Operation Just Cause and the U.S. Policy Process
RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA
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American policy toward Panama has been dominated by the Panama Canal, but the Canal has never been the direct cause of American military interventions in Panama. Since the 19th Century, the United States has on occasion played the role of a policeman in Panama. Most of the U.S. interventions took place before the Canal was completed in 1914. The last of these interventions occurred in 1925, when U.S. forces stationed in Panama subdued riots in Panama City. Operation Just Cause was carried in part for reasons that strongly resembled the earlier justifications for intervention. By the time Manual Noriega became an internationally recognized menace and President Bush decided to intervene, the Canal itself was only a background issue. The Bush administration was far more concerned with ending Noriegas ability to use the Panama Defense Forces to control the country. When Noriega refused to accept the victory of an opposition party in the May 1989 elections, final proof that Panamas economy and its civil society could not function effectively as long as Noriega remained in power.
- Government and Political Science
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics