More Haiti

The flak started quickly. Rusty suggested taking Red Cross training and being part of the solution—the very solution that can’t reach the country. kharris compared me (un?)favorably to The Drudge Report for saying (after Robert Gates did) that the delivery obstruction was “deliberate.”

The problem is the evidence keeps mounting—and it’s all on my side. Exhibit One:

US forces last week turned back a French aid plane carrying a field hospital from the damaged, congested airport in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince, prompting a complaint from French Cooperation Minister Alain Joyandet. The plane landed safely the following day.

Exhibit Two:

The State Department has also been denying many seriously injured people in Port-au-Prince visas to be transferred to Miami for surgery and treatment, said Dr. William O’Neill, the dean of the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami, which has erected a field hospital near the airport there.

“It’s beyond insane,” Dr. O’Neill said Saturday, having just returned to Miami from Haiti. “It’s bureaucracy at its worse.”

Exhibit Three (wrong people doing distribution):

When the aid helicopters descend on the Pétionville Club golf course, once a playground for the wealthy and now a sprawling city of makeshift tents, the residents hurry toward them. But to get there, they must climb a steep embankment to a landing zone on top of a hill where the 82nd Airborne Division distributes the food and water….

The elderly get priority, but some of them cannot make it up. Families with young children also have priority, so some people are said to have borrowed babies and hauled them up the hill….

Since members of the 82nd Airborne, from Fort Bragg, N.C., began distributing food on Saturday, their delivery method has evolved.

On the first day they wore rifles slung around their backs. By Monday, they had ditched the rifles and were trying to present themselves more as aid workers than as soldiers. [emphases mine]

This is the job usually done by the Red Cross (or that was done the first few days in New Orleans by the SCA, who had the advantage of knowing how to move a large amount of supplies through mud and floods), and who know the issues involved in distribution. This is the job those $10 contributions by texting are supposed to be supporting.

This is the job that isn’t being done for nonexistent “security” issues.

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