[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
7493: Re: The current situation; Simidor comments (fwd)
On one level, the conflict between Lavalas and the opposition is a conflict
between two visions of democracy: OPL's call for pluralism and power-sharing,
and Aristide's hegemonic principle of legitimacy by popular acclaim. The
tragedy in all this is that the country needs both the democratic
transformation represented by the Gourgue/OPL challenge, and the thirst for
social justice embodied by the Lavalas movement. With a real commitment to
democracy and social justice, Haiti would take a dramatic leap into modernity!
Some talk of a curse (fatalite historique) against Haiti, because at every
juncture where those two tendencies met in the past the result has been civil
war instead of progress. From 1869 to the 1915, this has been the nasty
blueprint, the fate that befell Haiti -- a tragedy that destroyed some of
Haiti's best potential, from Salnave to Salomon, to Boyer Bazelais, Antenor
Firmin, Rosalvo Bobo and so many others.
There are also distinct class antagonisms, obscured by the sensationalism of
the news. One brave soul put forward the issue of property taxes as the basis
for the dramatic transformation of one romantic young hero of Lavalas
resistance into a bitter anti-Lavalas critic (Richard Morse). It is
significant that Aristide's "Peace in the mind and peace in the belly"
campaign is being fought by thugs, while Convergence's gallant campaign for
democracy and accountability is financed by IRI and hardcore compradors
within the Haitian bourgeoisie.
Who wins and who loses? The thuggish rabble around Aristide wins. The
assorted chimeres, drug dealers, gang leaders, recycled FRAPH and
Tonton-Macoute militias, mascarading as "popular organizations," cannot
thrive in normal times. They need the insecurity and chaos like fish need
water. They have managed in a very short time to push the new government to
the brink, even while other avenues of negotiation and conflict resolution
were perfectly available. Cherestal and his government are the clear losers
of the confrontations at Pont Morin. For the time being, the streets belong
to the thugs commanded by Ronald Cadavre and Dany Toussaint, while Gourgue
has re-emerged with the stature of a national leader.
Aristide's latest speech about Catilina and Cicero does suggest that he has
surrended to the logic of assassinations and bloodshed. People have been
saying for sometime that Aristide and Dany Toussaint are two peas in a pod;
and that Jean Dominique had become disillusioned with Aristide and his gang,
that Dominique had an open confrontation with Aristide at Tabarre shortly
before he was killed, that he was tried behind his back and declared a
traitor to the Lavalas cause, and that Aristide's impromptu appearance last
week at Radio Haiti-Inter was the sign of a guilty conscience. How late is
it in the game for a plea for compassion, decency and restraint?