American Military Involvement in Haiti Essay

October 14, 2020 by Essay Writer

By the year 1905, Haiti’s economy deteriorated. It was out of this desperate situation that Haiti welcomed U.S. involvement. An agreement was reached and put Haiti under receivership from 1905 to 1941. U.S Marines occupied Haiti in 1915 and ensured stability in the region. The occupation was operated through client government. US military became part of the government. The USA operated and controlled custom houses and also was in charge of ports (Haiti n.pag).

U.S. marines were able to facilitate peaceful elections on August 2, 1915. This was achieved with the aid of Catholic Church and Haitian politicians. The US preferred candidate was Sudre Dartugurvane who won elections and sworn in to power on August 12, 1915. A treaty was laid a month after the new president’s inauguration and ensured that US dominion and control over Haiti. Some people thought that the treaty was disadvantageous to Haitians. (Naval Historical Center n.pag.). Haiti signed the treaty under pressure from the US. Under this treaty, US occupation in Haiti was legitimized. All finances were controlled by the US. There had been created all the conditions for US Army to be autonomous which led to disbandment of the Haitian army. 3000 Haitian police officers known as the Gendarme were to assist US army in maintaining law and order. More US civilians were appointed to various positions. Those positions that had initially held by military officers were given to the US citizens. This scenario reminded the Haitians of the French colonialism and led to rebellion in 1918.

Haitians Republic and US military successfully initiated a peaceful constitution change in 1922. US Army stayed in Haiti controlling its programme for 19 years. They withdrew from Haiti in 1934.

In 1990, Jean Bertrand Aristride took over the office of President. He was an ally of the US which was unpopular with Haitians, and there existed the Front for the Advancement Movement of Progress of the Haitian People (FRAH). FRAH overthrew the Government, while Aristride was a supporter of US politics. US army intervened, and Aristide was re-instated as President, which was a move highly condemned by the observers and the conservatives.

In 2001, the US funded and trained over 650 paramilitary army of anti-Aristide in the Dominican Republic. Many observers questioned the intentions of the US. As this went on, Aristide was working with neighboring countries like Cuba and Venezuela in coming up with strategies to reduce US dominion in the region. This caused US discontent.

In February 2003, new unfolding took place. IRI met Haitian rebel leader in the Dominican Republic. Three weeks later, the rebel group that was believed to be trained by the US marched in Haiti and destroyed hydroelectric power station. Leaders from other nations questioned US involvement in training the paramilitary at the Dominican Republic. (Buschschluter, n.pag.)

In 2004, rebels occupied and took over most cities in the Northern Haiti. They moved towards Haiti’s capital in March 2004. President Jean Betrad Aristide flew to Africa on US Chartered jet, which was a move, termed a ‘A Modern Day Kidnap’ (US-Haiti (1804-2005) n.pag.)


The role of US military in restoring order in 1915 cannot be undermined. The country was able to get back to track after the political instability. However, US Military can be blamed for training the paramilitary who later overthrew Haitian Government.

Works Cited

Buschschluter, Vanessa. “The Long History of Troubled Ties between Haiti and the US.” BBC News. 2010. Web.

Haiti. n.d. Web.

Naval Historical Center. US Occupation of Haiti, 1915-1934. n.d. Web.

US-Haiti (1804-2005): History of US Intervention. n.d. Web.

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