Use Our Diversity Better010 earthquake in Haiti, the U.S. Navy, Coast Guard, and Marine Corps were making significant contributions to the humanitarian-assistance and disaster-relief efforts titled Operation Unified Response. Among the services’ most important assets were the Haitian-American Sailors, Coast Guardsmen, and Marines who served as operators and translators. Aside from the valuable duties they carried out, an intangible element of the goodwill ambassadorship was the service members’ shared ethnicity with those they were helping.
To better engage with international partners, we need to devise a strategy aimed at capitalizing on ethnic diversity in the Navy. Sailors who were born in other countries or are first- or second-generation Americans can be useful to the objective of building relationships with foreign partners.