'Baby Doc' Duvalier returns to Haiti
A March 1982 picture shows Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier, then president of Haiti.
January 16th, 2011
07:39 PM ET

'Baby Doc' Duvalier returns to Haiti

Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier, Haiti's former dictator, returned unexpectedly Sunday to the country after some 25 years in exile.

He arrived in the Haitian capital as the nation is grappling with a political crisis, sparked by fraud allegations in a presidential election. It was not immediately clear why the former leader returned.

Duvalier, wearing a dark suit and tie, greeted supporters at the busy Port-au-Prince airport. He had traveled with his wife.

The Duvalier family ruled Haiti for three decades starting in 1957, when Francois "Papa Doc" Duvalier was elected president. He later declared himself president for life. Whe he died in 1971, he was succeeded by his 19-year-old son, Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier.

The younger Duvalier held onto power for 15 years before a revolt forced him to flee the country. He has been living in France

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Filed under: Haiti
soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. smokinmike

    Dictator returns. . .

    Details at 11.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jennym

    You are all concerned about the money that he stole form us, what about all the president who came after him and did the same? what about all the people who were in a position of power and stole form haiti? What about right now Preval who is the president and he is not doing anything for all those people leaving on the street , isn't that stealing? that is worse then the money Jan-Claude stole form us.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marky

      No, jennym, it's not worse, and Papa Doc and Baby Doc did not just steal money; they killed people and more. You should be ashamed of yourself to even grasp at the hope for one moment that Baby Doc should come back to power. What a nightmare! What a sad thing that you even think about this... he will destroy any hope of recovery. Haitians will have to begin to stop just asking for help and start helping rebuild Haiti themselves. It's not all up to outsiders! It sure is not for Baby Doc...

      January 16, 2011 at 8:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      Marky, I have nothing to be ashamed of. When he was in power and I was a kid, I never saw dead bodies on the streets, I did not know what not having electricity was, I did not know what dirty streets were. As a kid. I had a fresh , healthy mind. Now, look out our kids, they know everything about violence, they carry guns and nobody is doing nothing about it. We all talk about it, but nothing concrete is being done. Under Duvalier, I don't think kids carried guns on the street. Maybe if I knew what kids today know now I would be ashmed of welcoming him to Haiti, but I did not. All I knew then was for me to just be a kid and enjoy my time. So, again, I am not ashamed

      January 16, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
  3. jennym

    Well said Nounou. Well said.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  4. jennym


    January 16, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Concerned Haitian

    Please, Haitian people of the diaspora – do not settle or stand for this. This man did not respect the importance/significance of the Haitian nation. He used the nation's wealth as his and his wife's personal bank account. Foreign forces supported his way because he was nothing more than a puppet. We can only judge him on his past. I have never heard Duvalier take ownership for his past behavior. Yet , he should be allowed to return on what grounds? What has he accomplished in support of Haiti while in exile to redeem himself? Should redemption be allowed for a man/boy that has never shown respect for his nation's history?

    January 16, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lucky2005

      Why should he be remorseful? When the people will take him back either way with open arms. We need to learn how to protest and stand together as one nation.

      January 17, 2011 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Julie

    Oh gawd – Baby Doc is still aline? What a dingleberry on Haitis crap sundae. It's too bad there isn't some well-off, benevolent nation who could take Haiti under its' wing as a protectorate for a couple generations and then start from scratch.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Cara

    I agree!!!

    January 16, 2011 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. maozushi

    No one has brought Duvalier back. It's been more than 2 decades. He's an old man. A shell of his former self. Don't forget that he was following in his father's foootsteps. Things were bad & good under Baby Doc. He made lots of mistakes. Paris is nice, but u can't get good riz et pois there. Maybe the man is home sick. Especially when things are so bad there. Haiti's had so much misery, since the time of L'Ouverti, Dessalines, & Christophe until now. It's seems like things just go from 'bad' to 'worse' to 'slightly better' & then back to 'bad' again. It's the least developed country in the western hemisphere & falls way short in many areas when compared to it's neighbors. But it's problems are solveable. The main problem has always been, & cotinues to be a lack of good leadership. Duvalier's return in almost inconsequential in the grand scheme of things. It's what he will do from here on out that really matters & will define his final legacy.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      Yes, let wait an dsee what he is bringing to Haiti before we judge him becaus elike I said earlier Jean-Claude is a man now not the kid he was back then.

      January 16, 2011 at 9:20 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Cara

    I agree with Cesar!

    January 16, 2011 at 8:55 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Concerned Haitian

    I will live it at that noun- your credentials mean nothing to me. What have you done with them in support of your country? Haiti was filled with intelligent slobs. Duvalier will NOT save Haiti. Only God and a coming together of Haitian minds can do that. I just wonder with all if your education, how you can let nostalgia give you hope in a dictator. Haiti has gotten worst due to foreign hands coupled with domestic greed. Duvalier should allow us the dignity of not stepping foot in the country- we are down enough.

    January 16, 2011 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      @Concerned Haitian, what have you done yourself for your country with or whitout a degree?

      January 16, 2011 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  11. waldo

    **Y is everybody so mad this guy just send him away so simple. Hay jennym do you watch safari movies I do. Lions giraffs so what kind of movies u like sweetie.

    January 16, 2011 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      Thanks for trying to make us laugh. In discussions like that we need lines like that, honey.

      January 16, 2011 at 9:24 pm | Report abuse |
  12. betheby

    regarding to his return, hope some positive ideas come out of that, to help haiti back to its feet once again...hope the haitians leaders united put the differences a side to solve the haitian crisies together. Haiti can be a country once again with hope...

    January 16, 2011 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      Well said. I hope so too.

      January 16, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Myriam

    We need a leader someone that`s educated and knows the counrty so we could move on stop waisting time with Papa Doc the men is old and it`s time for him to see his homeland why exile a leader every time something went wrong ..please keep it moving and focus in Haiti future today people are dying of hunger little childrens are suffering , and hardly no elecrticity in this counrty it`s time to move on to better things..Haiti our time is here today so let`s start making some smart decision about our leader keep your eyes open Haiti

    January 16, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  14. waldo

    ***jennym is rite wait and see maybe he changed. I hope things get better jen. U don't sound from haity because ur englis is to good. R there movies at haity.

    January 16, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • jennym

      Wldo! what are you saying? Yes, I am from Haiti. I've benn here for 10 years and trust me I know Haitians who speak better, better, and better english then I do. Some of us are teachers at all level here. Some of us are from Harvard University, what else you want to hear dear Waldo?

      January 16, 2011 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  15. jennym

    We watch movies and we produce movies too, Waldo.

    January 16, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
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