Screenshot of Retired Lt. General Russel Honoré in a CNN interview on 30 September 2017, saying firing back at Trump over his early morning tweets attacking Puerto Rican leaders: “The mayor’s living on a cot, and I hope the president has a good day at golf.” Photo: CNN

By Brandon Carter
30 September 2017

(The Hill) – Retired Lt. General Russel Honoré, who oversaw the U.S. military response to Hurricane Katrina, fired back at President Trump over his early morning tweets attacking Puerto Rican leaders.

“The mayor’s living on a cot, and I hope the president has a good day at golf,” Honoré said in an appearance on CNN.

The former lieutenant general said Trump needs to give Lt. General Jeff Buchanan, who is overseeing the U.S. military response to the crisis in Puerto Rico, “anything he thinks he wants.”

“[Trump should] order the NORTHCOM commander to be on scene. She has the order to give Gen. Buchanan anything he needs, and that’s what’s needed right now,” Honoré said. “We need more boots on the ground to help kick-start the system.”

Buchanan said Friday that there weren’t enough troops or equipment for the Puerto Rico recovery efforts but more would soon be sent.

Honoré said earlier this week that Trump’s White House should have done more to prepare for Hurricane Maria.

"It’s kind of like Katrina: We got it. We got it. Oh, shit, send in the cavalry," he told Bloomberg in an interview. [more]

General who oversaw Katrina response slams Trump for Puerto Rico attacks


The mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Carmen Yulín Cruz, stands in floodwaters with a FEMA official, on 23 September 2017. Photo: Reuters

By Ellen Mitchell
29 September 2017

(The Hill) – The Defense Department has not sent enough troops and vehicles to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico but will soon send more, according to the three-star general newly in charge of coordinating the military response.

Army Lt. Gen. Jeff Buchanan said Friday morning that the Pentagon has 10,000 people helping with the response after Hurricanes Irma and Maria ripped through Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands earlier this month.

“We're certainly bringing in more [troops]," Buchanan said on CNN’s New Day.

"For example, on the military side, we're bringing in both Air Force, Navy, and Army medical capabilities in addition to aircraft, more helicopters. … [But] it's not enough, and we're bringing more in.”

The Pentagon has already allocated more than 4,000 troops to help in rescue and restoration efforts to the U.S. territories, but it wasn’t until Thursday, eight days after Maria slammed the Caribbean, that U.S. Northern Command (Northcom) sent Buchanan.

The head of Northcom's Joint Force Land Component Command is now serving as the Defense Department’s primary liaison to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). […]

The Pentagon has been steadily increasing its help to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands after both were slammed by the two Category 5 storms. The hurricanes knocked out power across Puerto Rico, leaving nearly half of its population of more than 3.4 million without drinking water.

Puerto Ricans and lawmakers, however, are frustrated with the federal government's response.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Friday on CNN that Trump should put the U.S. military in charge of handling and delivering aid to Puerto Rico. He asserted that only the Pentagon could repair the logistical issues preventing aid from reaching island residents.

San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz on Friday urged Trump to ramp up the federal assistance, ripping acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke for referring to the government’s response as a “good news story.”

“Damnit, this is not a good news story,” Cruz said. “This is a people-are-dying story.” [more]

'Not enough' troops, equipment in Puerto Rico, says general in charge of relief

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