LOOKING AT THE HAITI FLIGHT LOGS: “Church of Scientology ministers landed, as did AP reporters, CNN’s Anderson Cooper and diapers from Canada. But a French portable hospital and planeloads of doctors with medical supplies were diverted to the Dominican Republic.” So, Anderson Cooper in ahead of doctors? That’s helpful.
UPDATE: Chuck Simmins emails:
I can’t let the implications pass, Glenn.
Port-au-Prince airport has one runway and very limited ramp space. At the time that the Air force Special Operations people landed, it had two tow bars and two fuel trucks with planes parked in any open space.
The Air Force set up a landing pattern based on priorities created by the government of Haiti. Those priorities also were heavily dependent on the aircraft operator having followed procedure and registered, the ability of the airport to unload the aircraft in a timely manner and the room available at the airport.
Planes arrived without having asked for clearance. Planes arrived with loads that would take six or more hours to unload. Planes arrived when there was no room on the ground for them. Planes arrived without fuel to take off. Every single one of these problems were handled by the Air Force and the Haitians that they were working with.
One aircraft that landed the first day took six hours to fuel with the primitive facilities the airport had. The Air Force squeezed planes in for landings where they had bare feet on either wingtip.
According to the Air Force, the field hospital arrived without clearance and unloading it would have taken the airport out of service for hours.
It is very easy for the media to nitpick, especially since it concerns our military. Yet, there was not one NGO, not one other nation or international agency, capable of the response given by the United States military to the people of Haiti in their time of need.
Tell it to Anderson Cooper. . . .