Cablegate Chronicles: Haitian President Does Voodoo

This is an installment from our on-going series on the adventures of American diplomats and the people they monitor. The red button below will take you to another random episode.

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An American ambassador details Haitian President Rene Preval's decision making process and leadership style.


FROM: PORT AU PRINCE, HAITI
TO: STATE DEPARTMENT
DATE: MARCH 01, 2007
CLASSIFICATION: SECRET
SEE FULL CABLE

Like most Haitians, Preval was raised Catholic with an exposure to voodoo practices. He is a non-observant Catholic but maintains a cordial and respectful relationship with Haiti's Catholic hierarchy. He is particularly close to Haiti's Archbishop, who was a life-long friend of his parents. Likewise, he maintains a respectful and cordial relationship with Voodoo leaders. There are unconfirmed reports that Robert Manuel, who is a born-again Christian, influences Preval's religious views and that the two regularly pray together. However, Preval has been jocular and once dismissive of Manuel's praying in conversations with ambassadors.

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