UPDATE 11:29 pm EST: Pure speculation but the USS Carl Vinson has been underway from Norfolk headed to its new home port in California for about ten hours. Vinson would make a formidable platform for assisting the earthquake victims in Haiti. The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Battle Group lead the way after the Indonesian tsunami.
UPDATE 10:51 pm EST: Aftershocks continue. Now at 23, 10 of which are 5.0 or greater.
UPDATE 10:31 pm EST: Wyclef Jean is raising relief funds on Twitter and on his blog.
UPDATE 09:39 pm EST: U.S. Agency for International Development sending search and rescue teams. UN building in Port-au-Prince heavily damaged.
UPDATE 08:55 pm EST: 13 aftershocks as of five minutes ago. 7 were over 5.0.
UPDATE 08:47 pm EST: Reports are that the control tower at the airport in Port-au-Prince is heavily damaged. Nothing landing. U.S. military has teams trained to land and restore operations. May be first on the ground?
The United States government has issued clear statements this evening of its intention to provide massive aid to the earthquake ravaged nation of Haiti. Both President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton were quick to issue press statements.
The U.S. military’s Southern Command will be the lead military agency in any relief effort. After a hurricane struck Haiti in September of 2008, ships, personnel and aircraft were used to assist aid organizations and to provide supplies to the stricken nation. LINK 1 LINK 2
Naval Station Guantanamo Bay was key to mission in 2008. If Haitian roads and airfields are too damaged, this port will be needed both as a staging area and as a place to transship material and personnel.
Following the Indonesian tsunami, we learned that most American embassies have a disaster relief fund that can be used at the discretion of the ambassador. Those millions will be committed almost at once.
UPDATE: The list is getting long, so I have moved it to its own page:
Haiti Earthquake Relief
See update above.
Here are the websites for a few of the organizations responding to the Haitian earthquake.