U.S. sends relief to Asia

  1. U.S. sends financial aid, relief teams to Asian nations
    At least eight Americans among dead

    WASHINGTON (AP) -- The United States dispatched disaster specialists Monday and prepared an initial $15 million aid package to the Asian countries hit by a massive earthquake and tsunamis. U.S. officials were seeking to contact hundreds of Americans who remain unaccounted for in the region.

    Secretary of State Colin Powell said eight Americans died in the natural disaster, and that embassy officials were trying to locate other U.S. citizens who have not been heard from since Sunday's quake.

    "We will do everything we can to immediately help," Powell said. "This is, indeed, an international tragedy."

    U.S. officials immediately sent $100,000 each to India, Indonesia, the Maldives and Sri Lanka, and planned to donate $4 million later Monday to help Red Cross disaster efforts, Powell said.

    The initial U.S. aid package being crafted was expected to reach at least $15 million, said Ed Fox of the U.S. Agency for International Development. He called it an initial response until surveys are concluded and requests considered.

    Also, Fox said, the United States was drawing on shelter, food, water cans and other supplies that were kept in reserve in the Philippines and in Dubai.

    Powell cautioned that was a "quick infusion" and that the administration was prepared to help with long-term rebuilding.

    He also said while several hundred Americans were unaccounted for it does not imply they were casualties. "It just means we haven't been able to reach out and get contact with them," he told reporters at the State Department.

    President Bush, who is at his Texas ranch, has sent letters of condolences to leaders of the seven countries that were affected by the earthquake, White House spokesman Trent Duffy said Monday. The president received a special briefing Monday morning about the situation in Asia, has seen pictures of the damage on television and has spoken on the phone with Powell, Duffy said.

    "This is a terrible tragedy," he said. "There is a significant loss of life. And our thoughts and prayers are with all those who are suffering."

    Asked whether the United States was concerned that terrorists might take advantage of the catastrophe, Duffy said, "We wouldn't get into any classified types of information, but the American people can rest assured that no matter what happens in the world, that the government will be doing everything it can to protect the American people from terrorism."

    Assessment groups were sent to Thailand and Indonesia, and 21 specialists will fan out through the region to help with sanitation, health and relief supplies, Fox said. Most of the specialists are based in Thailand.

    The U.S. Navy said it sent three P-3 surveillance aircraft from Kadena air base on the Japanese island of Okinawa to Utaphao, Thailand, to conduct survey operations, including a possible role in search-and-rescue efforts.

    The Navy said it had no reports of damage to any of its ships or bases in the region.
    http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/asiapc....ap/index.html

    It is an international tragedy and I'm glad the U.S. is sending aid and according to this article there will be long term aid.
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  2. 24 Comments

  3. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I am quite heartened to see the US--- and WORLD as well---- respond to this crisis....so many countries are contributing manpower, food, blankets, medications and money to help out. Sad it takes a crisis if this magnitude to make some us (myself included), "come out and do the right things".........THIS is what I love to see the USA doing!
  4. by   Tweety
    Money well spent. One can only hope it reaches it's intended victums.

    This is where I don't mind my tax dollars going. It isn't costing any American lives.
  5. by   fergus51
    I think every country that is able will help. This is such a terrible event, but it is heartening to see people respond. Canada is giving 4 million to start.
    http://sympaticomsn.ctv.ca/servlet/A...hub=topstories
  6. by   pickledpepperRN
    Like my fellow posters I am sad at the loss of life and heartened that so many are helping.

    I almost can't bear to watch the TV show dead babies and devestated parents.
  7. by   Roy Fokker
    Frankly, some good news in what has been a rather dark day...
  8. by   donmurray
    It's good to see that UN members can all pull together sometimes, and contribute what they can. I hope the UK increases its initial $1m. We sent some tents and plastic sheeting already.
  9. by   Grace Oz
    It's unfolding to be the worst disaster in history! Just unimagineable! We've lost many Aussies, one a 6month old baby girl swept from her father's arms! We've dispatched Air Force Hurcules aircraft carrying aid and equipment. The Govt. has pledged AU$10 million so far. Several medical teams are rerady to fly across tomorrow. It's just a nightmare!

    Roy...... was pleased to read your Mum is safe, that's good news!

    As a planet, we really need to pull together now, more than ever, to help alleviate the human suffering.
    Grace
  10. by   Mkue
    I'm praying they will get help very quickly from watching the news this AM help is needed very badly.
  11. by   BeachNurse
    Powell: U.S. is not 'stingy' when it comes to aid


    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell responded to criticism from a U.N. official Tuesday, saying the United States is "not stingy" when it comes to providing aid to countries in distress.

    On Monday, Jan Egeland, under secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief for the U.N., criticized the United States and other countries in the wake of the tsunami catastrophe in South Asia, saying the amount of foreign aid they gave was "stingy."

    But Powell said the United States has responded with help for countries devastated by the weekend's tsunamis and will continue to assess the situation with an eye toward providing more aid.

    "The United States is not stingy. We are the greatest contributor to international relief efforts in the world," Powell said.

    Powell told CNN's "American Morning" that the catastrophe was "unprecedented in scope and scale."

    He said the United States had responded to an appeal by the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent by providing $4 million of the $7 million requested.

    On Monday, U.S. officials said the total package of aid so far was $15 million.

    In addition, Powell said, nine patrol planes and 12 C-130 cargo planes packed with relief supplies were on their way to South Asia.

    In a news conference at U.N. headquarters in New York Monday, Egeland called for a major international response -- and went so far as to call the U.S. government and others "stingy" on foreign aid in general.

    "If, actually, the foreign assistance of many countries now is 0.1 or 0.2 percent of the gross national income, I think that is stingy, really," he said. "I don't think that is very generous."

    In an interview Monday night with CNN, Egeland reiterated his view: "It bothers me that we -- the rich nations -- are not becoming more generous the more rich we become."

    The average rich country gives just 0.2 percent of its national income to international solidarity and international assistance, he said.

    "We keep 99.8 percent to ourselves, on average. I don't think that's very generous," he said.





    Find this article at:
    http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/asiapc...aid/index.html
  12. by   fergus51
    That isn't a criticism specific to the US Beachnurse, and I happen to agree with it although now is not the time to get into it.
  13. by   Q.
    I think such criticism is tacky.

    My dad just died last week and some people/friends gave cards with money designed to help our family with the expenses of his immense medical condition and burial.

    Should I publically announce on the behalf of the family that such donations were "stingy?"

    If the amount is so "stingy" and therefore insignificant, give it back. However, I highly doubt anyone will give any of it back. Why? Because it's not really stingy at all.
  14. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from Q.
    I think such criticism is tacky.

    My dad just died last week and some people/friends gave cards with money designed to help our family with the expenses of his immense medical condition and burial.

    Should I publically announce on the behalf of the family that such donations were "stingy?"

    If the amount is so "stingy" and therefore insignificant, give it back. However, I highly doubt anyone will give any of it back. Why? Because it's not really stingy at all.
    Hey there darlin . . . I sent you a pm but you are so popular that your pm box is full. :hatparty:



    I am sorry about your Dad. ((((Q))))

    steph

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