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Under the Radar

The DR: A nation in Perpetual Denial
Under the Radar

The DR: A nation in Perpetual Denial

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

On May 15, Dominicans head to the polls to elect a president, a vice-president and a National Assembly. As usual the 800-pound gorilla in these contests will be Haiti, their country’s western neighbor and former ruler from 1822 to 1844. Not surprisingly, Haitians living on the wrong side of the border are being treated as political pawns and subjected to inhumane treatments by these malditos.

Under the Radar

Do Haitians Need More Time To Grasp The Concept of A Constituent State?

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

Two days before the twice-delayed presidential runoff which was to take place on Jan. 24, albeit with only one consenting contender, Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) abruptly postponed it once more due to widespread protests, compounded by indiscriminate acts of violence by as-yet-to-be-identified thugs. The acrimony was such that Evalière Beauplan, a sitting senator, exhorted the masses to set up barricades all over the country while André Michel, a lawyer and former presidential contender, publicly threatened to burn the country into ashes, if the CEP were to proceed with the election.

The Anatomy of Instability
Under the Radar

The Anatomy of Instability

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

No one can accuse Haitian politicians of being inconsistent in their approach to fomenting instability in the country they profess to love, be they those in power or the ones vying for power. Collectively they thrive on brinkmanship and loath following any guidelines, particularly those of Haiti’s constitution.

Haiti needs a “System Change”
Under the Radar

Haiti needs a “System Change”

By Max A. Joseph

Unlike most Haitians trying to make sense of the wretched state of affairs in Haiti, I sincerely believe that the western-style democracy being imposed by force or coercion on the beleaguered country is ultimately responsible. Indeed, the reality speaks for itself. As long as the international community remains committed to that objective with a messianic zeal, the long-suffering Haitian people should expect more of the same. That, this particular brand western-style democracy centers on the neo-colonialist attitude of “Trust us, we know what is best for you,” makes it all the more unpleasant to a nation created out of resistance to oppression. Is there a solution to this nightmarish reality or should Haitians resign themselves to this unpleasant fate?

Has Haiti traded a Master for an Overseer?
Under the Radar

Has Haiti traded a Master for an Overseer?

By Max A. Joseph

The late Thomas Woodrow Wilson, Princeton University president, New Jersey governor and United States president, who ordered the first U.S. occupation of Haiti in 1915-1934, has been in the news lately over his view on race, which many consider abhorrent and insensitive to Blacks.

New Approach to International Relations Needed
Under the Radar

New Approach to International Relations Needed

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

On February 7, 2016, a new president will be inaugurated in Haiti. However not much is expected to change given that the president — Jude Celestin or Jovenel Moise, as per the results of the first round presidential election released by the CEP on Nov. 5 — may not be willing to tackle the primary challenge to the country’s future, namely its unbalanced relationship with the international community. Presently a comprehensive re-evaluation of our commitment to the international treaties which are irrelevant, if not detrimental, to our continued existence as a nation, is needed. Otherwise Haiti will remain an attractive target for ridicule and exceptional punishment.

Under the Radar

Illusion Of Control: The Fault Line Of The Occupation

By Max A. Joseph

The quest for absolute power has always played a significant role in the decline or demise of empires, as it encourages rulers to march to the sound of their own drumbeats, irrespective of the realities challenging their thirst. Such strategy inevitably creates an “illusion of control,” which leads to often repeated mistakes that progressively erode these rulers’ credibility — the somewhat indispensable component of great power authority. Haiti, which singlehandedly planted the seeds for the eventual destruction of slavery in the nineteenth century, remains by far the most prominent victim of this harmful form of human interaction. As expected, the ramifications are catastrophic for the Haitian people, whose own quest for stability and development is held hostage by this geopolitical folly.

The Future Looks Bleak For Haitians
Under the Radar

The Future Looks Bleak For Haitians

By Max A. Joseph Jr.

The caliber of a country’s leadership has always been the quintessential indicator of its likely greatness or irrelevance, seeing that a constituent nation is actually a work in progress. The history of Haiti may be fraught with events that were beyond the ability of many of the country’s leaders to control or influence, but internal factors have certainly played a significant role in our abysmal state such of affairs. Petty politics and cult of personality are so entrenched in our national identity that the average Haitian rightly feels that he has no stake in the system. These self-inflicted wounds inevitably made it easier for adversaries and tormentors alike to present themselves as “knights in shining armor” to unsuspecting Haitians.

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