Skip to comments.Murder and mayhem in New Orleans' miserable shelter
Posted on 09/02/2005 6:20:49 PM PDT by HAL9000
NEW ORLEANS, Sept 2 (Reuters) - With the rotors of President George W. Bush's helicopter sounding overhead, New Orleans' poor and downtrodden recounted tales of murder, rape, death threats and near starvation since Hurricane Katrina wrecked this city.
Ending days of abandonment since the hurricane struck on Monday, the U.S. National Guard handed out military rations and a bottle of water to thousands of evacuees -- the first proper meal most had eaten in days.
But as the masses lined up outside, herded by Army troops toting machine guns, inside the convention center where these people slept since Monday was the stench of death and decay.
Leroy Fouchea, 42, waited in the sweltering heat for an hour to get his ration -- his first proper food since Monday -- and immediately handed it over to a sickly friend.
He then offered to show reporters the dead bodies of a man in a wheelchair, a young man who he said he dragged inside just hours earlier, and the limp forms of two infants, one just four months old, the other six months old.
"They died right here, in America, waiting for food," Fouchea said as he walked toward Hall D, where the bodies were put to get them out of the searing heat.
He said people were let die and left without food simply because they were poor and that the evacuation effort earlier concentrated on the French Quarter of the city. "Because that's where the money is," he spat. A National Guardsman refused entry.
"It doesn't need to be seen, it's a make-shift morgue in there," he told a Reuters photographer. "We're not letting anyone in there anymore. If you want to take pictures of dead bodies, go to Iraq."
As rations were finally doled out here on the day President Bush visited the devastated city, an elderly white woman and her husband collapsed from the heat.
"I had to walk two blocks to get here and I have arthritis and three ruptured discs in my back," said Selma Valenti, 80, as her husband lay beside her, being revived by a policeman in riot gear. The two had eaten nothing since Wednesday.
Valenti and her husband, two of very few white people in the almost exclusively black refugee camp, said she and other whites were threatened with murder on Thursday.
"They hated us. Four young black men told us the buses were going to come last night and pick up the elderly so they were going to kill us," she said, sobbing. "They were plotting to murder us and then they sent the buses away because we would all be killed if the buses came -- that's what the people in charge told us this morning."
Other survivors recounted horrific cases of sexual assault and murder. Sitting with her daughter and other relatives, Trolkyn Joseph, 37, said men had wandered the cavernous convention center in recent nights raping and murdering children.
She said she found a dead 14-year old girl at 5 a.m. on Friday morning, four hours after the young girl went missing from her parents inside the convention center.
"She was raped for four hours until she was dead," Joseph said through tears. "Another child, a seven-year old boy was found raped and murdered in the kitchen freezer last night."
Several others interviewed by Reuters told similar stories of the abuse and murder of children, but they could not be independently verified. Many complained bitterly about why they received so little for so many days, and they had harsh words for Bush.
"I really don't know what to say about President Bush," said Richard Dunbar, 60, a Vietnam veteran. "He showed no lack of haste when he wanted to go to Iraq, but for his own people right here in Louisiana, we get only lip service."
One young man said he was not looking forward to another night in the convention center and wondered when conditions would improve. "It's been like a jail in there," he said. "We've got murderers, rapists, killers, thieves. We've got it all."
Threats will taken seriously by law enforcement. You will be in trouble.
The connecting parishes are claiming they had to protect their own parish's resources -- by not allow Orleans Parish citizens entry into their Parish.
A lot of wild rumors have been reported from the Gulf Coast - and on further scrutiny, some of them have been debunked.
I guess it wasn't a threat, but a promise.
Mentioning cannibalism maybe ugly, but there's no substantiation that it's a fact.
What is wrong with some of these people? I have a feeling they were animals before all this happened. What's being done to filter out the criminal elements before they ship them up here to Texas?
Nothing. The rapists, thugs and druggies will drop everything and stand in line like innocent choir boys when the busses come. Then they'll be shipped off to wreak mayhem and murder on another city just trying to do the right thing and help the innocent among them. Some thanks that will be. Be afraid. Be very afraid. they won't even touch them when caught looting in broad daylight. You think anything will happen based on heresay of traumatized people? Nope- can't touch them. Just shift them from place to place handing out benefits all along the way.
You might want to limit what you write.
Well, ya know, Clinton would have been able to do it! /sarcasm
Could you please be more vague?
You can't leave by I-10. It goes over the twin span, which is gone.
Yeah, a long, long time ago. I was just a little bitty thing, so I don't remember it much. I used to live in Lake Charles; I wonder if it flooded much there?
"What's being done to filter out the criminal elements before they ship them up here to Texas?"
I would not worry about that too much. Texas isn't New Orleans. I have lived in Texas 26 years. One thing that has taught me is that Texans are willing to give most anyone a chance -- and are probably tougher than any other folks in the nation when it comes to slapping down those that abuse the chance they are given. We will be really nice to the honest folk that came here needing help -- and really hard on the criminals that think generous equals soft.
That's it. I can't read anymore. I'm not sending a cent to New Orleans. I'll just send my check directly to Catholic Charities in Mississippi.
F&$ k Reuters, what a cheap shot to blame Bush.
I'm with you. People should not blame the President who is telling them before to evacuate the city before its too late.
I do think, no I KNOW there are grateful people who are thankful for everything that has been done for them in this disaster. It just seems that the media (including my once beloved Foxnews) have not had the inclination to show much of that. I am so cynical about ALL media now.
Was forgetting to use the hundreds of school buses to evacuate people Saturday and Sunday part of the disaster plan or did they just do that ad hoc?
The average person can go about two weeks without food, and judging from some of the fat asses I saw on TV most of these people could go a month without starving.
I don't believe any of these people were starving after five days.
This pisses me off. They don't like Bush now, how about we wait as long as we did to go in as we did to go into IRaq. Why don't we wait another ten months or so, and pass a few UN resolutions before sending in aid. Ungrateful bastards.
It took just as long as it did during hurricane Agnes. People were on their roofs then, too. People didn't start looting or killing each other, either. They were as grateful as hell when the troops showed up. They said "Thank you", not "F you."
Those people were suppose to evacuate. They didn't. Now, people are trying to help them as much as they can. There is no magic wand.
You're totally ignoring the brave people who are down there in great numbers wallowing in the sewer water to save those who decided to stay with their "stuff." Give the good people helping down there a little credit for a change. They're human, too, and they're being hassled and shot at. They're doing the best they can.
There is a difference between being "abandoned" and being "stranded".
In respect to the Federal Government, these people are now stranded just like the crew of a sinking unsafe ship is stranded during their wait for the Coast Guard.
The Federal Government has only a few days warning to move thousands of men, heavy equipment and thousands of tons of supplies to any potential natural disaster point anywhere in the U.S. That is being done.......But such massive logistics effort takes time.
In respect to the City of New Orleans and its Mayor , these people were abandoned.
The Mayor of New Orleans has had years of warning to plan for this. The current nightmare scenario has been predicted for years if and when New Orleans, a city below sea level, was ever hit with a Category 5 hurricane:
The Mayor of New Orleans is now whining about the inevitable time that the logistics of the massive relief effort is taking and complaining that the poor without automobiles were left to suffer.........Presumably by the Federal Government and therefore by Bush.
However, the Mayor has known for years that poor people without adequate transportation could not safely stay in New Orleans during a Category 5 hurricane and he did NOTHING to evacuate them.
With all that prior warning and with local resources at the scene and available, there was one task that was never done or even attempted by the Mayor ..........Namely, the complete evacuation of the city's poor population to areas on higher ground.
The Mayor is now playing the demagogue and angrilly saying that the people suffering are the poor blacks who did not have automobiles to evacuate. However, prior to the hurricane and with ample prior warning of the consequences of leaving people in the city, the Mayor had his buses all parked in orderly rows.
Not exactly demonstrating "starving Ethiopian" weight standards, are they?
Gladly. Everything I have learned about real life, I have learned from Free Republic. Be careful what you write. You words will come back to bite you in the butt. Repeatedly. And, never threaten anyone. Ever.
It ruins the surprise.
"I'll just send my check directly to Catholic Charities in Mississippi."
That's exactly what I concluded I would do.
You know all these folks that lived in the ghettos in NO are probably going to fall into that same lifestyle here. If they can't change the victim mindset, nothing will change and Texas has to deal with a suddenly expanded population of gangsters. Here they have a chance to start over and they're already standing around with their hands out , blaming and cursing the very people trying to rescue them!
Get over yourself. Do you realize how stupid your "judgment" sounds?
Not even a bird falls from the sky without God knowing about it. Do you really think he'd miss a hurricane?
Never trust anyone who uses the word 'masses' to refer to other people. The use of that word (including by such luminaries as Stalin and Castro) provides a singular insight into how the utterer of the word feels about his fellow man.
If a city has preplanned a facility as a shelter the preplanning should include food and water supplies. Obviously this city govt. doesnt know jacksht about planning for an emergency. I am sure there are federal govt books and pamphlets on how to properly set up such a shelter.Some of them probably written during WW2. Maybe the Governor and the Mayor cant read.
He be gone.
Now get over your self-righteousness and tell me where I erred (not that I don't err all the time)...
But this time, tell me what is wrong...
Yes, I have been there. Don't have much to argue with you about it neither. A lot of them think the voodoo thing is cute, too... It is not a place to bring children.
If these aren't true, too many true ones like it are. This question was asked a few posts back, but, have you ever been to New Orleans? It was full of savages before this. Now they are all concentrated in the convention center murdering children.
Absolutely nothing. And you can bet they won't be willing to stay put in shelters; eventually they'll end up on your streets.
This will be the standard reply I'd present to all presstitutes and others who carry the water (make excuses for DUmocrats) when the subject is to blame Bush for all:
The nanny state/welfare mentality - it's always someone else's job. What part of MANDITORY EVACUATION do these fools in the media not get? The people on the coast were warned, told to leave, and chose to stick it out thereby endangered themselves and their families. That would be considered neglect when parents put their children in danger.
The Governor and Mayor's extreme ineptitude is what the bozos in the lame-steam media should be focused on. It was their job to prepare their constituents, NOT the federal government. There was ample time to prepare, and most responsible adults took to the road for safety. Yet all that was offered on the state level was another poor evacuation plan from the dimwit dimocrats. Either using "one way out" stuck in traffic or holing up in the dome, what choices!
Before the storm, they could have used all the school & city busses to evacuate those who couldn't make it on their own to higher ground further inland. But they chose weakness in the face of real danger instead.
After the storm, all resources were put at their disposal, yet they delayed making the request as well as delayed the delivery when aid arrived. Martial Law was declared and yet they still sat on thier hands allowing lawlessness to erupt. Neither can handle their jobs, yet refuse to step aside and allow someone else to handle it.
If President Bush hadn't announced the evacuation order, there would be more loss and suffering, mainly due to the clueless Democrats who failed to do anything - who, by the way, have been in charge of that state long before Bush ran for office.
When you have your hand extended, you shouldn't b!tch about getting aid when you were told to prepare for 3-5 days of food and water. When it comes to your family's safety, waiting on government to solve your problems is no better than waiting on a welfare check instead of getting off your arse and finding work.
But I guess wading around in sewage and griping about it is a much more pleasing alternative if you always pull the "D" lever when it's time to elect leadership. The failure of a democrat-led state is why the media is out in force trying to point fingers at Bush, when they all know the reality of the situation...their own failures cause many more to die than would have if they hadn't been slow to react.
All of America is watching this story, but they don't see the eeeeevil president Bush hurling the hurricane at these people. They see how the people down South are reacting more than anything. This is what they'll remember.
Give the American people some credit. The majority isn't that stupid. They know left wing hate speech when they hear it. They know Bush had nothing to do with it, and if Jeb Bush or Rudy Guliani were in charge of the states down there, it'd all be wrapped up by now.
Is it from now on going to be the federal governments responsibility to evacuate the inner city of every city threatened by a hurricane in the gulf?
Posting this for those who didn't see it earlier -- note the date was last Sunday:
It was Bush that asked the Gov and Mayor to order a mandatory evacuation, NOT their idea at all.
Sunday, August 28, 2005, 11:47 am EDT
Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco said that it was President Bush that had called and urged the state to order the evacuation.
people were NOT released from jails. There were ample unjailed criminals for the looting. The prisoners were moved, under guard. The pictures you saw of prisoners on an overpass were distinct from the ones of ordinary folks on an overpass and wandering off.
wait a minute..before I read any further..just what exactly is the U.S National Guard??????
I seek humility all the time...and it isn't hard to find.
Thanks for clearing that up. That seemed too crazy to be true.
I've noticed that trend myself
There is no excuse for that at all. Anyone connected with the city government, should be jailed...