Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has directed the U.S. Pacific Command to support U.S. humanitarian relief operations in the Philippines after one of the most powerful storms ever devastated the island nation.
Hagel dispatched American ships and planes at the request of the Philippine government, which now faces a months-long recovery from Typhoon Haiyan.
At least 10,000 people were feared dead from the storm that struck Friday with 150 mph winds and 40-foot waves.
"The initial focus includes surface maritime search and rescue, medium-heavy helicopter lift support, airborne maritime search and rescue, fixed wing lift support and logistics enablers," said Navy Cmdr. Elissa Smith, a Defense Department spokeswoman.
The Pentagon is coordinating its work with the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Embassy in Manila.