A large tented city, initially capable of holding 1000 people, has been readied at Guantanamo Bay to hold any Haitian refugees unlucky enough to get caught fleeing their devastated country for American. Already on the US mainland the Operation Vigilant Sentry task force has swung into operation, clearing detention camps to hold any who make it there.
Now Joint Task Force Guantanamo Bay, which is responsible for planning for any kind of Caribbean mass immigration according to a US military spokeswoman, are readying the notorious camp for a new role: immigration detention centre. "There's no indication of any mass migration from Haiti," Maj. Diana Haynie said. "We have not been told to conduct migrant operations." But the base is getting ready "as a prudent measure," since "it takes some time to set things up."
This is all very timely as Friday was the deadline impossed by Obama for closing the camp and the PR engendered by its 'humanitarian' role takes a bit of the heat off of Obama's administration and it's a win-win situation for the military: "The ability to conduct real-world humanitarian assistance and disaster relief ... that's more exhilarating at the moment then walking the block in the detention camp, not to say that walking the block is not an extremely important mission for the United States but probably not as gratifying as saving someone's life." - Rear Adm. Thomas Copeman, Joint Task Force Guantanamo Bay commander.
We can only hope that the Haitians are not forced to wear orange jumpsuits and are moved around in shackles with hoods on little wheeled trolleys.