[Marxism] re: Aristide is president!

Fred Feldman ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Sun Feb 29 23:37:40 MST 2004

I originally wrote the last post on Haiti as an introduction to the
article Walter Lippmann posted from the Wall Street Journal.  When I
decided to post my comments to Marxmail, I characteristically forgot to
remove the material in the first two paragraphs referring to Walter
Lippmann's submission, which I was not including.
One of the things I learned in the Socialist Workers Party's healthier
days  -- re the Soviet Union, the trade unions, and other conquests --
was not to give up on such things until they are definitively gone.  It
took me many years to concede that the workers states in Eastern Europe
and the former Soviet Union were gone -- too long, I'm sure -- but I
still think that this is preferable to giving up the defense even a
little bit too soon.
To me, that includes Aristide's presidency in Haiti which was a conquest
of the struggle against Duvalier and his military-tonton successors.  I
believe, by the way, that "Baby Doc" Duvalier still lives in exile in
So until we KNOW that Aristide, speaking for himself under conditions
where he is clearly expressing his own conclusions, has given up the
fight and the presidency, I think  our stance has to be that he is still
the elected, legitimate president of Haiti.  Right now, US officials are
speaking for him and he has apparently been sent to a French-dominated
country where I believe his safety is not guaranteed.  Among other
things, I fear he may commit "suicide" out of "despondency" over his
Of course, it may turn out that he has genuinely given up and resigned.
But I favor crossing that bridge when and if we come to it.

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