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#2430: Hard facts on Dr. Francois Duvalier: an answer to Antoine's questions (fwd)

From: Jean Poincy <caineve@idt.net>

The intellectually curious always wants proof and I have no quarrel
about it. It is your right not place trust in whatever I advance in the
discussion. You seem to begin asking yourself questions about what you
have read so far. That is good. It is important to keep in mind that
whatever that was said and you read regarding the era being discussed
was the fabrication of most intellectuals who were victims of the
regime. Do you actually think that they would underline what Dr.
Francois Duvalier did that was significant? They had only one aim:
denigrate the man to instill hatred in the generation to come. You are a
victim of this "intellectual wash". I was a victim of it also. Once I
began to see light, I ceased to be an "intellectual victim" 

I suggest that you browse all existing libraries and try to find one
book written by them that underlines these facts; out of a 100, you will
probably find only one if it really exists. The worst thing that can
ever happen to an intellectual curious mind is to only get one side of
the story. Most of those who could write about the positive aspects did
not have the literary ability to do so. Please, Antoine don't dream
about finding right now some objective historians that would be willing
to take the challenge to disprove my sayings. Some way or another, I bet
you, they have been a victim of the Duvalier regime. Conduct a survey,
you will find out. I also encourage them to respond to your call, with
an analytical approach, otherwise all that they will do is to verbatim
the facts without much new light. Till now that I am discussing, I don't
disagree with any of the facts that you have presented. Not only I agree
with you, I also condemned them. Nonetheless, I look at their moral
value relatively to the collective good while in fact dismissing
individual claims perceived as immoral by you and many others. What
disarms you greatly is that you have no reference to verify my sayings.
Much to your disappointment, you will not find them, because the
historians never took that approach.

At any rate you asked me to tell you about the circumstance the slaves
were dumped, I am ready for you: you know that the French revolution in
1789 brought some impetus in the movement for freedom at least in
Saint-Domingue. It played a major role in shaping the struggle for
freedom in that colony. That was a blessing for both mulattoes and the
slaves. On May 15, 1791 all mulattoes were officially given the same
political rights with the withes, a cause that Vincent Oge and
Jean-Baptiste Chavanes dedicated themselves to. The slaves had their
party in their own way with the famous ceremony of the Bois-Caiman in
August 1791. Under pressure from Toussaint and his band in the Spanish
camp on the east side, Sonthonax and Polverel two commissioners of
Saint-Domingue declared freedom for all slaves on the 29th of August and
the 22nd of September 1793. 

I went overboard a little bit. Please, let's take a step backward. The
rhetoric on human rights, liberty, equality and fraternity was happily
received by the mulattoes as it created the opportunities for them to
claim political rights while excluding the slaves.  How hypocritical!
Mulattoes believed the pure Africans were inferior and should be kept in
slavery to the mercy of gradual emancipation. The blacks, who fought
vehemently the whites with Oge and Chavannes, the two prominent
mulattoes leaders, were let down when mulattoes and whites were
celebrating their union on October 24, 1791. 

By becoming a common enemy, especially after the Bois-Caiman, for the
unified entity, their fate had to be decided by the new class. During
the celebration and after fighting on numerous occasions for the
mulattoes, they were kept on the plantations and were excluded form
partaking the celebration. That was a major blow for them as they were
condemned even by their mulattoes children to finish their lives in the
lowest level of the social hierarchy. Their destiny was based on two
choices: 1) maintain their slave status on the plantations 2) send them
to the Mosquitos in Guatemala. The second option was chosen because
their presence on the plantations would be subversive as they tasted
freedom? Thomas Madiou a profuse facts teller Vols. I or II (pretty sure
vol. II) will give you in greater details. 

Now in regards to saving lives from infectious diseases, it was already
said on the list and ask Jean Jean-Pierre since he dismissed the fact by
saying that Dr. Francois Duvalier was given a scholarship by the
American government to conduct study in the field. As he was working
with an American team he does not deserve the credit to cure the rural
peasants from "PIAN" that was eating their feet up. He will translate it
for you as well. I am quite satisfied with "PIAN". The man eradicated
the "foot disease" which could handicap the people and ultimately kill
them. I am sure your mathematical inclination will make you see easily
how infectious diseases that are contagious can spread very rapidly.
When one has it, the whole family, the whole neighborhood, the whole
village, the whole town, the whole city and the whole country can catch
it, unless it was not a contagious disease. 

I don't speculate on what I don't know, I know the rules of quality
academic research, I use facts not to make a bouquet, but to structure
my analysis. I stay silent when I don't know so I can learn; but when I
know I make sure I state my points when incorrectness is in the air.

Ayiti has lived, lives and will live