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Haiti, a Difficult Cause to Defend, in the Present Socio-political Conditions

Interview with historian Christophe Wargny, former adviser of President Aristide, by Gotson Pierre

"It is extremely difficult to defend Haiti today ", complains historian and French teacher Christophe Wargny, former counselor of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Haiti, he says, is described, "and with good reason, as a country of corruption, of chaos, a country without future or a country of desolation."

"Even though one wants to promote the culture or the image of Haiti, one has the feeling of being completely isolated ," declares Christophe Wargny, who entertains the idea of making the bi-centenary of Haiti in 2004 a major historical event. For this reason, he is circulating an appeal among foreigners interested in Haiti.

"We find very little help from Haitians who should be the most concerned," he confides.

Christophe Wargny, who doesn't hide his friendship for Aristide, blames the present Haitian president in part for the country's difficulties. Wargny believes however that "Aristide's preference for the notion of fidelity to the detriment of the notion of competence appears today to reach new records and is one of the explanations for today's difficulties."

The French intellectual criticizes the structure of the Fanmi Lavalas party, the behavior of some Lavalas activists, and the contested elections of 2000. "The constitution of Fanmi Lavalas was made on a dreadfully Haitian model of a party with a chief and a clan," instead of a " more modern and different model " he states. On the other hand, "a certain number of original militants, who were really militants, who took risks, ended up wearing the traditional Haitian politician dresses, with everything that it signifies in clannishness and corruption ," regrets Christophe Wargny.

He also indicates that the way the elections of the year 2000 were managed not only added to the discredit, but created a political impasse. On one hand, he speaks of elections won, "but elections that they wanted to win too much," and then on the other, "The opposition sees no alternative but to hold for a hypothetical agreement." The result, according to Wargny, is an impression that the "completely confused political class forgets that it is supposed to represent the Haitian people, who suffer awfully."

Christophe Wargny is co-author with Pierre Mouterde of the book titled "After the Feast the Drums Are Heavy," an analysis of the relations of Washington with Port-au-Prince during the period from the military coup of September 1991, that brings evidence of the duplicity of Washington. Wargny declares that considering the years 1994 to 2002, there would probably be a certain number of revisions to make."There needs to be, he adds, "another book showing the extreme weight of internal factors against which one had the impression that a fight was beginning."

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