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Bring on the Mission: An Aristide Demonizer Turns Saintly on Pacifica Radio

by Net Sourcing by Alex Constantine Thursday, Mar. 25, 2004 at 5:32 PM

Dr. Robert Maguire, a spokesman for the Inter-American Foundation, smeared Aristide in the press before the coup. But in KPFK's "Background Briefing" on March 7, Dr. Maguire clung to a progressive perspective thinned down for consumption by Masters' progressive listening audience.

Bring on the Mission

Dr. Robert Maguire, a Guest on KPFK's "Background Briefing" (3-7-04), Demonized Aristide in the American Press Before the Coup

Net Sourcing by Alex Constantine

Dr. Robert Maguire, Ian Masters’ guest on "Background Briefing" (March 7, 2004), representative to Haiti for the Inter-American Foundation (IAF), told the press prior to the invasion that Aristide was “intoxicated with power.”

On the IAF Board, count Assistant Secretary of State Roger Noriega, oil company executives & an assortment of corporate predators...

Erroneous press reports BEFORE the invasion portrayed a tainted, power-hungry Aristide rigging elections in Haiti -- per Dr. Maguire, who reversed his position AFTER the CIA-backed coup for his tepid interview on anti-war KPFK. These and other horrific acts, the IAF’s respected Haiti "expert" claimed in the press, had come back to haunt Aristide. But POST-invasion, on KPFK, Dr. Maguire adopted the polar opposite position and commisserated with the exiled leader for the benefit of Ian Masters’ progressive audience.

Dr. Maguire’s original, pre-war position on Aristide:

Haiti Options are Few and Disturbing

By Christopher Marquis

New York Times

February 29, 2004

... Aristide became intoxicated with power, believes ROBERT MAGUIRE, an expert on Haiti and a professor at Trinity College in Washington.

"He feels he doesn't have to play the traditional Haitian political game," Maguire said. "It's like he says, 'I'm king of the world.' That's the way he has governed. He has alienated many, many people."

MacGuire depicted Aristide as a corrupt autocrat again on February 14, 2004:

Analysis: Haiti's man

of the people lost his way


(New York Times News Service):

... Without a force of order to fall back on, it has been impossible for Aristide to carry out any social agenda, and for a long time now he has not seemed to have the inclination or the budget to try.

The most flagrant example of his disregard for institutions came in 2000, when he allowed irregularities in an election that gave him a clear legislative majority. The United States responded by stopping all funds, says ROBERT MAGUIRE, director of the international affairs program at Trinity College in Washington and a longtime Haiti observer. "This became a resource-starved government very quickly," Maguire said, "Aristide could not deliver on any of his big promises about education and health care and so forth, and he couldn't even really do street patronage."

In other words, Aristide in some way stopped being a big man, even though he was the president, because he could not deliver the goods.

What is happening now is not simply the result of Aristide's leadership style. "This is happening because of irrefutable Haitian truths," Maguire said. "The country is deeply polarized between the included and the excluded, the elite rich and the poor masses, between the urban dweller and the rural villager. Aristide represented something unique and important. He rose to power as someone who was not part of the political class and not put in by the army. His support came solely from the Haitian people."

It turns out, however, that the Haitian people have a limited supply of patience....


Dr. Maguire Biography, from the Trinity College Web Site:

Bob joined the staff of Trinity College following a career in federal government service as a specialist in Latin America and the Caribbean, grassroots development, and political economy. His government service included stints with the Inter-American Foundation ... Dr. Maguire is best known for his work on Haiti, having been involved with that country since the mid 1970's through affiliations with the Inter-American Foundation, the Department of State, and Johns Hopkins, Brown and Georgetown Universities....


The purpose of the IAF, according to its Mission Statement:

* Strengthen the bonds of friendship and understanding among the peoples of this hemisphere.

* Support self-help efforts designed to enlarge the opportunities for individual development.

* Stimulate and assist effective and ever wider participation of the people in the development process.

* Encourage the establishment and growth of democratic institutions, private and governmental, appropriate to the requirements of the individual sovereign nationas of this hemisphere."



1) The IAF Coup:

“THE Reagan administration has moved in to snuff out one of the few progressive initiatives that have appeared on the official US aid scene in many years....”

Reagan Operatives Take Over Inter-American Foundation

The Inter-American Foundation has now had its Board taken over by White House appointees - proof if proof were needed that the Foundation had become an effective channel for funds to progressive groups in Latin America.

The Foundation’s money came from the US government but it was administered by an independent Board outside the government aid machinery. So it could reach many small groups that governments would not normally deal with. Some 1,600 grants were made over its 13 years of existence and the 1983 budget was millions.

Suspicions arose because many people found it difficult to believe that such an organisation could operate completely independently. Once contact was made with peasant co-operatives, it was argued. these channels could be used for the gathering of intelligence. The CIA must be tnvolved somewhere.

The New Internationalist believed these suspicions were groundless, supported the Foundation (see NI 126) and argued that this was a model that could well be copied in other countries.

But the Foundation’s freedom of action has not proved to the taste of President Reagan who has been trying for the past three years to get a majority on the seven-person Board. By December 1983 he had succeeded and promptly fired the Foundation’s Director, stimulating widespread press coverage in the United States and angry protest from members of Congress.

The new policy, say the Reagan appointees, will be to involve the US embassies and Latin American governments in project selection. This violates the Foundation’s mandate from Congress

There are fears now for the similar, and newly created, African Development Foundation whose Board the Reagan Administration has taken over completely. However, its strict legislative mandate to support community-based development projects may protect it.


2) WHO ELSE IS AT THE INTER-AMERICAN FOUNDATION? Curtin Winsor Jr. served on the advisory council of the Inter-American Foundation and is a member of the council of advisers of Americans for Freedom, Inc, run by Karen McKay who headed the Committee for a Free Afghanistan. He was on the board of the Nicaraguan Refugee Fund, a group that raised funds to support the Nicaraguan contras.... (Source: "Some Notes on the World Freedom Foundation," Institute for Media Analysis, unpublished manuscript, June 1, 1989.)


3) PETER BELL RECALLS HIS DEPARTURE FROM IAF terceiro/info/artigos_020502.htm

Peter American Bell, 62 years, president of the Care Foundation: “I was president of the InterAmerican Foundation, created to promote the development in Latin America and the Caribbean. We wanted to support communitarian organizations directed toward the democracy, but many people in them had criticized in the administration of Ronald Reagan. Some found that we would have to support only organizations clearly pro-Americans. They had produced a report criticizing the foundation and my direction. Later they had asked for my resignation. I opposed to leave, but they had finished firing me.”

The President intends to nominate Roger W. Wallace, of Texas, to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Inter-American Foundation (Private Representative), for a six-year term.


4) Clinton Appoints a Hill & Knowlton senior executive to the board of IAF

Fred P. DuVal named to the Board of Directors

of the Inter-American Foundation by President Clinton

News Release - 1/30/2001

Fred P. DuVal, a senior Managing Director of HILL & KNOWLTON, was named to the Board of Directors of the Inter-American Foundation by President Clinton. Mr. DuVal has extensive experience in government affairs, public relations and advertising.....


5) ROGER NORIEGA is in the board, too.

Roger Francisco Noriega-Member, Board of Directors-Inter-American Foundation


6) Ford Foundation & IAF Take an Interest in Brazilian Black Militants

In 1974, prior to Chris Welna's return to Brazil, Charles Reilly arrived from the University of Chicago to conduct research in pursuit of his doctoral thesis. Dr. Reilly later researched how public policy is made at the local level under a military regime and taught development planning at the Federal University in Pernambuco. But his introduction to Brazil was in São Paulo.

The newly married Reilly soon accepted a position with the Virginia-based Inter-American Foundation (IAF) which took him to Rio. There, he helped to facilitate funding from sources like the Ford Foundation for a wide variety of organizations undertaking constructive social engagement. Among them were one or more organizations loosely identified with the emerging Brazilian Black-Pride movement.

"The Ford Foundation was initially pretty uncomfortable with the idea of getting involved with African-Brazilian social programs" said Dr. Reilly. "They declined to provide any funding. That was before Chris Welna's arrival." Dr Reilly facilitated funding for them through the IAF "until we could establish their credibility. Chris was more receptive when he arrived, so then we were able to get Ford Foundation money."

The `Black Rio' movement was split between the kind of organizations Reilly worked with and more militant groups inspired by the Black Panthers and other radical groups in the United States. The Brazilian military regime drew no distinction. In late 1978 or early 1979 the Inter-American Foundation was forced to close down and the IAF staff was invited to leave the country.

"There was no good reason for the government to take that action," insists Dr. Reilly, although the reach of black activism did surprise him. "Through the Research Institute of People of Color," he indicated, "I was introduced to a couple of security cops in the National Congress who were activists in the black movement."

"I worked with a cluster of grass roots organizations," offered Dr. Reilly. "Among them were Olorum, led by Carlos Negreros and his wife Isaura Assiz....


6) These People are Helping the Poor?

Advisory Board Members of the IAF

Al Zapanta, president and CEO of the U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce, has held several presidential appointments, including a White House fellowship and a term as assistant secretary with the Department of the Interior. He has served as director of governmental affairs at ARCO ...

Rita DiMartino, former vice president of congressional relations for AT&T, is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Hispanic Council on International Relations, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, and the Cuban-American National Council. Previous public service includes her appointment in 1992 by former President Bush to the of USO's board of governors and by President Reagan as ambassador to the UNICEF executive board.

Charles A. Gargano is chairman and commissioner of Empire State Development, chairman of the Olympic Regional Development Authority and vice-chairman of the Port Authority. He began his professional career as an engineer with J.D. Posillico Engineering and Construction; a company he helped build into one of Long Island's largest heavy construction firms. In 1981 President Reagan appointed him deputy administrator of the Federal Urban Mass Transportation Administration and later ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago, a position in which he also served under President George H.W. Bush.

John C. Duncan served on the Foundation's board from 1988 to 1989, and on the advisory council beginning in 1983. He has been at the helm of a number of major mining and other industrial enterprises based in Latin America, most notably as a long-term senior executive with W.R. Grace & Co. His extensive record in public service and philanthropy includes leadership positions with the Council of Americans and ACCION International.

James R. Jones has served as chief of staff for President Johnson, member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Oklahoma, chairman and C.E.O. of the American Stock Exchange and ambassador to Mexico. While in his current position as co-chair of Manatt Jones Global Strategies,

Steve Knaebel is president and general manager of Cummins Diesel, S.A. de C.V., in Mexico. He held various positions with Cummins when it was a minority partner with the Mexican government and led the negotiations that resulted in its privatization in 1987. He was director of USAID's mission to Costa Rica, has held several post with the International Basic Economy Corporation, and served with the Peace Corps in Venezuela.


7) More on Dr. Robert Maguire's Foreign Service/State Dept. Bona Fides:

From 1994 - 2001, Bob served as the Coordinator of the Georgetown University Haiti Program, supported by the Ford Foundation to serve as a vehicle for the dissemination of information and analysis on issues linked to Haiti and to US-Haiti policy. In December 2001, he was awarded a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation to continue his policy-related work on Haiti exclusively from his location at Trinity College, and to extend that work into issues related to the contributions made by Haiti and the Haitian Diaspora population to the well being of the United States (see Haiti Program). Since 1990, Dr. Maguire has served as the Chair of Haiti Advanced Area Studies at the Department of State's Foreign Service Institute. Bob is consulted on Haiti and Caribbean issues by a variety of government agencies and non-governmental organizations, and regularly makes public presentations that address issues of development in Haiti, the role of the international community, and US-Haiti policy. He has traveled to Haiti at least 100 times and is fluent in Creole.


8) An Advisor to the Military, ala this Army Study

of the Fragile Stability in Haiti Under Aristide:


Donald E. Schulz

April 1, 1996

Page 2



Comments pertaining to this report are invited and should be forwarded to: Director, Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, PA 17013-5050.


All Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) monographs are loaded on the Strategic Studies Institute Homepage for electronic dissemination. SSI's Homepage address is:


The author especially wishes to thank Drs. Robert Maguire, John Fishel and Gabriel Marcella...


As this study goes to press, the U.N. Mission in Haiti is in the process of being extended for 4 months. The size of the force will be sharply reduced. The central role played thus far by the United States will be assumed by Canada, which, along with Argentina, Pakistan and Bangladesh, will provide some 1,900 troops to the operation. The question that all this poses is whether the progress that Haiti has made these past 18 months will continue, especially after the mission pulls out altogether

(presumably after June 1996). In the following report, Dr. Donald E. Schulz looks at the prospects for political stability, democratization, and

socioeconomic development. His conclusions are sobering. While by

no means dismissing the possibility that Haiti can "make it," he presents a portrait of the imposing obstacles that must still be overcome and a detailed discussion of the things that could go wrong. In a nutshell, he argues that without a much greater willingness on the part of the United States and the international community to "stay the course" in terms of

providing long-term security and socioeconomic aid, Haiti is unlikely to make a successful transition to a stable, democratic, economically modernizing nation...

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