Price-Mars and the Cataclysmic Events of 1929–30
By 1929 Haiti was at a critical juncture in its relations with the US occupational forces, which had been in the country for 14 years. Though order and stability had been established, its citizens had not only been deprived of freedom of the press and of assembly but were being subjected to military pressure to change their Constitution and had been assigned to a subordinate role under a client government.1 US attempts to improve roads, education, and agriculture had met with minimal success, largely because they were designed for the immediate benefit of American economic interests rather than for the long-term solution of inefficiency in age-old Haitian programs.2 Furthermore, authoritarian and insensitive rule and contempt for the ruled had made matters worse, not only in relations with the Haitian elite but with rural peasants as well. For a people with a proud heritage, the continuing coercion through a US-supervised native Gendarmerie, US control of the purse strings, and the increasing regulation of public and private land were sources of constant irritation.3 What to the Americans had appeared to be a strategic program with qualities of missionary diplomacy was becoming intolerable for the Haitians.
KeywordsEurope Income Assure Arena Dine
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