It is 2012 and despite the much talked about Mayan calendar, I sincerely believe that life on earth will not cease to exist on December 21st of this year. However, I am of the view that ideology-blinded politicians are ruining the prospect of a better world that would make life worth living. For millions of Haitians who, through no faults of their own, are confronting on a daily basis the negative effects of a military occupation (beatings, intimidations, cholera and induced-dependency), these politicians’ actions, if left unchallenged, may cause irreparable harm to the land of Dessalines.
Two hundred Haitians are getting infected daily with cholera because of lack of access to health care; three hundred thousands more are living in tent cities, and the most visible symbols of the state (the Presidential, Justice and Legislative Palaces destroyed in the January 12, 2010 earthquake) have yet to be rebuilt as Haiti is practically broke. Yet, Michel Martelly, is hell bent on using the country’s meager resources to rebuild the Haitian army. Bear in mind that cholera is preventable and treatable; however Haiti’s underfunded and primitive health care system enables the disease to reach epidemic levels. The international community, which is, to some extent, responsible for Haiti’s sorry state of affairs because of its storied antagonism toward the country spanning two centuries, can redeem itself by opposing with every means at its disposal Michel Martelly’s obscurantism and contempt for the basic rights of Haitians.
Re-establishing the disbanded army may be an insurance policy against unorthodoxies in Haiti (social reforms, rule of law and empowerment of the majority) but it is bad public relations for the international community. It is deceitful and rooted in the revanchist attitude of reactionary politicians, foreign fascists and the elite toward Aristide who, in 1994, disbanded the corrupt and brutal institution. In truth those who are supporting the remobilization of the Haitian army are barking up the wrong tree. Did these people ever pause to ask why Aristide demobilized the F.A.d’H the way he did? Any referendum on the demobilization of the Haitian army would have been approved overwhelmingly by the voters; yet, Aristide elected not to pursue this avenue. Moreover, do Michel Martelly and his cohorts really believe that Aristide, regardless of his understandable animosity toward the then-despised institution, could have demobilized it without the explicit approval of the international community?
Anyone clinging to the notion of Aristide having illegally demobilized the F.A.d’H is either guilty of willful ignorance or playing raw politics with a subject of paramount importance to the Haitian people. After 8 years of absolute control over the Haitian state following the exile to France of Baby Doc Duvalier on February 7, 1986, the F.A.d’H had, by 1994, the year it was demobilized by Aristide, evolved into a criminal enterprise. The gross human rights violations notwithstanding, drug smuggling and other illicit activities were rampant within the Haitian army. Scores of high ranking officers were forced into early retirement or exile; others were murdered by drug lords they may have double-crossed and still others were prosecuted by US authorities for their involvement in the drug trade. These instances of criminal activities and other strategic considerations explain Washington’s decision not to prevent the dissolution of an institution it considered vital to its interests in Haiti.
Tellingly, the approach by which the F.A.d’H was put out of existence (demobilization as opposed to a legal ban) leaves open the possibility of its remobilization at a future date under the right conditions, which presently do not exist. Unfortunately, Martelly and his politically inept advisers somewhat believe that they can force the issue down the throat of their benefactors, i.e. international community, which they see as natural partners in their unwarranted assault on the Haitian people. They have tried every approach, but none of them convincing enough to warrant a second look at Aristide’s rightful decision to dissolve the most murderous institution in Haitian history.
It was Jean-Jacques Rousseau, an 18th century French philosopher, who said “There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come.” Though this quote can be considered eternal because of its accurateness over the centuries, the opposite is also true. An idea whose time has not come can be hazardous to his promoter. Michel Martelly should tread carefully on the subject given that the international community, which stands to benefit the most from the remobilization of the Haitian army, does not support the idea at this juncture. His stubbornness is a classic symptom of megalomania. The 83% of the electorate, who did not vote for Martelly or participate in Haiti’s last presidential election, are being handed the short end of the stick.
An impoverished country that relies on foreign donations to fund its budget cannot afford to spend its meager resources on a non-productive asset. Martelly’s contention that a remobilized Haitian army will create job opportunities for the unemployed youths and provide disaster-prone Haiti with a professional and well-trained institution to deal with emergencies is the silliest argument ever made on behalf of the controversial policy. Indeed the international community will eventually agree to finance or support the formation of a military force in Haiti. However, Martelly and his acolytes, should know that a remobilized Haitian Army will certainly not be what they have in mind. The project must be opposed because it is indecency, megalomania, obscurantism and apathy that define it.

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