In a historic ceremony at the military base located in Miami, General Laura Richardson has become the first woman to command all US military operations for Latin America.
For the first time, at the head of the United States, Southern Command is a woman. General Laura Richardson, who had already led military bases in Texas and North Carolina, assumed his new role at a ceremony presided over by the Secretary of Defense of the Nation, Lloyd J. Austin, III.
The Southern Command is one of the ten unified combat commands under the country's Department of Defense. Based in South Florida, the army, navy, air force, marines, and the coast guard coordinate their operations throughout Latin America, except for Mexico, which falls on the northern command and twelve islands that have control. European. The region includes 31 countries and almost 25 million square kilometers.
Military resources are protected, the Panama Canal is secured, and all US aid in the region is coordinated.
"Again and again, you help with disasters; you make sure drugs don't reach our shores.
They make a difficult region safer. By controlling the safety of our neighbors, you make America a safer place. Laura comes from an extraordinary military family.
Led by Northern Command, Laura has done a tremendous job in turbulent times, increasing her role in vaccinating Americans. Today, General Richardson has made history as the first woman to lead Southern Command, "said Secretary Austin with applause.
Prior to his inauguration, Richardson was introduced by General Mark Miller, the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the country's top military man.
Here we are in a neighborhood. We work side by side to secure this hemisphere. Whoever opposes our security, our prosperity, or our allies has to confront the Southern Command.
This is what Commander Faller has done for the last three years, which is going on today, and I want to thank him. In his speech, Miller focused on the farewell of Admiral Craig Faller, saying that Laura was the right person to take control of the Southern Command at the right time, leaving the military base decorated for extraordinary services.
Richardson now commands 1,200 civilian and military operative operations.
Among the many projects that must be addressed immediately is the pacification and return to an institutional structure in Haiti. After the assassination of the president and the earthquake disaster, gangs have taken control of the streets.
"I lead this team in times of many changes. With threats that have no borders: pandemics, criminal organizations, climate change. The security of this region is directly associated with our national security. We are going to rebuild and expand our alliance, "Richardson promised on stage.
For decades, Southern Command has led operations against drug trafficking in Central and South America. Together with partners in the region, they seek to control drug trafficking, most of which seek to reach the United States.
"The risks are many, but we are here to work," said the four-star General firmly.
A crucial part of Richardson's job will be to maintain collaboration with partner countries. For example, Colombia has a strong US military presence, as does Panama, and solidifying those relations will depend directly on the new Commander. For the inauguration, representatives of 47 countries traveled.
"Freedom, democracy, laws, and gender equality. These are the pillars that we share with our allies", declared the Commander.
Richardson is also married to Lieutenant General Jim Richardson, with whom she has a daughter.