Two weeks, how many lives, incredible suffering, mind-blowing incompetence: Active duty US military STILL not asked to help

AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

I don’t even know what to say.

There’s an airport right up the road. Why isn’t that being used? There’s ocean front 20 feet from our lobby. Why are we not using that?”

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This will tear your heart out. I can’t stop crying.

And now? “Officials are worried about possible rain from Tropical Storm Fernanda, worsening a growing humanitarian disaster on the ground.”

Every last official – are all worthless. I am 100% in concert with the folks on Maui – Lahaina specifically – who told reporters during interviews during this weekend’s network news (which now seems to have been scrubbed of those comments) they wanted nothing to do with Biden visiting.

As in: Just stay away. You’re worthless.

800 people are still missing. The Hawaiian “disaster response” team is a disaster in itself, as is the governor’s shameful, shameless performance.

You know officials know it’s a disaster because of the media intimidation and lockdowns they’ve been trying to get away with since this whole horrible incident first started. And not just people who came in from outside, as I reported last week when Will Cain was told Lahaina was a “media-free zone.” The editor of the local Maui Times has been repeatedly buffaloed trying to keep her own people informed about their own situation. Authorities have blanket smothered information.

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The mayor of Lahaina – the mayor – wants to shut down questions.

And holy CRAP is their governor off the rails in CYA mode.

“…I think you’ll let me answer the question as governor. Doing reporting through social media is idiotic. Doing reporting in person is intelligent. I’m glad you’re doing some of that….Everyone is talking to me through my cellphone…Don’t use social media to judge these questions. You have people who are predators on social media. You know that for a fact…”

The word has gone out that even if you have some sort of shelter and have running water, filtering the water isn’t safe.

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The language is stark: People in torched areas of Maui should not try to filter their own drinking water because there is no “way to make it safe,” Maui County posted on its Instagram account this week.

The message reached Anne Rillero and her husband Arnie in Kula, who were eating yet another meal of frozen pizza. The couple feels incredibly lucky they and their home survived the fires that raced across Maui in recent days, wiping most of Lahaina off the map. The number of confirmed fatalities was raised on Friday to 114 people.

When a neighborhood organization alerted them not to drink their water and to air out the house even if they run the tap, the couple decided to eat off paper plates to avoid exposure. No washing dishes.

Which would lead me to ask Governor Pissy Pants “WHY AREN’T YOU BRINGING IN WATER?”

You know who has water – and not just cases of it, but great big potable, refillable, mobile containers full of it called “water buffalos”? That they take everywhere?

Marines.

There are around 10,000 Marines at Marine Corps Base Hawaii (Kaneohe). There another 12K+ active duty Navy sailors and 5500+ active duty Air Force personnel at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. That’s a lot of bodies with a lot of gear and, most importantly, expertise, who do not care if they are hot and tired.

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You know who it seems that Governor hasn’t requested come help Maui’s people – HIS people – only an island away?

Any of those 27,000 troops who are sitting there, waiting for the call.

It’s still just a couple of hundred National Guard assets, some Coasties and Army Corps of Engineers. That’s it. That’s Biden’s big “Joint Task Force 5-0.”

…The Hawaii National Guard has activated about 258 soldiers and airmen for duty that includes liaison support to the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, command and control elements, and local law enforcement, Singh said.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been assigned to remove debris and temporarily restore power, she said.

Singh said the Coast Guard has been working to minimize maritime environmental impacts, while remaining ready to respond to any new reports of individuals in the water.

And, as much as I hate defending Biden, that’s all he can do unless an official request from Hawaii’s governor asks for the active duty help. The DoD was and is ready to rock and roll – they’re not the ones slow on the movements here.

Q: Thank you. There’s been some concern with locals about a perceived slowness of the federal government’s response to all this. I know that this has been addressed multiple times but, General, I wonder if you can talk to that. And sort of a follow-on question to that is I know that the Marines down there, especially the Marines with the 3rd Littoral Regiment, have been on standby for days now and nobody’s availed them of those resources. I wonder if you can talk a little bit about that and if things are being offered that FEMA is not using.

[Joint Task Force 5-0 Dual Status Commander, Army National Guard, Brigadier General Stephen F. Logan]…But let’s make that clear that everything that we’re offering is at the request of the county and it’s for the phase of the operation that we’re in. I’m not sure what capabilities that Marine unit that you mentioned has or what they can bring, but right now the focus of our operation is to secure the impact zone. And the impact zone is identified as the portions of the town of Lahaina that have been impacted by the fire. And the primary focus of that is to render the area as safe as possible, to prevent entrance by unauthorized personnel because of the hazardous nature of what the operational environment is like, and then to facilitate the dignified and proper recovery of the decedents and their remains. And that process is ongoing. So that remains our priority at the present time.

Much of the Title 10 or active component response capabilities will probably be folded into a subsequent phase as we start to process the impact zone itself. So, I believe that that perception that the federal government or the greater DOD population has been slow to respond is not accurate and may be a perception because of the phase that we’re in right now. Thank you for your question.

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And in that general’s defense, he’s the Hawaii National Guard general talking about their part in the task force – he’d have no idea what the Marines could do or what was available active duty asset-wise. And, again, he says straight up that they are doing everything they’ve been asked for.

Active duty Marines ARE delivering 35 tons of disaster relief and aid to an island in the Pacific…but it’s Papua, New Guinea.

…Separately, in response to the volcano eruption on the island of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea, the amphibious assault ship USS America and the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit have supported U.S. government efforts for foreign disaster relief to affected residences at the request of the nation’s government.

Over the course of the 10-day humanitarian assistance operation, sailors and Marines provided aerial transportation for nearly 35 tons of disaster relief and supplies to remote aid centers on the island, she said.

The team also assisted in loading and unloading supplies, “demonstrating their commitment to serving as a crisis response team to the people of Bougainville,” Singh added.

How about that. And those Marines are on a ship in the middle of the Pacific Ocean themselves – not even on an island right next door.

Wouldn’t you be kinda pissed at somebody if you lived on Maui and heard that?

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I mean, as long as you didn’t hear it through social media.

UPDATE: This just posted and it is absolutely infuriating to me. I mean, I am so mad I am snorting fire at the miserable POS.

You’ll notice, he can’t be bothered to return the salute of his Marines as he exits Marine One.

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