Soldiers in Haiti told to stop handing out food

(MILITARY TIMES)   PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Food handouts were shut off Tuesday to thousands of people at a tent city here when the main U.S. aid agency said the Army should not be distributing the packages.


Soldiers work to organize earthquake survivors who gathered for disaster relief supplies in Port-au-Prince on Jan. 19.

It was not known whether the action reflected a high-level policy decision at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) or confusion in a city where dozens of entities are involved in aid efforts.

“We are not supposed to get rations unless approved by AID,” Maj. Larry Jordan said.

Jordan said that approval was revoked; water was not included in the USAID decision, so the troops continued to hand out bottles of water. The State Department and USAID did not respond to requests for comment.

Jordan has been at the airport supervising distribution of individual food packages and bottled water since his arrival last week. Each package provides enough calories to sustain a person for a day.

The food is flown by helicopter to points throughout the capital and distributed by paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division. At the tent city, set up at a golf course, more than 10,000 people displaced by the Haitian earthquake lay under makeshift tents. Each day, hundreds of people, many young children, line up for a meal.

Tuesday morning, the helicopters came only with water. Soldiers carried boxes of water in the hot sun and supervised Haitian volunteers who handed the supplies out.

5 Responses to Soldiers in Haiti told to stop handing out food

  • So, why can’t the governments build a large building (it would probably take a few days) or install huge tents where the people can come through like a cafeteria line and be handed food and water daily. Why can’t out houses be brought in or built around the tent city? Why can’t they put the people to work cleaning up the destruction by organizing the people. Most people are survivors and are willing to pick themselves up (those who are able bodied) and help re-build their communities – but, they need help – and rationing or denying food or water and medical supplies is extremely frightening when you think about those who got billions of dollars from the government – made billions in profits – and could help re-build a area that has been devastated if the right leaders really wanted to put their brains to work and make it happen – create businesses and jobs – There’s manufactured homes that come in boxes – put up a few and use as hospitals; missions; and food supplies – Pat Robertson said that this happened because they made a deal with the devil a long time ago; but I say, that it’s an opportunity for Pat Robertson and Christian leaders and other leaders to bring God to them as well as supplies and show them the light.

  • I agree with everything Rose C said…EXCEPT the god part. I say let them find god on their own terms. Don’t take the opportunity presented by the shock to further brainwash people based on some twisted, dogmatic book filled with socio-spiritual propaganda. I hope for a world free of religion…especially christianity. Peace.

  • haven’t these people suffered enough?? give them the food and water that millions of people have donated money for stop pampering to the elite arseholes!

  • Because they don’t care about them. This is more of a test run for domination of a country. Its like Hurricane Katrina on steroids. These bastards are sick.

  • It is understandable that there is always tremendous confusion and disorganization after a disaster such as this.

    But this is why I have quit donating to so-called relief organizations. Not only can I really not afford to donate since I am not getting pay raises and my pay is way too low to start with, not only has my health insurance cost soared (more than double this year over last year), but I also get no help with college tuition for the kids. I have to pay the whole thing. OK, fine, but I just can’t go giving funds after knowing about Jim and Tammy Baker and Jimmy Swaggart and all the others who have, shall we say, mishandled money or somehow been a serious embarrassment to fellow Christians. We all have sinned and we all come short of the glory of God. He loves and forgives us all. Unfortunately, bad behaviour destroys trust. So I no longer sned money.

    And the government, of course, is the biggest siphon of all. I just don’t trust anyone to properly handle funds. I have seen toys that were collected by the Sheriff’s Dept. where I used to work just sitting, undonated to where they were supposed to be donated. I guess everyone meant well, I don’t say anyone was trying to cheat. It just seemed like the donations don’t get to where they are supposed to go.

    This idiocy of not feeding the starving masses is not unexpected. I hope it doesn’t last, I hope someone in charge will not defy orders but sort of look the other way so that the people will get fed. Today. They are hungry today. You have food today, paid for by tax dollars. Feed them now. Do the right thing.

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