Pentagon Is Ready To Give Order To Evacuate Americans From Haiti

By Victor Winston, updated on March 14, 2024

As tensions rise in Haiti, the U.S. military, under the command of Gen. Laura Richardson, proactively positions itself to safeguard American citizens amidst growing violence and political disarray.

According to Fox News, The United States Southern Command is on high alert, prepared to initiate a noncombatant evacuation of U.S. citizens from the turmoil-engulfed nation of Haiti while simultaneously deploying marine forces to reinforce security at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

During a recent Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, US SOUTHCOM Commander Gen. Laura Richardson emphasized the military's readiness to execute a noncombatant evacuation operation (NEO) if the situation in Haiti necessitates it. This commitment comes in response to the burgeoning violence and political unrest that have significantly destabilized the Caribbean nation.

A critical element of the U.S. military's preparation has been the deployment of a Marine Anti-Terrorism Security Team (FAST) to Haiti. Their primary mission is to enhance the security infrastructure at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince. This move underscores a serious approach toward ensuring the safety of the Embassy staff and the broader American community residing in or visiting Haiti.

The Complexity of Security Operations in Haiti

While continuing to function, the U.S. Embassy has considerably limited its operations, directing its focus toward aiding U.S. citizens and advocating for a peaceful transition of power in Haiti.

Gen. Laura Richardson's statement at the hearing illuminated the military's strategic foresight, "As part of the wide range of contingency plans that US SOUTHCOM has, we are ready for a NEO activation if required and have other plans ready to go, as we always do, and keep those plans refreshed over and over."

Haiti's political landscape took a significant turn when Prime Minister Ariel Henry declared his intent to resign. This move aims to facilitate the emergence of new leadership capable of navigating the nation through its maelstrom of violence and governance collapse. Despite these internal changes and the State Department's travel warnings to American citizens, no definitive plan remains for evacuating U.S. citizens from Haiti.

Senator Mark Kelly underscored the gap between the heightened security measures and the absence of a NEO activation for American citizens still in Haiti. "SOUTHCOM has successfully airlifted embassy staff out of the country. But a number of Americans still remain in Haiti, and some may be looking to leave," Sen. Kelly articulated. This statement highlights the ongoing concerns regarding the safety and well-being of Americans amidst Haiti's escalating crisis.

U.S. Military's Role in Haiti's Crisis

The deployment of the U.S. Marine Fleet-Anti-terrorism Security Team (FAST) serves a dual purpose. It bolsters the Embassy's security and lays a groundwork that could potentially expedite a broader evacuation operation if deemed necessary. This nuanced military strategy reveals the complexity of responding to international crises involving American citizens.

The urgency embedded within the U.S. military's preparations reflects the unpredictable nature of Haiti's political and social turmoil. With non-essential personnel already evacuated over a preceding weekend, the focus now shifts towards the larger community of American citizens whose safety remains paramount amidst Haiti's uncertain future.

The Southern Command's statement detailed, "The U.S. Embassy remains open, and limited operations continue, focused on assistance to U.S. citizens and supporting Haitian-led efforts to secure a peaceful transition of power."

Given the circumstances, the U.S. military, under Gen. Laura Richardson's leadership, showcases a robust commitment to safeguarding Americans and supporting Haiti during its tumultuous period. The readiness to activate an NEO, bolstered by the strategic placement of marine forces, signifies a well-coordinated approach to crisis management abroad.

Conclusion

The U.S. military's preparedness to conduct a noncombatant evacuation operation for American citizens in Haiti, alongside the strengthening of security at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince, underscores a multi-faceted strategy to respond to crises. With tensions escalating and Haiti's political landscape in flux, the U.S.'s strategic moves reflect both a commitment to the safety of its citizens and a hopeful support for peaceful transitions within Haiti.

About Victor Winston

Victor is a freelance writer and researcher who focuses on national politics, geopolitics, and economics.

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