Well, it was really FEMA’s boss, Michael Chertoff, head of Homeland Security, who had the most astounding interview with Robert Seigel yesterday afternoon on All Things Considered. I listenened in the car on the way home. Seigel asked Chertoff why the thousands of people at the convention center with no food, water or officials in charge were being completely overlooked. Chertoff responded with disbelief – that the people were even there. Seigel said that NPR reporters were there and that is what they are reporting and it was a nightmare. Chertoff said well, you can’t believe all of the rumors. Oh my god. So Seigel replied that these are not rumors. These are experienced reporters that have covered wars and have been in refugee camps. Chertoff said, well, I’m not going to argue with you and the interview ended. It was astounding! Why couldn’t he just say “oh my god, nobody has come to me with this information. I will get on it immediately.” It was like he was a robot. The entire interview was incredible. Chertoff was on the defensive and kept saying “there’s food, there’s help…we have staging areas.” You can listen to it here. Siegel deserves a medal for keeping his cool. It’s a shame that it has to be this way. Our government could have been heroic.
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