[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/01/14/art.bophone0114.gi.jpg caption="The president, pictured here talking with the U.S. ambassador to Haiti, 'seems to have everything under control,' Colin Powell said Thursday."]
Washington (CNN) - Former Secretary of State Colin Powell praised the Obama administration's initial response to the devastating earthquake in Haiti Thurday, and said that the international community needs to be prepared to provide aid for years to come.
Powell told CNN's Wolf Blitzer he is "very impressed" with the way the Obama administration has handled the immediate aftermath of the earthquake so far. Powell said he would help out if he is asked to, but said that the president did the right thing by asking former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush to pitch in.
"I think the Commander-in-chief, he seems to have everything under control," Powell said.
Powell spoke emotionally about his personal connection to Haiti, and described how he felt seeing the images of the presidential palace in ruins.
"It hit me very deeply. I've been in that palace. I've been to negotiations in that palace and it's a beautiful building," Powell said. "To see it collapse - and when you realize what that meant to the rest of the city - it struck me deeply, and my heart immediately went out to the Haitian people who have suffered so much."