facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Chertoff rejects Katrina criticism

Feb. 15, 2006 at 1:27 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security chief Wednesday rejected congressional criticism he was "disengaged" from an impending Hurricane Katrina.

Suggestions that Homeland Security and President George Bush approached the disaster in a detached way "is simply not correct in my view and in my recollection of what happened," Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff told the Senate Homeland Security panel, CNN reported. "We were acutely aware of Katrina and the risk it posed."

Chertoff said the worst criticism involved the notion that people had "their suffering unnecessarily prolonged because this department did not perform as well" as it could have.

The Aug. 29 storm killed 1,322 people, mostly in Louisiana and Mississippi, and caused floods that left tens of thousands homeless.

A House Republican report criticizes Chertoff for waiting two days after the storm hit to activate a national response plan and for appointing Michael Brown, then director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, to lead the federal response.

Brown resigned after his competence was questioned.

The House report -- CNN obtained an advance copy -- said the government response to Katrina at all levels was "dismal," and showed that more than four years after the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, "America is still not ready for prime time."

© 2006 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
1
The FBI announces completion of facial recognition program The FBI announces completion of facial recognition program
2
Identical twin linked to 2004 rapes by new DNA test Identical twin linked to 2004 rapes by new DNA test
3
Shark attacks surfer at Santa Cruz beach Shark attacks surfer at Santa Cruz beach
4
Ohio school bus driver killed saving girl Ohio school bus driver killed saving girl
5
New York state may legalize recreational marijuana by next year New York state may legalize recreational marijuana by next year
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback