Lessons from DoD Disaster Relief Efforts in the Asia-Pacific Region
RAND NATIONAL DEFENSE RESEARCH INST SANTA MONICA CA
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This report analyzes recent humanitarian HADR operations to identify useful lessons for the U.S. government USG and the Department of Defense DoD. DoD has long been able to play a major role in international disaster relief thanks to its budget, manpower, and forward deployed resources. The Asia-Pacific region is of particular importance to the United States because it bears the brunt of more than half of the world s natural disasters and is home to numerous key U.S. allies. This report analyzes recent HADR operations in the region to take stock of lessons that have emerged and ensure greater success in the future. The United States is only one of many disaster assistance providers in the Asia-Pacific region. Other governments, international and regional organizations, and international and local nongovernmental organizations NGOs intervene as well, often with capabilities that complement those of the United States. Further, some countries have invested major resources in improving their disaster response capacity over the past few years. Future efforts will require, first and foremost, the ability to leverage the comparative advantages of our allies and partners in the region to help cope with HADR challenges and the ability to cooperate with these partners during disaster responses. Exploring ways to improve coordination and communication with these different assistance providers will enable DoD to respond more efficiently to disasters use its unique capabilities where they are most needed and limit the costs of interventions, which are likely to become even more numerous in the future.
- Government and Political Science