Dick Cheney- Corporate Criminal
Details the myriad illegal, immoral, and unethical activities of Dick Cheney when CEO of Halliburton, his obstruction of justice, and lies to the American public since his appointment as Vice President. For information on an equally corrupt politician, see link to Tom DeLay-Corporate Whore. Be sure to visit our cavernous vault of archives.
Dick Cheney Gloats Over New Halliburton Profits from Katrina Disaster as Bush Announces Plan to Cover Up Disaster Response Failure
Cheney called in as Bush says he will lead his own inquiry into Katrina
Julian Borger in Washington
Wednesday September 7, 2005
President Bush, facing a political crisis over the government's handling of relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, announced yesterday that he would lead his own investigation of what went wrong.
Mr Bush also declared that he was sending Vice-president Dick Cheney to the ravaged Gulf coast region to assess recovery operations, and remove "any bureaucratic obstacles that may be preventing us from achieving our goals".
The announcements, made after a cabinet meeting in the White House, reflected anxiety that the humanitarian crisis remained grave and that the political threat to the Bush presidency's legacy and second-term agenda was growing, as more details emerged of the failure of Washington's immediate response to the disaster.
"What I intend to do is to lead an investigation to find out what went right and what went wrong," Mr Bush said. "We want to make sure that we can respond properly if there's a WMD attack or another major storm."
There were signs yesterday that the army had begun literally to turn the tide in New Orleans. After having plugged the biggest hole in the levees around the city, the engineers' corps began pumping water out of the flooded streets for the first time.
But New Orleans' mayor, Ray Nagin, warned that it would take three weeks to bail the water out, and another few weeks to remove the debris. Until then it posed a serious danger.
CNN yesterday quoted Mr Nagin's office as saying E coli bacteria had been found in the water, which is contaminated by sewage, dead bodies and toxic chemicals washed out of oil refineries and other industrial plants.
The aircraft carrier Iwo Jima arrived at New Orleans yesterday to help provide helicopters and medical care for survivors. Paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division were deployed with small boats to help the house-to-house search for the living and the dead, amid some predictions that the death toll could reach 10,000.
"It's going to be awful, and it's going to wake the nation up again," Mr Nagin said.
Meanwhile the US Senate launched its own investigation, as both Republicans and Democrats denounced the government's performance, which left tens of thousands of people stranded for four days or more in New Orleans with little or no food, water or medical assistance.
"Government at all levels failed," Susan Collins, a Republican on the Senate governmental affairs committee, said. "It is difficult to understand the lack of preparedness and the ineffective initial response to a disaster that had been predicted for years, and for which specific, dire warnings had been given for days."
The seriousness of the political storm Mr Bush is facing was vividly illustrated yesterday by an editorial in the staunchly conservative Wall Street Journal which warned "the aftermath of Katrina poses a threat to his entire second term".
The usually supportive editorial page concluded: "What's really at stake in the coming months is the Republican claim to be the governing party."
Mr Bush insisted he would not be drawn into the "blame game", but echoed an argument his aides have been making - that the primary responsibility lay with state and local authorities.
Meanwhile Mr Bush, already under pressure for the impression that he has been unable to empathise with the poor, mainly black victims of the disaster, was not helped by remarks made by his mother, Barbara, after touring a relief centre in Texas.
"What I'm hearing which is sort of scary is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality," Mrs Bush told the Public Broadcasting Service. "And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them."