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Editorial

Welcome ‘Uncle Sam’

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By now, well-meaning Liberians of all walks of life owe heartfelt gratitude to U.S President Barrack Obama and the American people for the manner and form they are intervening in the current health crisis with which they are confronted.

Even though the people of Liberia may be grateful for the initial millions the United States Government, through its Agency for International Development or USAID, had pumped into the battle against the deadly Ebola disease, which continues to  claim hundreds and hundreds of  lives, their hope further arose from the September 16, 2014 address of President Obama on the Ebola Crisis in the Mano River Basin, particularly Liberia from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia.

As a matter of reality and promptness in the intervention of the U.S Government, the Commander of a U.S Military mission from the Africa Command, Major General Darryl Williams was already on the ground in Liberia for the mission code named: Operation United Assistance. “Our forces are going to bring their expertise in command and control – in logistics, in engineering. And our Department of Defense is better at that; our armed services are better at that, than any organization on Earth. We’re going to create an air bridge to get health workers and medical supplies into West Africa faster,” said Obama last Tuesday.

As part of the U.S intervention, the mission will build 17 isolation centers across the country, train local health workers, as well as provide logistical support, among others, in the battle against Ebola. As a further manifestation of its intervention, a C-17 U.S. military aircraft on Thursday, September 18 touched down at the Roberts International Airport in Liberia with the first shipment of increased U.S. military equipment and personnel for the final battle against the Ebola virus disease, as contained in Obama’s September 16 speech.

A heavy duty forklift, a drill set and generator and a team of 7 military personnel, including engineers and airfield specialists are already on the ground to quickly assess the payload and stability of the airport runways, while the forklift will be used to offload incoming supplies. Additional large military aircraft, transporting more of the promised 3000 personnel and supplies, will be arriving for the ‘Ebola’ mission shortly.

Major General Darryl Williams, in his capacity as Commander of U.S. Army Africa and Operation United Assistance, has been meeting with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and other senior Liberian Government officials to discuss the stepped up U.S. response to the Ebola crisis. Liberians may not only been hailing “Uncle Sam” for its direct intervention, but its international influences that attracted additional interventions, including German, France and other multilateral institutions and organizations- a credit that must also go to President Obama.

It is no doubt that Obama’s intervention at the time Liberians were in dire need as indicated in President Sirleaf’s letter to the U.S President, is a complete show of true partnership, as well as a manifestation of the historic relationship subsisting between Liberia and the United States dating back from the 1800’s. You are most welcome, ‘Uncle Sam’; this is truly the appointed time for your physical presence in a battle that we cannot win without you because “Our already limited resources have been stretched to breaking point.”

You are wholeheartedly welcomed, ‘Uncle Sam’; and thank you for coming, and we are assured that with your presence and involvement in this “threat to global security” at all level, Liberia will indeed prevail over Ebola.

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