Communication with state and local authorities in Louisiana and Mississippi was so poor in the hours immediately after Katrina struck the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29 that military commanders had to use couriers to transmit messages, [Paul McHale, the assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense] said...
Joint Task Force-Katrina has been shut down and Lt. Gen. Russel Honore has returned to his previous assignment as commander of the 1st Army.
[Paul McHale, the assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense] denied that President Bush ever proposed to Gov. Kathleen Blanco of Louisiana or Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi that Honore take charge of all military forces in those states, including the National Guard. Instead, Bush proposed that Honore be "dual hatted," McHale said putting Honore in direct charge of the federal troops while also having him command the National Guard troops under the direction of the governors.
Both governors resisted that approach. Honore ended up commanding only the federal troops, while the adjutant generals of Louisiana and Mississippi retained command of National Guard forces under the governor's control. McHale said this arrangement worked well.