Marines to Haiti

WaPo: Marines to Protect U.S. Embassy in Haiti

The Pentagon is sending 50 combat-ready Marines to Haiti today to protect the United States Embassy and its staff amid an insurgency bent on taking the country’s capital and toppling President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

The Marines are departing today, with the sole mission of securing U.S. facilities and associated buildings, said Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman.

The unit is called a FAST team, which stands for Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team, but defense officials were quick to point out that this deployment is not related to terrorism.

They are going “to provide an additional layer of security to what’s already there,” said Whitman.

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Defense officials said then that the dispatch of the team should not be viewed as an initial step toward U.S. military intervention. Since the outbreak of violence last month, the Bush administration has rejected the idea of sending U.S. troops or police to Haiti, saying it prefers to help broker a political solution.

Involvement in another insurrection, we don’t need.

FILED UNDER: World Politics
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. melvin toast says:

    I thought the article said that they are there to protect the americans, not aristede?

  2. dj of raleigh says:

    50 Marines is probably a superior force to that of the bandits.
    Haiti is hardly a country, can’t rule itself,
    and anarchy & looting seem ready to go at all times.
    Just get our people out and let the news cover the place.

  3. Miguel says:

    Let the French invade Haiti! O, how I would enjoy watching them play BIG GUY with the tiny guys, LOL. They may even lose and be kicked out!! Hm, sorry. A little devil was making me say such a nasty thing. Just let the French invade Haiti 🙂

  4. Mom says:

    I don’t think a long-term presence by the U.S. is the right thing to do, but we should augment the OAS to provide the aid and structural assistance necessary. What is the Peace Corp. doing, or what should it be doing? What is the OAS doing, or should be doing? What is the UN doing, or should be doing? I am tired of our troops always being tapped. Mom