You read it here first. Now a secret government report says that relief efforts to help Katrina sufferers failed so badly because of military troop shortages due to the Iraq war.

Kim Sengupta reports in the Independent that this confidential US government report details how funds for FEMA were wasted and diverted and how National Guard shortages due to the Iraq war led to catastrophic results. For some reason, even military personnel who were stationed in the Louisiana area during the storm had to “sneak off post,” against the explicit orders of their commanders, in order to help with relief efforts.

Pentagon advisor Stephen Henthorne compiled the report, which indicts not only the Federal Government, but also the New Orleans city government, which he accuses of diverting money earmarked for levee rebuilding to other projects in order to garner votes. Government agencies, both large and small, all took the gamble that, despite warmings from climatologists, a major hurricane would never hit the Gulf. Their failings were revealed when the inevitable happened.

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