Postdated Counterinsurgency

When U.S. troops rushed to Panama's National Police Headquarters two weeks ago to confront a small-scale revolt, they did so without waiting for President Guillermo Endara to ask for help. The reason for the breach of diplomatic procedure? At least four American military officers, including James Steele, head of the U.S. military support group in Panama, were in the building when the rebellion began. After American troops surrounded the headquarters, the officers were allowed to leave. The U.S. embassy then helped Endara make a request for U.S. aid.

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