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Chaos Erupts Amid New Orleans’ Desperation

excerpts from a report from MSNBC. Sept 2, 2005

As parts of hurricane-flooded New Orleans descended into anarchy Thursday, storm victims were raped and beaten, fights and fires broke out, corpses lay out in the open, and rescue helicopters and law enforcement officers were fired on.

“This is a desperate SOS,” Mayor Ray Nagin said.

Amid the lawlessness in New Orleans, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff announced plans to deploy 1,400 additional National Guard personnel each day for the next several days.

Anger mounted across the ruined city, as thousands of Hurricane Katrina victims grew increasingly hungry, thirsty and tired of waiting for buses to take them out.

“We are out here like pure animals. We don’t have help,” the Rev. Issac Clark, 68, said outside the New Orleans Convention Center, where corpses lay in the open and evacuees complained that they were dropped off and given nothing — no food, no water, no medicine.

About 15,000 to 20,000 people who had taken shelter at the center to await buses grew increasingly hostile. Police Chief Eddie Compass said he sent in 88 officers to quell the situation at the building, but they were quickly beaten back by an angry mob.

“We have individuals who are getting raped, we have individuals who are getting beaten,” Compass said. “Tourists are walking in that direction, and they are getting preyed upon.”

In hopes of defusing the unrest at the convention center, Nagin gave the refugees permission to march across a bridge to the city’s unflooded west bank for whatever relief they could find. But the bedlam at the convention center appeared to make leaving difficult.

You have been reading excerpts from "Chaos erupts amid New Orleans’ desperation" from MSNBC . You can read the entire piece here: tinyurl.com/8a2eo. Thanks to msnbc.msn.com.

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