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#1931: RE the Gourde's Depreciation, the killings of foreigners, .... Blanchet comments
From: Max Blanchet <MaxBlanchet@worldnet.att.net>
I should have read my message more carefully
before sending it. The Central Bank's intention
is to use its reserves in dollars to buy Gourdes.
Instead I said that it intended to buy dollars.
The mistake was mine!
The idea, which is well known and used all over
the world, is to use the strong currency held in
reserve to prop up the weak one.
Provided you have enough of the latter!
Haitian economists quite correctly have pointed
out that this will not work. The end result will be
the rapid depletion of reserves and a Gourde
that will remain weak to the detriment of the
majority that relies so much on imported goods,
especially foodstuff and fuels. And currency
speculators who are probably making a killing
out of this mess ...
In the short term, I do not see an easy solution.
Except for fiscal discipline which the Central
Bank is very good at anyway. As a matter of
fact, it is so good at it that it has turned Haiti
into one of the better pupils of the IMF, to
As for the violence that is now impacting
foreigners, from my perspective, there are
1) It is the result of random banditry except that
the bandits are now getting bolder sensing that they
can do so with impunity. Of course, people must take
steps to protect themselves but the main responsibility
rests with the Préval Administration. It must take
steps to strengthen the police and improve the
judicial system so that felons are properly and
swiftly tried and then put away.
2) It is the work of "forces obscures" hell bent on
disrupting the elections and discrediting the Préval
Administration and the country. What I said in 1)
applies here as well. The Préval Administration must
face its responsibilities and take steps to dismantle
these shadowy networks.
Given everything that has happened in Haiti,
especially since 1986, I tend to view
interpretation # 2 as more than plausible.
And many in Haiti saw scenario # 2 coming as the
Clinton Administration failed miserably to disarm
the "forces obscures." The irony of it all is that
the Occupation Forces did just that in 1915 under
much more hostile conditions.
Perhaps the intent all along was to keep these
networks in reserve just in case!