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Haiti - 219th of the death of Toussaint Louverture: Message of reflection from Lesly Condé
"Dear compatriots and friends everywhere,
This year, we commemorate the 219th anniversary of the death of Toussaint Louverture at Fort de Joux (Doubs, Savoie, France) https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-12415-haiti-politic-moving-tribute-of-president-martelly-to-toussaint-louverture.html . This man who, thanks to his strength of character, his singular sagacity and his unwavering courage, opened the door to the only slave revolt which led to the creation of a sovereign State, must have known moments of extreme humiliation. It is not difficult to imagine all the physical and psychological torture he had to undergo before passing away when he was completely at the mercy of France. There are details that will never be revealed, but we can say without hesitation that Toussaint Louverture is among the greatest martyrs of the cause of human rights.
However, the commemoration of the death of Toussaint Louverture gives us the opportunity to talk about the life of this great man. This life is a tribute to the resilience and tenacity that characterize heroes. It is a life during which our hero conquered the implausible and offered many lessons in finesse and diplomacy to the very people who called themselves civilized. Thanks to his talents as a negotiator, he was able to take advantage of the rivalries that existed between the colonial powers of the time and improve the living conditions of his congeners.
There is an important aspect of Toussaint Louverture's life which historians do not seem to dwell on, but which gives it even more merit. He had a childhood and adolescence as a house slave. There is a vast difference between the treatment a domestic slave received and the inhuman conditions in which the slaves of the fields languished. Despite this status, Toussaint Louverture remained faithful to the cause of his race. He trained the soldiers and generals who changed the course of human history by creating the first sovereign black state in the New World.
The man who dedicated his entire life to the cause of human development, did not experience the birth of the Haitian Nation of which he is the main founder. For remaining faithful to the cause of his race, Toussaint Louverture met a horrible and humiliating end at Fort de Joux. He had to endure tortures and taunts that we will not hear about. Even if his heritage belongs to the whole world, it is first and foremost ours. We Haitians are the deep and many roots to which he alluded at the dark moment of his abduction.
If nothing can prevent us from being proud of Toussaint and of our unique identity of which he is at the origin, we must also honor his precious memory by practicing, like him, self-love, solidarity and an unconditional attachment to our common dignity.
At a time when our country is facing the challenges of the 21st century, we must, like Toussaint Louverture, allow ourselves to be guided by wisdom, patience and determination. Toussaint Louverture is a beautiful page in our history and that of humanity. His life is an eloquent example of courage and perseverance.
Today, the real settlers have changed continents. They have also changed their language, but they remain just as hateful, just as inclined to deprive us of what is rightfully ours. Today more than ever, the example of Toussaint Louverture can guide us towards the better days that belong to us.
Message from Lesly Condé in 2022 :
Messages from Lesly Condé in 2021 :