Have no fear, 2011 will be a great year for Haiti and for the world!
By Jean H Charles
On November 1, 2009, I attended for the second time (the first one being at the Brooklyn Museum in New York) a voodoo ceremony celebrating the guedes (the good and bad angels). The voodoo mambo or priestess made the prediction that 2010 will be an excellent year for Haiti and for the world.
In fact, 2010 was the worst year in Haitian history and in the rest of the world.
In Haiti, a devastating earthquake killed 300,000 people, while leaving 1.5 million homeless. A cholera epidemic brought into the country by the United Nations has killed 5,000 people; it might go to 10,000 before leveling off.
Throughout the world, according to a study made by the Center for the Study of Catastrophes of the United Nations, 2010 has been one of the most costly and deadly for decades. With 373 catastrophes, 200 million people without homes, 400,000 dead and $110 billion economic losses in the US, $18 billion in China and $4.5 billion in Pakistan, the year has wrought calamities beyond recorded observation. Haiti has rung the alarm bell but it was repeated in Chile, Russia, China and Pakistan.
The prediction that 2010 would be a great year for Haiti and for the world was indeed a voodoo prediction, filled with holes and spurious expectation!
Based on the natural principle, after the bad weather is the good one, after the rain is sunshine, have no fear! God has promised He will not bring about the deluge twice to mankind; I am predicting that 2011 will be a good year for Haiti and for the world.
The signals are already there. Tunisia that lives under a dictatorship for the past thirty years has booted out its dictator at the beginning of the month of January. The people want nothing more than true and real democracy. Egypt is on the verge of packing up Mr Mubarak, who ruled as a dictator for the past thirty years. Yemen and maybe some more of the repressed Muslim or Gentiles countries will be taken the lead of Tunis to tell the dictators they have no clothes, they should let the people go!
2011 will be a determining year for Haiti to find, at last, solace after experiencing with dictatorship, militarism and anarchism as a tool of governance. In reviewing the literature on Haitian history, I was surprised to find this gallant nation has been suffering for the past not 50 but 500 years the ignominy of humiliation, repression and plain disregard of their human dignity. For three hundred years during slavery it was the de jure bondage, right after the independence during the next two hundred years it was the de facto enslavement.
Throughout this long history, the ruling nationals intertwined with the international sector have always conspired to keep the masses at bay, ignorant, poor and not in control of their destiny. This February 7, 2011, Rene Preval, sustained by a sector of the international community, at the end of his mandate will either succeed in having the upper hand to continue the culture of squalor in Haiti or he will be butted out by the people power to yield the scene to enlightened governance that puts the needs and the aspirations of the people on the front line.
I am observing in Haiti a global waste of international resources with no significant impact for the population. The United Nations, with a purse in Haiti of $865 million per year, is the biggest culprit. Encircled with a total wall of silence, the 42 nations that comprise the personnel of MINUSTHA are engaged in a scam of diligence and make believe when they know that we know they are completely useless.
The only harm endured by the UN military in Haiti is the wearing of a heavy helmet under constant 90 degrees Fahrenheit weather. For all the propaganda of a violent population, the Haitian people are peaceful, resilient, and going about doing their daily business of survival with a saintly resignation and a shrug that necessitates a personal and collective overhaul.
The thousand of NGOs that took up residence in Haiti after the earthquake are maneuvering like chickens without heads. Without direction, coordination and vision they are spending the international funds mostly on their own needs first, on the needs of the Haitian people maybe or after.
The Preval government, using words instead of action, is busy bilking the NGOs and the international institutions instead of helping them to help his people. In a perverse symbiotic relationship that feeds each other, the government and the international institutions are comfortable with each other, afraid of standing up on the side of the Haitian people.
In the flawed election, planned and coordinated by the Preval government, with the logistic support of the UN and OAS, the people of Haiti have misled the prognosticators and the polls to keep their candidate close to their cards.
When the discredited Electoral Board pushed the government candidate for a second run, putting aside the candidate who carried the popular vote, all hell broke loose. There was rioting all over the country, in particular in Les Cayes (the southern part of Haiti). OAS/CARICOM, an incubator of the criminal conspiracy, was called again by the same Haitian government to correct its wrong.
This time, it has no other choice but to reverse the results and put the popular candidate Michel Martelly in the second round, setting aside the government candidate Jude Celestin.
The drama is not over because Jude Celestin is pulling the patriotic bell to generate national sentiment in his favour. Jean Claude Duvalier, with his surprise visit, is shuffling the cards. Jean Bertrand Arisitide has a expressed strong interest in returning into the country, putting the weight of his popularity in the mix. Rene Preval, in spite of his mediocre leadership standing, wants to remain the broker par excellence of the Haitian political transition.
Haiti will necessitate cesarean section to give birth to a new nation hospitable to all. I am confident the political skills of the people have reached a mature level to handle the birthing of true democracy without too much pain and suffering. .
Closer to home, P.J. Patterson, the Haiti CARICOM Representative, has called for helping Haiti to become the driving force of the Caribbean. He will need the credibility of his long years of service to face the Colin Granderson force embedded with the discredited Haitian government and a corrupt sector of the Haitian elite bent on keeping Haiti in bondage forever.
February 7, 2011, a day of reckoning, will be like the birth of Christ in the world, the day that will force the dawn of a new beginning in Haiti. May the good people of the world align themselves with the people of Haiti to facilitate the birthing of this true era of democracy!
February 5, 2011