Gustav On the Rampage

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Gustav On the Rampage



Cuba is getting clobbered even as I write this. New Orleans is being evacuated.

[url=]Here is a good info source.[/url]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture


Civil defense authorities in Cuba's Pinar del Rio province and most of northern Cuba said they were moving 190,000 people to safety, mainly from coastal towns vulnerable to flooding before Gustav hits shore.

The eye of the hurricane was expected to pass over the Isla de la Juventud, or Isle of Youth, to the south of the mainland early afternoon Saturday, before directly striking Pinar del Rio and battering the capital Havana to the east.

- AFP, 1:10 p.m. EDT

Joe Strummer

We'll see what happens.

About the RNC: They can cancel Bush's speech, they can have everyone go to NOLA and hand out water like Sean Penn. But, can they stop those video's of Sara shooting machine guns on CNN and there amazingly ignorant base from chanting USA USA USA at any rally/convention that will be held during what looks like could be a re run of 2005?

I doubt it, but who knows.

My Friends in NOLA said they were deciding today if they were going to leave. My guess is they are.

West Coast Greeny

If they decide not to, phone them back and tell them they're idiots. This storm moves 100km east and we have another Katrina.

As for the Republicans, I think they'll postpone the convention. Not out of compassion, but out of the fact its rather hard to compete with a Category 4 hurricane making landfall over Louisiana.


Where it's projected to go now it'll actually be worse than Katrina. [img]frown.gif" border="0[/img]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[b]Which country takes best care of its people?[/b]

• Item: Tropical Storm Fay kills 23 people in Haiti and the Dominican Republic earlier this month.

• Item: Hurricane Gustav (Category One) kills 76 people in Haiti

• Item: Hurricane Gustav (Category One) kills 8 people in the Dominican Republic

• Item: Hurricane Gustav (Category One) kills 7 people in Jamaica

• Item: Hurricane Gustav (Category [b]Four*[/b]) kills 0 people in Cuba; Cuba successfully evacuates 476,000 people and provides them with shelter and food. The hurricane makes a direct hit on the Isle of Youth, where 87,000 people live. All survive. In all, 19 people were injured.

[b]*[/b]Note: Hurricane Katrina was a Category Three when it hit New Orleans, killing 1,600 people.

[b]Update:[/b] Tropical Storm Hanna kills 25 in Haiti and one in Puerto Rico.

[ 03 September 2008: Message edited by: M. Spector ]

Kelly Martin

Canada is sending aid to the USA for this hurricane.


Canada sending emergency aid as Gustav pounds toward U.S. coast
Canwest News Service, Reuters
Published: Sunday, August 31, 2008
OTTAWA -- A Canadian Forces C-17 carrying a military medical team and emergency supplies was preparing to leave CFB Trenton Sunday to assist U.S. forces preparing for Hurricane Gustav, which is expected to hit land as early as Monday.

[url= page[/url]


good good and the Lord said, I will wash over thee with howls of anger. The sea shall rise and wash away sin, all peoples will moan at the tempest I have wrought, but the Oil Men shall smile as they are the blessed of the Lord. This is the word of your lord-praise be to god!

I already saw the gas prices jump up 12 cents this weekend when they 'say' it takes 6 weeks for the oil to reach the pumps from the time it is purchased, that is why gas prices fall so slowly. Yeah well why the hell can it rise in only 1 hour by 12 cents across the entire city!

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

E-mail message from Havana:


I'm tired today because of everything I've had to do, cleaning up the front of the house, the roof, putting the plants back, repotting some plants, talking with neighbours, etc.

Electricity came back this morning and gas a bit later. Other parts of the street were without electricity until late afternoon.

The Isla de la Juventud and central Pinar del Rio were hit terribly hard. The worst damages in
50 years. Gusts up to 340 kph. That's not a typographical mistake - 340 kph! Recorded.

But no loss of life. None.

And electricity brigades from other provinces already arriving in the affected areas by early morning today, with repairs already underway, plus public health making sure that no illnesses or epidemics result from stagnant water, etc. And people already working together cleaning up, rebuilding temporary shelters out of fallen timbers and blocks, optimistic. You should hear the interviews with simple local people. The confidence they have that they'll get the necessary assistance from the state to rebuild and start again.

At the same time, many Cubans already talking about their concern about what will happen - again - if and more likely when Gustav hits New Orleans. People must be terrified there.

Tomorrow I'll try to send you a little update on the extent of damages. Just in the central part of Pinar some 86,000 homes affected and/or destroyed. The Isla completely without electricity and many areas incomunicado. The only communciation via ham radio and some cell phones. The images from planes, which we're already seeing on TV, is horrendous!

But not one life lost.

Although there were some injuries, some 19 people injured in various locations from falling roofs or busted in doors and windows. But no one critical.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture


Hurricane Gustav left a swath of devastation across Cuba’s western province of Pinar del Rio and the Isle of Youth, residents and eye-witnesses in the communist-ruled island reported on Sunday.

No deaths had been reported as of Sunday afternoon, however, a full day after the storm packing 145 mph winds crossed Cuba.

Gustav had already killed at least 86 people in the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Jamaica.

“High tension towers were twisted and down, roofs blown off entire towns, schools destroyed and in Palacios even the baseball stadium’s walls were gone,” Reuters TV cameraman Heriberto Rodriguez said.

Residents could be seen crying over the foundations of their homes or wandering around aimlessly.

There was little information from the Isle of Youth, 40 miles off the southwestern coast, which was raked by Gustav before it made landfall in the southern coast town of Palacios.

State television showed pictures of destroyed homes, submerged factories and boats lifted from their moorings and left in city streets.

The storms 150 mph winds scattered trees and telephone poles like toothpicks. The 800,000 residents of Pinar del Rio and the Isle of Youth remained without power on Sunday, as did many of the more than three million residents of adjoining Havana province and the capital.

Where Gustav’s eye hit nothing stood. Up to 100 miles to the east in Matanza, wind gusts downed trees and damaged buildings, telephone and electricity lines.

The city of Havana’s streets were littered with branches, shrubs, trees and light poles.Wind and rains damaged banana plantations and other crops in Havana province, the capital’s bread basket.

Damage to recently harvested tobacco in Pinar del Rio, the heart of Cuba’s prized industry, was still being tallied.

The Cuban weather service said one of its stations measured a [b]gust of 204 mph, the highest ever recorded.[/b]



Yet no deaths. Not bad for a third world country suffering under a genocidal embargo over the last 50 years.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture


The good news is that nearly two million people evacuated and were spared the direct hit of Gustav. Our sisters and brothers in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, who were not able to leave the point of the storm, lost over 100 lives. The people of the U.S. were fortunate to be able to leave.

The bad news is that most people have not been allowed to return.

Since the storm, New Orleans and numerous other coastal communities have continued 24 hour curfews and prohibited people from returning by posting law enforcement at all entrances. Officials argue that neighborhoods are without electricity and return would be challenging due to the presence of downed trees and power lines.

Locking people out is quite a hardship and also very challenging for the hundreds of thousands of displaced working families. As one local resident put it, “I understand that most public officials are saying for us to stay away as a safety aspect, but they do not realize that some of us cannot afford to stay away that long.”

Garland Robinette, a respected radio voice of WWL radio, was also pleading with elected officials on air this afternoon, “What are you going to do about the poor people who can’t afford another hotel room?”

[url=]Bill Quigley[/url]

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

The last Hurricane Gustav, [url=]six years ago[/url].

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=]Katrina Redux[/url]


Then on Monday night with the threat passed, Nagin refused to say when residents would be allowed back. Now he'll allow it on September 4 but kept a dusk-to-dawn curfew in place, and warned about power outages and lack of sanitation. Earlier, Governor Bobby Jindal stated that return would be delayed until roads and bridges were inspected and debris cleared. A worrisome sign that something's up. Just like post-Katrina. Many evacuees may be denied reentry. One-fourth of them had no transportation and were bussed out. New Orleans poorest and mostly black. How they'll get back isn't clear. And the fact that DHS chief Michael Chertoff was in town is another reason to be suspicious.

As well as thousands of National Guard forces and USNORTHCOM contingents from across the country. [b]Militarizing the city along with local police and other security forces.[/b] Mobilized in place to crack down. DHS and FEMA also and reports about Blackwater Worldwide and other paramilitaries.

Very likely reliable as [b]post-Katrina, Blackwater mercenaries were deployed on New Orleans streets and in neighborhoods. Protected by immunity, they came in full battle gear right after the storm hit and spread out into the city's chaos. Their cover was to provide hurricane relief, but they functioned as vigilantes.[/b] Empowered by federal, state and local authorities. Terrorizing local residents. Removing them from choice areas for development. Assuring they couldn't return. A part of America's "war on terrorism" that's heading for cities everywhere.

They patrolled the Cresent City like Gestapo. Threatening in SUVs with tinted windows and their logos on the back. Others in unmarked cars with no license plates. Menacing in full battle gear. Wearing flak jackets. Carrying automatic weapons with extra guns strapped to their legs. Licensed to use them and kill. Their role as "the world's most powerful mercenary army (employing) some of the most feared professional killers in the world accustomed to operating without worry of legal consequences (and) largely off the congressional radar," according to author Jeremy Scahill in his book on the company. Part of a scheme to militarize America with New Orleans the first test case. Making its streets resemble Baghdad and perhaps back now for an encore.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=]Letter to Fidel Castro[/url] from the Cuban artist nicknamed [url=]Kcho[/url].

"Dear Fidel:

"It seemed important to me, after arriving on the island [Isle of Youth, formerly known as Isle of Pines] and seeing with my own eyes and feeling with my body everything that was happening, to get in touch with Richard so that you could know about the terrible situation in this special municipality.

"I have no words to express the reality of what I saw yesterday in the Isle of Youth. In all my 38 years, I have never seen anything like it and the people I talked to in my province have never seen anything worse, but incredibly, their morale is still sky-high… Many have lost their homes and almost everyone’s belongings, beds, mattresses, TV sets, refrigerators, etc., are ruined. Most of the population is in this situation; it is estimated that of the 25,000 homes on the island — and this is not the final figure — some 20,000 have been affected to some extent, and half of those 20,000 have no roofs or are totally destroyed.

"…The brigade of 52 electrical line workers from Camagьey worked until 3 a.m. and started work again today at 6:30 a.m. with tremendous determination. They are expecting another group of 60-plus workers from Holguнn…

"… There are still many unresolved problems, such as houses that were destroyed by Hurricane Michelle in 2001.

"There are serious problems with food… The island is like a prison right now, precisely because it is an island, even though flights have resumed… Money has no value because there is nothing to buy and nowhere to go to buy anything.

"Human solidarity is the most important thing right now. Morale is high but that will not last forever; it will be necessary to resolve some things in the coming days. As electric power is reestablished, (it would be good to) create information points where people can gather to learn about what is going on in the country and the municipality, or just to listen to music or spend some time together.

"Right now the province is ‘a theater of military operations during a truce,’ where people are happy because they’re still alive, and not thinking much about having lost their belongings. They are trying to save what’s left and adjusting to that new situation, but as the days go by their morale may fall and they could become depressed.

"…The conditions in the hospital are subhuman, and only the determination and convictions of revolutionary men and women are making it function.

"Pineros (the people of the Isle of Youth) are revolutionary and combative and everybody is working tirelessly (patients, relatives and medical personnel). The 32 patients requiring hemodialysis — each accompanied by a relative and nurses — arrived in the capital yesterday at approximately 4:00 p.m. They had spent 48 hours without treatment but they were doing fine.

"The morale of the pineros is high, and they are happy with the work being done by the corresponding institutions, and by the fact that not one human life was lost in Pinar del Rio, the Isle of Youth or Matanzas.

"I think that for the Isle to return to what it was will take a lot of time with work and a lot of resources, as if it were a province, because now, everything is devastated."