CARICOM countries need to prepare for fallout of US and Iran situation

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CARICOM countries need to prepare for fallout of US and Iran situation
Garvin Heerah is urging CARICOM leaders to get together quickly and come up with an appropriate response to what could happen next.
Garvin Heerah is urging CARICOM leaders to get together quickly and come up with an appropriate response to what could happen next.

(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) – A sug­ges­tion that CARI­COM heads meet as soon as pos­si­ble, and come up with a strat­e­gy to deal with any pos­si­ble fall­out or dan­ger­ous sce­nar­ios, re­sult­ing from the re­cent dé­tente be­tween the Unit­ed States and Iran.

It comes from Strate­gic Se­cu­ri­ty Con­sul­tant and for­mer Di­rec­tor of the Na­tion­al Op­er­a­tions Cen­tre, Com­man­der Garvin Heer­ah, who says Trinidad and To­ba­go should take the lead on this.

He warns that coun­tries around the world where US in­ter­ests are lo­cat­ed have now been made more vul­ner­a­ble, as a re­sult of the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion be­tween Wash­ing­ton and Tehran.

“Iran has made a clar­i­on call to all of their sup­port­ers,” he states. “To all of their proxy forces—those are forces that are backed by the Iran­ian gov­ern­ment and their sym­pa­this­ers—to wage an at­tack on the US gov­ern­ment.”

He is urg­ing CARI­COM lead­ers to get to­geth­er quick­ly and come up with an ap­pro­pri­ate re­sponse to what could hap­pen next.

“You will find that peo­ple will be wrong­ful­ly ac­cused, wrong­ful­ly pro­filed, wrong­ful­ly in­ves­ti­gat­ed,” he warns. “We’ve seen that be­fore. Some of us ac­tu­al­ly have been the vic­tims of that when we’ve trav­elled in­ter­na­tion­al­ly based on that sort of pro­fil­ing, es­pe­cial­ly at in­ter­na­tion­al air­ports and sea ports. That’s a dis­ad­van­tage. It is some­thing that rolls out of these sorts of is­sues.”

Com­man­der Heer­ah says se­cu­ri­ty of­fi­cials in the Caribbean must take proac­tive moves and en­gage in strate­gies to en­sure the safe­ty and se­cu­ri­ty of their cit­i­zens, be­cause re­al threats al­ready may be em­bed­ded in their pop­u­la­tions.

“They must pay spe­cif­ic at­ten­tion to what might be the ex­is­tence of ‘sleep­er cells’. Or at least, in­creas­ing our in­tel­li­gence gath­er­ing to lis­ten out to the chat­ter that is tak­ing place, es­pe­cial­ly in the realm of the dark web.” He adds: “There is ev­i­dence that there are sleep­er cells in our re­gion. Be­cause of that, there can be that sort of per­son­al sym­pa­this­er type of ap­proach, where peo­ple may take it on­to their own as lone wolves, for in­stance, to treat with the is­sue.”

Both the US and Iran have re­port­ed to the Unit­ed Na­tions Se­cu­ri­ty Coun­cil that their mis­sile strikes against each oth­er were acts of self-de­fence.

And both have re­served the right to en­gage in sim­i­lar de­fen­sive ac­tion in the fu­ture.

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