Haiti must be saved.

A recent article in the Daily Beast caught my eye: “What if Haiti can’t be saved?”

I do not believe that we have the luxury of saying
“what if Haiti can’t be saved”.

I don’t hold out any hope for the current generation of Haiti’s citizens to remake their troubled nation into a well employed island paradise replete with a morally sound police force, solid government and civil infrastructure and negligible crime with a Burger King on every corner and Chevy pickups blazing John Mellencamp or JayZ tunes out the windows.

Haiti’s people suffer a sort of battered wife syndrome, after two or three generations of bloody dictatorial leadership and it will take a century or more before the lasting scars of that history fade from the national psyche. I say a century because the earthquake has accelerated the wounds from a thousand cuts to trillions of lashes and a wholesale flogging against a concrete wall.

Haiti’s people will never forget this, even after the last body is buried and the last street is cleared of the rubble of destroyed homes and buildings.
Truly, the fastest and most humane solution is to give each family a quonset hut on poles and tell them to hunker down with the stacks of MRE’s and get through the coming hurricane season while the Army Corps of Engineers installs several hundred solar powered desalination plants along the shoreline.

But that still won’t ease the core reasons for Haiti’s troubles, which live on a cellular level within Haitian society itself.

Sounds like a grim assessment.
Now hear this:
It’s nothing compared to what will happen if we give up on our neighbor 700 miles to the southeast of us.

Al-Qaeda is surely watching and waiting, and biding its time.
Faith in the Christian God is waning to an all time low, and if that is combined with the perception that America is once again ignoring the plight of Haiti, AQ will almost be welcomed as liberators, and liberators they might be for they might waltz in flush with oil money, lavish aid and a new message, lips smacking at the notion of implanting a newly minted outpost within easy striking distance of our shores.

A jihadist Haiti is a nightmare that could never be extinguished and it would spill over into the Dominican Republic either by sudden force or by slow attrition.

Nope, we’d better accept the fact that Haiti is our new ward now and forever, an adopted child. It’s a problem child to be sure, but it’s ours and it’s our responsibility, unless we like the idea of another long emergency added to the ones already looming on the horizon.

17 Responses to "Haiti must be saved."

  1. EmmaG  January 16, 2010 at 8:04 pm

    Thank you, CS, for your thoughtful blog. My first thought was “who are we to ask that question?” Haiti will continue to physically exist as will its people. There are many, many Haitians in the US who are doing there best to provide support for their families there, even before the earthquake and the four hurricanes of 2008. You are so very right: we cannot give up on our neighbor just the other side of Cuba.

  2. CheckerboardStrangler  January 16, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    Well, now that you mention it, there IS one other group that might be interested in Haiti but they have had little success in the past, and that is the Latin American socialists and Marxists.

    But I put my money on AL QAEDA. They would stop at nothing if they thought they could establish a stronghold 700 miles from our shores. Imagine what they would be able to do with a base in Haiti!

  3. bryan mcclellan  January 17, 2010 at 12:03 am

    Too little resolve, results in fear.

    Too little respect of ” fear”, makes him,

    an unworthy opponent, insurmountable.

    Nothing will change if we reach and still fail to see the need within. What we should fear is leaving ours behind and crushed, whilst chasing the latest boogieman.

    How can we with humanitarian efforts close to the vest pose an honest profile half a world away, or for that matter in our own front yard?

    Yours is a balanced argument, yet,

    I seem to recall, the domino echo in my one good ear…

     

  4. Carl Nemo  January 17, 2010 at 1:46 am

    Wow, Al Qaeda in Haiti? When pigs fly…!

    You need to really focus closely on the Haitian people, their existing infrastructure, now a portion of the island reduced to rubble along with their history etc.  

    You have a mix of 80% Catholicism and Vodou practitioners or both which has links to African pantheism. Protestants represent 16% no doubt there for missionary, medical and diplomatic work, but the number Islamists would be extremely small; ie, simply visitors passing through. Also Haitians in general don’t hate the U.S. as one would think. Haiti is the only predominantly French speaking nation in the America’s.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haiti

    You’d be hard pressed to find a single Islamist on the island at least any that would want to stay over night. I doubt if you could get a Haitian interested in such a violent movement; ie, death now so you can have access to a glorious afterlife through the sacrifice of one’s life for Jihad. It would be as oil and water to them. To Islamist recruiter… “Hey mon are you some kind of cuckoo”… in French…:))

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haitian_Vodou

    Possibly Marxists and Socialists could get a toehold if they worked at it although the country seems to exist under a long line of despot dictators; ie, 70 of them since their successful slave rebellion in 1804. Haiti is the oldest black republic on earth.

    No, what Haiti needs is to be declared a U.N. protectorate and virtually have the country rebuilt from the ground up along with creating an industrial infrastructure useful to the West; ie, ethanol production for fuel or fuel mix as in Brazil. The money should not be administered by the existing Haitian government which is another corrupt regime although the violence has somewhat abated due to the the U.N. peacekeeping presence, but that’s not enough.

    Sugar cane grows incredibly well in those climes and allows for decent production. Even if the price is somewhat depressed by higher order societies that do so, such as Brazil, but would be the equivalent of sitting on a good sized oil field for the Haitians. Also there’s oil and gas reserves in the area within their waters although not elephant sized, but enough to give the people some hope; but the transgenerational criminals that have been running this country need to be rounded up and exiled…period!

    Otherwise it will continue to be the same old story concerning this “red haired black stepchild” of the Carribean.  

    *****

    Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. …Chinese proverb

    ***** 

    Carl Nemo **==

     

  5. issodhos  January 17, 2010 at 7:34 pm

    Your article raises more questions than it answers, CS. To begin with, what do you mean by “saved”? Your conclusion seems to be saying that “saved” means making Haiti and its citizens our charity case forever. That does not seem like a very meaningful “save” to me. It also raises the question of why us? Why not France? Why not the EU? Why not China? Why not the Haitians, themselves? Why not someone with more skin in the game than most others – the Domincan Republic? The UN?

     

      Indeed, you have not really answered the fundamental question of why it must be “saved” or even what it is that would be “saved”. I do not buy into the silly Al Qaeda boogie man argument or the “national security crappola” so often used to manipulate the American citizenry.

     

      And since the US government is broke and currently relying on printing phony money or borrowing it from thugs like the Chinese Government and others, why would you think we are in an economic position to “save” Haiti as a charity basketcase into perpetuity?

    Yours,

    Issodhos

  6. Warren  January 18, 2010 at 1:19 am

    By all means, let’s pour more trillions of dollars and thousands of lives into more “nation building”. After all, we’re getting so good at it. (not)

    —W—

  7. woody188  January 18, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    I’ve found those threatening Al-Qaeda expansion are usually wrong and usually pushing an agenda of Manifest Destiny under the guise of democratic nation building.  Haiti will be “saved” by Haitians or no one.  Sure they will need tempory aid, but ultimately everyday Haitians must recognize their potential and take the responsibility for their own lives back on their own shoulders or they will continue to be used and abused by tyrants and outside influences.

  8. bryan mcclellan  January 18, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    And that’s the real wood, without the termite rot of globalization.

  9. griff  January 18, 2010 at 11:31 pm

    Methinks they need arms – the greatest aid that can be given to those oppressed. Feed ‘em first, of course.

  10. Carl Nemo  January 19, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    Within a thousand years or less, Haiti will be a deserted island with minimal traces of humanity having been there. : |

    Carl Nemo **==

  11. woody188  January 18, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    No More Sorrow

  12. bryan mcclellan  January 18, 2010 at 11:11 pm

    History heeded not, is lamentation.

    None the less, will we merely hear the echos ,

    or be the origins of said reverberation?

    I choose speech.

    It is time past we speak not of the horror of war or government amok, but the time of accounting with a voice clear and reasoned, claiming not only ours, but the worlds right to individualism across the board.

    From here , the Pope, the Queen, and any other faux so called blueblood/bush/saudi/ tsar/csar/ayatolla/murderous globalist/nazi/socialist/cia/ bad cop good cop/kennedy/rockafeller/carlile/chinese bildeberger sympathizing prick is on notice,

    I’m not dead yet, and niether is America…

  13. Carl Nemo  January 19, 2010 at 3:12 am

    A thought provoking piece Woody…! : ) 

    I urge folks to fetch the link and read the poem.

    Carl Nemo **==

  14. Carl Nemo  January 19, 2010 at 11:25 pm

    I like your brain chemistry my friend in thought! Your stringing of thoughtwords from Pope to Chinese Bilderberger is unique.

    You’ve got your “groove on” tonight…no?! : )

    Carl Nemo **==

  15. bryan mcclellan  January 19, 2010 at 12:12 am

    I remember shootin straight on C-Rats, the jelly wasn’t bad but you had to stir the peanut butter with El-P38..

    No comment on the crackers, but boysan got real good at chuckin the chocolate bars right back at us that wouldn’t have melted in any form or function of Hell.

  16. almandine  January 22, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    I think you could say the same for Dallas, New York City, Minot, Paris, Sydney, Beijing, Moscow, Ottawa… you name it. Probably won’t even take nearly that long.

  17. Carl Nemo  January 22, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    Thanks for your support of my projection… : )

    Nemo **==

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