Macron Visits the Devastation in St. Martin
After Hurricane Irma swept through the beautiful island of St. Martin, many of the island's inhabitants lost everything they had. Although the Category 5 hurricane spared many of the areas in the United States that it was supposed to hit, the terrible storm seems to have saved much of its power for St. Martin. Recovery will require a massive amount of funds, as well as boots on the ground. Luckily, the newly minted French president has stepped in to help—and he has sworn that France will rebuild its struggling island as soon as possible.
Emmanuel Macron immediately expressed his dismay and concern about the situation in St. Martin, stating that the circumstances there are absolutely critical. Some of the areas he highlighted as particularly troublesome were restoration of access to education, a supply of clean water, improving the state of telecommunications and improving the energy situation. In a show of solidarity with the citizens of this devastated island, Macron slept on a cot. Although he pledged to make these changes as soon as possible, some of the island's residents were unhappy with the speed of the recovery. Many complained about not being able to get a flight back to France, and others wondered what Macron hoped to accomplish by visiting the island himself. Although 2,000 St. Martin residents have already departed the island, many of the remaining 33,000 are looking for a way to leave. Macron assured them that they would be able to do so.
Another important statement Macron made was that the buildings in St. Martin would be rebuilt in a way that would serve as a model for the world to see. He made several comments regarding the fragility of the structures that had been knocked down, alluding to the fact that many of the homes in St. Martin were not constructed to endure natural catastrophes. In the new plan that Macron has outlined, the homes that are built will be tougher and stronger than their predecessors.
In the wake of Irma's wrath, there have been all sorts of challenges and tragedies. Not only were 11 St. Martin residents killed due to the storm, but there were also looters taking advantage of the situation. Macron has also promised to ameliorate that particular challenge. With 500 extra emergency workers on their way within the next few days, the once-beautiful island retreat is looking to recover its magic.
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