David Rothkopf è un esperto di politica estera statunitense e durante la presidenza Clinton fu viceministro al commercio internazionale. Il suo commento riguardo Haiti è uno dei più interessanti e amari che vi possa capitare di leggere. Rothkopf era a capo di un progetto che coinvolgeva diverse agenzie, il cui scopo era sostenere e assistere la faticosa ripresa dell’economia dell’isola. Non manca l’autocritica, specie relativamente alla gestione delle relazioni con l’ex presidente Aristide, che oggi vive in esilio in Sudafrica.
We made serious errors. The first was misreading Aristide. This was the result of an intelligence failure as serious as any in the news in the past few decades. Many in our own intel community knew he was a bad guy, affiliated with bad guys, not a good ally. But top policymakers ignored the intel, even firing folks who had the temerity to tell the truth. Later, we made the mistake of demanding Aristide leave at the end of the term of office he had largely not been able to serve due to his exile … which may have seemed logical at the time but resulted in his effectively become the opposition to his own party from the moment he left office so he would have a chance to run again for office against his own closest political allies a few years hence.
The political turmoil associated with all this left us focused on process and uneasy about fully dispersing the aid that was committed to the country. Further, the country lacked what is commonly called absorptive capacity, the ability to actually take and productively use all we were offering. The bureaucracy was weak. Some was corrupt. Helping Haiti was hard to do.