Damming the Flood: Haiti, Aristide, and the Politics of Containment
Verso, 2007 - 442 pages
Once themost lucrative European colony in the Caribbean, Haiti has long beenone of the most divided and impoverished countries in the world. In thelate 1980s a remarkable popular mobilization known as Lavalas, or “theflood,” sought to liberate the island from decades of US-backeddictatorial rule. After winning a landslide election victory, in 1991the Lavalas government led by President Jean-Bertrand Aristide wasoverthrown by a bloody military coup. Damming the Floodanalyzes how and why Aristide's enemies in Haiti, the US and Francemade sure that his second government, elected with another overwhelmingmajority in 2000, was toppled by a further coup in 2004.
The elaborate international campaign to contain, discredit and thenoverthrow Lavalas at the start of the twenty-first century was perhapsthe most successful act of imperial sabotage since the end of the ColdWar. Its execution and its impact have much to teach anyone interestedin the development of today's political struggles in Latin America andthe rest of the post-colonial world.
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... and especially since the mid - 1980s , every Haitian government has been
constrained , with variable degrees of enthusiasm or reluctance , to adhere to the
neo - liberal economic orientation that locals tend to deride as the “ American
It would be mere demagoguery for a Haitian president to pretend to be stronger
than the Americans , or to engage them in a constant war of words , or to ... PH :
There was no other option , no alternative to reliance on American troops ?
Why did he come to embrace the American line ? JBA : Well , I don ' t want to
judge Leon Manus , I don ' t know what happened exactly . But I think he acted in
the same way as some of the leaders of the Group of 184 . They are beholden to
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