Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Under Guise of Troop Withdrawal Discussions: Is Chile Pressuring Haiti to Join OAS Coup Efforts Against Venezuela?

by Kim Ives (Haiti Liberte)

Chile’s President Michelle Bachelet visited Haiti this week ostensibly to discuss with Haitian President Jovenel Moïse the future of United Nations troops in Haiti. Since the deployment of the UN Mission to Stabilize Haiti (MINUSTAH) in June 2004, over 12,000 Chilean troops have been deployed in Haiti, Bachelet said. Today, Chile has 392 soldiers and 41 police in Haiti, the second largest contingent after Brazil’s 981 soldiers.

            On Apr. 15, the UN Security Council is likely to renew MINUSTAH’s mandate for a final six-month period, as recommended by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres in a Mar. 16 report. Guterres proposed to the Council “a staggered but complete withdrawal” of the 2,370 UN soldiers remaining in Haiti to be replaced by a new mission of 295 UN police officers which would “support political stability, [and] good governance, including electoral oversight and reform.” There are now about 844 UN police officers in Haiti, bringing the current MINUSTAH armed force to over 3,200.

            In short, after MINUSTAH’s Oct. 15 end, a reduced, renamed mission would remain, on behalf of the U.S., Canada, and France primarily, to “monitor and exercise an early warning function” against any anti-imperialist political developments in Haiti (of course, Guterres used the euphemism “for conflict prevention, human rights and rule of law issues”).

            However, the day after Bachelet met with Moïse on Mar. 27, the Organization of American States (OAS) convened an extraordinary session at its Washington, DC headquarters on whether to sanction Venezuela for what OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro says is Venezuela’s “violation of every article in the Inter-American Democratic Charter.” In a Mar. 14 report, Almagro stepped up his years-long campaign to invoke the OAS’s sovereignty-smashing “Democratic Charter” to expel Venezuela from the body, as happened to Cuba after its 1959 revolution.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

After Aristide Court Appearance, Police Fire on Cortege, Wounding Two

by Kim Ives (Haiti Liberte)

On Mar. 20, Haitian police fired on partisans accompanying the vehicle of former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, after he had responded to the summons of an investigating judge in a money-laundering case against one of his former security chiefs.

            Several hundred supporters were escorting the three vehicles returning Aristide, accompanied by his party’s former presidential candidate Maryse Narcisse, back to his home in Tabarre, just outside of the capital, Port-au-Prince.

Eluding Tricks and Raids, Guy Philippe Bargained for a Lighter Sentence, U.S. Says

He Wasn’t Immune or Mistreated, It Adds

by Kim Ives (Haiti Liberte)

For eleven years, the U.S. attempted all manner of ruses, persuasion, negotiations, and ambushes in an attempt to capture paramilitary leader Guy Philippe after a Miami grand jury issued a November 2005 indictment against him for drug trafficking and money laundering. But it was all unsuccessful until he left the rural, seaside Haitian town where he was holed up and ventured into the capital.

            Acting U.S. Attorney Benjamin G. Greenberg enumerated the efforts of Haitian and U.S. authorities to apprehend Philippe, 49, in a Mar. 10 response to his lawyer’s motions to dismiss the charges against him because too much time had elapsed between the indictment and his Jan. 5, 2017 arrest by Haitian police. Philippe, through his attorney Zeljka Bozanic, also claimed he was unaware that he was being pursued, a contention the U.S. calls “patently false.”

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Haiti Action Committee: Attempted Assassination of Aristide Marks a New Stage of Terror in Haiti

Yesterday, there was an assassination attempt against former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, Haiti’s first democratically elected president. President Aristide had been summoned to appear as a witness in a court case.
While returning from court, his motorcade was attacked by armed Haitian police. A number of people were injured in the attack. Mass protests against the police broke out immediately.
This attack on President Aristide signals a new stage of terror in Haiti.
In the wake of the electoral coup which installed Jovenal Moise, a right-wing protégé of former President Michel Martelly, as Haiti’s new president, there has been a marked increase in repression directed against grassroots activists.
This attack on President Aristide signals a new stage of terror in Haiti. It harkens back to the days of the Duvalier dictatorships. Human rights activists and all supporters of democracy in Haiti need to condemn this attempted assassination and demand that those who committed this act be brought to justice.
Contact the Haiti Action Committee at www.haitisolidarity.net, on Facebook at Haiti Action Committee, on Twitter @HaitiAction1or by email at action.haiti@gmail.com.

Haïti : le capitalisme des paramilitaires

 Jeb Sprague-Silgado -  América Latina en movimiento 

Cet article examine l’évolution et la flexibilisation des forces paramilitaires en Haïti, ainsi que les stratégies hégémoniques des élites transnationales. Dans ce contexte, la « flexibilisation » désigne la façon dont les opérations ou les composantes d’un processus sont modifiées pour répondre aux besoins d’une forme plus avancée de reproduction sociale et matérielle qui augmente ou diminue, et qui se redéploie et se réaffecte plus facilement. Je prête ici une attention particulière à la phase la plus récente du paramilitarisme en Haïti moderne, par rapport à la restructuration politique et économique d’Haïti à l’ère de la globalisation [1]. Tout au long de l’histoire du capitalism mondial, les groupes dominants ont développé des moyens d’atteindre l’hégémonie pour maintenir et projeter leur domination de classe. À l’ère du capitalisme global, une grande variété de moyens recyclés, modifiés et nouveaux pour atteindre l'hégémonie a émergé, y compris dans le bassin des Caraïbes.  

La question qui se pose ici est celle des enjeux de cette nouvelle ère du capitalisme global du point de vue du paramilitarisme, en particulier dans le cas d’Haïti. Est-il vrai, comme je tâcherai de le montrer, que le paramilitarisme n’a pas disparu à l’ère de la globalisation, mais a été modifié et fait partie des stratégies changeantes des élites (et surtout des élites transnationales) ?

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Exposing the "real" mission of Christian zealots in Haiti

Reza Aslan - Religion Dispatches
After the massive earthquake that devastated Haiti in 2010, the popular televangelist Pat Robertson went on his flagship TV program, the 700 Club, and made an extraordinary claim. The earthquake, he said, was just one consequence of a pact with the devil made by Haiti’s revolutionary founders. 
“[The Haitians] were under the heel of the French. You know, Napoleon III and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said, ‘We will serve you if you will get us free from the French.’ True story. And so, the devil said, ‘OK, it’s a deal.’”
Most people – including most Christians – who heard Robertson’s statement were aghast. But for a small group of evangelicals who adhere to a fairly new Christian movement called Spiritual Mapping, Robertson was preaching the gospel truth. 

7 Years After Haiti’s Earthquake, Millions Still Need Aid

On Jan. 12, 2010, a massive earthquake ravaged Haiti, claiming up to 316,000 lives and displacing more than 1.5 million people. Today ― seven years later ― 2.5 million Haitians are still in need of humanitarian aid, according to a new report from the United Nations.
The quake tore a catastrophic path of destruction through the ailing island nation, leaving Haitians with a herculean recovery mission. In the years that followed, a string of devastating natural disasters have fueled ongoing famine and poverty crises, given rise to a deadly cholera epidemic, and quashed Haiti’s continued efforts to rebuild.
“Haitians continue to suffer years after the earthquake,” U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator Mourad Wahba, who has worked in the country for two years, told The WorldPost. “People lost their friends and family. I see the pain in their faces when they talk about it now. It’s a very long healing process.”

Having Helped Washington Overthrow Aristide, Guy Philippe Knows “Too Much” and Is a “Danger” to U.S., Lawyer Claims

Kim Ives - Haiti Liberte
What goes around, comes around,” says the proverb, and former Haitian “rebel” leader Guy Philippe must be pondering this karmic truth as he languishes in his Miami, FL jail cell.
In February 2004, he played a key role in helping U.S. Special Forces kidnap then President Jean-Bertrand Aristide from Haiti and whisk him off to a seven year exile in Africa. Today, Philippe claims, through his lawyer, that U.S. government agents illegally kidnapped him from Haiti on Jan. 5, 2017 and, with “shocking and outrageous” conduct, flew him to Florida to stand trial because he has “too much information” about Washington’s overthrow of Aristide.
In November 2005 (21 months after the coup against Aristide), a U.S. grand jury issued a three count indictment against Philippe for drug trafficking and money laundering between 1997 and 2001. After his arrest in Haiti and transport to Miami, Philippe pled not guilty to the charges through his Hollywood, FL-based lawyer, Zeljka Bozanic. On Feb. 28, 2017, she  filed with U.S. District Court in Miami two motions to dismiss and one motion to abate (temporarily suspend) the case against Philippe.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

1943-2017: René Préval: Who He Was and What He Represented

by Kim Ives (Haiti Liberte)

In 2009, former U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Janet Sanderson called him “Haiti’s indispensable man,” who was “capable of imposing his will on Haiti - if so inclined.” Another diplomat recently dubbed him one of Haiti’s “three kings,” along with former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide and the Duvalierists.

            They were referring to former Haitian president René Préval, who died of a heart attack on Mar. 3 in the capital’s mountain suburb of Laboule at the age of 74. Over the past 30 years, he had played one of the most important and contradictory roles of any politician in helping to briefly free Haiti from the political grips of Washington and the Duvalierists, nostalgic for the three decade (1957-1986) dictatorship of François and Jean-Claude Duvalier, only to lead the country back into their clutches by acquiescing to neo-liberal privatization campaigns, sovereignty-stripping international accords, minimum wage suppression, two foreign military occupations, and an “electoral coup d’état” a year after the 2010 earthquake.

            Préval was laid-back and personable, but low-key and retiring. He shunned the trappings of power and trumpeting his accomplishments, unlike his successor Michel “Sweet Micky” Martelly, a ribald, flamboyant konpa music star. For example, Préval was so prone to informality that he scandalized some Haitians by wearing a white guayabera in the group photo at a hemispheric conference where all the other heads of state wore suits.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Female witness speaks out about 2002-2004 crimes of Guy Philippe & his henchmen

By: Jafrikayiti Jean Elissaint Saint-Vil

 In this interview (in Haitian Creole), a native daughter of Lascahobas, Haiti, courageously describes several crimes committed by Guy Philippe and his paramilitary henchmen against unarmed Haitian women, men and children between 2002 and 2004.

 Philippe went on a rampage, armed, trained and protected by the CIA and the government of neighbouring Dominican Republic, on a mission to overthrow Haiti's legitimate democratically-elected goverment, led by President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

No one has ever faced trial for the crimes described by this witness. Neither Philippe, nor his powerful criminal sponsors within Haiti, the U.S., Canada or Europe. For more see Jeb Sprague's excellent book "Paramilitarism: The assault on democracy in Haiti"

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