Noblesse Oblige for The Sole Superpower

U.S.-led troops head for Somalia to combat anarchy and starvation

A PRE-WORLD WAR I AMERICAN CLICHE HAD IT THAT "the Marines have landed, and the situation is well in hand." About 1,800 U.S. Marines begin landing in Somalia this week, the advance guard of a United Nations force probably more than 17 times that size, and the situation soon may be well in hand -- so far as distribution of food to the starving goes. But much else about what George Bush called "a difficult and dangerous job" remained murky.

The mission is a striking departure for both the U.N. and the U.S. It is a peace-enforcing, not peacekeeping, operation (there...

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