< HOME  Friday, February 10, 2006

HAITI: Ticking Time BOMB

After reading some more about today's election in Haiti, I learned that the situation in Haiti is extremely DIRE and volatile. You wouldn't know from the scant coverage it gets in the MSM.
Mr Préval, who was P resident between 1996 and 2001 — the only Haitian in 200 years to be democratically elected and serve out a full term — will inherit a country beset with problems.

Haiti is the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. The unemployment rate is 80 per cent, [!!!] 55 per cent live on less than $1 a day, [!!!] life expectancy is 52, the police force is violent and corrupt, and Port-au-Prince’s worst slums are no-go areas ruled by armed gangs.

But he is already being dogged by one overwhelming issue: Mr Aristide’s future. In an interview with The Times last week Mr Préval said that Mr Aristide was still a Haitian citizen, “and no Haitian needs a visa to leave or return to his country”.

Analysts [financial, no doubt] believe that a return by Mr Aristide would be deeply destabilising and polarising, and would destroy Mr Préval ’s hopes of reaching out to Haiti’s business elites, [surprise, surprise] the masses, and the international community.

* * *

Mr Aristide, in an interview with The Times soon after his arrival in South Africa in May 2004, left little doubt about his ambition.

“It is a must that I return, and I am confident that I will,” he said. “My return is demanded by the people. It is necessary to show them democracy can prevail and they will never be slaves again.”

Uh, maybe Mr. Aristide can stop by the US on his way to Haiti. We could use some moral support in our struggle to restore freedom and democracy in America.


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