to hospitals in other parts of the state;
  • trigger outbreaks of tetanus, influenza, and other diseases likely to be present after a storm;
  • create 30 million cubic yards of debris and 237,000 cubic yards of household hazardous waste.

    Lt. Gen. H Steven Blum, the head of the National Guard Bureau:
    "We did not anticipate the collapse of local law enforcement."

    National Guard Fact Sheet, Army National Guard Charter:
    "Under state law, the ARNG provides protection of life, property and preserves peace, order and public safety. These missions are accomplished through emergency relief support during natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and forest fires; search and rescue operations; support to civil defense authorities; maintenance of vital public services, and counterdrug operations."

    Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff:
    "I have not heard a report of thousands of people in the Convention Center who don't have food and water."

    CNN (website and Cable news), Simultaneously:
    "At the Ernest Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, thousands of increasingly frustrated people waited for help amid dead bodies, feces and garbage, in 90-degree heat and rain with little food and water. (See video on the desperate conditions -- 4:36)"

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