Comments

apit34356 wrote on 9/1/2005, 9:26 PM
Not to start a debate, but the events are not similar, except for major damage and life loss. I agree that we, the U.S., will not see any or much help from the world, except from our closest allies. Just remember, that Tsunami event did not have much, if any warning before it struck. The Hurricane event had a day or two of warnings, lot of people did not leave. The Tsunami event immediate life loss was extremely high, fortunely, the Hurricane immediate life loss was not.

My sister and her family decided to stay because they thought the warnings were over blown,( fortunely, they are ok, but are without power, water, etc). I like New Orleans, but they have always known about the the dangers. I think sometimes people are drawn to high stress living.

People do need help in the effected areas. I do worry about the health of these storm victims, especially the ones eating food from the stores affected by the flood waters. Even sealed food is dangerous because people fail to clean off the containers and clean thier hands before handling the food.
johnmeyer wrote on 9/1/2005, 9:28 PM
The scope of this disaster is huge. The entire width of Mississippi is devastated from the coast to almost two miles inland.

Everyone knows about New Orleans, which is about to be completely evacuated -- an unprecedented move.

Even if we had all the money in the world, there is no way, in just a few days, that everyone across hundreds of square miles, can be rescued, fed, sheltered, etc. That said, there are people, especially in New Orleans, who clearly are not being helped at all, but it is tough to get people in to help when some of the people they are trying to help are shooting at them. I don't think I heard about anyone in Thailand, or other Tsunami areas, taking shots at the rescuers.

I have a good friend who spent the last six months in Thailand helping with the relief efforts. According to him, it took weeks and weeks before most people got the relief supplies. My friend's main effort was setting up communication systems to help people identify corpses. He showed me pictures he took of the open morgues with thousands of bodies, weeks after the event. Just like in New Orleans, the bodies are not dealt with immediately; there are other immediate priorities.

We all need to be very, very careful how we consume the media reports about this horrific event. The media tends to focus on what is not being done, especially around the projects in New Orleans. However, I listened to the head of FEMA today who gave a very cogent news conference presentation. Here is a guy who also headed up the Tsunami relief efforts, and he was able to compare and contrast the problems faced in both situations. The scope of what is being done now is on a scale that is totally unprecedented, far larger than the Tsunami. The number of military personnel involved is bigger than any domestic event in history. The number of government people, across over thirty different agencies, is also bigger than all the relief efforts in last year's hurricanes combined.

There are people who are suffering greatly, and there are tens of thousands of people from all walks of life on the way to help them. I know we live in an era of point and click instant gratification. Unfortunately, relief efforts take days and weeks to ramp up. I live in California, and we are always warned that after an earthquake, we should plan to be totally on our own for at least a week. That's the grim fact after a disaster.

As for civic pride, speaking for myself, I have never been prouder to be an American. The people that are suffering will be helped; the cities will be re-built; energy sources will be brought back on-line; and we will take the lessons learned and be better prepared for the next big challenge.

FrigidNDEditing wrote on 9/1/2005, 9:45 PM
Well, I just have to say, CATEGORY 5 HURRICANE!!!

I'm sorry, but if you live in a big bowl, and you know it's coming, and you don't leave - I haven't got a lot of sympathy for you.

Now that being said - it's terrible what's happening there, and I think that Pmasters is right - everyone thinks that the great and powerfull america doesn't need help because we're so "rich" - why isn't our own media saying anything? (this is gonna get me in trouble with some of you) They half think that we deserve to be hurt because we're so much better off than the rest of the world (it's just not much of a concious view, but I think that's why)

Dave
Spot|DSE wrote on 9/1/2005, 9:45 PM
Well said words, John. Most every state governor has asked employers to allow employees to take time to help where they can. In Utah (and I'm sure in other states) 2 chartered jets landed at the AF base in New Orleans, I understand it's the only strip open. They are airlifting several hundred people to Utah tomorrow, and they'll be returning. Utah has pledged to bring in up to 2000 people on state expense to be housed in unused miltary housing and winter relief housing, and if they can reassemble some of the Olympic housing, that too, will be available. The department of Workforce Services in Utah has started outreach programs for immediate job placement for temp jobs, and the Mormon church took 6 semi loads of emergency food, blankets, and water.
Patrick, I think you're seeing the darker side of things vs what's probably really happening. I know in my own little world of Utah's culture, people are scrambling to do whatever they can. I'm certain that every state has similar programs happening.
It's unfortunate that the news is reported differently in the US than the US reported the devastation in other countries, I agree. I also agree that it's an atrocity that many news agencies outside of the US are reporting it as "stupid Americans, they should have known better" but at the same time, America is viewed by some nations as the "leader" of the world, and therefore nothing like this should ever happen here.

All I can say is that my heart goes out to the families who have lost their homes, jobs, way of life, and must start all over again from scratch. There are some members of this community that have been displaced, I hope we'll be able to hear from them soon.
jlafferty wrote on 9/1/2005, 10:11 PM
Well, I just have to say, CATEGORY 5 HURRICANE!!!

That's ludicrous.

The place hit is among the poorest regions in the states, if not the poorest. Many who live(d) there had barely enough funds to scrape by a mockery of normal life, and you're asking them to evacuate their homes -- with what? What car? Where would they stay? Do you know of any free hotels?

The real atrocity of this disaster is that the government knew it was innevitable and turned a blind eye to the threat (in fact, diverted funds away from it). And now the scape goat has become "the looters" -- a tiny fraction of a large group of desperate people without food or water for days.
FrigidNDEditing wrote on 9/1/2005, 10:18 PM
What was the Govt. supposed to do? Stop the hurricane from coming? - 2 days? - that's hardly enough tome for Govt. to wipe its own butt :)

There's no need for a "scape goat" with natural disasters, but if a hurricane were coming my way, and I had no money - I'd find a way - I've been VERY poor (right around $8K anual house hold income, my mom and I, there's no way we wouldn't have gotten out - we would have gotten out, your life is worth more than your home.

And just so you know - the govt. actually was doing things to "prevent" so to speak - they had it in the works so as soon as the hurricane was over there was money to start going in.

Dave
John_Cline wrote on 9/1/2005, 10:27 PM
First of all, I'm not terribly surprised that aid isn't pouring in from outside the U.S. Due primarily to our current administration's policies and actions over the last, oh, say... four or five years, we aren't terribly popular with the rest of the world.

Secondly, yes, there were some idiots that ignored the evacuation warnings, but the majority of the people now stuck in New Orleans probably didn't have the financial resources to leave town. They lived in a bathtub with a category five hurricane heading straight for them AND they happened to be too poor to do anything about it.

Lastly, I think it's kind of strange that Congress could convene a special session, on a moments notice, on a weekend no less, to pass legislation to "save" a brain-dead woman and our president immediately flew back to Washington from one of his numerous extended vacations to sign the legislation. Now, this disaster happened last Monday and Congress still hasn't wandered back in to work to get some relief legislation passed. It seems to me that the party in charge has massively misplaced their priorities. I'm just waiting for Pat Robertson to say that because of their hedonistic lifestyle, New Orleans got what they deserved.

John
PossibilityX wrote on 9/1/2005, 10:29 PM
$1 billion a week would buy a lot of disaster relief for any government.

If that government saved $1 billion a week for the past, uh, PERIOD when it was spending it instead with Halliburton, perhaps there'd be a Shiite-load of $$$ available now to help the folks on the Gulf coast.

I've made stupid investment decisions in my life, but I can rest easy knowing that no matter how stupid they were (or will be, in the future) I've been severely overmatched in the Stupid Spending Department. There's such a thing as spreading one's self too thin and then NOT having anything left to give.

Hard to take care of things at home when you're busy "taking care" of things halfway around the world.

CLINE: Well spoken, man.
kentwolf wrote on 9/1/2005, 10:57 PM
>>the scape goat ..."the looters"...desperate people without food or water for days

1.) So that makes them steal TV's and stereos...with no power available.

2.) So that causes at least 12 rapes in the Superdome of which I can remember for sure.

3.) So that causes at least 6 murders in the Superdome of which I can remember for sure.

4.) So that makes them shoot (stolen) guns at rescue workers.

Got it.

That hardly qualifies one for "scapegoat" status.

Same mentality as the "L.A. Riots" of a few years back.
filmy wrote on 9/1/2005, 11:27 PM
>>>The place hit is among the poorest regions in the states, if not the poorest. Many who live(d) there had barely enough funds to scrape by a mockery of normal life, and you're asking them to evacuate their homes -- with what? What car? Where would they stay? Do you know of any free hotels?<<<<

I agree and than again I don't. Poor - oh yes, however Katrina also hit a lot of other "not poor" areas. I have seen interview after interview with people saying things like "We have heard this all before and it never happened so we stayed, now look." I also have heard interviews with tourists who are not poor but had no way to evacuate because the airports all shut down. People were told to go to certian areas - media focused only on the "big one" at first. All of sudden thousands of people come out of the civic center and it takes the mayor to issue an "SOS" for those people. And near by a hotel offerred a place for cover - yet they are all but forgotten about. Over in Chalmette local schools were being used until the levee's' were breached and everything there flooded. I heard that about 100 people died in one evacuation area in SBP because no one knew they were there, no one came to rescue them and supplies ran out. The Chalmette Medical Center had to be evacuated yet I don't think I have heard any mention of this anywhere. One of my best friends is from there, his family still lives there - want to see the neigborhood? Chalmette, LA after Katrina.

My point being that many people got out, others - poor or not - stayed for whatever reason. The night it hit people were drinking down in the french quater. The day after, before the levee breaks and the flood, people were starting to party it up. I do not blame this on being "poor", I blame it on being stupid maybe. Or maybe just jaded because they had heard it all before.

>>>And now the scape goat has become "the looters" -- a tiny fraction of a large group of desperate people without food or water for days.<<<

Scape goat for what? Today has been an interesting day really. One side is going on about how it is a racist issue - if it has been 'rich white republicans' and not 'poor black democrats' you would have seen faster action. Another side is saying "the looters" are only getting food and water that they need yet when you see the footage of people stealing TV's, stealing guns and very "trendy" white kids stuffing shirts into a bag the issue seems to change to some other topic. Word is in the dome a 9 year old girl was raped and rival gang members are trying to take over.

Hey, I can see a lot of sides to this. Right now it is a mess and IMO G.W is not the leader this country needs right now. It was painful in those early hours hearing him toss out a few words about how "the country was there for them" as he went into another well praticed speech about how "we are winning the war in Iraq". And than that awful mumbly address he gave yesterday. It was pathetic. Someone early on said to get Rudy on a plane out to the area and have him be the spokesperson. But than we also have the media - as I flip from network to network I have seen the media do what they don't normally do - help. I see a producer run out to someone and pull them in from the water, I see another take some people onto their boat, I see another crying....that little "third wall" is being broken daily. Yet I also hear the "other side" starting to say "The media needs to stop saying the Goverment isn't doing anything. The media should shut up or do something to help" and the irony is that it *is* the media who has been out in force doing the helping. It was the media who got out the message to FEMA about the thousands at the Convention Center. It was the media who have manged to get into these areas in hours when it has taken days to get our 'highly trained' rescue teams in.

yeah, ok...it is a bit typical to see the media right there sticking the camera in the saddness but somehow this is all different. In a large sense, like what happened on September 11, 2001, I just don't think people were prepared for this large of an event. No matter what is being said about one area - I simply do not think anyone expected the *scope* of this. On the first day there was talk about a communication breakdown with rescue services. Now today we hear the ACOE and FEMA and others defending why it has taken so long to get anywhere. At face value it all makes sense but than you look at IRAQ - and I have to agree somewhat with the people who wonder how we can drop thousands of people, vehicles, food, tents and so on into a desert most people have never been to and create a mobile city overnight but we can't get the same thing in a day in an area that has hundreds of national media already there. All this considering GW already declaired much of these area a disaster area before anything happened.

EDIT - spelling
johnmeyer wrote on 9/1/2005, 11:38 PM
Lastly, I think it's kind of strange that Congress could convene on a moments notice, on a weekend no less, to pass legislation on a brain dead woman and our president immediately flew back to Washington from one of his numerous extended vacations to sign the legislation.

For those not familiar with this comparison, John didn't invent it. He took it directly from today's "hate Bush" talking points that are making the rounds of the Internet BLOGS. It is, of course, a completely silly comparison. Congress is the legislative branch of government. It has only one "weapon" in its arsenal: legislation. It can pass laws, and it can appropriate money. It cannot send the military anywhere, or send more cops, or anything else. They can convene to appropriate money, as they have now done, but there is no urgency to this function because in an emergency the Executive branch (which does have the ability to do all the things I listed above) can send in the troops without waiting for the money to be appropriated (as, in fact, Bush had already done).

In the case of the brain dead woman, she was being starved to death by the removal of her feeding tube and, by passing a law, Congress could stop that act from taking place. Whether you agree or disagree with what happened in that case, at least understand that, in order to do something, a law had to be passed quickly. By contrast, in this case, Congress has no real need to act quickly because they, by how our government is designed, have virtually no real-time role in situations like this. Not one thing they did today, when they did convene, was necessary to enable any action to take place over the next several weeks. If they had voted next week, the same exact actions would still take place in the coming days. The date of their vote was completely irrelevant to anything (except for political show, I suppose).

Thus, making this statement is merely an attempt to politicize something that has no business being politicized. I find these attempts to politicize this tragedy to be crass, pointless, unfeeling, and an horrendous exercise of poor taste. What is the point of making these statements? Who does it help?

What's more, in all cases so far -- just as in this one, as I have already pointed out -- these points are not even close to the mark. For instance some German newspaper ran an article stating that hurricane itself was Bush's fault because he has refused to sign the Kyoto agreement on global warming.

Right.

Even if he had signed it, and even if he had immediately started it implementation, it would have made about a 0.1% change in global carbon dioxide output at this point in time. Much of the technology needed to burn fuels with fewer CO2 emissions hasn't even been invented yet, and even if it were already available, it will take years to install and implement.

If you want to read how outrageous this political stuff has gotten, read Sidney Blumenthal's awful, hateful article that ran yesterday:

Katrina comes home to roost

This isn't the place to refute all the exaggerations and hyperbole in this article. The point is that no man, no administration, and no political party is to blame for the hurricane. More to the point, there is no single entity that is entirely to blame for any failure or failures to sufficiently plan for how to sustain a city that sits below sea level from a storm of this magnitude.

If indeed more could have been done in the years prior to this tragedy, then you would have to start with the city of New Orleans itself. Then, you'd go to the state of Louisiana. Then, at the Federal government level, you'd have to go back through multiple administrations, and probably a dozen past Congresses. And once you looked at all the proposals, both those that were enacted as well as those rejected, you'd also have to go back and look at what other projects were considered at that time. At the local level, do you spend the money on levy improvement, or more housing for the poor? At the state level, do you spend the money on more pumps, or do you spend it on bridge maintenance? At the federal level, do you spend the money on earthquake retrofitting in California, or flood control and wetland restoration in Louisiana? You can't do them all, and you don't know what the future will bring, and when something will happen.
John_Cline wrote on 9/2/2005, 1:41 AM
John,

FYI, I've never read a BLOG in my life. However, if that sentiment actually was "making the rounds" as you say, that merely confirms to me that I'm not alone in my feelings.

Nevertheless, thank you for your kind words.

John
Jackie_Chan_Fan wrote on 9/2/2005, 3:04 AM
I did hear on the news that i beleive Japan, has offered to help us, with money, services etc.

kentwolf wrote on 9/2/2005, 3:20 AM
>>I did hear on the news that i beleive Japan, has offered to help
>>us, with money, services etc.

Too late! Everyone here is already mad! :)
TorS wrote on 9/2/2005, 3:30 AM
More than 20 countries has offered to help, among them Germany, Japan, Israel, Venezuela and Honduras. The United Nationn too, is prepared to help. However, US authorities has been reluctant to accept outside help.
What makes you think the regimes that were hit by the tsunami were so popular in the outside world?
Tor
birdcat wrote on 9/2/2005, 4:44 AM
JohnMeyer - It's nice to read a voice of reason every now and again - Thank you.

DSE - As the only real American on this board (that I know of), it is also a breath of fresh air to hear your remarks.

And to anyone is ashamed to be an American, I figure you have two choices - 1) Work actively and tirelessly to change what is wrong without blaming everyone or anyone for your problems (something we all should do anyway) or 2) Move somewhere else and renounce your citizenship.

Just MHO.
filmy wrote on 9/2/2005, 5:33 AM
>>>DSE - As the only real American on this board (that I know of), it is also a breath of fresh air to hear your remarks<<<

????????

Where did *that* come from? You think Spot is the only person here that was born and raised in this country called the United States? Talk about living in a box.
Jimco wrote on 9/2/2005, 5:53 AM
Here here, johnmeyer!

As for the "never been more ashamed to be an American" comment, I have never been more proud. I read stories of Americans traveling hundreds of miles with their boat in order to rescue as many people as they can. I read many other stories of fellow Americans doing extraordinary things to come to the aid of those in need. I see American corporations donating tens of millions of dollars to the relief effort. I see other corporations donating water, vehicles, etc.

Yes, this is a great country.

Jim
p@mast3rs wrote on 9/2/2005, 5:54 AM
"And to anyone is ashamed to be an American, I figure you have two choices - 1) Work actively and tirelessly to change what is wrong without blaming everyone or anyone for your problems (something we all should do anyway) or 2) Move somewhere else and renounce your citizenship."

1) Many of us do that but you seem to forget we are not in power nor do we have the amount of power of those elected officials have to make the proper common sense decisions to better our world. Like I said, our government jumps at the chance to "liberate" a country in the name of "freedom" or call out to every American and claim its their duty to help those affected by the Tsunami. Yet when our people in our own land, hit hard times, the government seems to look the other way. I speak from experience. Last year, we received exactly ZERO support from our government when we endured three hurricanes. There were concerts to raise awareness and funds to support the victims of the hurricanes in Florida. There was no worldwide support for us. Hell, they had Live 8 to help raise funds to feed people that keep reproducing knowing they have no means to support or feed them. They had Tsunami relief concerts and telethons to help those rebuild their shacks and feed them.

2) I am more American than those in power to lead our country. The American coulture is made up of hard working citizens that do their part (work hard, pay taxes, law abiding) while some big wig sits up in his Washington office appropriating funds where HE thinks they need to be, not where the people he governs thinks they need to be. I don't start needless wars, ignore people who are hit by disaster, etc... Ive done my part in each and every disaster that has hit our nation in the last 10 years whether it be donations, food, clothing, volunteering, etc... But moving somewhere to renounce my citizenship that I have earned probably more so than our elected officials is crap. For an administration that is supposedly based and led on our leader's faith and religon, he sure seems to embrace violence, wars, and allowing of suffering by those hit by tragedy. A nine year old girl was raped at the Superdome. Think about that for a second.

Again I say, the reason these people are suffering is because it is not an election year. Last year, Bush provided aid to Florida that helped build the good will of the people. (Side note: It seemed the most wealthisest people received the aid first and it trickled down to the less fortunate. Many received NOTHING.) But this year, no election. No reason to provide goodwill to those that you govern for a vote.

But I guess Bush will go to war with N.O. with the hopes of liberating them. Afterall, there is oil to be had in the region down there. I just think someone needs to remind him that N.O. and the oil around there belongs to the USA and that no war is needed.


birdcat wrote on 9/2/2005, 7:00 AM
pmasters -

I am not in power - If I were, I would have been doing things differently than what is done. I do however, work actively to make this country a better place to live - I volunteer anywhere from 10 to 20 hours per week (just about every week) working for various causes, including the Boy Scouts, Make-A-Wish, cancer support groups, inner city relief, etc... Not to mention a decent chunk of my income going to various (in my estimate) good causes.

I don't think it is the government's fault or responsibility to save those who refuse to be helped. There was a man in N.O. they interviewed on the news who claimed he was going to do his utmost to cause disruption (violence, theft, whatever) because he was disgruntled - Is it the government' employee's (soldier, policeman, EMS worker - whatever) responsibility to risk their lives to save this man while he is shooting at them - What about the guy that raped that nine year old girl? Should he get a new house somewhere just because he thinks he deserves it? (Personally I think he should be left to die a slow and lingering death but I digress)..

I do not doubt that many in government are fumbling the ball here - Federal, State and Local - But that doesn't mean they aren't trying and just because you are not enamored with the President, that doesn't mean the folks who work for government agencies aren't doing their utmost best to try to make things better for the unfortunates caught in the middle - You contrasted this with the Tsunami Aid - How many of those survivors shot at their resucers? How many held up supply trucks and stole from others just as much in need?

I have no problems with folks taking food, water, diapers without paying but what about those stealing TV's, cameras, jerewlry, GUNS, vacuum cleaners (what are they gonna do with those without a place to live or electricity?). I personally think looters taking non-survival items should be shot on sight but again, that's just my opinion.

I think we all need to reserve judegment on our government agencies until after a few weeks - Time is needed to get any plan to be implemented - And while the feds are offering support (I think they do need to do more) I think we need to concentrate on saving as many as we can as quick as we can - And if anyone hampers that effort, they should be removed as a problem in any way possible.

And about Florida - My fiancee lives there - she had about $20,000 (twenty thousand) in damage last year - of which her insurance covered about $14,000. FEMA gave her NOTHING. The FEMA money was reserved for those who didn't own a home and had no out of pocket expenses - They were giving out money hand over fist to those who didn't need it but ignoring the homeowners who needed it most.

My two older sons live there as well - The oldest works for not much more than minumum wage (as does his girlfriend) and goes to college part time. My middle son (who only has one leg) goes to school full time. When the storms came last year they crashed at my fiancee's - but if they were told to evacuate, they certainly would have by any means possible - It's not the government's job to send in planes for them! There was plenty of opportunilty last year for lawlessness in Florida but we didn't see nearly the level of looting and outwight highway robbery that is occuring in N.O.

And about the Washington bigwigs - I had the opportunity to work with one US Senator a number of years ago (I was organizing a tenants group and his office was helping me) - Yes, he was an asshole who cared only about his getting re-elected - but his staff was amazing and very dedicated - Those sitting in the offices are nothing more than figureheads - the real work gets done by others, and it is those staff members who can make a difference, not the morons they work for.

Again, sorry to rant - Just tired of everyone blaming GW (whom I don't agree with more and more these days) for the problems this nation has been building for decades.
fldave wrote on 9/2/2005, 7:20 AM
"There was plenty of opportunilty last year for lawlessness in Florida but we didn't see nearly the level of looting and outwight highway robbery that is occuring in N.O."

48 hours after Hurricane Ivan hit us in Northwest Florida, I was in a FEMA line with people loading up the back of my car with cases of water, ice and MREs. Same way with Dennis 7 weeks ago, although it was about 24-36 hours. They were a very welcome site, and I was very impressed with their efficiency.

If those timetables would have been followed in N.O., I don't believe we would have near the level of this crisis. I am shocked with the delay. Biloxi is only a 2 hour drive from my house. The FEMA stuff was already in the area. Channel 5 from Mobile has reporters moving back and forth to Gulfport several times per day. Unbelievable.

This delay is why this is such a crisis. People will do strange things when they are hungry, but they will do stranger things when they are hot and thirsty. They also are having a 110 degree heat index this week.

Dave
and yes, these hurricanes are getting old
DavidMcKnight wrote on 9/2/2005, 7:27 AM
There will be fallout from this for years, if not decades. Not living in NO, I have no right to complain about anything related to this; any discomfort I may experience in the coming months is insignificant compared to what the survivors of this are going through.

That said...

I live near and work in Houston, which is taking in some 75,000 displaced NO residents (Refugees sounds too demeaning). But I have concerns - a tiny percentage of these folks are most certainly thugs and will be hell-bent on doing evil. Those that want to work will need to find jobs - how will that affect our local economy? Those that don't want to work will expect and get handouts; where will they all go once they leave the Astrodome and other shelters? Can't stay there forever.

I'm as stunned by the events as everyone else. I hope and pray for their safety and well-being, every single one of them. Yesterday I donated beyond my means to the RC Disaster Relief Fund, and my company matched it 100%. I don't mean for this to sound as though I don't want them here; as responsible Americans we HAVE to do our very best to get all of the residents to safety. I'm just saying the very nature of doing that, en masse, can adversely affect our locality. We have to act now as if it won't, but not be surprised if in the future, it does.

risce1 wrote on 9/2/2005, 7:48 AM
...........This delay is why this is such a crisis

So True, and other countries are offering help, the area was obviously not prepared for a disaster , which amazes me since they are below sea level. I think local and state agencies are the ones to point figers at. But first lets get these poor souls some water, and save some lives..
PossibilityX wrote on 9/2/2005, 7:57 AM
Within hours of the disaster, European help was offered. Protocol in these matters requires that the affected country issue an appeal, however...a diplomatic nicety to avoid making it appear that the country offering aid is implying that the affected country can't handle the problem.

France (that's right, FRANCE) was among the first to offer aid. The Germans are offering fuel from their strategic reserves. In the beginning, the US said it didn't need help.

Not surprisingly (to me), our press NEVER reported this, instead whining that other countries were not stepping forward!

The amount of news we DON'T get in this country is appalling. All you have to do is watch foreign news once in a while to see and hear what doesn't get said here.