Ret. General Rips Officials For Chummy Storm Response: ‘Stop Patting Each Other on the Back’
Days after Hurricane Harvey first made landfall in Texas and caused widespread devastation, the state is still getting a grip on the actual scope of the damage. As of publication, 30 people have been killed by the storm and floods, and thousands still need to be rescued. Meanwhile, tens of thousands have gathered in emergency shelters throughout the area.
Wednesday — one day after President Donald Trump praised the response by government officials and agencies, stating that they’d all be able to “congratulate each other” after it was over — a retired general provided an entirely different take to CNN.
Speaking to host Erin Burnett from Houston, Lt. General Russel Honore (Ret.) tore into the effort so far from officials — federal, state and local — while pointing out that they don’t have a grip on how large this disaster really is.
Honore, who commanded the military response to Hurricane Katrina, noted that the state needs to realize the job is too big for the National Guard and give control to the US military, saying that state officials need to “get the hell over it.” The retired general also said that evacuations should have happened earlier, stating that the elderly, sick and those in areas previously flooded should have been the first to have been evacuated.
He also told Burnett that he had more resources on hand for Katrina than what is available for Harvey, leading him to slam those in charge.
“Something is wrong with our command and control, and they need to stop patting each other on the back while these people are out here waiting to be rescued,” Honore exclaimed.
The military veteran ended the segment with this thought:
“The American people have put too much confidence in us. we have been too successful overseas to come out in amateur hour and incrementally deploy the force. You have to come in big and you got to be there right at the edge of the storm so you can come in as soon and go in and rescue people. We don’t have 100 helicopters here as of last night.”
Watch the clip above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]
Follow Justin Baragona on Twitter: @justinbaragona
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