Relief Workers in Indonesia Tackle Bottlenecks to Aid ; Indonesia's Rugged Terrain, Downed Bridges, and the Sheer Volume of Aid Are Slowing Supply Distribution

By Tom McCawley Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, January 3, 2005 | Go to article overview

Relief Workers in Indonesia Tackle Bottlenecks to Aid ; Indonesia's Rugged Terrain, Downed Bridges, and the Sheer Volume of Aid Are Slowing Supply Distribution


Tom McCawley Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


The airplane hangar at Medan's Polonia airport was piled high with boxes of instant noodles, rice, and drinking water Sunday, while relief volunteers and French fire fighters idled nearby, waiting to be flown to disaster-struck areas. The food was destined for hungry tsunami victims, cut off by destroyed roads and bridges and waiting for help.

"A lot of help can't get in or out," says Rizal Nordin, governor of North Sumatra and the local head of the provincial disaster task force team. "Transport is our biggest problem."

A massive relief and food distribution network being assembled, which will link international agencies to tsunami victims, is facing bottlenecks at key points - such as at Medan Airport. But Sunday food aid stockpiled at the airport had started to flow, relief workers say, a week after the Dec. 26 tsunami struck

The obstacles highlight the sheer scale of this international relief effort - said to be the largest of its kind in history - under way across six countries from Somalia in Africa to Sri Lanka in South Asia. The US has increased its contribution to the disaster relief effort to $350 million. Japan has increased its pledge to $500 million. More than $2 billion has been promised in emergency aid.

Indonesia, with at least 80,000 dead and up to one million homeless, is the worst hit. Its problems are a microcosm of managing the giant program. The Indonesian government and military, US Navy, and international agencies are now racing to stave off outbreaks of hunger and diseases such as cholera in distant areas still cut off from communication.

Some displaced people Sunday took comfort in the arrival of the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln off the coast of Banda Aceh. But others have complained that relief efforts have been slow to reach them. "Why are you giving us so little [rice]?" hungry victims asked Indonesian Social Affairs Minister Bachtiar Chamysah after his visit to a town where some 20,000 are thought to be dead.

Most of the northwest coast of Aceh province, the hardest-hit area is barricaded by a mountain range and cut off from supply overland, with bridges, roads, and harbors destroyed by the earthquake that triggered the tsunami. Relief workers, such as US Marines, must rely on expensive helicopters to drop food to afflicted cities. Stockpiles similar to the one in Medan have been accumulating in other cities.

"The whole humanitarian effort is really only just getting going now," said Mike Huggins, a spokesman for the World Food Program, on Saturday. Specialists in assessing the human impact of disasters from organizations such as the International Red Cross, say the lack of access was making planning almost impossible in towns such as Meulaboh on Aceh's West Coast.

The delays have been frustrating to volunteers such as Djumiati, who is leading a team of Muslim nurses to staff hospitals in afflicted cities. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Relief Workers in Indonesia Tackle Bottlenecks to Aid ; Indonesia's Rugged Terrain, Downed Bridges, and the Sheer Volume of Aid Are Slowing Supply Distribution
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.