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#2336: The Pean execution -- Antoine responds to Lamour (fwd)
From: Guy Antoine <GuyAntoine@windowsonhaiti.com>
Yvon, I did hear your version of the motives surrounding the Pean execution.
However, the reason I am able to relate vividly certain events that happened
during my time in Cape-Haitian is because I choose to describe only what
fell directly within my sphere of observation, and not engage in
Pelota, Lemoine, and a few others were the "kok chante" (singing roosters)
of those days, so it is possible that they were connected to the execution,
and then again it's possible that they were not. I cannot implicate them,
simply because I just do not have any evidence about this.
As a matter of fact, that was not the only speculation I heard at that time.
Some advanced the less credible notion that he was done in by his funeral
parlor competitor in Cape-Haitian. I do not give any credence to that story
whatsoever, but if I were to mention the rumours of the day, this would have
to be one of them.
However, the notion that he was executed based on his lougawou or
zombification activities was widespread. You are right to mention that a
good part of the population was duped in accepting that version, which
was made more "credible" by the fact that Pean was the owner of a
funeral parlor business. That is part of a general pattern where Haitian
superstitions have been exploited to the fullest by those in a position of
authority. Remember the duvalierist string of 22's...
As far as the tragic death of Tony Piquion is concerned, the version that
you report is a new one for me. I know that his body was riddled with
bullets from machine gun fire that erupted at the night club. The name
that I heard associated with that killing on a consistent basis is that of
Aderbal Lherisson. I had never heard the names of Pelota and Lemoine,
connected with it. But at the time, I was also a child, perhaps older than
you, but not too much older, which means that I was not yet of age to
frequent the night clubs. Otherwise, if I had been there, I would now be
empowered to relate this to you in the most vivid way. But I'll leave that
task to others.
This Lherisson character is the same one, I believe, who accompanied
the 1974 Haitian National Soccer team to Germany for the World Cup.
After Haiti lost its first match to Italy, 3-1, in the game that produced
goal of the tournament by Manno Sanon, a key player, Joseph, was
disqualified due to his use of an asthma medicine which contained a
banned substance. Joseph got slapped by Lherisson in front of the
team, due to his misfortune. It appeared that the team lost its morale
completely after that, instead of riding the crest of its very good showing
against Italy (most especially the first half... I watched it on the big
at Madison Square Garden, and boy, what a boisterous group we were!
...someone should relate the atmosphere in Haiti that day).
If anything that I described in the above paragraph is incorrect, I would
welcome a rectification. I was not part of the Haitian soccer team, so I
cannot say what actually happened with absolute certainty.
The crimes committed by Duvalier and his cohorts should be recorded,
because as new generations evolve, we tend to lose the memory of the
way it was, and this loss of memory gets exploited by people who would
love to give us a different version of our History. However, we must guard
against relying on speculation. The sword cuts both ways.
My compliments to Gilles Hudicourt for his Pointe-Ouest story. Talk about
a vivid recollection! Where else would one read this if not in Corbettland?
Guy S. Antoine
Look thru & Imagine!