Heine Calls for International Action in Haiti Amidst Escalating Crisis

Amb. Jorge Heine

Ambassador Jorge Heine, Research Professor at Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies and Interim Director of the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future, recently authored an article published by The Conversation on May 22, 2024. The article, titled “Kenyan president will receive White House praise over troops-to-Haiti move − but lack of action across Americas should prompt regional soul-searching,” discussed the deployment of Kenyan troops to Haiti as part of a U.N.-backed mission aimed at stabilizing the country amidst rampant gang violence.

In his article, Heine, who has written a book titled “Fixing Haiti” on the previous U.N. stabilizing mission known as MINUSTAH, expressed his concerns about the lack of action by countries in the Americas. He wrote, “From a humanitarian perspective and in terms of regional security, to allow a country in the Americas to drift into the condition of a failed state controlled by a fluid network of criminal gangs is a recipe for disaster.” Heine also highlighted the reluctance of the United States and other major governments in the Americas to put their own troops on the ground in Haiti, instead outsourcing the role to Kenya.

Heine shed light on the historical factors contributing to Haiti’s current crisis, such as the devastating impact of forced reparations to France and the U.S. invasion and occupation of Haiti in the early 20th century. He argued that the international community bears responsibility for the Haitian tragedy and is duty-bound to help fix it. In his own words,

“Moreover, there is an argument to be made that the international community bears responsibility for the Haitian tragedy and is duty bound to try to fix it.”

The full article can be accessed here.

Ambassador Jorge Heine is a Research Professor at the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University. He has served as ambassador of Chile to China (2014-2017), to India (2003-2007), and to South Africa (1994-1999), and as a Cabinet Minister in the Chilean Government. Read more about Ambassador Heine on his Pardee School faculty profile.