200 United States Marines are now patrolling the coast of Guatemala. Why? To combat drug trafficking. This is another stage of Operation Martillo that was started in January of this year to help in the war on drugs from Central America.
This is the first time ever that Marines have been used for this specific purpose. They are joining other Central American Countries who have sent law enforcement personnel, including others from Britain, France, and Canada.
The number of troops at 200 is quite large, and one of the largest involvements in that region of the world ever.
The Marines have been training at Guatemalan air base at Retalhuleu, and they also brought along four UH-1 "Huey" helicopters.
The main emphasis will be on patrolling the coast, looking the fast powered smaller boats, as well as what are called "narco-submarines" that can travel underwater for up to 5,000 miles. Over eighty percent of the cocaine that gets to the United States comes from this region.
The goal is to stop it before it gets here.
Since the civil war in Guatemala in 1978, when the United States dropped some aid, efforts have been made steps to get back into good graces. Allowing Marines to help in the war on drugs is one of those steps. This is a small step, as the Guatemala is still rife with corruption and violence.
So, do you think this is a good use of our Marines and military?
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