The Guardian today reports on/sneers at (delete as appropriate) the visit to Phuket by Jeb Bush (Dubya’s younger brother), and Colin Powell, who form the diplomatic element of the US contribution which includes $350m cash, plus 12,600 military personnel, 20 US naval vessels and 80 military aircraft:
"The US secretary of state, Colin Powell, came close to damaging his reputation as the Bush administration's leading diplomat when he walked into the room, strolled to the US desk, shook the hands of the people working there and then walked straight back out again. It was only when he was downstairs that an aide suggested he "might like" to meet the volunteers from some of the other countries, too. Reminded that he is part of an international relief mission, Mr Powell promptly turned on his heels once again and marched back up the stairs to belatedly press some non-American flesh.
Jeb Bush, who was chosen as a US representative in part because his own state of Florida was hit by four powerful hurricanes last year, conceded that the destruction caused by the tsunami was far worse. "We had nothing compared to that," he said. "When you have 150,000 people who died over 11 countries, that goes way beyond what anybody's experienced in our own country."
But he and Mr Powell will have to wait until they get to Indonesia to see the damage first hand. In Thailand, they did not visit any of the worst-hit areas. "We did not want to get in the way of relief work," he said. "
Astonishingly, the Guardian forgets to remind us that they’re only after the Thai oil.
I suppose we’ll just have to wait for Michael Moore’s next movie to find the real motives behind this highly suspicious American visit.