Naval War College Review


Robert B. Watts


In September 1994, the Caribbean nation of Haiti burst into political unrest that drove twenty-six thousand migrants out to sea on board overcrowded and unseaworthy craft in an unprecedented mass migration to the United States. Several months later, over thirty thousand Cubans followed suit, attempting to reach the mainland on literally anything that could float. On 31 August 2005, a “weapon of mass destruction” in the form of a category-five hurricane exploded in the Gulf coast city of New Orleans, killing over 1,300 citizens and forcing the evacuation of tens of thousands. Finally, on 20 April 2010, the Deepwater Horizon explor- atory oil rig exploded, heralding an unprecedented environmental disaster whose final impact has yet to be determined.