The following is an editorial reflecting the views of the United States government:
The United States is providing people in India with several million dollars in aid to help them recover from the recent tsunamis. The earthquake-induced tidal waves killed over ten-thousand people and displaced more than three-hundred-seventy-thousand others along the Indian coast. Among the areas hardest hit were the offshore islands of Andaman and Nicobar, and Tamil Nadu state.
The U.S. is working with local Indian officials and nongovernmental organizations to build temporary shelters, rehabilitate buildings, and organize day-care centers. Rebecca Scheurer, a U.S. government relief official, says, "Humanitarian relief efforts are helping people return to normal life."
Despite its own needs, India is reaching out to help its neighbors who were also affected by the natural disaster. Within hours of the tsunamis, Indian ships and aircraft loaded with hundreds of tons of supplies were on the way to Sri Lanka and the Maldives. Uday Bhaskar is director of the Indian Institute for Defense Studies and Analysis:
"India is trying to definitely convey a certain determination that it is in a position to play a certain responsible role as quickly as it is required. In the Indian Ocean, India is the most credible navy and therefore it was in a position to extend this kind of humanitarian assistance."
Senator Bill Frist, majority leader of the U.S. Senate, visited India and praised the country's relief operation:
"I heard it directly from the leadership in Sri Lanka, the tremendous assistance and help that has been put forward by India."
In India, and elsewhere, the U.S. will continue to assist affected governments as they care for the survivors of the devastating tsunamis. President George W. Bush says, "We will stand with them as they start to rebuild their communities. And together the world will cope with their loss."