No Benign Neglect

U.S. pays full attention to Haiti's demise

See Matters to be Investigated and Bush Bloodbath brought to Haiti since Feb. 29, 2004

Call For Stricter Peacekeeping Selection

Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!


No Benign Neglect

U.S. pays full attention to Haiti's demise
HLLN Note: Below is a letter to the Orlando Sentinel in reference to John C. Bersia's article "Time To End Benign Neglect of Haiti (also copied below). According to his bio, Mr. Bersia is also "special assistant to the President for global perspectives." His article advocates the "temporary suspension of Haiti's sovereignty" as if Bush's Feb. 29, 2004 regime change in Haiti and disenfranchisement of almost 9 million
Haitians hasn't already attained that goal.

Mr. Choisil's response outlines for this "special assistant to the president" a Haitian perspective on Western paternalism and constant repugnant interference in Haiti's domestic affairs and why this has kept Haiti's peoples contained-in-poverty, under a repressive U-S backed army and regimes and in constant Coup D'etat, although US/Euro interference is consistently explained and justified as benevolent, selfless and for bringing "democracy," "development" "free market", "law in order" and now "protectorate" to Haiti. In response to J. Bersia's missionary point of view as stated in the Orlando Sentinel's "Time to End Benign Neglect of Haiti," Mr. Paul Choisil emphatically states: "...There is indeed, no (U.S.) benign neglect of Haiti.... some sectors pay full attention to the demise of that country."

Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network
(A network dedicated to institutionalizing the rule of law and protecting the civil, human and cultural rights of Haitians living at home and abroad)
Sept. 1, 2005



No Benign Neglect - Haiti is already under a (de facto)
U.S. protectorate

To: jbersia@orlandosentinel.com, erzilidanto@yahoo.com

Dear Mr. Bersia,

I am an expatriate Haitian who spent forty years in Canada and achieved a successful economic and social life in my adopted country. I, nevertheless, kept in touch with the development of events and the historic background that led and kept my native country in the desperate state in which it is now languishing.

I take exception to your paternalism and your dismissal of the causes
that brought about the situation we are facing.

Historically, the primary causes of the woes and miseries of Haiti lie in the policies of the colonial powers that forced, through blackmail and intimidation, to pay a fictitious debt in an amount that prohibited any development and plans for the future. It took Haiti one hundred years to pay this punitive debt, because the Haitian sense of honor forces its leaders to meet a commitment, however unjust. This policy was pursued by the newly independent but profoundly racist American governments that continued a boycott and refused to recognize and deal with the world's first black nation.

An independent Haiti was a threat to a USA that was prospering because of the free labor provided by slavery.

After that reluctant recognition, the struggling governments of Haiti, at the beginning of the eighteen century were the subjects of harassment by the USA until they finally decided to occupy that country militarily and administratively, for twenty years. This occupation did nothing to develop Haiti. It exploited its resources, established forced labor for American interests and set out to destroy Haitian culture, with the collaboration of the local elite. Monopolies were created for this collaboration which still exists today.

The legacy left by the USA is the creation of an army trained to protect the interests of that elite and to keep the masses in the background.

As a result, we have a society where a very small minority controls all the financial aspects of the country, while keeping the overwhelming majority in a state of destitution. This minority strives and prospers by representing goods and services sold by US multinationals.

In turn, they have only support corrupt governments which support their and US interests while suppressing the claims of the population.

The "dysfunctional past oppressive rule, poverty and environmental devastation" have their causes in the above.

There, clearly, is a large responsibility by the so-called international community.

Under these circumstances, poverty is inevitable considering the wages that are paid to the workers . Inadequate to obtain the basic foodstuff, these wages cannot cover clothing and fuel. Thus the cutting of trees to meet that need is the principal cause of that environmental devastation.

We can also mention the vast expanses of agricultural lands destroyed by US companies for the exploitation of rubber, sisal and export agro-industrial projects, as well as the dumping of Florida rice and cheap foodstuff that drive the Haitian farmers to the slums of the capital.

USAID shortsighted so-called employment producing projects that encourage the peasant to abandon his plantation for short term employment. This destroyed the capacity of the farmers to produce food for local consumption, as was the case in the past.

In the cities, the assembly factories are still paying a daily wage that is less than the hourly wage of a US worker, for luxury items intended for US consumption.

Your recommendations are erroneous because this experiment was already made and it is one of the causes of the present situation.

Who are you to suggest that the sovereignty of a nation, that fought so valiantly with its blood, courage and pride, be suspended? Don't you know that, actually, Haiti is under occupation with the UN acting as proxy for the US?

I would venture to say that if Haitians were left alone to decide what their future would be, we would not be corresponding, now. Since when does the international community concerns itself with the welfare and future of any nation?

How pretentious can you be to think that you can prescribe the tools to fix Haiti and, for that matter, the Dominican republic? If the gap between Port-au-Prince and Santo-Domingo is so great, why are there more Dominicans fleeing by boat than there are Haitians?

It is true that a better and closer relationship between Haiti and the Dominican republic would make for a better Hispaniola and more prosperity and happiness for their two populations. But what is dividing the two countries have their roots in the big multinational interests. E.g. the exploitation of haitian workers by the big agro-industrial and construction companies.

Can those countries not solve their own problems, if not interfered

Please do not blame the victims. As a journalist you could divulge and publicize the horrendous crimes being committed right now by the US-backed interim government of Haiti, with the assistance of the UN and the International community.

There are numerous reports, documented by photographs and video pictures which are not published by the mainstream US media. If you are concerned about Haiti, you might look into them and perhaps, investigate their truthfulness.

There is, indeed, no benign neglect of Haiti.

Indeed, some sectors pay full attention to the demise of that country.

Paul Choisil

Time to end benign neglect of Haiti
The Orlando Sentinel

(KRT) - The size and scope of Haiti's problems demand at least 20 years of hands-on assistance by the global community. When nature raises its voice - as it did with Hurricane Katrina in recent days, the freak monsoon floods that struck India earlier in the summer and a tsunami of epic proportions late last year - one cannot help but listen. Such disasters, which suggest evidence of a planetary protest, typically send people scurrying to the assistance of the afflicted.

In more peaceful times, though, when no compelling threat - natural or human-made - looms, public concern often diminishes or disappears altogether. I am reminded of Haiti, which seems to find itself not only in a perpetual crisis but invariably marginalized. The rest of the world tends to pay attention and react only when Haiti's woes spill into the Caribbean and make their way to other shores, including those of the United States.

I would like to see that benign neglect end and encourage a chance for Haitians to enjoy stable, productive lives. To begin, the international community should take a more aggressive stance in helping Haiti separate itself from a dysfunctional past of oppressive rule, poverty and environmental devastation. In addition, a tighter bond should be established between Haiti and its neighbor on Hispaniola, the Dominican Republic.

The ideal opportunity to resolve the Haitian conundrum came in early 2004, with the departure of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Despite apparently good intentions, Aristide accelerated Haiti's plummet toward failed-state status. The international community dutifully expressed alarm and dispatched troops, but unfortunately its quick-fix technique has not succeeded in creating an environment that will allow free, fair and safe elections later this year.

Even a recent decision to boost the size of the United Nations stabilization force in Haiti falls short of the challenge.

The size and scope of Haiti's problems demand at least 20 years of hands-on assistance by the global community. Now, I suspect that such a proposal will resonate poorly among Americans who already clamor for the United States to withdraw from other nation-building enterprises, notably in Iraq. But if they desire long-term security for nations bordering the Caribbean, they would be unwise to handle Haiti hastily and fade away. That approach merely would guarantee a repeat of past failures.

The most promising solution lies in the temporary suspension of Haiti's sovereignty and in the imposition of a comprehensive plan that would remove the influence of past regimes, bolster the society, revamp education and training, and build a constituency for democracy and free markets.

At the same time, it would help for Haiti and the Dominican Republic to work more assiduously to reduce the historical tensions that plague them. They have a common interest in dealing with just about every issue, from hurricanes to economic development. Expanding critical discussions at the national leadership level would make a difference.

Beyond that, the two countries would stand to gain from establishing a permanent institute devoted to research on Dominican-Haitian affairs. I am not talking about a make-work, one-person office that would generate insipid trivia about the two countries. Rather, I envision a serious, public-private partnership that would produce ongoing, substantive assessments for the use of policy-makers and other interested parties.

In the panorama of worthwhile issues, fixing Haiti and narrowing the gap between Port-au-Prince and Santo Domingo deserve a closer look and a proactive sense of urgency.
John C. Bersia, who won a Pulitzer Prize in editorial writing for the Orlando Sentinel in 2000, is also the special assistant to the president for global perspectives and a professor at the University of Central Florida. Readers may write to him at the Orlando Sentinel, 633 North Orange Ave., Orlando, Fla. 32801, or by e-mail at
© 2005, The Orlando Sentinel (Fla.).Visit the Sentinel on the World Wide Web at
http://www.orlandosentinel.com. On America Online, use keyword: OSO.
Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services.
Forwarded by the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network
"Men anpil chay pa lou" is Kreyol for - "Many hands make light a heavy load."



Call For Stricter UN Peacekeeper Selection

4:47 pm, 29 Jul 2007 . Newswire.co.nz

A United Nations official says the organisation's selection process for peacekeepers is not strict enough.

The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Manfred Nowak, says soldiers from countries whose armies are suspected of torture and abuse should not be considered for peacekeeping operations.

Mr Nowak says the UN urgently needs to impose stricter standards and it should consider forming a professional standing army.

His comments come amid a number of accusations of abuse against UN troops in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti, Cambodia and Ivory Coast.

© NewsRoom 2007


Third World peacekeepers not up to scratch

: UN official
Posted Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:41am AEST | ABC News

A United Nations official has said soldiers from countries whose armies are suspected of engaging in torture and abuse should not be considered for peacekeeping operations.

UN special investigator on torture Manfred Nowak says the organisation's standards for selecting peacekeepers are too low.

His comments come against the background of accusations of abuse against UN peacekeepers in countries including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti and Cambodia.

Mr Nowak said the main problem was that some peacekeepers came from developing countries with questionable human rights records and that while on durty they might commit the same kind of crimes that they would at home.

Mr Nowak said one solution was to finally give the UN its own professional standing army.
lly give the UN its own professional standing army.


UN official: better peacekeepers needed

Staff and agencies | Heraldnewsdaily.com

28 July, 2007By WILLIAM J. KOLE, Associated Press Writer 11 minutes ago
VIENNA, Austria - U.N. standards for selecting peacekeepers are too low, and soldiers from countries whose armies are suspected of abuse should not be considered for peacekeeping duty, the U.N.‘s chief anti-torture investigator said.

Concerns about the quality, training and ethics of peacekeepers are growing as developing nations with questionable human rights records increasingly send troops for international peacekeeping operations, Nowak said.

Nowak did not mention past abuses by soldiers from the U.S., Britain and other Western countries who have formed the bulk of many peacekeeping operations worldwide.

Nowak did single out soldiers from Morocco, who are alleged to have abused minors in Ivory Coast.

Last week, a 730-member battalion of Moroccan troops was confined to its barracks in the northern Ivorian city of Bouake shortly after the U.N. began receiving allegations of the abuse of minors there. U.N. spokeswoman Margherita Amodeo said only one unit of the battalion was allegedly involved.

Moroccan officials were unavailable for comment Saturday, but the French daily Le Monde reported that U.N. and Moroccan authorities would go to Ivory Coast next Tuesday to investigate.

He told Profil he would recommend that "as long as the military in Nepal tortures, no (Nepalese) troops should be consulted for peacekeeping missions."

He said his investigation found that troops beat detainees with bamboo poles or plastic pipes, applied electric shocks to their ears, rolled iron rods over their thighs and tied up some so they were hanging upside down.


Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!





The Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network's Appeal for international support on the People of Haiti's right to
self-respect, self-determination and self-defense

We Haitian democracy activists have taken on ourselves a great task.
The Haitian people have been robbed again, not only of the wealth of our
country, and not only of the lives and livelihoods of our countrymen,
but of our sense of self-determination.

The very essence of being Haitian is the connection to those freedom
fighters of the revolution who would not lie down and obey the men who
claimed to be their masters. Today, Haiti is being ruled by a regime
that was selected by foreign powers. The legitimate officials are in exile,
in hiding, or in captivity.

All around, voices are telling us to suffer this indignity, to give up
on our quest for self-governance, that somehow we are unfit to choose our
own leaders or our own style of governance.

We utterly reject this pattern of thought. It is the mental slavery
from which Bob Marley calls us to emancipate ourselves. For the average
Haitian "This Song of Freedom" is truly all we have ever had. And now they
want to take that too.

It is with this sense of insistence and urgency that we set forth our
grievances and define our terms for reconciliation in the Haitian
Lawyers Leadership Haiti Resolution. We ask that all Haitian democracy
activists circulate this resolution, and address the issues and demands of the resolution to their own governments, and to the United Nations, which
has the responsibility for protecting the right of self-determination.

The Haitian Lawyers Leadership Haiti Resolution:

1. Demand the return of constitutional rule to Haiti by restoring all
elected officials of all parties to their offices throughout the
country until the end of their mandates and another election is held, as
mandated by Haiti's Constitution;

2. Condemn the killings, illegal imprisonment and confiscation of the
property of supporters of Haiti's constitutional government and insist
that Haiti's illegitimate "interim government" immediately cease its
persecution and put a stop to persecution by the thugs and murderers from sectors in their police force, from the paramilitaries, gangs and former soldiers;

3. Insist on the immediate release of all political prisoners in
Haitian jails, including Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, Interior Minister Privert
and other constitutional government officials and folksinger-activist Sò

4. Insist on the disarmament of the thugs, death squad leaders and
convicted human rights violators and their prosecution for all crimes committed during the attack on Haiti's elected government and support the rebuilding of Haiti's police force, ensuring that it excludes anyone who helped to overthrow the democratically elected government or who participated in other human rights violations;

5. Stop the indefinite detention and automatic repatriation of Haitian
refugees and immediately grant Temporary Protected Status to all
Haitian refugees presently in the United States until democracy is restored to Haiti; and

6. Support the calls by the OAS, CARICOM and the African Union for an
investigation into the circumstances of President Aristide's removal.
Support the enactment of Congresswoman Barbara Lee's T.R.U.T.H Act
which calls for U.S. Congressional investigation of the forcible removal of
the democratically elected President and government of Haiti.


Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!




Yvon Neptune's
Letter From Jail
April 20, 2005

(Kreyol & English)
Click photo for larger image
Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme - on "Wanted poster" of suspects wanted by the Haitian police.
Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme speaks:
Radio Lakou New York, April 4, 2005 interview with Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme

Crucifiction of
Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme,
a historical

Urgent Action:
Demand a Stop
to the Killings
in Cite Soleil

Sample letters &
Contact info

Denounce Canada's role in Haiti: Canadian officials Contact Infomation

Urge the Caribbean Community to stand firm in not recognizing the illegal Latortue regime:

Selected CARICOM Contacts
zilibutton Slide Show at the July 27, 2004 Haiti Forum Press Conference during the DNC in Boston honoring those who stand firm for Haiti and democracy; those who tell the truth about Haiti; Presenting the Haiti Resolution, and; remembering Haiti's revolutionary legacy in 2004 and all those who have lost life or liberty fighting against the Feb. 29, 2004 Coup d'etat and its consequences
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