[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1998, Book II)] [August 10, 1998] [Page 1429] [From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]
Letter to Congressional Leaders Reporting on the Deployment of United States Forces in Response to the Embassy Bombings in Kenya and Tanzania August 10, 1998 Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:) On August 7, 1998, two bombs exploded about five minutes apart at the U.S. Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. A number of American citizens were killed or wounded, and the embassies suffered extensive damage. Department of State officials requested immediate medical, security, and disaster response assistance from the Department of Defense. On August 7, 1998, a Joint Task Force of U.S. military personnel from U.S. Central Command deployed to Nairobi to coordinate the medical and disaster response assistance arriving in Kenya and Tanzania. In addition, on August 8, 1998, teams of approximately 50-100 security personnel each arrived in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. These teams will enhance the ability of the United States to ensure the security of the American Embassies and American citizens in these countries. The U.S. forces comprising the Joint Task Force and the medical and security assistance come primarily from elements of the U.S. Central and U.S. European Commands. Other elements are U.S.-based units. Each of the armed services is represented. Although U.S. forces are equipped for combat, this movement is being undertaken solely for the purpose of enhancing embassy security and ensuring the security of American citizens. United States forces will redeploy as soon as the additional security support is determined to be unnecessary. I have taken this action pursuant to my constitutional authority to conduct U.S. foreign relations and as Commander in Chief and Chief Executive. I am providing this report as part of my efforts to keep the Congress fully informed, consistent with the War Powers Resolution. I appreciate the support of the Congress in this action to assist in embassy security and the security of American citizens overseas. Sincerely, William J. Clinton Note: Identical letters were sent to Newt Gingrich, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Strom Thurmond, President pro tempore of the Senate. This letter was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on August 11.