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28887: Morse (comment) Security in Port-au-Prince (fwd)


The Question (as statement): How to get from the airport to the Oloffson to the provinces...

First of all, at the airport, there are yellow and white shirted taxi drivers. It's their job to know what roads to take. $20 or $25 will get you just about anywhere in Port au Prince.

Secondly, President Preval has been talking tough these last few days in regards to the gangs. He's given the gangs the option of turning their weapons over to the DDR (Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration) in exchange for job training, small business investment and schooling. The other option being, "die trying to hold on to your weapons and gang lifestyle".

Thirdly, I'm told that the UN is making a stronger presence on the airport road. The area on the Oloffson side of Champ Mars hasn't had shootings or kidnappings to speak of in the last couple of years.

Tomorrow I head off to Jacmel. I'm going to visit Mme Nerva. She's really getting on in age. Mme Nerva represented Haiti on the Washington Mall approximately 15 years ago. She was doing Haitian ceremonies for the Folklife Festival. Some of the folks in Washington couldn't quite understand all the "possesions" and insisted on their being an ambulance available for the high incidence of "heat stroke". Mme Nerva is a living treasure. Sometimes we wait a little too long before honoring people.

Afterwards, I'm heading to the beach to do a comparative analysis, waves, sunshine and seafood by the shore. Actually, I'm just going to chill...

Richard Morse
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