The most despicable aspect of what has been going on in Haiti since February 29th 2004 is not the Security Council-mandated occupation itself but the deafening silence of Haitian intellectuals, the traditional guardians of the country’s culture and moral force behind its raison d’être. It seems that the group is of the opinion that speaking ill of the occupation is tantamount to rejecting the precepts of western civilization, which they so admired. As an ensemble, they have long rejected the concept of Negritude and instead established themselves as fanatical protectors of western orthodoxies in Haiti, a country essentially African, superficially westernized and, as fate would have it, condemned by geography.
In their vanity, Haitian intellectuals remain fond of quoting philosophers of the enlightenment period while failing to realize that the brilliant concepts emanated from these geniuses’ minds were never meant for people like them. In fact many philosophers of that period remained silent of the subject or actively supported the enslavement of other races based on the unscientific argument they were genetically and intellectually inferior to their enlightened European masters. It is therefore inconceivable that Haiti’s intelligentsia, the nation’s traditional moral guardian, abdicated that role and abandoned the country to an undeserving fate in the face of relentless onslaughts from vindictive and irredeemable oppressors.
They (the intelligentsia) never accepted the reality that the occupation of Haiti in 2004, the year of the bicentennial of its epic victory against oppression and arrogance, was a well conceived strategy of the revanchists. The two centuries during which Haiti was the victim of piracy, extortion, economic sabotage and embargoes, military threats and occupations and political persecutions did not dampen the collaborative tendencies of the intelligentsia or awaken then from their naïveté. Conclusively these conformists or rather impenitent collaborators, who selfishly long for a Prix Goncourt or other literary honors commending their westernization, will be judged harshly by history and future generations of Haitians.
Who could ever forget Gérard Gourges, a scholar revered by thousands of former pupils, whose farcical attempt to seize the presidency on February 7th, 2001 dealt a lethal blow to a promising, albeit imperfect, democratic experiment that saw the first peaceful transfer of power in Haiti? His action, unfortunately, set the stage for the February 29th 2004 infamy. What about Leslie Manigat’s acrimonious response to his defeat in the 2006 presidential election when he lambasted the voters’ rejection of his candidacy and preference of René Préval as that a dog returning to its vomit? In retrospect, the esteemed Professor and former president was right about the electorate’s impulsive choice, but his vindictiveness characterized the condescension and disdain that have been the hallmarks of the uneven relationship existing between the intelligentsia and the mostly illiterate citizenry.
The 2004 foreign-instigated armed rebellion headed by Guy Philippe, which the intelligentsia actively supported, was by all measures a testament of the group’s moral deficiencies. The group’s indifference toward the achievement of 1804 not only helped bring about the Great experiment (2004-?) conceived in the dark rooms of the UN but also nullified its role as torch-bearer in an ongoing struggle on behalf of the nation and, by extension, a whole race. Deprived of a moral guide, Haiti’s marginalization is now completed; its destiny hijacked by impostors and impenitent collaborators operating in a vacuum. Is the proliferation of political parties, 66 in this year’s elections excluding those disqualified by the Provisional Electoral Council (CEP), a cultural trait or the discernible result of the intelligentsia’s abdication of its role as moral guide of the nation?
Had the Jewish intelligentsia not been uncompromising in protecting the Jewish identity, through centuries of unremitting persecutions, Judaism and the Jewish people would now be a footnote of history. In their twisted logic, Haitian intellectuals associate Negritude with Papa Doc Duvalier, a champion of that philosophy, whom they revile as a tyrant who forever sullied the concept with his personality cult and Vodou-inspired rule. Nevertheless, a perfunctory examination of the challenges Papa Doc faced (the combined enmity of Catholic Church, the western powers, the US-trained Army and the mulatto elite) only validates the defective and duplicitous nature of this western-inspired mind-set. Had not Christianity, the foundation of western civilization, been used as an effective tool in the enslavement groups or races that were considered “others”? Was Papa Doc wrong in using Vodou as a counterbalance against relentless attempts to subjugate his people or sabotage his rule, which sought to awaken the Haitian tradition of self-sacrifices for a greater cause?
This mundane assessment of the reality proves too complex for the country’s intelligentsia to understand, because the group is philosophically bankrupt, hopelessly self-centered and morally dysfunctional as a result of its westernization. Haiti is now abandoned to an uncertain fate; its people deprived of a raison d’être, which helps explain the current occupation (2004-?) by forces determined to erase its identity. Under the Great experiment, present-day Haiti is a 21st century version of a plantation where the Master controls every aspect of its subjects’ lives right down to their way of thinking. This is why combating criminality and other societal shortcomings, common in every area of the globe, takes precedence over the need to articulate our inalienable right of self-determination. It is also in that context the fraudulent election was declared valid by the international community and the people, terrorized by the guns of MINUSTAH, submissively agreed.
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