In Haiti, former dictator ‘Baby Doc’ Duvalier is thriving

The Washington Post

Jean-Claude Duvalier is back in Haiti, and it seems very possible that he will never be tried for the crimes his alleged victims and international human rights groups claim: forced disappearances, illegal detentions, intimidation, torture and execution.

…Although an older generation in Haiti recalls with a shudder the bad things that happened in the Duvalier years, many Haitians are nostalgic for the era, when the country was more prosperous, tourists were not afraid to come and Haiti was the world’s leading maker of baseballs.

More than 60 percent of the Haitian population is younger than 25, so they have no memory of Baby Doc’s reign, only stories of better days.

…After months of delay in which three prosecutors came and went, his case is now before Judge Jean Carves, who has promised lawyers that he will soon rule on whether the matter will proceed to trial.

Duvalier’s supporters think not.
…But the lawyers pursuing Duvalier say that the international community, with the exception of Canada, has been mostly silent on the prosecution — and that the new government of Haiti is against it.
…Bernard Diederich, an authority on the Duvalier regime and the author of “Papa Doc & the Tontons Macoutes,” said Duvalier “certainly should stand trial and let justice decide whether he is guilty of stealing hundreds of millions and for the killings during his reign, especially those who died in Fort Dimanche.”

“But as Haiti is the land of impunity,” Diederich said, “don’t expect justice.”

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About fromourisland

Gardener, knitter, wife, mother of 2, grandmother, and lots more.
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