Jean Bertrand Aristide: Is it Politics as Usual in Haiti?



Jean Bertrand Aristide: Is it Politics as Usual in Haiti?
St. John Fisher College
Fisher Digital Publications
International Studies Masters
International Studies Department
Jean Bertrand Aristide: Is it Politics as Usual in
James Tillotson
St. John Fisher College
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Tillotson, James, "Jean Bertrand Aristide: Is it Politics as Usual in Haiti?" (2005). International Studies Masters. Paper 11.
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Jean Bertrand Aristide: Is it Politics as Usual in Haiti?
The country of Haiti has had a vicious, tumultuous and revolutionary political history that has included a slave
led revolution for freedom and subsequently two hundred years of political instability that can be measured by
the thirty-two regime changes by political coup d'etat. In the 1980's a novel form of government was
introduced to Haiti through the influential support of its northern neighbor the United States, as well as the
United Nations. The new democracy that was created through a new constitution in the 1980' s would in turn
lead to the presidential election of 1990 and subsequently the populace would elect a new leader, JeanBertrand Aristide. He was elected on a party platform of revolutionizing the political, social, and economic
composition of Haiti. Aristide was elected with the support of the innumerable peasants and impoverished
workers of Haiti to institute these changes for them. Unfortunately for Aristide and the impoverished peoples
of Haiti, he was unable to complete these changes because of his deficiencies in political diplomacy, his lack of
sensitivity to the fundamental socio-economic problems, and due to influential factors outside of his control.
Aristide' s legacy ought to be one of prestige and dignity as the first freely elected Haitian president. Instead he
will be seen as a grandiose visionary who dreamed beyond the clouds, instead of keeping his feet, eyes and
ears on the ground.
Document Type
Degree Name
M.S. in International Studies
International Studies
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