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In a Chaotic Capital, Haitians Anxious for U.S. Troops
Time ^ | 1/17/2010 | Iaon Grillo

Posted on 01/17/2010 9:48:43 PM PST by Saije

The once seemingly immovable white pillars of Haiti's presidential palace are strewn across the streets. The central towers of what locals nicknamed the "Little White House" have crumbled like a kicked-in sandcastle, one of the more dramatic casualties in the wake of the Jan. 12 earthquake. It is symbolic of the power of the Haitian state, which is itself in ruins. The absence of any effective authority in the five days since the tremor has led hungry and desperate residents to loot and fight over the crumbs to survive. On Monday, the U.S. is sending troops in to help restore order — and far from resenting the intervention, many Haitians are anxious for the American colossus to come in quickly and to completely take over the running of their country.

"We want American soldiers to be swarming all over this place," says Joel Auguste, a barber who is staying in a refugee camp thrown up in the national soccer stadium. "They shouldn't give one dollar of aid to my politicians because they will just steal it. Let the white man come and hand it out." Auguste once lived in the U.S. himself, selling tickets at Madison Square Garden. While living in America, he had the misfortune of being caught up in Hurricane Katrina. But he says the much-criticized U.S. response to that catastophe is practically a role-model compared to the Haitian government's collapse now. "They evacuated me straight out of Alabama," he recalls of the 2005 hurricane. "Here it is every man for himself. There are escaped criminals all over the place and people are trying to rob whatever you have."

Such calls for Washington to take the direct reins of Haiti — a state founded in 1804 after the world's first successful black slave revolution — may seem bizarre.

(Excerpt) Read more at time.com ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: earthquake; haiti; haitirelief; relief; ustroops
I've read comparisons to Katrina but what comes to mind for me is the looting and rioting in 2003 after the fall of Baghdad. Hopefully someone's got a plan to address the security situation in Haiti really soon.
1 posted on 01/17/2010 9:48:46 PM PST by Saije
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To: Saije

The US could if it was willing. Bummer, being the UN bootlicker he is, will turn it over to those folks to bumble and fumble it.


2 posted on 01/17/2010 9:55:38 PM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
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To: Saije

How about we go back to 1993 with the Clinton deliberate and engineered screw-up in Somalia as an anatomy of a disaster. Here we have a similar type of environment, as soon as the populace and the bad guys figure-out that they will not get shot for overrunning relief stores or pillaging they will create the type of problem that was wished for Katrina. So far relief agents have been smart enough to drive off and get out of the way…we’ll see.


3 posted on 01/17/2010 10:18:37 PM PST by ntmxx (I am not so sure about this misdirection!)
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