What now? That is on the mind of many Haitians as US troops sent to aid the earthquake victims pack their duffels for home.
Some also fear the departure of the American troops is a sign of dwindling international interest in the plight of the Haitian people following the catastrophic Jan. 12 earthquake.
"I would like for them to stay in Haiti until they rebuild the country and everybody can go back to their house," said Marjorie Louis, a 27-year-old mother of two, as she warmed a bowl of beans for her family over a charcoal fire on the fake grass of the national stadium.
U.S. officials say the long-anticipated draw down of troops is not a sign of waning commitment to Haiti, only a change in the nature of the operation. Security will now be the responsibility of the 10,000-strong U.N. peacekeeping force and the Haitian police.
The military operation was criticized by some Haitian senators and foreign leaders as heavy-handed and inappropriate in a country that had been occupied by American forces for nearly two decades in the early 20th century. But ordinary Haitians largely welcomed the troops, many out of disenchantment with their own government.
"They should stay because they have been doing a good job," 35-year-old Lesly Pierre said as his family prepared dinner under a tarp at an encampment in Petionville. "If it was up to our government, we wouldn't have gotten any help at all."
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