PORT-AU-PRINCE — A feeling of jubilation is running through many Haitians, and some are demanding that France repay Haiti, in the week since The New York Times published its Ransom project about forced payments Haiti made to its former colonizer post independence.
To historian Pierre Buteau, the Times work brings the independence “double debt” back to the fore in conversations, since it destroyed the national economy. It brings both a sense of peace of mind for some Haitians who often think they are the one responsible for their own misery and is an awakening of the conscience of Haitians that can motivate them to reflect on their history.
"The impact that this article can have, and I hope it will, is that it will allow citizens to assess the importance of the past in the crisis that the country is currently experiencing," Buteau said.
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