West Wing
18th And Potomac

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This Is The Dawning of the Age of Sagittarius

There's a meeting in the Oval Office with Jed and Leo and a bunch of military advisors. There's a crisis in Haiti; a big shot in uniform -- whom I will call...let's see...Cornelius -- tells Leo that the UN Observer Group, which consists of 400 technical advisors and observers and sixty-five unarmed security specialists are in Port-au-Prince right now. The OAS additionally has 200 observers. Another guy -- who reminds me of Tony Shalhoub a little, so I'm going to call him Tony -- says that Colonel Bazan's forces surrounded Carrefour Liberté (Liberty Square), citing improper permits for a victory rally mounted by supporters of President Dessaline. Some of the crowd refused to disperse, and shots were fired, killing two people. The newly designated minister of Justice, René Ducasse, was arrested, and the home of the Chief Justice is surrounded by soldiers. They claim it's to protect him from death threats, but Tony says that their intelligence is that he's under house arrest. Cornelius adds that there are personnel carriers with Haitian troops parked in front of every police station in Port-au-Prince, indicating that the army plans to take power from the Gendarme Nationale. Jed asks, "Where's the President-elect?" A third guy, Jake, says, "Sir, we can't find him." Jed and Leo are quite alarmed to hear that they can't find Dessaline. Jake explains that he never showed up for a 4 PM courtesy conference with Gilbert Tass, and that they can't reach him anywhere by phone. Armed Forces Radio is reporting that he's fled the country, but the Dominicans say that's not true. Leo asks what intelligence has to say about Dessaline's whereabouts, but Cornelius explains that they can't just call around, because it's "chaos down there." Leo and Jed consider all this. It strikes me that I can't remember the last time I saw a big smile on Leo's face. Not that I blame the guy. Leo suggests evacuating nonessential personnel from the embassy. Jake warns that such a move will be seen as a signal that the U.S. has no confidence in Dessaline's government. Jed points out, "At the moment, there is no Dessaline government. There is no Dessaline! And I just got done pulling nine dead bodies out of Colombia. Evacuate the nonessentials. Get some Marines at the embassy. And somebody brief Fitzwallace." The various advisors take off to do his bidding. Jed walks over to his desk, tosses his binder on the desk, and rubs his eyes.

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West Wing

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