Monday, January 18, 2010

Haiti and Security

What Haiti needs most right now is
security.  Though Haitians affected by the earthquake have a number of critical obvious needs, such as medical care, potable water, and food, the security issue is paramount amongst them.  Without security doctors can't and some of them won't be able to effectively treat the wounded.  Without security the aid organizations can't deliver critical supplies.  Without security, Haitian-Americans who would like to make a long-term commitment to Haiti will be reluctant to do so. Without security civil conflict and violence will become the dominant discourse and actuality. Perhaps as importantly, as everyone recognizes, this is an opportunity to rebuild Haitian institutions, this opportunity will be lost even before it fully materializes.

Many people want to know how they can help Haiti.  One place to start is by contact your congressperson and stressing the need for U.S., UN, and international troops in Haiti.  This is a fundamental priority.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Dr. Charles: I agree with your call for security but I look at it as a necessary evil. Given Haitian history and its particular distrust of French and American intentions in the region, and a short viewing of the arrival of the 82nd Airborne paratroopers to Haiti, I would urge the American soldiers to exercise caution and diplomacy. You don't gain the trust of a devastated and hungry people by waving guns around and giving them orders in a foreign language,especially when they are in their own country. Goodwill will go a long way in gaining the trust of the Haitian people in this, one of their greatest hour of need. I would therefore urge restraint on the part of American soldiers and the displaying of machine guns and other heavy weaponry only as a last resort. The majority of Haitians are law-abiding citizens. Sincerely, Lionel Bourjolly Jr.