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The Smoking Gun: Navy Ship sat unused, awaiting Bush’s orders, while Bush ate cake

Ben Frank

September 6th, 2005

After the Hurricane struck, Bush did NOTHING to mitigate the disaster, instead he continued on his scheduled photo ops- yucking it up with Seniors, eating cake with John McCain, and playing guitar for the cameras.

Meanwhile, a US Navy ship with amphibious landing vehicles, hopsital facilities with 600 beds, 9 million meals (MREs) and the capacity to make 100,000 gallons of water per day- sat unused for a week- awaiting Bush’s orders.

In this BBC interview with Lt. Commander Sean Kelly says they could not act alone, they were waiting for Bush. Thousands died because Bush did nothing.

http://www.indybay.org/uploads/bbc-bush_mia.wmv

"We had the USS Baton sailing almost behind the hurricane so that after the hurricane made landfall it’s search and rescue helicopters would be available almost immediately. So we had things ready. The only caveat is, we have to wait until the President authorizes us to do so. The laws of the United States say that the military can’t just act in this fashion, we have to wait for the President to give us permission."

This Knight Ridder news story has details on this navy ship, still completely UNUSED a week after Katrina struck.

Published Sat. Sept 3rd, 2005

The USS Bataan, a 844-foot ship designed to dispatch U.S. Marines in amphibious assaults, has helicopters, doctors, hospital beds, food and water. It can also make its own water - up to 100,000 gallons a day. And it just happened to be in the Gulf of Mexico when Katrina came roaring ashore.

The Bataan rode out the storm and then followed it toward shore, awaiting relief orders. Helicopter pilots flying from its deck were some of the first to begin plucking stranded New Orleans residents.

But today the Bataan’s hospital facilities, including six operating rooms and beds for 600 patients, are empty. A good share of its 1,200 sailors could also go ashore to help with the relief effort, but they haven’t been asked. The Bataan has been in the stricken region the longest of any military unit, but federal authorities have yet to fully utilize the ship.

"Could we do more?" said Capt. Nora Tyson, commander of the Bataan. "Sure. I’ve got sailors who could be on the beach plucking through garbage or distributing water and food and stuff. But I can’t force myself on people.

"We’re doing everything we can to contribute right now, and we’re ready. If someone says you need to take on people, we’re ready. If they say hospitals on the beach can’t handle it … if they need to send the overflow out here, we’re ready. We’ve got lots of room."

http://www.macon.com/mld/macon/news/nation/12554907.htm

Bush’s actions immediately after Katrina struck (incl photos):
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/8/31/163230/120

———

note: This is should be the final nail in the coffin for Bush- but as usual the media will try to bury it. The spin on this may be: 'we need to remove that red tape and let the military act on their own, without orders.’ This would be a step further towards the police state- allowing the armed forces to act on their own… ie- lets give the brownshirts freedom to do whatever they want.

The problem was not the red tape- the problem was Bush’s lack of leadership. Why did he continue with those photo ops? why didn’t he or anyone else in command order this ship into action?

bush-day_after_katrina.jpg

:: Article nr. 15477 sent on 07-sep-2005 03:24 ECT

www.uruknet.info?p=15477

Link: www.benfrank.net/blog/



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