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CBS News report on Bahamonde's testimony

This is an alleged transcript of the report CBS Nightly News did on Bahamonde's October 20 testimony. In case you care, the claim at the link is that NBC and ABC did not cover this:

BOB SCHIEFFER (CBS News anchor): Congress heard more shocking testimony today about FEMA's slow response to Hurricane Katrina. Only this time, FEMA was under fire from one of its own, someone who was in the thick of the disaster and says that he tried to get his superiors to do something about it, but, at one point, they were literally out to dinner. Here's [CBS News correspondent] Bob Orr.
ORR: Twelve hours before Katrina began battering New Orleans, the lone FEMA official inside the city e-mailed headquarters with a dire warning: "This is going to get ugly real fast." But Marty Bahamonde told Senate investigators today that message, like many others he sent during the crisis, was largely ignored.
[begin video clip of Bahamonde's October 20 testimony to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs]
BAHAMONDE: And in my opinion, there was a systematic failure at all levels of government to fully comprehend the magnitude and the severity of the situation that was presenting itself on an hour-by-hour basis.
[end video clip]
ORR: When the first levee failed, Bahamonde frantically called FEMA boss Mike Brown, worried that floodwaters could keep FEMA trucks from reaching the city.
[begin video clip of Bahamonde's October 20 testimony]
BAHAMONDE: The only thing he said to me was, "Thank you, I'm now going to call the White House."
[end video clip]
ORR: Bahamonde, who spent two days himself in the squalid conditions of the Superdome, denied ever telling Brown the shelter of last resort was prepared for thousands of evacuees.
[begin video clip of Brown's September 27 testimony to the House Select Bipartisan Committee to Investigate the Preparation for and Response to Hurricane Katrina]
BROWN: Marty later was able to communicate to me the information that, you know, they had plenty of food.
[end video clip]
[begin video clip of Bahamonde's October 20 testimony]
SEN. SUSAN COLLINS (R-ME): Did you communicate to Michael Brown that there was plenty of food in the Superdome?
BAHAMONDE: I couldn't have been any more clear to him that food and water was a desperate situation at the Superdome.
[end video clip]
ORR: By Day Three, with people still being plucked from rooftops and health conditions deteriorating, Bahamonde e-mailed Brown with an even more urgent plea for help: "The situation is past critical. Estimates are many will die within hours. We are out of food and running out of water at the Dome." There was no response, but three hours later, Bahamonde got a copy of this note from Brown's press secretary: "It is very important that time is allowed for Mr. Brown to eat dinner. Restaurants are getting busy." Brown has yet to tell his story to the Senate, but when he does he'll face some tough new questions about the discrepancies and his role in the botched response to Katrina. Bob Orr, CBS News, Capitol Hill.

Bahamonde: saw levee break on Aug 29; Chertoff: didn't learn until Aug 30

According to Bush Adviser Acknowledges Lack of Preparation for Katrina, on the night of Monday August 29, Marty Bahamonde reported to Michael Brown that "he had observed a massive break on the Lake Pontchartrain levee [the 17th Avenue Canal levee] and flooding over 80 percent of the city". Brown told Bahamonde that he would call the White House, but Chertoff denies that Brown told him that.

"The tenor of his discussions on Monday . . . was, this was bad, but it could have been worse," Chertoff said in an interview, adding that he learned of Bahamonde's report only after meeting him personally days later. "There was not a report to me until the following morning that there was a significant breach of the 17th Street levee."

Marty Bahamonde's testimony

His 10/20 testimony from the Senate is in this PDF file. There are excerpts here.

Marty Bahamonde, Michael Brown, FEMA emails

The emails sent by various FEMA officials were made public, and a brief overview and links to the downloads are available here. A few excerpts are here.
The Marty Bahamonde emails are in this PDF file and ones sent to and from Michael Brown are in this PDF file.
I've cached those in case the links stop working at some time in the future.
If someone could look through those and find something interesting that hasn't already been discussed, please leave a comment.
Discussion here ("how Michael Brown ate dinner while New Orleans flooded and people died"), here, and elsewhere.
Previously: [Bahamonde] blames Brown and "FEMA internal memos not as damning as you might think"
11/03/05 UPDATE: More Michael Brown emails.

FEMA official blames Brown

FEMA Official Says Boss Ignored Warnings

Federal Emergency Management Agency officials did not respond to repeated warnings about deteriorating conditions in New Orleans and the dire need for help as Hurricane Katrina struck, the first FEMA official to arrive in the city conceded Thursday.
Marty Bahamonde, a FEMA regional director, told a Senate panel investigating the government's response to the disaster that he gave regular updates to people in contact with then-FEMA Director Michael Brown as early as Aug. 28, one day before Katrina made landfall.
In most cases, he was met with silence or a polite thank you from Brown, who said he would check with the White House. ``I think there was a systematic failure at all levels of government to understand the magnitude of the situation,'' Bahamonde said.
The testimony before the Senate Homeland Security Committee contradicted Brown, who has said he wasn't fully aware of the dire conditions until days later and that local officials were most responsible for the sluggish response.
...In e-mails to various FEMA officials, including one to Brown, Bahamonde described a chaotic situation at the Superdome, where many of the evacuees were sheltered. Bahamonde e-mailed FEMA officials and noted also that local officials were asking for toilet paper, a sign that supplies were lacking at the shelter.
"Issues developing at the Superdome. The medical staff at the dome says they will run out of oxygen in about two hours and are looking for alternative oxygen,'' Bahamonde wrote in an e-mail to David Passey, an assistant to Brown, in late afternoon on Aug. 28.
Less than an hour later, Bahamonde wrote: ``Everyone is soaked. This is going to get ugly real fast.''
Bahamonde said he was stunned that FEMA officials responded by sending truckloads of evacuees to the Superdome on that day even though they knew supplies were in short supply.
"I thought it amazing,'' he said. "I believed at the time and still do today, that I was confirming the worst-case scenario that everyone had always talked about regarding New Orleans.''

The WaPo's version of this AP story is in "FEMA Official Says Boss Ignored Warnings". It starts:

In the midst of the chaos that followed Hurricane Katrina, a Federal Emergency Management Agency official in New Orleans sent a dire e-mail to Director Michael Brown saying victims had no food and were dying. No response came from Brown.
Instead, less than three hours later, an aide to Brown sent an e-mail saying her boss wanted to go on a television program that night _ after needing at least an hour to eat dinner at a Baton Rouge, La., restaurant.

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