President Ronald Reagan ordered U.S. Pressures to attack the island and to for sure the safety and security of american on Grenada. | Barry Thumma/AP


Citing the risk posed to American nationals on the Caribbean country of Grenada by that nation’s pro-Marxist regime, on now in 1983 president Ronald Reagan ordered U.S. Forces to invade the island and to secure your safety. In little an ext than a week, Grenada’s federal government was overthrown.

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Code-named operation Urgent Fury, the intrusion was prompted by inner strife in ~ the People"s Revolutionary Government, bring about the house arrest and—six days prior to the invasion—the execution of element Minister Maurice Bishop, the country pro-Marxist leader. That brought about the formation of a Revolutionary military Council v Hudson Austin, one more Marxist, together its chairman. Protesters clashed with the new government if violence escalated.


The invasion contingents had the U.S. Army"s fast Deployment Force, composed of the first and 2nd Ranger Battalions, and the 82nd Airborne Division; Marines; the Army’s Delta Force; and Navy SEALs. In all, the merged forces constituted the 7,600 troops drawn from the joined States and Jamaica. They defeated Grenadian resistance after ~ an airborne assault by the rangers on suggest Salines airport on the southern finish of the island if the Marines staged a helicopter and amphibious landing in ~ the airplane on the northern finish shortly afterward.

Some 20 U.S. Troops were eliminated and an ext than 100 wounded; an ext than 60 Grenadian and also Cuban troops to be killed.

In short order, Hudson’s military federal government was deposed and also replaced by a government appointed through Governor-General Paul Scoon, which stabilized the scene until elections were organized in 1984.

There were virtually 1,000 americans in Grenada at the time, countless of them students at the island’s medical school. American officials had actually been voice concern around conditions top top the island because 1979, once Bishop seized power and began to construct close relationships with communist Cuba.

The invaders found themselves facing opposition native the Grenadian equipped forces and from Cuban military engineers, that were in Grenada to repair and also expand the island’s main airport. They possessed scant intelligence about the island; in some cases, they required to depend on old tourist maps to find their way.


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Some politics observers voiced apprehension over Reagan’s justification that the invasion. They listed that it had actually taken ar days ~ an explosion in a U.S. Army installation in Lebanon had killed much more than 240 U.S. Troops. Nevertheless, the Reagan management cited the invasion as the first successful rollback that communist influence due to the fact that the beginning of the Cold War.

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Nowadays, Grenada marks this particular day as a nationwide holiday known as Thanksgiving Day. That commemorates the freeing, together a an outcome of the invasion, of numerous political prisoners, who subsequently went on come be chosen into office.

In 2000, the Grenadian government launched a truth and reconciliation commission to re-examine several of the controversies the the time. The commission unsuccessfully check to discover Bishop"s body, which had actually been disposed the under Austin"s orders and also never found.