Haiti: An American Crutch

It’s naïve to think that the United States government is a generous institution that genuinely looks after the general welfare of its republic and others in need. After a long history of mismanaged occupation and indebtedness, the US feels the obligation to aid Haiti victims in the wake of the earthquake disaster. For those who believe the United States is operating benevolently and unselfishly, they should think again.

Given the mismanaged history of US-Haiti relations, it is safe to say that if the United States had no stake in Western hemisphere politics it wouldn’t be contributing so much to the relief effort. But it does. In the government’s conception of the US’s best interest, glorifying American wealth and manpower is nothing short of how a state operates when its global hegemony feels threatened. The constant reminder of the 82nd Airborne’s presence in Haiti is all too similar to Russia’s May Day parades during the Cold War, US troops parading through Paris in 1944, and Caesar’s military showcase after his conquest of Gaul. And after American conquest in the Middle East, what better way to boast military power in the Western hemisphere than to remind a poor country how powerful and wealthy America can be when it taxes its citizens promptly and without adherence to law?

American Imperialism

However, instead of parading through the streets of our major cities, our troops now quasi-occupy a tiny island because parades seem too aggressive and “relief efforts” sound better to Latin America and Canadia. US intervention in Haiti is nothing more than basic state politics and international diplomacy.

The next question at hand would be, “Why does the United States feel the need to boast its global strive for hegemony?” The answer is simple in that after 2001, the rise of the rest brought economic giants like India, Brazil, and China into the international arena as legitimate players who pose financial or military threats to the United States. And when the United States feels threatened, what does it do? It flaunts its military power rather than lowering taxes and letting the private sector out-buy the threat into bankruptcy. Haiti is nothing more than a showcase and Washington politicians would love nothing more than to use a tragedy to flaunt military ideals.

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