Grenada 1983

International Operation Name: not applicable

International Operation Dates:  not applicable

Mandating Organization: Government of Canada

Region Name:  Caribbean

Location: Grenada

Canadian Operation Name: (Grenada 1983)

Canadian Operation Dates: 1983/10/25 – 1983/10/30

Mission Mandate:

To evacuate Canadian nationals from Grenada during the American invasion of the island

Mission Notes:

In March 1983, the New Joint Endeavor for Welfare and Liberation (New JEWEL) party in Grenada overthrew the government of Eric Geary in a nearly bloodless coup. The new, leftist government, the People’s Revolutionary Government, under Maurice Bishop established close ties with Cuba, the Soviet Union and other communist countries. In October 1983, Bishop was arrested and subsequently murdered, along with several cabinet ministers, in a power struggle within the new government.

As a result of the ensuing civil disturbances, the United States, in conjunction with several Caribbean nations, invaded Grenada on 25 October, under the pretext of evacuating American citizens, ousting the leftist government and restoring the “lawful” government. For the most part, the fighting was over by October 28th, with only small pockets of resistance remaining. Five hundred ninety nine Americans and 80 other foreign nationals were airlifted from Grenada.

Coincidental to the American-led invasion, a Canadian Armed Forces Boeing 707 (CC-137) from 437 Squadron had arrived in Barbados that same day. The Boeing could not fly into Grenada for technical reasons, with the result that a CC-130 Hercules from 436 Squadron was dispatched from Canada on 26 October. On 28 October the Hercules conducted two flights into Grenada; however, in neither case had any Canadians assembled to be evacuated. The 23 Canadians wishing to depart the island were evacuated by USAF flights and subsequently returned to Canada on the CC-137 on 30 October. 

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