Rubio Discusses How U.S. Can Aid in 'Apocalyptic' Haiti Crisis

Rubio Discusses How U.S. Can Aid in 'Apocalyptic' Haiti Crisis

Grayson Bakich
Grayson Bakich
March 25, 2024

The ongoing crisis in Haiti has sparked discussion in the United States, such as potential aid and how to deal with the expected mass migration of fleeing Haitians. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) discussed the unfolding situation in a recent appearance on Miami-based NBC 6, saying it was "a very, very complicated situation with no easy answers," yet also "something from a horror movie" and "apocalyptic."

However, Sen. Rubio conceded that his priorities have focused on American citizens left behind in Haiti, adding that "my office has been interacting with many of them." At the same time, "the problem is not simply the ability to get them out. It is getting them to the airport. In Port Au Prince, the airport has fallen. You have to drive through gang checkpoints to get there."

The Miami Herald reported on the back-and-forth gunfights between gang members and Haitian government forces at the capital's Toussaint Louverture International Airport, as the gangs have gained control over most of Port Au Prince.

Nevertheless, Sen. Rubio said direct military involvement from the U.S. would be "very controversial, even among Haitian activists in our community," and "there is simply no appetite for it."

As a result, the Florida Senator said, "It is a very, very complicated situation with no easy answers, and [it will] require some creative thinking, and ultimately, we will try to do the best we can in that regard. And your heart breaks for these people because they are suffering, and they are suffering stories that we are hearing that sound like something from a horror movie. It is apocalyptic."

The host brought up efforts by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) to prevent the mass migration of fleeing Haitians into the United States, turning boats around with help from the Coast Guard.

Rubio noted this was a far cry from the southern border crisis since Haiti is an island 700 miles from the U.S. mainland, yet like the Mexican border, mass migration from Haiti is "a real humanitarian crisis" since the Coast Guard would be rescuing migrants on these vessels "on a near constant basis," but there would be nowhere to take them back.

However, Rubio clarified, "It is not that I support a halt in deportations. It is that where would you deport them to? To deport someone, you have to be able to contact the government, you have to say, 'Hey, I am bringing this guy back,' you have to be able to put them on an airplane, and you have to land that airplane. Right now, that cannot happen."

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Grayson Bakich

Grayson Bakich

Florida born and raised, Grayson Bakich is a recent recipient of a Master’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Central Florida. His thesis examined recent trends in political polarization and how this leads into justification of violence.

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