PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Haitian officials are planning a massive relocation of 400,000 people from makeshift camps to the outskirts of the capital as the U.S. government tackles repairs to the damaged main port — dual efforts to help residents survive the aftermath of the catastrophic earthquake.
The plan to temporarily relocate thousands is aimed at staving off the spread of disease at hundreds of squalid settlements across the city where homeless families have no sanitation and live under tents, tarps or nothing at all.
Phi Beta Iota: The port “re-opening” is so severely over-stated as to call into question the sanity of those implying this to the media (if they did–if not, this should be publicly corrected. One pier with cracks handling one truck at a time and extremely limited fuel bunkerage is not “open.” ) All of this was known when we posted CAB 21 Peace Jumper Sequence of Events. The US military appears to be treating this as a casual “one thing at a time” series of decisions instead of doing what we suggested in the first place: get a grip on reality, open two C-130 airfields, do massive airdrops of water, food, plastic, and lumber, and think creatively–for example, roll out every Sea Bee, Red Hat, and Army engineering unit, ramp up the second port on the far end of the island and start moving people in that direction, finish Route 9 the way we promised and then reneged ten years ago, triage all cargo at point of loading (push the information perimeter out and create a needs-driven bottom-up Reverse TIPFID). And so on. False reassurances at this point are going to assure a plague-ridden calamity in the next few weeks. From where we sit it is obvious the US Intelligence Community is as useless in Haiti as it has been in Afghanistan. It’s time for DoD to try something new, what we have is not working. Haiti is an open source information problem. Haiti is also a Strategic Communications and Multinational Engagement challenge, a rare opportunity to test drive STRONG ANGEL for real and set the stage for truly multinational Stabilization & Reconstruciton operations on a come as you are basis.