Is Washington Preparing to Change Horses in Haiti?

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Ted St. Dic and Magali Comeau Denis, two of the principal leaders of the Montana Accord coalition.

(Français)

Over the past few days, the U.S. imperialists appear to be testing and judging the viability of the ruling coalition formed around the Musseau Accord, led by de facto Prime Minister Ariel Henry, as well as that of its arch-rival, the Montana Accord coalition.

What we must understand is this: the capitalist powers control both of these two leading political accords. There are clear signs that Washington is pondering its options.

Take, for example, Henry’s last message to the nation on Sep. 11, in which he promised to hold elections in 2022. This is almost surely impossible as he has made clear his weakness and incapacity on every front. Despite being appointed and backed by Washington’s “Core Group” of ambassadors, he has miserably failed in his mission. Today, Haitians are engaged in another historic nationwide uprising demanding that he go.

Meanwhile, on Sep. 8, Susan D. Page, former U.S. diplomat, former Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Haiti and former head of the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH), wrote a telling article on the website of the U.S. establishment’s Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) in which she acknowledged that “[m]istrust between the population and what it sees as incessantly meddling foreign powers – particularly the United States – is at an all-time high.” Then she points to the Montana Accord as “a broad group of Haitian citizens [which] has coalesced to form a roadmap to the restoration of democratic norms without the interference of foreign powers. For the United States, working in greater partnership with such organizations… could help restore Haitian confidence.”

Former U.S. diplomat Susan D. Page wrote an article for the Council of Foreign Relation’s that suggests that Washington may soon take a new tack in Haiti.

Thus Ms. Page concludes: “The United States needs to make clear that it is turning the page on the past and working alongside Haitians desirous of charting their own transition.”

Shouldn’t we now wonder what is on Haiti’s horizon?

After having destabilized Haiti with neoliberal reforms, coups, military occupations, dictators, and countless other intrigues, Washington is now mulling whether to reshuffle its Haitian political puppets by replacing the Musseau team by that of Montana to continue its imperialist domination of our nation. We can be sure that the subservient Haitian bourgeoisie will quickly approve and applaud such a change, since the latest peyi lòk (nation-wide shut down) is hurting their business interests and privileges.

Henry continues to dream that he is indispensable while making statements crowned with lies. His government is a disaster. It’s now clear to all that he will never be able to carry out the reforms and elections for which he was shoehorned into power more than a year ago. So Washington is calculating that it’s best to change things up before Haiti sinks any further into the chaos of its ever-deepening security and institutional crisis. Ms. Page has faith in Washington’s new bilateral tool, the Global Fragility Act (GFA), for which Haiti is a “priority” and pilot case, as our collaborator Travis Ross has written. Ms. Page clearly states: “The United States should view the Montana Accord as the natural starting point for its new strategic approach for Haiti…”

The CFR article also explains that “the United States should consider a major revision to its existing democracy, human rights, and governance program” in Haiti. Ms. Page explains that Washington has been working over the past five years through a so-called “the Consortium for Elections and Political Procedures (CEPPS)” but then points to its “unsuccessful efforts” and suggests that “the United States should consider other, more creative initiatives for promoting democracy and electoral reform in Haiti.”

So now the “Haitian-led” alternative coalition will provide the “creative” solution to ensure Haiti’s continued subordination to U.S. imperialism. Washington has always treated Haiti with cynicism and contempt. Have we no determination to turn this shameful page, to once and for all make a break with the past? Must we always swallow the pills they give us that are incompatible with progress, modernization, and development?

In other words, there will be no “rupture” but merely some new puppets, leaving in place the same neocolonial policies under a state apparatus that has only changed cosmetically.

Capitalist exploitation has generated ever-growing misery, poverty, unemployment, crime, and insecurity in recent times. This makes the situation very explosive.

De facto Prime Minister Ariel Henry has failed miserably in his mission, as evidenced by today’s uprising in Haiti and Washington’s search for an alternative.

The traditional Haitian political class wants to move forward with the firm support of the Haiti’s ruling classes and the imperialist powers in a government which casts the sinister shadow of the far right. The Haitian masses, the “wretched of the earth,” continue to long for and demand a social revolution, changing ownership of Haiti’s resources, means of production, and state apparatus. This is the danger of this current moment: we risk falling for the same petty little maneuvers, the electoral illusions, so that nothing will change.

Workers, peasants, activists, young people, and the unemployed, the biggest battles are ahead of us, and new challenges are on the horizon. We must fight for politics that go beyond the electoralism preached by the guardian powers and the moribund political class, so that the system in place can be changed. Through this fight, we can, indeed, open another path leading to a transformation of society that could impose a government at the service of the popular majority capable of freeing us from American domination which aims now to saddle us with the “Global Fragility Act” for a more effective control of our country.

It is important to prepare for our future, because the fight for national liberation is our only path to achieve peace, freedom, and social security. It alone can restore our dignity and break radically with the social, economic and political apartheid that has characterized the country since the parricide of 1806.

Let’s thwart the new tactics of the imperialist aggressors. Oppressed Haitian masses, let us prepare, organize ourselves, and count only on ourselves! Your resistance and a genuine revolutionary mobilization can break the never-ending nightmare cycle of Haiti’s submission to the United States’ strategies.

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