On October 15, the United Nations Security Council will meet to debate the extension of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) which has acted as an occupying force in the country since the summer of 2004. MINUSTAH was created to put an end to the Multinational Interim Force (primarily made up of U.S., French, Canadian and Chilean troops) which occupied Haiti after an internationally backed coup détat ousted the democratically elected president Jean Bertrand Aristide and his Fanmi Lavalas party from power on February 29, 2004.
During these ten years, MINUSTAH has compiled a horrific record of human rights abuses, including but not limited to extrajudicial murder, an epidemic of sexual assault against Haitian men, women and children, the repression of peaceful political protests, in addition to unleashing cholera through criminal negligence which has caused the death of over 9,000 people and infecting nearly a million more. Despite these well documented abuses, the historical record has shown that the Security Council will mostly likely renew MINUSTAH for another year without any thought to damage being done to Haiti. As evidence of how little resistance there is to the renewal of MINUSTAHs mandate in the United Nations, on August 21, MINUSTAHs budget was extended to June 2015 clearly signalling that the occupation is certain to continue.
When one examines the level of instability in Haiti which is used as the justification for MINUSTAHs continued presence in the country, the United Nations argument of protecting the Haitian people from themselves falls flat. Despite the mainstream media portrayal of Haiti as a lawless and dangerous country, in 2012, it had a homicide rate of10.2 per 100,000 people, ranking it as one of the least violent countries in Latin America and the Caribbean in contrast to Washington DC which sat at 13.71 per 100,000. Furthermore, to argue that it is the presence MINUSTAH which has acted as a stabilizing force which has kept violence down, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimereported that between 2007 and 2012, Haitis homicide rate doubled from 5.1 to 10.2 per 100,000.
For the fiscal year running from July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014, $609.18 million was allocated to MINUSTAH. In the ten years in which MINUSTAH has been operational, their total budget is over $5.5 billion. If this same amount had been applied towards human development in the form of investments in clean water, sanitation, healthcare and education Haiti would have the potential reclaim its sovereignty and self-determination.
We must be clear, the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti is not based on any principles of humanitarianism, but rather those of an imperialist occupation which seeks to make sure that the islands government can implement and maintain repressive policies favourable to international investors. Thus the reasons for MINUSTAHs continued presence in Haiti were confirmed thanks to revelations by WikiLeaks. In one of the most up-front classified cables, from US Ambassador Janet Sanderson on October 1, 2008,stated that, A premature departure of MINUSTAH would leave the [Haitian] government…vulnerable to…resurgent populist and anti-market economy political forcesreversing gains of the last two years.
The corrupt and repressive regime of President Michel Martelly has proudly boasted that Haiti is open for business. Indeed, this is true however it is the people and the land that are being sold. Canadian mining companies like St. Genevive and Eurasian Minerals have taken advantage of weak laws to prospect new sites covering enormous swaths of territory (an estimated 1/3 of Northern Haiti has been granted to companies via permit), setting up the potential for substantial displacement through forced evictions and environmental destruction. Montreal based Gildan Activewear (the worlds largest manufacturer of blank T-shirts) has routinely pressured the Haitian government to block an increase in Haitis abysmally low daily minimum wage and have undermined unionization efforts in their plants.
MINUSTAH has carried out a series of human rights violations resulting in a loss of Haitian sovereignty, stability, dignity and life. Its record of engaging in acts of extrajudicial murder, sexual assault, suppressing peaceful political protests, undermining democracy and introducing cholera into Haiti are more than enough grounds to revoke its mandate. Yet for geopolitical and economic reasons, this does not happen.
As people of good conscience and principled internationalists, we collectively have the capacity and the resources to force an end to the military occupation of Haiti. However, we will not be able to fulfill this potential and stand in solidarity with the laboring classes in Haiti, if we dont organize campaigns in Canada and across the world that pressure contributing states to end their provision of military and police personnel to MINUSTAHs occupation force.
Our opposition to the military occupation of Haiti ought to take the form of grassroots-oriented campaigns that educate, mobilize, and organize membership-based organizations to add the end to the occupation to their organizational programme. It is critically necessary to reach out to the people in the spaces in which they are present, and offer specific actions that they may carry out to force the withdrawal of the occupation troops.
We have a moral and political obligation to support the struggle for self-determination by the popular classes in Haiti. The successful Haitian Revolution eliminated the enslavement of Afrikans in Haiti, and lit the fire of freedom in slaveholding states in the Americas.
The people of Haiti demonstrated their solidarity with the colonized peoples in South America by providing a place of refuge, guns, ammunition, personnel, and a printing press to Simon Bolivars campaign to liberate the region from Spanish colonialism. The French Revolution and the American Revolution cannot lay claim to being beacons and agents of emancipation in the Americas.
As we work to rid Haiti of MINUSTAHs occupation forces, we ought to be motivated by the fact that we are continuing a long and proud tradition of people-to-people solidarity in support of emancipation in the Americas. Haiti is the architect and pioneer of this principled political tradition. We should remember this legacy as we call for the Security Council to pull out the occupation troops from Haiti.
Kevin Edmonds is a PhD student and member of the Toronto Haiti Action Committee and the Campaign to End the Occupation of Haiti.
Ajamu Nangwaya, Ph.D., is an educator. He is an organizer with the Campaign to End the Occupation of Haiti, and the Organization of Afrikan Struggles and International Solidarity.
IRRESISTIBLE NEWS FROM BULGARIA (Sofia Morning news)
What about Austria « the only EU country allowing an EU citizen to open a bank account in another EU member state without tax authorities in the person’s country of origin being informed »?
Luxembourg said on Tuesday it will drop its bank secrecy rules from 2017 in a move that marks a breakthrough in global efforts to reduce tax evasion.
At a meeting of EU finance ministers in Luxembourg, the country’s finance minister Pierre Gramegna said it would sign up to an international standard aimed at fighting tax dodging and money laundering.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development last year published a document that foresaw an annual exchange of bank information between governments starting in 2017.
Bulgaria‘s President Rosen Plevneliev is “a scoundrel and a lackey of the CIA”, said the leader of Russia‘s Liberal Democratic Party Vladimir Zhirinovsky for a show on Rossia 1 TV channel.
Zhirinovsky, who is known for his ultra-nationalist stance and rants on various topics, also accused Plevneliev on not knowing Bulgaria‘s history.
- Version How is the gang of Kiev going on today ?
In the meantime, Kiev was the theater of clashes between men in masks and Ukrainian police. And President Poroshenko kept blaming the pro-Russians and lawmakers belonging to Ianoukovitch camp responsible – according to him – for the deep rooted corruption in Ukraine. What about the gang of the coup against former president Ianoukovitch this president represents, being another lackey of the CIA ?
Two Republics in Eastern Ukraine are ready to stage elections on November the 2th to settle their own states, independent of Kiev and to name their sovereign governments : Donetsk and Lugansk Republics are nascent.
When a president can witness a lawmaker thrown in a dustbin by people of Kiev and keeps silent, he betrays the function. This goes beyond the personnality of the lawmaker and applies to every citizen as human being deserving the respect of his body.
- Version four: Oscar Pistorius on the verge to be sentenced to community services
As a disabled man, I will rather agree on that sentence associated to the house arrest decision.The question raises by Pistorius emprisonment is one of adjusting public places to disability : in other words, how to normalize disables in our post-modern times ? Pistorius case will open this door and debate room of whether life in prison can cope with disability ?
Today, the answer to that question is « NO ». Here begins the headache for a proportionate sentence.
Did I hear you saying « scoundrel » ? I like that Russian politician man stance and rant.
As for Haïti, good luck with president Martelli, the former popular musician who became president of a betrayed state, for centuries. Baby Doc, that other « scoundrel » just stirred the country to bankruptcy. His successors were not that better. When the devastating earth quake hit bringing back president Clinton, the inevitable – on top of Haïti’s rebuilding still waiting for that building to occur, the country was emerging from both Duvalier criminal regime and from a deadly episod of cholera. This moment was aired yesterday at Al Jazeera and I caught the reportage haphazardly.
A collectif of international lawmakers in Haïti have filed a lawsuit against the UN for gross failures. No response by the UN so far. Incredible from Secr. Gen. Ban-Ki-Moon.
There also, in Haiti, you encounter problems of land grabs by foreigners through national leaders corruption and slavery mentality, contestable concessions allowed in opacity by the same Haiti’s traitors rulers. Promises of money for rebuilding are not fulfilled. In the end, one can not tell whether it is the Bill Clinton supervision and monitoring response which is defaulting or the promises of the IC failing short.
More, what is that president Martelli good at if, since the earthquake, his people are still living in tents en masses.
I told you yesterday of the cultural sect dansing the danse of death with politicians in such a way that, there is no barriers today : an X-movie prostitute, a reality show starlet, a professionel of porn, a musician, a top model, athlets, footballers, in short, cultural celibrities can capitalize on their artistic or vacuum reputation and transfer or transform it into political capital. It starts with a guitar or a bed and it ends leading a nation. And Obama and other presidents of the World just find this extremely sane. What a scam for those sects.
Ronald Reagan was an exception. He wasn’t propelled from Hollywood to the White House, overnight.
Get more about the legal sects of our times I would not call our new gansters and gangs, because some of them are doing their job consciously. I’m too shy and polite to commit that type of suicide or culpable homicide. I’m not telling you. You know this is the truth, my hand on my heart. I swear. Ah ah ah.
I’m not telling you that one contaminated tooth can infect other teeth and spread the rot in the entire mouth the Ebola rampage way.
Neither will I recall you the Power of a criminal ruling and rulers on the People’s consciousness, perfectly staged by a highly instructive movie : I comme Icare by Henri Verneuil, a French movie, at the times when France was still a nation of Excellency and thinking. Today, France is mired with gangs of all sorts. Fatally, the country is fading away. Desperately. Any new idea is fought aggressively. Segolene Royal, the environment minister has proposed the gratuity of highways in the Week-end. All the gangs are out there to oppose it : leading the cortège, the gang of press qualifying her proposal as an exit way. So in France, this stance expressing the will of sharing democratic dividends with French people is an exit road.
Segolène Royal is right. But a set of predatory and selfishness sects are trying to turn her down. The French PM, as a perfect lackey of the private sectors, has opposed that idea of change. Those highways’ societies, racketing the French people, are making huge profits insanely. Making those highways free – progressively – is a positive economical measure and fits the promise of change by president Hollande. A promise kept unfulfilled so far. The gangs can not understand that.You can’t have your eyes concentrated on your pockets full of stolen money and think collectif at the same time. Impossible.
French Journalists – most of them – exist by settling accounts – the mafia style – with politicians they don’t want to see in command. Mrs Royal and former President Nicolas Sarkozy are their favorite targets. Easy. In the meantime, french press is falling in the dustbin of History. Miserably. They want to chose the Prince and rule the society from behind. They want to wipe off the people and chose for them. Those are perfect exemples of democracy falsifiers, distorters and counterfeiters. I will leave it here for today.
French highways used to be a national property. Because of corruption and greed, they went privatised to benefit some happy few, while taking away money and buying power from French people’s pockets. In Switzerland, Highways are free. Why not apply the rule in France and inside the EU to set the people free to travel by car at guise ?