Calling On Former High-Ranking Haitian Military Officers

Members of the demobilized Haitian military

I understand that these demobilized military guys want the return of the Haitian military. I do not think anyone with the Haitian blood flowing through their veins could ever reject or oppose to that. The return of a professional Haitian military is paramount to the country’s national security and prestige.

The argument is not whether the return of the Haitian military is feasible or not as it is recognized in the Constitution of the land; it is, rather, how should we proceed and what should be its mission and purpose.

I have heard many making the argument that we do not need to return with the Haitian military. I must ask these people this simple question: If you say we do not need our own military, what do we still need MINUSTAH troops in the country for? They are not there working for free; they get paid for what they do. Would it not make sense to replace these foreign troops occupying our land with our own folks -who know our culture, speak our language and are from us? I doubt anyone would disagree with that.

So until someone can show me how it is not going to be in the country’s best interest to reactivate or reinstate the Haitian military, I am standing strong and resolute for the return of the Haitian military as stipulated in the 1987 Constitution.

The way these so-called former members of the armed forces are proceeding to make their voices heard, however, is not going to help their cause. Rather, it will turn off people with the pen power to satisfy their concerns.

In terms of public relations, they are doing their movement a disservice. They are not being properly represented and portrayed in the press nationally and internationally. When I and most people look at them, to be honest with you, it is disheartening, appalling and disgusting. We look at them as a group of armed thugs in the heart of some jungle receiving military training for the sole purpose of terrorizing their own population of civilians -raping, killing, kidnapping, destroying, stealing, etc… Not a good image to project and promote when you want people to listen to you.

So I am calling on former military officers in the caliber of General Herard Abraham to come to the rescue of these so-called prior service military personnel. They will constitute a sort of a leadership council to represent these guys and push to the forefront their revendications. In other words, this body will play the role of a lobbying team to talk on behalf of these guys -whom no one in the international arena will ever sit down to talk to.

It is imperative that certain well respected former high-ranking military officers come forward to form this lobbying body to represent these guys. We all know that nature abhors a vacuum. So if nothing is being done urgently to structure and galvanize this movement and give it an allure of serious, I guarantee you someone from their ranks will emerge and proclaim himself or herself the leader of this movement. And when that happens, it will be very hard to ask this self-proclaimed leader to step aside and allow someone with the leadership skills, education and knowledge to lead the movement. Meanwhile, they have weapons in their hands; no one can foresee what may happen. It is very dangerous to allow someone with demands that cannot be met to have a weapon in his hand and become bitterly frustrated. You can expect the unexpected to occur. So we do not need to let things get to this point of no return, especially when we could do something to prevent that.

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