Mekela Panditharatne

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A memorial, in San Juan, P.R., in June called “Project 4,645," was a collective initiative from social media reacting to a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine that estimated that 4,645 people died in Hurricane Maria and its aftermath. The official death toll is now estimated to be 2,975. Erika P. Rodriguez for The New York Times

The wind and rain began lashing New Orleans in the early hours of Aug. 29, 2005, while President George W. Bush was on vacation at his ranch in Texas. As the levees buckled and water poured into the city, the federal government tarried. Later, Hurricane Katrina’s long pall — the more than 1,800 related deaths, the devastation and the slow federal response — would come to haunt Mr. Bush’s presidency, cratering his approval rating.

President Trump, who has overseen his own hurricane crisis after last year’s storms in Texas and Puerto Rico, has largely escaped the presidency-defining censure that dogged Mr.…  Seguir leyendo »

Puerto Rico Needs More Than Bandages

Four months after Puerto Rico was battered by Hurricane Maria, Congress last week approved more badly needed emergency assistance, including $2 billion to repair the island’s severely damaged power grid. An additional $9 billion will be directed to recovery and restoration projects in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

The expectation is that this aid will help provide relief not only to the hundreds of thousands of utility customers in Puerto Rico who are still without power but also to the more than three million islanders as a whole, who are still being warned to boil water before drinking it. But the money from Washington falls far short of the island’s requirements.…  Seguir leyendo »