Hurricane Katrina: a Natural and Political Disaster

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"Hurricane Katrina: A Natural and Political Disaster"

Four days after Hurricane Katrina devastated much of the northern Gulf Coast, tired and angry people stranded at the convention center in New Orleans welcomed a supply convoy carrying food, water and medicine with cheers and tears of joy. Hurricane Katrina was the costliest and one of the deadliest hurricanes in the history of the United States. It was the sixth-strongest Atlantic hurricane ever recorded and the third-strongest land-falling U.S. hurricane on record. Within days of Katrina's August 29, 2005 landfall, public debate arose about the local, state and federal governments' role in the preparations for and response to the storm. Criticism was prompted largely by televised images of visibly shaken and frustrated political leaders, and of residents who remained in New Orleans without water, food or shelter, and the deaths of several citizens by thirst, exhaustion, and violence days after the storm itself had passed. The criticism of the government response to Hurricane Katrina primarily consisted of condemnations of mismanagement and lack of leadership in the relief effort in response to Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, specifically in the delayed response to the flooding of New Orleans. Although some people believe that the government was well-prepared for the natural disaster, when Hurricane Katrina swept the coast and destroyed what we know as New Orleans, many of these Americans suffered from the lack of the intervention of the U.S. government.

Since the storms hit, government, private and voluntary organizations have worked in concert to help rebuild the region. President Bush continues to follow through with the Federal commitment to do what it takes to help residents of the Gulf Coast rebuild their lives in the wake of this disaster. Nevertheless, the government failed to adequately respond to the hurricane immediately. Argument against this claim presents that Mayor Ray Nagin gave a...
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