This might not be the best place to post this, but I want to "vent" and maybe get some feedback on ideas below:
Like many people I have been shocked by the lack of an organised response to the recent series of Hurricanes in the Caribbean.
Shipping bottled water from the UK to Gibraltar, transshipping it to HMS Ocean to take to the area is Logistical nonsense, wasting valuable time and money even without the breakdown to Oceans machinery causing further delays.
I hope that lessons can be learnt from the disaster and applied in the future:
If United Nations Rules stop us spending our Foreign Aid Budget "on wealthy Countries" maybe our Foreign Aid budget should be split into Official "United Nations endorsed" and Unofficial Aid for Disasters where as a Country we feel we should assist. Very few people in this Country understand why our Foreign Aid Budget is being spent on Countries, like North Korea, India, Pakistan and others, whose Leaders have made a "Lifestyle choice" of putting guns before butter, like Germany in the 1930's, and expect us to feed their people, while they spend their own money on Nuclear weapons, ICBMs, and the Space Race.
Materials assistance with clean water, food, personal hygiene equipment, Solar chargeable lanterns, a change of clothing, plastic sheeting and rope to make a basic shelter should ideally be supplied within 24 hours, that means that permanent warehouses storing these items should be established just outside the Hurricane Area in a location with Good Air and Sea Links, and ships and aircraft should be loaded up and follow the Hurricanes path ready to start delivering help as soon as the wind drops.
There appears to be plenty of time to do this if a suitable organisation is in place, the tracks of the Hurricanes appear to be forecast well in advance.
To ease distribution of this initial assistance I suggest that it should be prepacked in Rucksacks, which would enable the recipients to carry it away. TV footage of relief being given to people often shows them struggling to carry what they have been given.
Small converted Ro Ro Ferries, similar to the Africa Mercy ships, or ex Military Landing craft could be fitted with large Electrical generators that could be plugged into an Islands Electricity supply, to restore power and De salination equipment and large Fresh water storage tanks enabling them to pump clean drinkable fresh water into the Islands water mains.
They could also provide accommodation for Volunteers to help clear the wreckage and restore the Utilities and carry the necessary Earth Moving equipment, building equipment/ materials, Motor transport for distributing aid, portable generators for areas where the overhead power lines are down, a mobile hospital, a temporary Radio station and Mobile phone mast to restore communications temporarily while permanent repairs are being made to the Islands infrastructure. Not all these items would be needed every time but it makes sense to cover all eventualities in specially built or converted vessels.
None of the Islands could support such a system on their own, but collectively they could contribute part of the costs, as the equivalent of a collective Insurance Policy against the consequences of Hurricane damage, this Regional effort could include Haiti, Cuba, San Juan and the parts of Mexico and the USA that are effected by Hurricanes with support from the "Colonial Powers" of the USA, UK , France and Holland, that are still responsible for many of the Islands.
It is always better to ask a stupid question than to do a stupid thing.