A Lesson in History: Haiti’s Reasonable Doubt

Go Lean Commentary

There are important lessons to learn from history … regarding the ongoing theme of America’s War on the Caribbean.

Consider Haiti … again. America has a long and abusive history with Haiti, its oldest and poorest neighbor.

In 1915, more than a century after having eradicated slavery from their country, the people of Haiti suddenly find themselves the victims of a brutal American occupation, reigniting an all too familiar past for the proud, independent nation. – Documentary Synopsis

CU Blog - A Lesson in History - Haiti's Reasonable Doubt - Photo 1

There is a very important point of consideration: Haiti and the Haitian people have a legitimate case of reasonable doubt for expecting regional leadership from the US. This commentary is also within the consistent theme for the movement behind the book Go Lean…Caribbean, whose goal and aspiration is for Caribbean people to take their own lead for Caribbean elevation. This applies doubly for Haiti.

Consider the full article here:

Title: The Forgotten Occupation
The Forgotten Occupation recounts the 19-year period during which the United States of America subjugated Haiti to a brutal occupation. From 1915 to 1934, the Haitian people found themselves under the rule of a system that was in large part influenced and pushed for by the National City Bank of New York (now Citibank), and that initially found support amongst many Haitians in the country.

The Forgotten Occupation is about Jim Crow, which was imported to Haiti by way of the American marines, whose perceptions of the Haitians they were occupying were rooted in the racist consciousness of the United States South from which most of them came. It is that consciousness that made it easy for the occupiers to kidnap innumerable men, take them away from their homes, and constrain them to forced labor. This process eventually ignited a mass rebellion.

The Forgotten Occupation is about those who resisted and paid for that resistance with their lives. It is about Charlemagne Peralte, the leader of the Cacos (the rebel group formed mainly of Haitian peasants) who, despite being outgunned, outmanned, and having little to no chance of a significant retaliation against the unstoppable force who now claimed their land, fought on as best as they could.

The Forgotten Occupation is about those who were displaced from their land, which was forcibly seized and handed over to corporations, including the Haitian-American Sugar Company and Dole: the American Pineapple Company.

The Forgotten Occupation is also about the rebirth of Haiti. For, due to the rabid racism it suffered under the US presence, Haiti was forced to reevaluate its identity as an extension of French culture and began to develop a deep appreciation for its African roots.

There are a large number of people, including many Haitians, who know nothing of these 19 years. The Forgotten Occupation seeks to shed a light on this significant chapter of Haiti’s history, which has long since faded from the collective mind, but still affects the country to this day.
Source: Retrieved February 4, 2017 from: http://www.theforgottenoccupation.com/


VIDEO – The Forgotten Occupation (Trailer) https://youtu.be/n7HjC8n_PsM

Published on Jun 18, 2015 – In 1915, more than a century after having eradicated slavery from their country, the people of Haiti suddenly find themselves the victims of a brutal American occupation, reigniting an all too familiar past for the proud, independent nation.

  • Category: Film & Animation
  • License: Standard YouTube License

The reasonable doubt the Haitian people may have toward America is not just 100 years old. It was also relevant 100 days ago; just a few months ago, during the Presidential Election in the US, in the race between Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton. Universally in the US, the African-American population supported Hillary Clinton, but there was exception with the Haitian Intelligentsia … and the Haitian right-wing wealthy elite.

Yes, there is a Haitian Intelligentsia!

They have a low regard for Bill and Hillary Clinton … after their Clinton Foundation development initiatives. This regard was shared – make that exploited – by Donald Trump and his camp during the campaign. See here:

CU Blog - A Lesson in History - Haiti's Reasonable Doubt - Photo 2Trump’s team glommed onto the possibility that Haitian Americans—generally black, generally Democratic-leaning voters who make up roughly 2 percent of the population of Florida, where Trump and Hillary Clinton are separated by less than a point—might be persuaded to vote against the former Secretary of State (Hillary). The irony of a nativist pandering to thousands of immigrants and refugees aside, there was a logic to this. Many people rightly identify Clinton with failures of humanitarianism and development in Haiti. The Trump team has folded that perception into a half-true narrative in which Haiti—like Whitewater and Benghazi before it—becomes a synecdoche for all the ills, real and imagined, of the Clintons themselves.

There are good reasons the world’s first black Republic has been an island-sized headache for Clinton as she seeks the presidency. Haiti is a place where some of the darkest suppositions that lurk on the left and right about her and her husband take form. Here is an island country of 10 million people where America’s ultimate power couple invested considerable time and reputation. Here is a fragile state where each took turns implementing destructive policies whose highlights include overthrowing a presidential election. Bill Clinton in particular mixed personal relationships, business, and unaccountable power in ways that, if never exactly criminal, arouse the kind of suspicion that erodes public trust. No two individuals, including Haiti’s own leaders, enjoyed more power and influence than the Clintons in the morass of the failed reconstruction following the deadly Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake, when a troubled country managed to go from catastrophe to worse.

The reality is a lot more complicated (and interesting) than that, [the conspiracy theory that the Clinton stole billions of dollars from Haiti’s post-earthquake relief funds]. The United States and Haiti were the first two independent republics in the Americas, and our often blood-soaked relationship goes back a lot further than the meeting of a silky Arkansan and an ambitious Illinoisan at YaleLawSchool.

… wealthy Haitians openly loathe Bill Clinton, who ordered the U.S. invasion that put down the [right-wing military] junta and restored Aristide to power [in the 1990’s].

Source: Posted September 22, 2016; retrieved February 4, 2017 from: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2016/09/the_truth_about_the_clintons_and_haiti.html

Haiti has had to endure American dysfunction for a long time. The Go Lean movement has previously detailed the American societal defects – institutional racism and Crony-Capitalism – and how Caribbean communities have been impacted. There is cause-and-effect of these American dysfunctions in the Caribbean region in general and Haiti in particular. Reflect back on the 1915 Occupation:

“The reason it’s critical to understand the US Occupation is because many of the problems that Haiti has today, are actually of much more recent origin, they’re 20th century problems” – Laurent Dubois

See  Appendix B below for more on Citibank – the instigator for American action – and their abusive behavior towards Haiti.

The review of these historic events are more than just an academic discussion, the book Go Lean…Caribbean aspires to economic principles that dictate that “consequences of choices lie in the future”. The book serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU). Haiti – the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere – is one of the 30 member-states for this Caribbean confederacy. This poor status is a direct result of American and European (French) dysfunction over 300 years. Yet, the book asserts that we should not leave it up to these colonial masters to assuage our problems. We need our own expression of governance.

The Go Lean roadmap seeks to optimize the Caribbean governance. This vision is defined early in the book (Pages 10 – 12) in the following pronouncements in the Declaration of Interdependence:

Preamble: As the history of our region and the oppression, suppression and repression of its indigenous people is duly documented, there is no one alive who can be held accountable for the prior actions, and so we must put aside the shackles of systems of repression to instead formulate efficient and effective systems to steer our own destiny.

xi. Whereas all men are entitled to the benefits of good governance in a free society, “new guards” must be enacted to dissuade the emergence of incompetence, corruption, nepotism and cronyism at the peril of the people’s best interest.  The Federation must guarantee the executions of a social contract between government and the governed.

xii. Whereas the legacy in recent times in individual states may be that of ineffectual governance with no redress to higher authority, the accedence of this Federation will ensure accountability and escalation of the human and civil rights of the people for good governance, justice assurances, due process and the rule of law. As such, any threats of a “failed state” status for any member state must enact emergency measures on behalf of the Federation to protect the human, civil and property rights of the citizens, residents, allies, trading partners, and visitors of the affected member state and the Federation as a whole.

The purpose of the Go Lean roadmap is to turn-around the downward trends for the Caribbean in general – Haiti included – to reverse course and finally elevate Caribbean society. The CU, applying lessons from the last 100 years, has prime directives proclaimed as follows:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion & create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to ensure public safety and protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines.

All of the focus on Haiti is not just history, there is currency as well; consider these developments that are en vogue right now:

CU Blog - A Lesson in History - Haiti's Reasonable Doubt - Photo 3

The Go Lean/CU book and accompanying blog-commentaries all present a new vision and new values for Haiti’s future.

The Go Lean book details a series of assessments, community ethos, strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to optimize the societal engines for Haiti … and other locales in the Caribbean region:

Community Ethos – Deferred Gratification Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Systems Influence Choices & Incentives Page 21
Community Ethos – Consequences of Choices Lie in the Future Page 21
Community Ethos – “Crap” Happens Page 23
Community Ethos – Minority Equalization Page 24
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Future Page 26
Community Ethos – Ways to Manage Reconciliations Page 34
Community Ethos – Ways to Improve Sharing Page 35
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Greater Good Page 37
Strategy – Vision –  Integrate region for Economics & Security Page 45
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Department of Homeland Security Page 75
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Department of Justice Page 77
Implementation – Assemble Existing Super-national Institutions Page 96
Implementation – Ways to Pay for Change Page 101
Implementation – Foreign Policy Initiatives at Start-up Page 102
Implementation – Security Initiatives at Start-up Page 103
Implementation – Ways to Deliver Page 109
Implementation – Ways to Foster International Aid – Case Study: Haiti’s Earthquakes Page 115
Implementation – Ways to Impact [Regional] Elections Page 116
Implementation – Ways to Promote Independence Page 120
Planning – Ways to Make the Caribbean Better Page 131
Planning – Ways to Improve Failed-State Indices Page 134
Advocacy – Ways to Grow the Economy Page 151
Advocacy – Ways to Create Jobs Page 152
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Governance Page 168
Advocacy – Ways to Better Manage the Social Contract Page 170
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Justice Page 177
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Homeland Security Page 180
Advocacy – Battles in the War on Poverty Page 222
Advocacy – Ways to Re-boot Haiti Page 238

There have been a number of blog-commentaries by the Go Lean promoters that have developed related topics of lessons from history of race relations. See a sample list here:

http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=8767 A Lesson in History – Haiti 1804
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=7738 A Lesson in History – Buffalo Soldiers
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5183 A Lesson in History – France and Mexico’s Dysfunctional Past
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5695 A Lesson in History – Repenting, Forgiving and Reconciling the Past
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=5123 A Lesson in History – Royal Charters: Zimbabwe -vs- South Africa
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=4971 A Lesson in History – Royal Charters: Truth & Consequence
http://www.goleancaribbean.com/blog/?p=451 CariCom position on Slavery/Colonization Reparations

Let’s learn from this history of Haiti’s past; and from the repercussions and consequences from those events. See a full related documentary in the Appendix A below. In many ways, Haiti has not moved. Also, America has not moved.

Our goal is to reform and transform Haiti and the Caribbean, not America. We hereby urge everyone in the Caribbean – people, institutions and governments – to lean-in to this Go Lean roadmap. It is time now to reboot Haiti. We must do the heavy-lifting ourselves, and not leave it up to any American elites – like the Clintons. We have reason for reasonable doubt for their aid and others’ aid.

This is what we all want: Caribbean facilitating a new Caribbean that is a better homeland to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the book Go Lean … Caribbean – now!


Appendix A – Documenting the U.S. Occupation of Haitihttps://youtu.be/nhPNU8aR2Co

Published on Feb 22, 2016 – A discussion with historian and archivist J. Michael Miller about the rich sources housed in the Marine Corps Library at Quantico surrounding the U.S. Occupation of Haiti from 1915-1934. Miller recently made possible the donation of a remarkable and rare text, the Monograph of Haiti, to Duke Libraries, and speaks about this and other sources he has found through his research.

More info: https://fsp.trinity.duke.edu/projects/documenting-us-occupation-haiti

Category: Education

License: Standard YouTube License


Appendix B – Where Does Haiti Fit in Citigroup’s Corporate History?

Citigroup’s history in Haiti is remembered as both among the most spectacular episodes of U.S. dollar diplomacy in the Caribbean and as an egregious example of officials in Washington working at the behest of Wall Street. It’s also a story marked by military intervention, violations of national sovereignty and the deaths of thousands.

In the early 20th century, the National City Bank of New York, as Citigroup was then called, embarked on an ambitious and pioneering era of overseas expansion. Haiti emerged as one of National City’s first international projects. …

Source: Posted June 12, 2012; retrieved February 4, 2017 from: https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2012-06-13/on-citigroup-s-anniversary-don-t-forget-its-brutal-past



Share this post:
, , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *