Rappel du premier message :
In Haiti, to indicate that someone's comment is meaningless, one would respond "what you've just said is equivalent to what you have not said". Well, in essence, this is my reading of this whole Bill Clinton statement thing.
While Clinton and Ban Ki Moon were in Haiti (March 2009), there was a large Lavalas demonstration organized to make it evident that the vast majority of Haitians disagree with the forced exile of former President Aristide. Several thousands took to the streets. http://www.haitiaction.net/News/HA/3_12_9/3_12_9.html
The Preval-Pierre-Louis government apparently managed the Clinton-Ki Moon itinerary in such a way to avoid either of them nor Préval himself from having to address the crowd’s direct, highly visible (unmistakable) and persistent demand. Deceitful information was given to the demonstrators about the whereabouts of the delegation.
There is a statement made by Clinton that the pro-coup side is stretching to suggest that he endorses that Aristide remains in exile (see http://www.radiokiskeya.com/spip.php?article5741
In reality, Clinton did not address the issue at all. He said “I must tell you that your future can be better than your past.” This web link discusses how that statement has been interpreted in many different ways and generated much debate.
|“For some, for instance, Haitian lawyer Samuel Madistin, “The future can be better than the past” is a “clear sign” that the new democratic administration would not dwell on the eventual return of Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who would be considered as “the past” to which Clinton referred. For others, such as one of the organizers of the pro-Lavalas party demonstration, René Civil, the statement should be interpreted in a positive light, asserting that the future is tied to Aristide’s return. When he returns, he added, “There will be a wind of change blowing over the country and this will open a new era of cooperation between Haiti and the international community.”|
The truth of the matter is, Bill Clinton did not say anything of the sort as he did not have to anyhow.
My take on all of this: Much a do about nothing!
Clinton or Ban Ki Moon going on a celebrity tour of Haiti is nothing new. We’ve seen Clinton go to Africa, months after he blew up a pharmacy with hundreds of Africans and then claim to be suddenly so concerned with the welfare of Africans that he wants to make African Renaissance a conerstone of his life struggle. Political games are being played and Haitian poverty is being pimped – the “Tarzan narrative” is once again at play.
By the way, I stumbled upon a book titled “Desire for Development: Whiteness, gender and the helping imperative” by Babara Heron which deals with this matter in great detail. It would help many of us make better sense of these Clinton, Bono, Tarzan initiatives and why they are not really about improving lives of impoverished peoples as they are about colonial continuities – “stabilizing” the status quo. Barbara Heron is a former student of Sherene Razack (U of T “Black Threats and White Knights.). http://www.wlu.ca/press/Catalog/heron.shtml
Unfortunately, there are still many Haitians, tragically some of them self-identify as “leaders” of Lavalas who find it normal to rely on Santa Clauss (Bill Clinton et al.) to change the situation, including the end of political exile in U.N. occupied Haiti. To me, this kind of day-dreaming is downright irresponsible. Bill Clinton. Ban Ki Moon and all the Hollywood stars have no stake in Haiti. It is not up to them to decide whether, if or when Haitians get our act together or whether, when and if Jean-Bertrand Aristide returns to Haiti. These decisions are ours and ours alone to make. The required change will happen as we make these decisions, without hesitating or consulting folks who ought to have no say in these matters.
«Depi nan Ginen bon nèg ap ede nèg!»
(Brotherhood is as ancient as Mother Africa)
(L'entraide fraternelle date du temps où, tous, nous fûmes encore dans les entrailles de l'Afrique-mère)