Saturday, January 23, 2010

Give it a rest, people

Criticism is easy, but offering solutions hard. The US is planning to put about 20,000 troops into operation to get Haiti back up, and France, Nicaragua and Venezuela are upset. No surprises there. Medecins Sans Frontieres want the US to deliver medicine first, and soldiers second -- or presumably, never.

What's wrong with these people? Absolutely nothing, if you understand that they are motivated by self-interest. The US is likewise motivated by self-interest. What the US gets out this? Less illegal Haitian immigrations. Some goodwill after making a mess of Iraq. Haiti is in the US' backyard, so it feels (has) an obligation to respond.

But who cares about the self-interest. What are the Haitians getting out of this? Stability, hopefully. Hopefully the US troops won't go off half-cocked and start murdering civilians. Soldiers on the ground will hopefully prevent the chaos from descending to savagery. Without stability, there will be no medicines delivered, no logistics for further rescue and rebuilding.

Troops are needed. This is in the US' backyard, and let's face it, the US military is very good at logistics. Let them take charge. The US can hopefully redeem itself for missing the ball on New Orleans.

in reference to: US says it will stay in Haiti for long term (view on Google Sidewiki)


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