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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2001 – 2003 : The Return of the Army “ We can ' t be called upon , expected or
required to intervene every time there is violence against a failed leader . We can
' t spend our time running around the world and the hemisphere saving people ...
When Roger Noriega called on Aristide to take steps to “ heal the wounds ”
caused by the 17 December 2001 attack on the presidential palace , for instance
, he made it clear that in the opinion of the US it was the government ( rather than
Instead they called for the arrest of ex - prime minister Yvon Neptune , on account
of his apparent complicity in the so - called “ massacre " at La Scierie in Saint -
Marc on 11 February 2004 ( see above , page 159 ) . 34 Ronald SaintJean ...
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