Cablegate: Bangladesh Requests Immediate Us Military Support For
DE RUEHKA #1826 3251259
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 211259Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY DHAKA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5606
INFO RUEHKT/AMEMBASSY KATHMANDU PRIORITY 9358
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME PRIORITY 0389
RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK PRIORITY 8251
RUEHCI/AMCONSUL KOLKATA PRIORITY 0999
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 0572
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 0020
RUEKDIA/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
UNCLAS DHAKA 001826
DCHA/OFDA FOR ROBERT THAYER
AID/W FOR AA MARK WARD AND ANE ANNE DIX
DEPT PASS TO SCA/EX
DEPT PASS TO SCA/PB
DCHA/FPP FOR MATTHEW NIMS AND PAUL NOVICK
ROME FOR FODAG
BANGKOK FOR RDM/A TOM DOLAN, ROB BARTON
KATHMANDU FOR USAID OFDA BILL BERGER AND SUE MCINTYRE
TAGS: EAID SOCI PINR PREL BG
SUBJECT: BANGLADESH REQUESTS IMMEDIATE US MILITARY SUPPORT FOR
HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE / DISASTER RELIEF OPERATIONS.
REF: DHAKA 1815, DHAKA 1814, DHAKA 1808, DHAKA 1808, DHAKA 1797,
STATE 157623, DHAKA 1796 AND PREV.
1. (SBU) SUMMARY. CDA a.i. received a broad request from the GOB
for immediate U.S. military resources to participate in the response
to Cyclone Sidr. U.S. military planners already present in
Bangladesh will now begin developing specific operational plans for
implementing this request in conjunction with USAID/OFDA and host
nation counterparts. END SUMMARY.
2. (SBU) BANGLADESH REQUESTS US MILITARY ASSISTANCE. CDA a.i., DATT
and Acting DCM met with Chief of Army Staff Gen Moeen Uddin Ahmed
1015 a.m. November 22 at CDA a.i's request to discuss potential U.S.
military resources available for support in the aftermath of Cyclone
Sidr. General Moeen extended a broad invitation for the US military
to support ongoing relief operations; Ref B details the US military
resources present in Bangladesh. General Moeen also expressed
gratitude for the items already delivered by USAID/OFDA.
3. (SBU) SPECIFIC US MILITARY CAPABILITIES. Matching up host nation
needs, within the overall framework of the USAID/OFDA operation and
ongoing Mission goals, with available US military resources will be
a continuing process, but General Moeen initially identified three
initial priorities. These are: a) logistics and cargo lift
capability, b) freshwater production, containerization and
distribution, and c) deploying medical teams to impacted areas.
These resources are present on the USS Kearsarge, with an estimated
arrival of November 23.
4. (SBU) COORDINATION OF EFFORT. All aspects of this operation will
be closely coordinated with USAID, the lead USG agency in relief
efforts. US military operations will also be coordinated with
public diplomacy goals. For example, the Information Support Team
already present in the Mission will develop media products in
support of all phases of US military humanitarian assistance to
multiply effort and effectiveness.
5. (SBU) HOST NATION COORDINATION. In the meeting between General
Moeen and Emboffs, General Moeen expressed concern that the GOB
response needed to be better organized and that accurate information
be distributed to decision makers. General Moeen added that he had
recommended to the Chief Adviser that the GOB designate a Chief
Coordinator for relief efforts. This Chief Coordinator would
initially be established at a forward operating base in Barisal.
General Moeen confirmed that initial plans for this forward
operating base include space for the U.S. government to establish
its own forward liaison element.