Haiti’s Endless Sorrows
Few people anywhere have suffered as long and egregiously as Haitians.
No strangers to adversity and anguish, for over 500 years, they endured severe oppression, slavery, despotism, colonization, reparations, embargoes, sanctions, deep poverty, starvation, unrepayable debt, and natural calamities.
Except for brief interregnum periods, most recently under priest, educator, man of the people-turned politician Jean-Bertrand Aristide in the 1990s and early new millennium years, Haitian misery continues unabated.
Toppled twice by US regimes — by Bush I in 1991, again in 2004 Bush II/Cheney, Aristide no longer is involved in Haitian politics. Widespread suffering has gone on for time immemorial.
Today Haitians are enduring some of their worst ever oppression, misrule, and deprivation under US puppet Jovenel Moise since installed in February 2017.
Protests for his removal raged almost daily since July 2018. Countless thousands of long-suffering Haitians have demonstrated in the capital Port-au-Prince and other cities nationwide.
They demand Moise’s resignation, installation of a transitional government, repeal of increased gasoline and other punitive taxes, as well as against regime corruption and oppression.
On Monday, Liberation News called Haiti’s landscape “apocalyptic, reflecting the fierce class war that has been waged since (summer 2018), if not for decades,” adding:
“The huge crowds are heroically taking to the streets to defend Haitian sovereignty from the murderous military forces and corrupt, corporate interests that dominate the Haitian government.”
“With each passing day and week, the movement only continues to grow in size and strength” — despite brutal regime violence, other human rights abuses, and indifference to popular needs and rights.
Police consistently attack protesters with tear gas, water cannons, beatings, and live fire, killing around 20 in recent weeks, arresting and injuring countless others.
Brutality failed to deter justifiable public rage over intolerable conditions, including deep poverty, lack of vital public services, unaffordability of food and other essentials to life, along with grand theft by Moise, other regime officials and cronies.
Haiti is indebted to the IMF and World Bank loan sharks of last resort, demanding their pound of flesh, compelling indebted nations to erode social services so they, private bankers and other corporate predators are paid, ordinary people exploited to serve them.
Haitians mostly suffer from longstanding US imperial control, plundering the country and exploiting its people for profit, no matter the human toll.
It’s what Chicago School fundamentalism is all about, featuring free-wheeling capitalism, unrestrained profit-making, public wealth in private hands, minimal (if any) social services, government serving powerful interests exclusively, human rights and needs ignored, along with harsh crackdowns on critics.
Haiti is the region’s poorest country, most of its people struggling on less than $2 a day to survive, enduring hunger, malnutrition, overall deprivation, and repressive rule.
Moise is Washington’s man in Port-au-Prince. Reviled by Haitians, protests continue to replace him.
Opposition elements formed so-called transition commissions, wanting him replaced with provisional rule, possibly a new constitution.
Falsely claiming it would be “irresponsible” for him to resign, his days may be numbered, dark forces in Washington perhaps wanting a clean slate with new puppet rule to try assuaging public rage.
No matter who’s in charge internally, US grip on the country is firm. Earlier in October, Haiti Liberte reported that anti-Moise protests continue with no signs of abating.
They’ve partially or entirely shut down Port-au-Prince, burning barricades, disrupting commerce, and weakening Moise’s hold on power.
Millions of Haitians won’t be deterred until he’s gone — what replaces him likely to be continued dirty business as usual like most always before.
Last week, Haiti Liberte editor Kim Ives reported that UN blue helmet MINUSTAH forces ended 15 years of repressive post-Aristide occupation on October 15.
They’re replaced by the so-called UN Integrated Office in Haiti (UNHIN), headed by Helen La Lime, a career State Department official, serving US imperial interests.
Ives explained that “UNHIN has a one-year mandate to advise the Haitian government on ways to ‘promote and strengthen stability and good governance (and) support the government in the areas of elections, police, human rights, prison administration, and justice system reform.”
Like nearly always before, when things change in Haiti and other US-controlled countries, everything stays the same under new faces, continuing exploitation and repression.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”