This article appears in the October 8, 2021 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
SCHILLER INSTITUTE WEBINAR
Reconstructing Haiti as America’s Way Out of the ‘Global Britain’ Trap
Sept. 30—The Schiller Institute held an international September 25, 2021, titled, “Reconstructing Haiti—America’s Way Out of the ‘Global Britain’ Trap.” The event featured a preview of “The Schiller Institute Plan for the Development of Haiti,” presented by co-author Richard Freeman. The 16-page plan is in full in the October 1 issue of EIR.
Then followed a six-person, 1.5-hour panel discussion of the plan, including additional presentations, by experts with backgrounds in medicine, engineering and development policy, several of whom have direct associations with Haiti.
The five panelists, in addition to Freeman, were Eric Walcott, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Institute of Caribbean Studies; Firmin Backer, co-founder and President of the Haiti Renewal Alliance; Joel Dejean, engineer and Texas-based activist with The LaRouche Organization; Dr. Walter Faggett, MD, based in Washington, D.C., where he formerly was Chief Medical Officer of the District of Columbia, and currently is Co-Chairman of the Health Council of D.C.’s Ward 8, and an international leader with the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites; and moderator Dennis Speed of the Schiller Institute.
Freeman presented both the dimensions of extreme underdevelopment, enforced for decades on Haiti, and also the essentials of a development program for that nation, in the context of development of all of the Island of Hispaniola and the Caribbean. He presented a map of proposed hospitals, railways, nuclear power sites, safe water systems and other vital infrastructure. He showed maps of infrastructure projects that Chinese firms had proposed in recent years, but which fell into abeyance.
In his concluding remarks, Dennis Speed stressed the necessity of dialogue and urgency of action on Haiti and on Afghanistan, referring to the June 2020 call by Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche for people to use the approach of the 15th century philosopher-cleric, Nicholas of Cusa. His “coincidence of opposites” perspective seeks the common interest that unites people in mutually beneficial pursuits, and avoids staying on the lower level of seemingly impossible conflicting interests. With former U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders, Zepp-LaRouche formed the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites, which since then has been mobilizing for international collaboration on building a world platform of health security. Speed said that the Schiller Institute dialogues serve the “policy formulation process into which all citizens of the United States and all Citizens of all other nations are now invited to participate.” Speed denounced the prevalence of lying narratives, and the quick impulse to resort to violence, pointing out, rather, that “Truth can knock out the brains of falsehood, but you have to wield the club of truth in order to do that.”
What follows are edited excerpts from the discussion, arranged by topic.
Fight COVID-19, Build Health Infrastructure
Dr. Walter Faggett: I think a lot of those exciting recommendations [in the Haiti Development Plan] really speak to the need for having an upgrade of the health care delivery system. We need this all over the world, but I think Haiti would be a good example of what can be done, because we know that the immunization rate there is less than 1%. I think a lot of the things that Helga and Dr. Elders and Dr. Satcher recommended really worked well in D.C. We’re now down to zero deaths, and about 100 new cases there [in Ward 8].
But I think that in Haiti, the exciting railroads, developing new ports, the whole economic development must have a secure environment to be developed. I think the example in Afghanistan of having my old unit [the 92nd Airborne] go in, shows that a mission can be accomplished…. But, as Franklin Roosevelt said, you can really tell a lot about a nation by how it takes care of the health of its people. To have a “build back better”—and in the case of Haiti—to construct a public health system, will be key to economic development….
Some of the Schiller Institute programs are about positive peer pressure, having community health workers. It worked pretty well in D.C., and I think that’s one reason we’re doing so well against the pandemic. It was so good to hear the emphasis on youth, and to have youth from the USA working with youth in Haiti—has a lot of possibilities.
The National Medical Association is poised to do a lot of things both in Africa and in Haiti. We stand ready. Until we get some security however, it’s very difficult. Right now, some of the health workers and aid workers in Haiti, as I understand it, are having to shelter in place because of the instability of the situation. So, having said that, we have now some political will and interest to have a competition between China, the U.S., and Russia in terms of who can bring the most vaccine to under-served areas. Vice President [Kamala] Harris in Vietnam confirmed one million doses of vaccine. China countered with two million, so having vaccine diplomacy could be an initial step.
We do need to have good testing first. We have no idea how bad the situation is in Haiti now, but if it’s as bad as we think, then we probably have alpha, delta, and lambda variants. In Guinea, the Marburg virus has been identified, along with Ebola. Can you imagine now the trifecta? Ebola, Marburg, and COVID-19 right there at the border between Guinea and Liberia.
It’s going to be in the United States’ interest to contain the pandemic in Haiti. And now could be the window to bring in the needed resources for adequate testing, which leads to the level of immunization needed. This is a good example of why we need to reestablish a health care delivery system worldwide if we’re going to really beat this pandemic.
Eric Walcott: Regarding 1% tested in Haiti, and as far as those vaccinated in Haiti, the rate might be even lower. We cannot allow, in our own backyard, such low testing and vaccination ratios. Haiti needs an immediate influx of COVID-19 vaccine; Haiti must be given all the support that it needs in terms of testing and all the equipment and supplies that it needs for that to happen. Otherwise, we’re going to have a major problem.
Dennis Speed: [Reading a message to the panel from José Vega, Bronx, New York] “The Chinese have given El Salvador resources to develop their nation’s physical economy. They also gave El Salvador a ton of vaccines, and in turn, El Salvador then donated vaccines to their neighboring country, Honduras. Given these actions, I think El Salvador is in the moral and political position to think of helping countries like Haiti….”
Leverage the Diaspora
Walcott: Based on Wikipedia reports, there are about 25 physicians and 11 nurses per 100,000 in Haiti. There are probably 1,000 physicians of Haitian descent in some of the best hospitals in Brooklyn, New York. Probably as many in Miami, at least half of that in Washington, D.C. I think it’s time that the U.S. considers operationalizing the international loan program so that we can leverage the expertise of the diaspora so that they can contribute toward the redevelopment, or the reconstruction of Haiti. This can be done right away.
The Haitian diaspora of professionals continue to be engaged, they continue to lend their own support through remittances, through medical missions, through trade missions, all these different types of activities. I know we have an acting Prime Minister in Ariel Henry who has expressed that Haiti cannot do it without the help of the diaspora. Let’s take him up on that, and let’s work with him to see how, with the Haitian diaspora and the friends of Haiti, the friends who are listening out there right now to this program, let’s support the Haitian people in forging a new path for Haiti. I think we can do it.
Richard Freeman: There is a tremendous intellectual pool among the Haitian diaspora—Washington, D.C. area, Florida, New York City—with extreme talents. There’s a large number of professionals—doctors, lawyers, engineers, architects, people with some financial knowledge as well. That could be of tremendous help—if there were a way—maybe to have one to three months a year; and I don’t want to ruin people’s jobs. But they could go back into Haiti to work on this program. This is a tremendous margin of a wealth of knowledge which is completely invaluable, because they know Haiti as well.
Poor Conditions, Not ‘Poor’ People
Walcott: I hate it, and with much chagrin when I hear it said that Haiti is “the poorest country in the Hemisphere.” There is nothing poor about Haiti. Take a Haitian working in the market in Haiti and bring them to the United States. In less than four years, you may have a Haitian professional. Whether it is someone who has a business endeavor, or someone who has matriculated through college and become a physician, a lawyer, a doctor. It’s the poor conditions; the conditions are what is poor, and it is the international community that has contributed to an unstable environment that has helped to engender, has created these poor conditions. It is not the Haitian people who are poor.…
Let’s dispel this notion of Haiti as being poor. Let’s talk about opportunity. With more than 10 million people, if we are able to create the right conditions, we could help create a very strong, vigorous economy in Haiti. It cannot happen all by itself, and certainly it cannot happen if we continue to have those who go in-country and create havoc because they want Haiti to be a narco-trafficking state. Let’s stop that; let’s work together, and let’s figure out how we can foster a new Haiti in the years to come.
Speed: We’re at the point now of the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution over the next several years. If you really wanted to celebrate that, which was meaningful to the world as a whole, you would recognize both the contribution that was made during the time of the Revolution by Haiti, by Haitians. But more importantly, it’s a way of actually telling the true story about what it is that ought to be what American policy should be. The contradictions are well known. The support for slavery on the part of Jefferson, as opposed to the opposition to slavery on the part of Hamilton. These things are known. If you are going to ever reach the point that you can resolve the internal problems of America, as it actually exists, then you’ve got to really deal with this issue of, as you pointed out, that the people are not poor. The question here is something completely different, which is, how do you take the human mind, how do you take people who are eminently capable, and provide the conditions in this circumstance in the most efficient way?
Freeman: Abraham Lincoln recognized Haiti in 1862, and one of the people who prodded him into it, was a person named Frederick Douglass. Douglass is not only one of America’s greatest sons, he’s a former slave; in fact, he was an escaped slave. He’s one of the greatest intellectuals that ever lived in America.
Walcott: We need an honest appraisal of the natural resources of Haiti. We do know that Haiti has gold; we do know that it has other minerals. It is alleged that Haiti has oil and gas. Is it in the strategic interest of France, the United States, or Canada to under-develop these resources? I don’t think so. We need to do better. If we have a strong Haiti, I believe we can have a strong United States, we can have a strong France, we can have a strong Canada. Because these are where Haitian nationals shop; it’s where they do business. A strong agricultural industry in Haiti automatically means an increase in trade.
Freeman: On agriculture, Haiti has very good rainfall; there are two growing seasons with good fertilizer, seed, farm equipment, timely water application which has to be brought there. But you could produce not only rice, corn, sorghum, sugar cane, mangos, specialty coffees. You can develop, you can reforest all sorts of trees from pines to fruit trees, because it’s the right latitude for it.
Haiti is surrounded by water, in which are 270 different species of fish. The problem is that fishing is approached with small paddle boats and canoes. One of the things I tried to price out and put into the report [that we just issued] is bringing in 100 commercial fishing vessels—they don’t have to be super huge—and turn Haitians’ ability to have these as part of a fleet that will start to bring in fish. Fish is very high in protein.
It would take only about half a billion dollars—and Eric mentioned $5 billion in aid—to purchase 3,000 100-horsepower four-wheel drive tractors, a fleet of 100 commercial fishing vessels, pumps, sprinklers for central pivot and drip irrigation, fertilizer and seed, hydroponics, and aquaculture, to realize Haiti’s potential, to take off in agriculture, and provide for not only everything on the [domestic] health level that is necessary, but for the world.
From Charcoal to Fusion
Joel Dejean: Why don’t we give Haiti a vision of being the first nation to go from charcoal to fusion, with nuclear fission power as a steppingstone? China has just developed a pebble-bed, high-temperature gas-cooled reactor in the range of 100 MW; it is ready to deploy that. Why don’t we give China the opportunity to demonstrate that reactor in Haiti, to increase the electrical power, per capita, a thousand-fold over the coming 5-10 years? If we include in that, courses in nuclear engineering, nuclear science, fusion plasma technologies, laser technologies, we could develop Haiti to leapfrog the current paradigm of just fossil fuels and ridiculous renewable windmills and solar power, to be at the frontier of the highest energy density available to anyone on Earth, which is thermonuclear fusion power. We don’t need nuclear attack submarines; we don’t need nuclear missiles; but we do need nuclear technology.
Freeman: On September 16th, Haiti’s Foreign Minister, Claude Joseph, signed the founding document of the Latin American and Caribbean Space Agency—ALCE—during a heads-of-state meeting in Mexico City of CELAC. Imagine in ten years, if we do this program, and develop and have a mobilization! If we mobilize, America’s going to be producing hundreds of machine tools, thousands of tractors. People will be back at work. We will develop at a faster rate than we have over the last 40 years during which time America has actually been falling down and collapsing, including its health system.
USAID, Other Failures
Firmin Backer: We are proposing a plan to move forward for Haiti. I think it’s a really good plan. I was reading this week about the USAID spending in Haiti for the past 11 years—about $5.1 billion of U.S. taxpayers’ money. That was between 2000 and now. How is it possible that all that money was spent, yet now that Haiti has faced two major disasters—the pandemic and also the earthquakes—it is difficult to get assistance to the people where the earthquakes occurred. When we look at the infrastructure in the country, it is really difficult to get goods and services from Port-au-Prince to the other major cities.
I was reminded of a conversation I had with a friend of mine after the 2010 earthquake: that the strategy for the U.S. should be to build infrastructure in the country so that when an earthquake happens again, we would have the means and logistics to provide assistance to those affected areas. But, lo and behold, it happened again, and in the south, we don’t even have a major port or airport in order to bring relief to those affected people. I think at this point that we do have an opportunity to really re-assess how the United States spends taxpayers’ money in Haiti.
Walcott: Where is CARICOM [the Caribbean Community, an intergovernmental organization of 15 Caribbean member states] on the issue of Haiti’s development? The last statement by CARICOM said that they recognize they must play more of a facilitating role at least in resolving the political impasse in Haiti. I believe they could lend their support currently in helping to provide the gendarmerie [military force with civilian policing duties], to help create a safer environment. We cannot, in our backyard, allow for gangsters to terrorize the Haitian community, the Haitian countryside, as they have been for the last year or two. This has to stop, and I think this is the conversation that I hope will help create a new outlook on Haiti.
Backer: Looking at the policies of the United States for the past years, we could ask them, “If you implement X, Y, and Z, what is it that you have to lose? Here is everything that you have to gain.” I was of the opinion that really the USAID will get a lot more for the taxpayers’ money if they invest in infrastructure. And the response was that, if they develop a plan like that, Congress would not approve it, because it’s not their priority. That’s what I feel is lacking: the political will to develop a plan like that just because they do not have the political will to push Congress to adopt a different plan than the one that they usually have. And that’s where we need to push.
Walcott: For too long now, I believe the ghost of [the late Sen.] Jesse Helms [Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee 1995-2001], has continued to rear its ugly head in U.S. foreign policy towards the Caribbean and South and Central America. What you see now are the remnants of the failed Jesse Helms policies that seem to have a lessened value for brown and black people. And you see it materializing in the way that the National Security Agency (NSA) develops it policies.
That entire house—the NSA, where U.S. foreign policy national interest is set—needs to be revamped. We need new thinkers who do not necessarily see the world from the old paradigms of shades, the old dichotomies of color, and the Malthusian theory that there are too many people existing in the world. In order for us to do that, we really need to impress upon this administration that we need some new thinking. We need a deeper look, a deeper dive into who is actually sitting in those positions, and we need a seat at the table in terms of developing U.S. foreign policy.
Walcott: You’re talking about two countries—Haiti and Afghanistan—that are facing major calamities in their histories. I think it’s timely that we’re having this conversation, because it might be time to talk about having a reconstruction effort that’s beyond just typical aid. In both countries, the institutions of governance are weakened. We used to talk about a failed state, and we don’t want to necessarily use those types of terms, but it’s time that the creative genius of the world comes to bear on those countries, because for too long, both Afghanistan and Haiti have been in a destabilized posture.
Having said that, I think when we talk about Haiti—and Haiti is the country that I know best out of the two—I believe that there are some immediate needs. Irrespective of what we say about this current administration of Ariel Henry, we need to provide him with all the support that we possibly can so that at the very least we could get to a posture of having elections within the next year or so at the soonest, based on when the country is prepared for it.
I have been involved in the 1998-2000 election observation mission of the Organization of American States. I was a lead observer and helped set up the infrastructure for those elections. I tell you that we have been too focused on elections as an event, rather than looking at it more in terms of a process. It’s not an end unto itself. We have to build institutions of governance, but we also have to ensure that we have true political parties that are not just individuals who exist only on paper, and that elections aren’t just the business of politics, but that individuals truly represent the electorate.
We cannot continue to sit by while Haiti descends into a country that has more or less certain garrisons, certain communities where the community members cannot go to, because they’re run by gangs. This has to stop! My good friend, Brian Nichols, was just appointed and confirmed recently as Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs. He’s a long-time diplomat who actually cares about Haiti. In fact, he and I were in Haiti back in 1998-2000 working on the peacekeeping mission then. He was always serious-minded and always demonstrated compassion for what was taking place in Haiti….
The Haiti report is some very good work. I hope, honestly, that we can have a larger conversation and share it with not only the U.S. administration, but it would give time for rethinking and refocus and a new engagement by our friends in Canada and our friends in France. My criticism of those two countries is that they have become too involved in the internal politics of Haiti. We cannot continue to have a selection and pretend that it’s an election. We have to let the will of the people really be heard, understood, and let that be the result of our best efforts.
Haiti deserves far better than what the world has given it thus far, and I believe that it is time for us to consider putting our best foot forward.
Create Credit, Stop the Debt Weapon
Backer: It was said that we have to let Haitians build Haiti, and that’s good. However, we need to also address the policies that are impeding Haitians from building Haiti themselves. One of the things Xi Jinping mentioned [at the UN September 21] was debt suspension. That’s good and everything, but in 2010, after the earthquake, the World Bank and IMF developed a policy of forgiving Haitian debt, which they did. A lot of people celebrated that. However, the fine print of that agreement prohibited Haiti from borrowing money on the international market. As a result, we have spent all this time since then at the mercy of the international donors, and we know how that works. There was one project that I became aware of, where China had lent Haiti some funds, but as soon as the project was begun, it was shut down, because Haiti had violated the agreement not to borrow money on the international market.
As far as I know, that agreement is still in place. So, even if Haiti—or, even if the people of Haiti who want to develop their own country—would like to borrow money to implement some major needed infrastructure project, they would still not be able to do that, because of the agreement of forgiving the debt that does not allow Haiti to borrow money on the international market.
Walcott: We have made the government’s ability to do business in Haiti extremely tough. We’ve come against, usually, the IFIs—the international financial institutions—and that is written in the book, Haiti in the Balance: Why Foreign Aid Has Failed, and What We Can Do About It. We’ve always come up against some of the most extreme requirements as conditions for receiving aid in Haiti. So, doing business in Haiti is by a factor of 10, or maybe even 50, higher to the standard cost of doing business. It’s extremely difficult, for example, for the government of Haiti to purchase tractors, if it needs to. It’s extremely hard for the government of Haiti to try to purchase tar pitch to build roads. It’s extremely difficult for them to do so. That is usually what happens when your credit rating is low, and when the uncertainty of doing business is high.
But it begs the question: Can we develop Haiti in a normal environment absent something like a financial authority and control board? Absent something like a Marshall Plan? Absent some serious concessions that it may need, recognizing that Haiti has paid a huge price for being the first black republic? It’s a question that I ask, and I’ll say that I would hate being an elected official in Haiti, in the sense that it is extremely difficult for them to deliver and do the government’s work. How do you set up a sewage system under those types of conditions? How do you build the schools that we’re talking about? Is it that we want that for the international community, but that is not supposed to be done by the people of Haiti? These are some of the real conditions that we have to fix. Haiti needs our help, but also Haiti probably needs us to be less obstructionist as it goes about its business.
Dejean: Haiti should have a national bank, a sovereign national bank that can issue credit as low interest, long term loans for some of these projects. And it should be able to take deposits from foreign countries that want to work in Haiti, like China or the United States, or Russia. So, that’s the key. The U.S. needs a national bank, and Haiti can lead the way by having a national sovereign bank.
When it comes to the drugs crisis, look at the banks. The drug gangs depend on the drug banks. If it wasn’t for laundering of drug money, the drug banks would not exist. So, if we want to get rid of the drug gangs, implement again Glass-Steagall [the 1933 Banking Act] and get rid of JP Morgan Chase, the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank (HSBC), and we’ll have a much more peaceful Haiti where development can occur.
Walcott: If the U.S. or France were to return all of gold bullion that they have taken from the National Treasury of Haiti, I think we would be talking about doing something real and true. When we talk about the poverty or the quick decline to a so-called poor country, poor nation-state, we cannot do that in the absence of not being revisionist in terms of history. The true history is that the National Treasury of Haiti was pillaged by the Bank of Lyons and a couple of other banks in France, and also by the United States. I’m American, and I love my country, but I also recognize that the United States has done wrong when it comes to Haiti; so has France. So, let’s try to rectify that. If you go back to the history, you’ll realize that the U.S. decided not to recognize Haiti until Haiti allowed the U.S. to run Haiti’s Treasury, to mint Haiti’s money, and so forth. They ran the economy into the ground. And many years prior, the French had done the same.
Freeman: The whole system is bankrupt. The largest New York banks have $264 trillion in derivatives. What’s a derivative? It’s a side bet. You have two guys shooting dice in an alley, and if someone says, “I bet you that Eddie is going to win,” it’s a side bet. Our financial system is really a casino royale. It is speculative, it is genocidal. Because it’s bankrupt, it keeps sucking more money out of Haiti, and other countries in the world—in Africa in particular, but also Ibero-America and Asia. Its mentality is, humans don’t exist, you just cull the herd and you get rid of those that you don’t want, which is what’s being pushed right now under the Green New Deal. And it’s a global policy to deny countries the right to develop. They say we should reduce the world’s population to 3-3.5 billion. I don’t believe them; I believe they would reduce it down to 1-2 billion. That’s a genocide a hundred times worse than Adolf Hitler. That’s how they think.
So, they’re going to ration credit. What we have to do is use something called the Glass-Steagall Act. Write off all assets except the ones that are connected to real production or housing or giving businesses money to pay payroll. This has to be done by the international community, because until they are put out existence, they will continue to suck more and more wealth out of the real physical economy, including human lives.
Speed: China’s President Xi Jinping addressed the UN General Assembly September 21, and said,
I would like to propose a Global Development Initiative. Staying committed to development as a priority, we need to put development high on the global macro policy agenda, strengthen policy coordination among major economies, and ensure policy continuity, consistency, and sustainability....
Staying committed to benefits for all, we should care about the special needs of developing countries. We may employ such a means as debt suspension and development aid to help developing countries, particularly vulnerable ones facing exceptional difficulties....
Xi began that statement by talking about the fact that COVID-19 is still raging in the world, and profound changes are taking place in human society, and that the world had entered a new period of turbulence.
Backer: We should be talking to China with a plan like that, as they’re willing to really put some funding into developing the infrastructure in the country in order to develop the nation. You have identified a variety of projects that are already on the books that can be implemented. So, now it’s really getting the diplomats involved to build up relationships with our friends and allies in order to win the much-needed resources in Haiti for development.
Dejean: The question is, how do we get the Biden administration to move on this development plan? Well, exactly the leverage that Haiti has, is to recognize the People’s Republic of China. Taiwan is not an independent nation; it is a province of the People’s Republic of China. If Haiti takes the sovereign right to do that, and invites the Chinese in to begin the development of water treatment, sewage treatment, power development, and to test out their new pebble-bed, high-temperature, gas-cooled reactor, then one response that the U.S. could have is to say, “All right, we promise to give you the first working compact magnetic fusion reactor as soon as it comes online.” That’s the type of competition we need.
Walcott: China can be a wonderful partner, but I do believe that the issue of China and Taiwan is a disruptor in the Caribbean. You see it going from administration to administration, played out in countries like St. Lucia for example. One political party will be closer to the Taiwanese, and of course they will get Taiwanese aid. So, when the new administration comes in, everything has to stop; all the projects stop, and you now have to get in bed with the Chinese. So, to a certain extent, global politics has been played out in the hemisphere, and it’s having a negative impact on small nation-states.
In terms of the political will, I do believe in South-South bilateral collaborations. We don’t do enough of that in the region. That is one of the things that we can do. Haiti, which was a strong friend of Simón Bolivar, who helped Venezuela out, who helped Che Guevara, and many others who came to Haiti to seek refuge. And Haiti was known to be the place where liberators went to get refueled, and were provided with support in real terms, whether it be with soldiers, or financial resources to go back and liberate their countries. I kind of wish we had some nation-state that viewed Haiti as worthy of that type of support; the support the likes of which Haiti had given.
Freeman: The policies in the Schiller Institute Haiti program are kind of universal. These will work. China used these policies to take 850 million people out of poverty. People are still stunned that that can be done over a period of 60 years. People called China “poor” in the 1960s and 1970s. But they committed to this policy in a mobilization, and you can now see, lifting 800-850 million people out of extreme poverty is one of the greatest accomplishments on Earth. And working with the Chinese and the Russians and the United States—if we bring that together—consider the difference in dynamic.
Now look at AUKUS, which is going to provide 8-12 nuclear-powered submarines which could be turned into nuclear-capable submarines, in an alliance between Australia, the UK and the United States. The subs would be given to Australia. That is a model for war.
Put this Haiti development program together, and you put forth a new paradigm, not only for our Hemisphere, but for the world. These programs will work. Just imagine one fine day ten years from now we get the following news: A Category 5 hurricane has struck Haiti, and everyone is safe. And on the same day, the one millionth student from two new Haitian engineering schools which we proposed, graduates. That’s the difference in vision.
Dr. Faggett: I’m very excited about the increased feasibility [for action throughout the Caribbean and elsewhere], based on this very comprehensive panel. I look forward to realizing Helga’s mission of improving global health platforms as a step towards peaceful initiatives going forward. I think the momentum is here.
Walcott: This dialogue has to continue. It cannot happen in the dark, and I’m happy that we have a global conversation with some of our friends from around the world. But I want to challenge the Schiller group and LaRouche group to take this conversation to the streets. Let’s have a conversation either at the Organization of American States, or at George Washington University with our good friend who is always discussing Haitian issues, or Howard University. We need to mobilize people so that those who care, who are true friends of Haiti, see how they can support not only the reconstruction, but the liberation.
Some of the liberation that must take place for many of us right here, is in our own heads. We must dispel the idea of Haiti as the poorest country in the hemisphere. When we hear another professional or adult talking that conversation, let them know that it is the conditions that are poor, but these are not poor people. These are proud people who have a very storied history, and should be treated as such.