Ruto’s Decision to Deploy Kenyan Police to Haiti Sparks Debate: But at What Cost?

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The President of the Republic of Kenya, William Samuoi Ruto, just completed an overseas trip in the US where he pledged to provide security in a civil war-torn Haiti in a manner that suggests American bribes prodded Kenya to the finish line. Haiti is a nation fighting to control her destiny that has been hijacked by imperialist powers whose sole motive is to extract her rich natural resources with no regard to the plight of the poor in that country. This article admonishes the Ruto administration for exercising poor judgment and concludes that Haitian enforcement of law and order amounts to condoning the looting of natural resources in that impoverished nation.

Why is Haiti at War?

Yes, why is Haiti a loggerhead with herself? What are the issues bedevilling her? Properly answering these questions will help us comprehend why Kenya’s decision to send its police force was a grave mistake that will not address the core problems Haiti is grappling with.

Haiti was a nation historically created by European slave masters. The Haitian Revolution of 1791-1803 became the only successful slave revolt in human history and precipitated the end of slavery not only in Saint-Domingue but in all French colonies. The struggle for independence in Latin America can be traced to this rebellion in Haiti.

However, several Haitian leaders following the revolution employed forced labour, believing a plantation-style economy was the only way for Haiti to succeed. They also built fortifications to safeguard against attacks by the French. During the U.S. occupation between 1915 and 1934, the U.S. Marines forced Haitians to work building roads to defend against Haitian resistance fighters.

Unpaid labour is still practised in Haiti. As many as half a million children are unpaid domestic servants called restavek, who routinely suffer physical and sexual abuse. Additionally, human trafficking, including child trafficking, is a significant problem in Haiti; trafficked people are brought into, out of, and through Haiti for forced labour, including sex trafficking. The groups most at risk include the poor, women, children, the homeless, and people migrating across the border with the Dominican Republic.

Read Related Article: Kenya’s Intervention in Haiti: A Cautionary Tale for Tanzania’s Foreign Engagements

Haiti is an ecological disaster for many reasons. The soil yield is too little to support agrarian ventures. Therefore, hunger is all you get in Haiti. Clean water is another challenge. It comes as no surprise to see Haitians eating clay-like soil as food. It is a country that does not seem capable of supporting humanity at a large scale like the one seen there.

The politics of Haiti are very counterproductive, as mafioso gangs seem to run amok. Assassinations of their political leaders are a banality on the same page. The commoners face death threats regularly.

As institutional rot grows, gangs are at war to fill that vacuum created by military juntas and popular elected civilian rules. However, these gangs have another reason to fight: getting rid of international miners who are extracting the richness of their country without sharing the returns in acceptable terms.

In many ways, Haitian gangs are jostling for territorial control and gains as much as for self-determination. African countries that endured colonialism for more than a century should have been the last people on earth to stand against the Haitian rights to self-determination.

Why Kenyan Police Will Not Stabilize the Country?

President William Samuoi Ruto made a case for Kenya to help Haiti stabilize the country, keeping hooliganism out of that national discourse, but the harsh truth needs no further emphasis. Kenya should have asked herself first why the Americans did not want to send their armies to quell the conflict there.

The US sent its special forces to do the same during the Bill Clinton administration in the early 1990s. Why is the US unwilling to repeat the same now? At that time, Haiti was going through difficult times, with the US pushing out the then-military strongman Raoul Cédras (1991-1994), who fled to South America.

The US has a moral obligation to resettle most of the Haitians in the US rather than containing them in a fruitless land that promises hunger and extreme poverty. If the US can absorb millions of illegal immigrants, what is stopping her from crafting a policy that would encourage Haitians to go back home to the USA, where they were uprooted from?

Most Haitians will fall over themselves to be taken out of the infertile Haitian land and live in the USA, where dreams are fulfilled but sometimes shattered.

The presence of Kenyan police will escalate fire with fire against mafioso gangs ruling parts of Haiti. Obviously, Kenyans will die for the vain cause. I say so because Kenyan police are not there to alter the dynamics of the inferno but to contain it into manageable proportions. Kenyan police are not designated to disarm armed unruly gangs or pursue them into their hideouts.

Most of these gangs have headquarters in the forests and normally pop out in urban areas unannounced in order to steal, kidnap, abduct, kill and inflict maximal carnage in order to invoke fear that justifies their capability to subdue parts of the country under their control.

Some Haitian gangs have become quasi-government machines collecting taxes and have their own police and armies. Some of these illegal entities have struck deals with multinationals extracting minerals for protection. Without it, senior staff operating the mines are vulnerable to kidnap, abductions and assassinations.

The real cause of lawlessness in Haiti is a history of perpetual injustices. From slavery to neo-colonialism, the people of Haiti have known no peace or fairness. As injustice keeps manifesting, the internal resistance also hardens, which explains why the gangs are popular in the areas where they have bases. Kenyan police will not upend that fact even if given a millennia.

Then Why is Kenya Pursuing a Lost Cause?

The US is promising Kenya to be a designated NATO member in Africa! Does Africa need that? Why Kenya is eager to be a NATO outlier beats the odds. Why an African nation that has failed to end lawlessness in Laikipia and elsewhere now begins to dream of being part of a global police is excruciating to fathom.

NATO is in an existential conflict with both Russia and China, and the US is the most beneficiary if she prevails. Dividing both China and Russia into smaller countries, she is shy to commit her own citizens to that cause, knowing the domestic politics have significantly changed over the years against placing American lives in harm’s way. Kenya will not be a beneficiary because her tiny economy will not be strong enough to stretch itself in order to pick the pieces there.

On the contrary, the US and its allies are grappling with manpower supply issues to their militaries. Family planning taken to extremes has dwarfed their populations when combined with their youth apathy to military services, leaving NATO in a quandary. This is why most NATO countries are opening their borders to attract illegal immigrants under the pseudonym of “asylum seekers“.

Joe Biden is on record claiming his administration is bringing more Somalis because they are good fighters! He did not attribute to a humanitarian ground to explicate his administration’s decision to loosen her borders.

So, Kenya is poised to supply NATO shortages with manpower. African history is slowly but surely going full circle. Post-independence, Africa is less free than it was six decades ago, but it is still a source of cheap labour and raw materials for the developed world!

For her Kenyan perspirations, an American conglomerate called Apple will shift some of her operations to India and Kenya from China partly to punish China for her geopolitical intransigence and entice new suitors. President Ruto is smiling ear to ear to create high-tech jobs for his unemployed youths, hoping that in the next election of 2027, those delighted striplings will thank him sumptuously in the ballot box.

American predatorial instinct is ecstatic that Africans never change despite plucking them out of the bush. The bush still flows in African veins and artilleries. Today, we are talking about Kenya, but tomorrow, it will be Tanzania’s turn: all fallen into a bait of economic breakthroughs in exchange for innocent human bloodshed!

The US is keeping no secret that it will deploy Kenya as a launchpad to win the hearts and minds of Africans. The rest of Africa will take notice once the Kenyan economy begins to blow all eight cylinders. The US is attempting to erase her image of undermining, mistreating and calling Africa names. Once, a US senator, Mr. Jesse Helms, dismissed Africa as a rathole. Not anymore, Africa now is being reprogrammed to be a fountain of manpower to fill the gaping holes in NATO. Welcome to the new world order of friendship with benefits!

Tanzanian corrupt leaders will beg Uncle Sam to have mercy upon them so that they may reign indefinitely. The US will be more than happy to add another satellite to its global ambitions to contain Russia and China, of all people. Soon, we will have to choose: Are we with Uncle Sam, or are we with the American designated “AXIS OF EVIL?”

We know where our leaders will pledge their loyalty to, even before D-Day pays us a courteous visit. Lack of economic freedom will always be our weakest link to geopolitical manipulations.

Africa fought the last two World Wars for her colonial masters and soon will be enticed to repeat it for the same reasons: carrying the can for the imperial powers while burying our own beloved in the shallow graves without the tangibles to justify it! African stupidity defies logic and common sense. It is just a generational curse going berserk!

The author is a Development Administration specialist in Tanzania with over 30 years of practical experience, and has been penning down a number of articles in local printing and digital newspapers for some time now.

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