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7493: Re: The current situation; Simidor comments (fwd)

From: Karioka9@cs.com

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?

Daniel Simidor