Cablegate: Tfus01: Update On French Reaction to Hurricane
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PARIS 006137
STATE FOR CRISIS MANAGEMENT SUPPORT and EUR/WE
TREASURY FOR DO/IM
JOINT STAFF FOR J-5/EUR
DHS FOR FEMA/OIA
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PINS AEMR MARR CASC PGOV US FR
SUBJECT: TFUS01: UPDATE ON FRENCH REACTION TO HURRICANE
REFS: A) STATE 163366 B) State 164135 C) STATE 164429
D) Paris 5995 E) Paris 6026
1. SUMMARY: This is an action request, see para 14.
France is still willing to provide further assistance, but
awaits word from the USG as what else might be provided.
The Ambassador, DCM, and other Embassy officials have
publicly expressed thanks per ref B. END SUMMARY.
FRENCH GOVERNMENT OFFERS
2. We have passed latest general acceptance cable to the
GOF (ref C). France continues to offer additional
assistance, specifically 20 to 30,000 MREs. These are
located in Paris with the French Ministry of Defense, and
are available for delivery within the next 2-3 days. They
can be flown using available Air France cargo space, meaning
preferred destinations would be Houston or Atlanta. Other
arrangements could be made if another destination is better,
such as Little Rock, but that could entail a delay of up to
5 days in delivery. One MRE contains 2 meals, with a
caloric value of 3200 calories. The total weight of the
shipment would be 48 tons for the 30000 MREs.
3. France also has offered help with diving teams and the
use of a tugboat. We understand the Department will shortly
send a message on formal acceptance, and we will immediately
relay the message to the MFA upon receipt.
4. Our matrix on the status of French assistance, to date,
is as follows:
143 tents 25m2 Accepted & sent 9/6
146 tents 13m3 Accepted & sent 9/6
200 tents 16 m2 Accepted & sent 9/6
98 tents 8 m2 Accepted & sent 9/6
2 tents hangar 86 m2 Accepted & sent 9/6
980 camp cots Accepted & sent 9/6
1000 pliable jerricans Accepted & sent 9/6
1100 buckets 11 liters
3136 soapbars (Marseille)
576 cooking kits Accepted & sent 9/6
30 generator 2.5kwa Accepted
9 generator 4.2 kwa Accepted
20 generator 4kva LX4000 Accepted
350 Crsyl (water-purifier)
126 first aid kits
1029 tarps 8x6 Accepted & sent 9/6
1200 tarps 5x4 Accepted & sent 9/6
1000 blankets Accepted & sent 9/6
1 water treatment station
2 water treatment station
10 motorpumps 36m3/h Honda
20 motorpump 36m3/h SDMO
4 concrete mixers
394 storm lamps
159 masonry kits
192 carpentry kits
295 plumbing kits
6 portable electric tools
30 chainsaws+gloves+ safety hats
300 pick axes
3000 ponchos (15 cartons)
234 Boots (US sizes 9/10/11)
1000 MREs Accepted & sent 9/7
5. The French Red Cross made 12 logistical experts
available to the US Red Cross.
6. The NGO Telecom Sans Frontiers sent a team to Houston on
September 5 via commercial air to help restore telephone and
7. Air France informed us on September 6 that it is
prepared to make cargo capacity available for French
humanitarian relief shipments to the U.S. Air France has
frequent service to Atlanta and Houston, for example.
8. Representatives from the international oil company Total
informed the Ambassador on September 6 that Total is
pledging a donation of USD 1 million to the US Red Cross.
9. We have received innumerable offers of assistance from
private French citizens, and are directing them to
appropriate organizations in the US.
10. On September 3, Ambassador Stapleton conducted an
interview about the hurricane with Le Parisien, the largest
circulation (500,000) daily paper in Paris. The interview,
along with a photo of the Ambassador, appeared last
Saturday. On September 8, per guidance provided ref B, the
Ambassador held a well-attended press conference to thank
the GOF and the people of France for the aid that they have
provided to date. More than 20 journalists attended, and
the results were immediate and positive. Beginning last
night with the AP and AFP wire services stories, five radio
stations, a cable news TV station, and daily center-right
newspaper Le Figaro all carried features based on the
Ambassador's press conference remarks.
11. The DCM gave a live morning drive-time radio interview
on September 6, emphasizing the resilience of the US and our
thanks for French pledges of assistance.
12. Le Monde (center-left national daily) will publish
Ambassador Stapleton's 9/11 anniversary op-ed in its Sunday-
Monday weekend edition. Entitled "Adversity and
Friendship," the op-ed draws parallels between France's
supportive response after 9/11 to its similar support and
solidarity in Hurricane Katrina's wake.
13. We will continue to seize other opportunities for
public and media outreach to reiterate our messages.
14. ACTION REQUESTED: Please provide further guidance on
French offers of assistance, in particular the 20 to 30000