From Haiti's Ruins, a Chance to Rebuild a Nation
- Alec MacGillis, Washington Post.
Even as rescuers are digging victims out of the rubble in Haiti, policymakers in Washington and around the world are grappling with how a destitute, corrupt and now devastated country might be transformed into a self-sustaining nation. Development efforts have failed there, decade after decade, leaving Haitians with a dysfunctional government, a high crime rate and incomes averaging a dollar a day. But the leveled capital, Port-au-Prince, must be rebuilt, promising one of the largest economic development efforts ever undertaken in the hemisphere - an effort "measured in months and even years," President Obama said Saturday in an appeal for donations alongside former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. And those who will help oversee it are thinking hard about how to use that money and attention to change the country forever. "It's terrible to look at it this way, but out of crisis often comes real change," said C. Ross Anthony, the Rand Corp.'s global health director. "The people and the institutions take on the crisis and bring forth things they weren't able to do in the past."