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Under the Radar

Haiti’s curse: Demagoguery and Demagogues

Photo Credit: Garry Pierre-Pierre

Photo Credit: Garry Pierre-Pierre

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

As I pointed out before, it exists in Haiti a group of powerful individuals who ought to be described as “indispensable immortals” because of their enduring presence in the political arena that belies their abysmal records or shenanigans of behalf of foreign entities. This situation explains the country’s inability to grasp the issues that characterize its immense needs and, by extension, come up with the proper solutions. It is all the more absurd that personal animosities rather than ideologies or adversarial politic have always been and remain the driving force behind their endurance. Hence the innovative approach of members of this villainous grouping to don the mantle of human rights campaigners and passionate proponents of democracy is an affront to common sense.    Have these “indispensable immortals” suddenly come to realize the extent of their destructive or duplicity behavior? Most Haitians would rather believe that to be the case, but the reality says otherwise. Take for example the case of Stanley Lucas whose diligent work on behalf on the US-based International Republican Institute (IRI) culminated in the invasion and occupation of Haiti by French and U.S forces on Feb. 29, 2004. Because his politic of personal animosities had priority over patriotism, it never mattered to Mr. Lucas the year 2004 was the bicentennial of the country’s hard fought liberation from the evils of slavery and colonialism.

Although Mr. Lucas has never apologized for his deviant behavior that ultimately caused the premature death of thousands of his fellow Haitians, he is now positioning himself as a true democrat wanting the best for Haiti. His blog Haiti Solutions provides a window to the man’s narcissistic and self-righteous personality. That he “supports the growth of political and economic freedom, good governance and human rights in Haiti by educating Haitian citizens, parties and governments on the values and practices of democracy” is demagogic and insulting. Some individuals are known to have a way with words, but this man clearly outclasses them all.

A supranational professional agitator with a murky agenda rather than a legitimate political figure, Stanley Lucas is every Haitian’s worst nightmare. Notwithstanding his unpatriotic behavior and invectives against Haiti’s Lavalas party and leaders, which have become more vitriolic and demented over the years, his expert opinions are nothing but redacted versions of the international community’s neocolonial narrative. He obediently repeats everything emanated from the nation-builders without any regard for the truth. His advocacy of the Rwandan model of development for Haiti, which he ultimately disregarded, is one glaring example of Mr. Lucas’ sycophancy. I wish the man could have been more informative about how the Rwanda model of development would be appropriate for Haiti, given that the two countries’ situation could not be more different.

Rwanda, the former Belgian colony which, in the mid-1990s, experienced one the nastiest ethnic-based conflicts in the African continent, is now enjoying an economic boom that makes it the envy of its neighbors. For the past 22 years however, the country has not only reverted to the colonial-era type of governance that institutionalizes the Tutsi minority’s political domination of the Hutu majority but also been under the one-man rule of Paul Kagame, a Tutsi and darling of the international community. The Rwanda solution, it appears, could not be more at odds with Mr. Lucas’ stated philosophy of promoting democratic rule in Haiti, or is it?

To the architects of the so-called Rwandan solution for Haiti, the dissimilarities between the countries were the least of their concerns. They figured Rwanda’s Hutu-Tutsi ethnic divide could be re-created in Haiti, at least superficially, by pitting one economically dominant class against the impoverished majority. It was under this Machiavellian plan that the likes of the Arpaids, the Boulos and other members of the Mediterranean mafia in Haiti would have become the nominal Tutsis, empowered by the international community to do as they please with the country’s perceived Hutus, to be exact the economically destitute black majority.

It is highly improbable Stanley Lucas was briefed on the fundamental objective of the Rwanda proposal, or he would have objected to it had he been an influential member of the institute that conceived such neocolonial absurdity. True to form, he has dutifully ceased his advocacy of the plan because the nation-builders may have come to doubt its impracticality and decided to abandon it, despite the occupation and Minustah 2004-? In Haiti’s dysfunctional political arena, however, a new purpose is always around the corner for the likes of Mr. Lucas. Ever the agitator and opportunist, he may have found one: fighting the legitimacy or lack thereof of Joceleme Privert, Haiti’s interim president.

It does not matter to Mr. Lucas that the present-day crisis originated with Michel Martelly, Privert’s predecessor, who subverted the electoral process by refusing or failing to hold constitutionally-mandated municipal and legislative elections for over three and a half years. From his perspective, the interim presidency of Mr. Privert (Feb 14-?) is the result of machinations of Lavalas usurpers out to destroy the democratic process in Haiti, hence illegal and deserving universal condemnation. Through media interviews, the man comes close to advocating not civil disobedience but armed insurrection against the interim government, which he perceives as illegitimate because the Haitian parliament has yet to consent on extending its mandate that expires on June 14, 2016. Apparently Mr. Lucas has become a rogue agitator; his handlers should consider re-briefing him as was the case with the Rwanda solution.

Jul. 24, 2016

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