Wall Street demanded an invasion of Haiti, and so did the United States

Today, Citigroup has completely removed the story from its public profile. Haiti is hardly mentioned in his official chronology. The company refused to provide access to its files, saying it was unable to find any information about some of its largest loans to Haiti.

Yet, according to nearly two dozen annual reports published by US officials and reviewed by the New York Times, a quarter of Haiti’s total income went to repay debts controlled by the National City Bank and its subsidiary over a decade, nearly five times the amount spent. in public schools in Haiti during that time.

Over the course of a few years, the American officials who controlled Haiti’s finances spent more money on their paychecks and outlays than they did on the overall health of the entire nation of about two million people.

“We have been under the absolute control” of the United States, George Leger, the Haitian lawyer, declared before the US Senators in 1932, to explain how deeply Haitians resented the financial and political control of their country “just to please the York group of bankers.”

At first, many US legislators did not want anything to do with Haiti and vehemently refused to recognize its independence. Aunque los haitianos habían luchado junto a los estadounidenses durante la guerra de Independencia, Estados Unidos se negó a reconocer a Haití durante casi seis décadas, por temor a que pudiera inspirar a las de las personizas s United State.

But in the early twentieth century, as the American footprint expanded into the hemisphere, Americans saw a necessity..and an opportunity. They wanted to limit European influence in the region, particularly German influence, but they also realized what the French had known all along: there was a lot of money involved.

Historians continue to debate the legacy of the American invasion and how it shaped, or continues to shape, Haiti today. Some attribute the occupation to Haiti in a time of violence and coups, while others point to Americans crushing dissent, shooting civilian protesters, carrying out extrajudicial executions and imposing martial law for a prolonged period.

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