Hope for Haiti

Even Before The Devastating Storm damage to Haiti's shores two months ago, The UN's World Food Program was feeding 500,000 people in Haiti. Then Tropical Storm Jeanne struck on September 17, leaving thousands dead, hundreds of thousands homeless, and an additional 100,000 victims that will continue to need rations for months to come. And though the immediate necessities for the people of Haiti are food and shelter, the underlying problem that threatens their stability is political unrest. That's the reason that the government and people are so woefully unprepared to deal with this crisis.

Because of the political unrest in Haiti, the UN's peacekeeping mission to Haiti now struggles to bring stability to the island. Backers of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who was forced out of the country last February, carry on gang warfare with backers of the current interim government. Each side inevitably blames the other for every flair-up of violence, every case of an innocent bystander, so often a child, gunned down while caught in the crossfire. Amid this aggression and insecurity, UN peacekeepers strive to calm the troubled waters.

As tragic as the scene appears, hope persists for what is still a beautiful part of the world. Once political stability returns to Haiti, I believe that the world can expect a rebound because this small nation does have resources. Haiti is not—and does not have to be perceived as—a place predestined to poverty and volatility. Many Haitians are doing a lot right, and the world is also doing a lot right in terms of investing aid and know-how in Haiti. Also, individuals far from the scene can also do something by supporting humanitarian organizations.

Testimony of Healing
'God does not afflict'
November 15, 2004

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