Friday, September 02, 2005

FEMA REFUSED TO ALLOW HELP INTO NEW ORLEANS

Not only did the Bush Administration withdraw funding for levee repairs in New Orleans, not only did they fail to pre-position ships with emergency supplies and personnel prior to the Katrina hit, not only did they fail to provide assistance in evacuating the city prior to the Katrina storm, but...

INCREDIBLE! The Bush Government refused to allow Canadian rescue teams to cross the northern border, [the determined Canadians put their teams and equipment on boats and sailed to Louisana, where state officials let them in to help.]

FEMA also refused to allow fourteen airboats from Florida to enter the city for search and rescue work, as well as refusing former Vice President Gore's donated air planes to remove hospital patients from N.O. Naturally Bush refused offers of medical personnel and supplies from Cuba and oil and gas from Venezuela, but....

EVEN MORE INCREDIBLE: FEMA prohibited the American Red Cross from bringing food and water to the refugees in the N.O. Convention Center and Sports complex on the grounds that if the Red Cross brought in emergency supplies, the refugees wouldn't want to leave the city. People, including babies, were dying there from dehydration and FEMA intentionally ignored them.

Bush and FEMA officials Should be Criminally Prosecuted For Negligent Homicide If Not Manslaughter.

Red Cross NEVER allowed into New Orleans.

Fri Sep 2nd, 2005 at 18:02:05 PDT

My first diary! This whole week has been so depressing. My Red Cross donation was one bright spot. At least I had done something to help.

Then, after reading dKos and the other blogs all week and seeing over and over again comments that that FEMA and the NG were no where to be seen from the people on the ground in NO, I was wondering where the Red Cross was in all this. They were never mentioned. It was like they didn't exist. And, after yesterday's drama at the convention center, the Brown and Chertoff lies, the Red Cross was still MIA. Then, earlier today, I saw a note that the Red Cross was not allowed to enter NO. Hmm, that's doesn't make sense. This simmered for a couple hours.

So I called the Red Cross and asked them if its true....

[editor's note, by SteveRose] updated to more blatant title.

And, to my surprise, the nice lady answering the phone said it was true and they told/asked/ordered not to enter NO. She then went right into her spiel about all the other work the Red Cross was doing across the region. I said that's nice, but I still didn't understand why they weren't in NO. To my amazement, she patiently explained it to me. I even called back to verify what she said. This time she asked if I was media, I said no, just a concerned and confused contributor.

So here goes: Homeland Security (her term, not mine) told the Red Cross DO NOT enter New Orleans and says this still now. And why, you may ask? Not Security. Not worker safety. Not lack of access. It was because people would be drawn to the Red Cross food and they wouldn't want to go to be evacuated. So I asked: "The people starving and dying at the convention center yesterday couldn't get Red Cross food and water because they would be drawn to the food at the convention center, where they were, and not want to be evacuated from the convention center where no evacuations were going on or planned and all the while they are dying". (Actually, it was a couple questions.) She went back into her spiel about all of the other good work they were doing. When I asked again, she said yes, that was true. She seem relieved to admit it.

In closing, I asked if she asked this question before since she was very familiar with the answer she gave. She said yes. And I promised another donation. Which they will get after this post.

So, the question for Bushies, why was the Red Cross banned from NO when they knew people were starving? Could it be they were saving the convention center rescue until Bush's visit today? It certainly seems like it. Doesn't it?

Red Cross National Affairs number (202-303-5551)

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