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Ezili Danto's note on the two most common neocolonial storylines about Haiti: (D. Allen Kerr & Reuters, Guadian.co.uk),
Haitian Perspectives
, May 11, 2008

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Media manipulations and the Haitian Hills switching the conversation :On distractions - How the social scientists' manipulate information to keep a right wing agenda in Haiti going and to continue imposing starvation on Haiti : The life of those in the Haitian hills are not more sacred than that of the masses

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Ezili Danto's counter-narrative to the Associated Press's current Neocolonial Narrative in "Haiti's tourism dreams deferred by riots"

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Haiti's tourism dreams deferred by riots
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Veil of Blood: Ignorance is No Defense
May 9, 2008

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Bringing the love to Haiti
May 9, 2008

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Comments on Ezili's Danto's response to D. Allan Kerr "Bringing the love to Haiti
May, 2008

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Haiti's violent image is an outdated myth, insist UN peacekeepers

By Reed Lindsay,
Guardian.co.uk, May 11, 2008

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BRIEFING: Haiti's image of fear 'a big myth' to some,
May 4, 2008

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Spanish reporter shot by foreign soldiers in Haiti- family By Teresa Larraz, Reuters, May 9, 2008
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Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progress by Tom Brown, Reuters, May 11, 2008
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Ezili's Response to Lionel's Questions: Creating New Paradigms by Ezili Danto, April 14, 2008
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FOOD CRISIS: 'The greatest demonstration of the
historical failure of the capitalist model'
by Ian Angus, Global Research, April 28, 2008
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Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!


 


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When Haiti Was Free - Video Evidence of Media Lies (A Proposed HLLN Documentary) by Ezili Danto for Haitian Perspectives and the FreeHaitiMovement, May 14, 2008
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Ericq Pierre et le plan néolibéral ! by Haiti Progres, May 7, 2008
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Le Plan Politique Américain pour Haiti by Haiti Progres, May 7, 2008

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Hope in Humiliation: HLLN’s analysis of May 18, 2006 and the Inaugural of President Rene Preval by Marguerite Laurent

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Many Haitians want exiled Aristide back, April 16, 2008

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Comparing crime, poverty and violence in the rest of the Hemisphere to Haiti
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Haiti no longer grows much of its own rice and families now go hungry
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Paradise Lost: the Caribbean's shocking secret, August 3, 2008

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Violence, murder and social breakdown are threatening many small states in the Caribbean

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zilibuttonCarnegie Hall
Video Clip
No other national
group in the world
sends more money
than Haitians living
in the Diaspora
Red Sea- audio

The Red Sea


Ezili Dantò's master Haitian dance class (Video clip)

zilibuttonEzili's Dantò's
Haitian & West African Dance Troop
Clip one - Clip two


So Much Like Here- Jazzoetry CD audio clip

Ezili Danto's

Witnessing
to Self

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Update on
Site Soley

RBM Video Reel

Haitian
immigrants
Angry with
Boat sinking
A group of Haitian migrants arrive in a bus after being repatriated from the nearby Turks and Caicos Islands, in Cap-Haitien, northern Haiti, Thursday, May 10, 2007. They were part of the survivors of a sailing vessel crowded with Haitian migrants that overturned Friday, May 4 in moonlit waters a half-mile from shore in shark-infested waters. Haitian migrants claim a Turks and Caicos naval vessel rammed their crowded sailboat twice before it capsized. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

Dessalines' Law
and Ideals

Breaking Sea Chains


Little Girl
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Sunday Dress

Anba Dlo, Nan Ginen
Ezili Danto's Art-With-The-Ancestors Workshops - See, Red, Black & Moonlight series or Haitian-West African

Clip one -Clip two
ance performance
zilibutton In a series of articles written for the October 17, 2006 bicentennial commemoration of the life and works of Dessalines, I wrote for HLLN that: "Haiti's liberator and founding father, General Jean Jacques Dessalines, said, "I Want the Assets of the Country to be Equitably Divided" and for that he was assassinated by the Mullato sons of France. That was the first coup d'etat, the Haitian holocaust - organized exclusion of the masses, misery, poverty and the impunity of the economic elite - continues (with Feb. 29, 2004 marking the 33rd coup d'etat). Haiti's peoples continue to resist the return of despots, tyrants and enslavers who wage war on the poor majority and Black, contain-them-in poverty through neocolonialism' debts, "free trade" and foreign "investments." These neocolonial tyrants refuse to allow an equitable division of wealth, excluding the majority in Haiti from sharing in the country's wealth and assets." (See also, Kanga Mundele: Our mission to live free or die trying, Another Haitian Independence Day under occupation; The Legacy of Impunity of One Sector-Who killed Dessalines?; The Legacy of Impunity:The Neoconlonialist inciting political instability is the problem. Haiti is underdeveloped in crime, corruption, violence, compared to other nations, all, by Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent
     
No other national group in the world sends more money than Haitians living in the Diaspora
 
 
 
 
 







 


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Ezili Danto's counter-narrative to the Associated Press' current Neocolonial Narrative in "Haiti's tourism dreams deferred by riots."

No. Haiti's dream of democracy, Haitian-owned tourism, and sovereignty - food and security sovereignty - were "deferred," not by food riots but by the Bush dynasty's two regime changes to Haiti's democratic governments, free trade that destroyed Haiti's agriculture and UN slaughtering, raping in order to pacify dissent.


Don't believe the hype. The violence in Haiti is not caused, as this AP report ("Haiti's tourism dreams deferred by riots") tells it by hungry, starving Haitians. But by US dumping subsidized American rice and foods that destroyed Haiti's food sovereignty. Then, after destroying Haitian human rights with two coup d'etats, saddling Haiti with a UN protectorate so that Haiti's natural resources could be fleeced at the point of a UN gun, while humanitarian NGOs, aid workers rush in bandying about their "generosity to Haitians" to raise funds abroad that mostly go, not to help Haitian self-sufficiency but to pay for their own children private education and for their life as mini monarchs in Haiti.

Behind the media's spins and racist reporting of the "recalcitrant, unable-to-rule-self and violent Black Haitians," the Haitian people starve, are contained-in-poverty, stripped of their human rights and democratic leaders and being abused and raped by said same "benevolent humanitarians." The AP and other mainstream press reportings on Haiti are nothing less than another sort of rape and abuse. For evidence of Ezili's counter-narrative to AP's Neocolonial Narrative, go to:
AP's INTERVIEW-Haiti not descending into instability - minister"; Comparing crime, poverty and violence in the rest of the Hemisphere to Haiti; Ezili Danto's Note: Economic proposals that make sense for the reality of Haiti - The Western economic model doesn't fit an independent Black nation;; When Haiti Was Free - Video Evidence of Media Lies;
Media Lies: The two most common neocolonial storylines about Haiti - May 14, 2008 & August 27, 2007 ; Media Lies and the Real Haiti News, August 12, 2007; HLLN Links to US "free trade" fraud promoting famine in Haiti ;and Video - United Nations and Aid workers raping and abusing children).
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Ezili Danto's note on the two most common neocolonial storylines about Haiti:

US Poverty Pimps masturbating on Black pain, the Christian NGO's Veil of Blood and the mainstream media’s role in this ongoing travesty and untold crime against Haiti and humanity:
Ezili Danto responds to the two common neocolonial storylines about Haiti as represented by D. Allen Kerr's "Bringing the Love to Haiti," Reuters' "Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progress and, Reed Lindsay's "Haiti's violent image is an outdated myth, insist UN Peacekeepers"

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In "Veil of blood: Ignorance is No Defense" Ezili Danto responds to one of the two common storylines about Haiti - Kerr's 'Bringing the Love to Haiti.'

And, in this post we bring to the Network's attention Reuters' latest article, which clearly delineates the other most common storyline about Haiti.

Reportings on Haiti, such as Reuters' "Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progress" frame and spin with statements propagating Haiti's historic "failures," "thuggery," and "incompetence." The article plugs into the well-established US/Euro negative images about Haiti and the accepted lie about the unreasonably angry and violence-prone Haitians while simultaneously putting forth the "good intentions" and "benevolence" of the foreigners and Internationals with statements such as: "Ferocious poverty in Haiti means a recent surge in food prices cut deep. The prime minister was forced out of office last month after food riots resulted in six deaths...The only thing preventing (President Preval from easily being toppled by the 'angry Haitian protesters who sought to storm the national palace last month') was the U.N. peacekeeping force". (See - Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progress by Tom Brown, Reuters at
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/veil.html#graveyard

In other words, it is Haiti's failures (Uhmmm...."self-imposed?" poverty) that make the rise in food prices cut so deep. Reuters' ironically titled: "Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progress" frame and spin with statements such as these.

The article seems straightforward, factual and imminently plausible. And, if you knew nothing about Haiti, you'd have no reason to question the assertions made. But, if you've been following closely to the non-mainstream media, this reporting would leave you shaking your head in cynical acceptance of the embedded media's hopelessness, unprofessionalism and biases. For, you'd already know it is not just simply Haiti's FAILURES (poverty) that makes the rise in food prices cut so deep. It is the US's FAILURES - through its historic economic thuggery, greed, imposition of coup d'etats on the populace, incompetent neoliberal death plan, its financial institutions' endless debt, its orchestrated destabilization of "fragile democratic" Haitian governments, rapacious NGOs, discriminatory implementation of US immigration policies towards Haitians and intractable racism - that makes the rise of food prices cut so deep in Haiti.

In these sorts of mainstream articles, as represented here by this Reuters' article, you will find underscored that "so many elected Haitian leaders have been ousted,"; the "...only thing preventing (Uhmm, this present one - President Preval from easily being toppled by the 'angry Haitian protesters who sought to storm the national palace last month') is the U.N. peacekeeping force" and that "change has never come easily amid the deep divides separating Haiti's tiny elite from its impoverished masses..."

The direct implication is that the poor, violent-prone Haitian "hoards" have done the government ousters and coup d'etat's in Haiti. Not the Bush-supported Haitian army in 1991 and, in 2004, the US-Bush State Department and hired Haitian mercenaries, trained in the Dominican Republic. No.

There is no mention of the actual fact that President René Préval of Haiti "appeared to taunt the populace as the chorus of complaints about la vie chère — the expensive life — grew. He said if Haitians could afford cellphones, which many do carry, they should be able to feed their families. “If there is a protest against the rising prices,” he said, “come get me at the palace and I will demonstrate with you.” No. Reuters' Tom Brown article summarily ignores that fact, or that even other articles had already outline this explanation for the Haitian protestors to have gone to the National Palace. (See, New York Times article "Across Globe, Empty Bellies Bring Rising Anger " and a Reuters article by Michael Christie, edited by Tom Brown, entitled "INTERVIEW-Haiti not descending into instability - minister", where when asked if there would be a coup d'etat, or in Reuters' bias words: "...when asked if the angry mobs storming through the capital Port-au-Prince on Tuesday threatened Haiti's stability," the Haitian expert told Reuters, no, "that's not my reading." Effectively telling Reuters' Tom Brown, et al: "no, we are not descending into chaos." )

But who cares about journalistic accuracy vis-a-vis powerless Black and Haitian? Certainly not Tom Brown and his ilk at Reuters who demonstrate herein how Reuters could care less what Haitians officials have to say about the Haitian situation. Unless of course, it fits in with their US assumptions about the innately "violent and unthinking Haitian hoards," who Reuters must lie about, misrepresent and say are the ones conducting coup d'etats, and instability in Haiti when this has NEVER, ever been the truth. Or, unless it helps to keep the UN mandate being continually renewed.

Reuters turns the truth on its head. For, the un-debatable fact of the matter is that these Haitian masses being herein maligned, demonized and vilified are the very ones who peacefully demonstrated, protested and got slaughtered for trying to STOP the last two bloody, unconstitutional Bush-Dynasty coup d'etats that occurred in Haiti.

But never mind all evidence to the contrary, the Reuters spin and frame must arrive at: "... many elected Haitian leaders have been ousted,"; the "...only thing preventing (this present one - President Preval from easily being toppled by the 'angry Haitian protesters who sought to storm the national palace last month') was the U.N. peacekeeping force." End of story. Haitians are not human beings made in the image of God, but subjects to be given emergency hand-outs, made refugees in their own lands, fleeced of their resources, and defined and given their roles and place by the Reuters' and other mainstream corporate Tom Brown "Gods" projecting their deficiencies on others in earth's so-called "New World."

Thus, the face of senseless violence in Haiti, as unhesitatingly promoted by this Reuters article, is "the angry Haitian protesters who sought to storm the national palace last month," the "warlords!" in Site Soley, now "pacified" (code for: summarily executed by the UN, murdered or indefinitely incarcerated) who are to blame for Haiti's violence. Not the US, not the UN and not the US-financed, morally repugnant Haitian economic elite, who were too tiny in numbers to actually deliver the Bush 2004 coup d'etat, so the Bush Administration ended up carrying it out itself - through military rendition - kidnapping Haiti's president out of Haiti. But, the US's hierarchy of subjugation, strumming, for its neocolonial and racist geopolitical purposes, "deep divides" between the impoverished masses and Haiti's tiny elite is deliberately and willfully omitted, goes unstated in these mainstream reportings.

No. There will be no such statements of truths. What you will read in these sorts of mainstream articles is that Haiti and other developing countries are "rattled by violence over rising food prices BLAMED on growing demand in Asia, the use of crops for biofuel, record oil prices and speculation."

You won't find any explanation in such articles about how the US ousted Constitutionally elected Aristide in order to push its failed neoliberal economic policies, massive privatization plans and how, to date, these neoliberal plans have destroyed Haiti's national production, Haiti's self-sufficiency and are the ultimate cause of Haiti's anger and current Clorox hunger and food crisis. Instead, you will be regaled with tales of "Ferocious poverty... food riots, six deaths....the poorest places in the poorest country in the Americas....the notorious armed gangs of Cite Soleil...mostly loyal to ousted former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide... ruled their domains like warlords." In effect, the necessity for US benevolence, domination and control to keep Haitian brutality, barbarity, violence, Black incompetence at a minimum, the choice for Aristide continually demonized, and of course, to ensure President Aristide is kept safely in exile. These messages are repeated ad nausea, practically in every such article, like a desperate mantra.

In these sorts of mainstream articles, there will be no mention of the US hand in the 2004 coup d'etat, its purposeful orchestrating Haiti's instability and anarchy in order to bring UN occupation - the Bush proxy saviors, its hand in creating Site Soley in the first place or, why the people protested the occupation before the election of President Preval in 2006.

This second sort of storyline absolves the US of its historic thuggery and continuing maliciousness in Haiti, while upholding the myth of US, UN and their controlled world financial institutions' good intentions, democratic intentions and benevolences. You'll not find, in such mainstream stories on Haiti, how the US/Euro sponsored two ferocious coup d'etats against the people of Haiti in recent memory or, about the US's neoliberal death plans in Haiti pushing Haitians into fleeing to shark infested waters by unsafe boats. There will be no repetitive accounting about how countless Haitians are continuing the Middle Passage journey of their ancestors before them, finding no asylum, no sanctuary, no justice in the Western Hemisphere - in this American Mediterranean hostile to Haitians.

Though no blame is ever pointed at US' economic thuggery in Haiti, these articles will spin around, frame the appropriate quote to invariably point to the incompetence of Haiti's leaders:’ We’re dying of misery and hunger here,' said Joseph, 44. 'I haven't seen any improvement...(President) Preval's initial reaction to the food riots in early April was: "Poze," meaning "cool down" or "chill" in Creole. His words offered little solace to people..."

No. These stories on Haiti, will not mention any good in Haiti, other than in a patronizing matter, and only when it reinforces what the US State Department sees as its "successes" in Haiti. (For example, Reuters' Tom Brown writes, like a State Department bulletin, that "The pacification of Cite Soleil, a teeming warren of shanties south of Haiti's capital with sufficient size and guns to undermine governments, is one of the few concrete achievements of Preval..." http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSCITESOLEIL). Basically code for announcing that the second Bush regime change in Haiti is successful. That all the Aristide protestors in Site Soley - who the article blanketly refers to as "notorious armed gangs," never deigning to see the thousand upon thousands of innocent demonstrators who took to the streets after the awe and shock the Bush 2004 regime change as exercising civil disobedience against US-occupation, sponsored anarchy and coup d'etat. No. We are left with the impression all of Haiti's poor in Site Soley, who protested the coup d'etat and US-intervention were only opportunistic"warlords" or following these Haitian warlords!!!, and now thanks to the Westerners' intervention, these folks are now "pacified." This being one of the few "concrete achievements" of the Preval (puppet) government, whose role it seems to most Haitians, is to legitimized the Bush Coup d'etat/rendition and authorize, with seemingly Constitutional and electoral mandate for Bush's proxy UN guns, sent to Haiti after the US ousted Aristide, to keep the populace disenfranchised, "pacified".

The article states "..Preval authorized the U.N. peacekeeping force in Haiti to launch a crackdown on the notorious armed gangs of Cite Soleil, whose leaders were mostly loyal to ousted former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and who ruled their domains like warlords." No mention is made of where the "arms" and "guns" in Site Soley came from, or that most of the guns in Haiti are in the hands of the Haitian elites, their foreign sycophants and private securities, and not in the hands of the Site Soley young and poor.

These racist articles put the blame for violence and all instability in Haiti squarely on the shoulders of the outnumbered and outgunned, emaciated Black ghetto street youths ("notorious armed gangs" or now even uhmm, "warlords!!!") in Site Soley. Period. The powerful US, Canada, France, USAID, IDB, World Bank, IMF, their IFI's economic hit men, their hired Haitian death squads/known human rights abusers, roaming free in UN/US occupied Haiti to intimidate dissent, resistance, or otherwise integrated into the newly formed, post-coup d'etat Haitian police and unleashed on the people of Site Soley and the populous neighborhoods in Haiti to make successfully the "pacification" of Haiti, are all "peacemakers" and get no blame, no negative mention for Haiti's instability.

To sell this storyline, there will also be absolutely no mention of Haiti's Riches, and how Haiti's resources are feeding foreign pockets, or that the foreign NGO's spend most of the billions in foreign "aid" monies outside of Haiti and on their own salaries and living expenses, making no sustainable difference to the structural poverty and plight of the masses. But, Haiti's poverty is forever, (the people make less than $2 a day and Haiti is the poorest in the Western Hemisphere) and continually highlighted, no matter what the article is about.

Because of the constant and willful lies, half truths, disinformation, fabrications, spins and the context-free "professional" reporting of such mainstream media reporters, comparatively innocent pedestrians, like D. Allan Kerr, will regurgitate the storylines of these mainstream presses (i.e. "Haiti's thuggery and incompetence") as they join in and also "Bring the Love to Haiti!"

And the beat goes on and on and on: "..recent flights from Miami to the capital have been packed with Christian missionaries."
(http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/veil.html#myth).

Now that Haiti is occupied by these internationals and they want to show their "successes," in order to justify getting their mandates renewed and continue getting paid the over $500 million the UN soldiers are making off the backs of innocent Haitians, stories will crop up about how "Haiti's violent image is an outdated myth, insist UN peacekeepers." (See "Haiti's violent image is an outdated myth, insist UN peacekeepers" By Reed Lindsay in Port-au-Prince Guardian.co.uk | The Observer, Sunday May 11 2008).

Of course Haiti's violent images has historically been a myth, especially under the two oustered democratically elected Haitian governments. But no matter. It justifies the constant US travel warning advisory to keep tourists away, the negative image intact, Haiti underdeveloped, Christian missionaries in, all exulted by the Haitian pandering and bowing and scraping for their "emergency aids." All hankering for old Dixie and many, for lots of cheap Haitian maids, garden boys, chauffeurs and Black bodies to rape and abuse with impunity like in the days of slavery.

Only when the UN or US says something positive about Haiti, does it matter. This Lindsay Reed - Guardian.co.uk - article doesn't even mention that President Preval also told the world, just a few years ago, even before he so-called "authorized the U.N." to "pacify" the "gangs of Cite Soleil," that Haiti was not one of the most violent and corrupt places in the world. That Haiti is "underdeveloped in crime, corruption and violence, compared to other nations."
(See, Q & A with Haitian President Preval Miami Herald, Oct 26, 2006)

These sorts of articles murder the truth. Omit critical information, are unfair to Haitians. Continue the corporate media's complicity in the ongoing and historical travesty and crimes against Haiti and humanity in process against Haitians. For, you won't learn from them that historically US policy amounts to nothing more than bullying Haiti into lowering its tariffs on subsidized US products, destroying Haiti's domestic economy, flying all capital out of Haiti with no restrictions, tying Haiti to endless and fruitless IMF/IDB/WB loans while the world's NGO's take up the slack with emergency handouts that perpetuate all these poverty pimps keeping a job in Haiti and masturbating on the resulting Black pain. This circular and self-sustaining, oppressive hierarchical necolonail system is ferocious, unrelenting and intractable. To compound matters, racism and school-bought brainwashing about US/Euro white folks' innate “benevolence” doesn't allow for the voice of Haitians and Black leaders, who point these truths out, to be heard whatsoever.

The Neocolonialists isolating and then inciting political instability in order to exploit and fleece Haiti of its resources and dignity is Haiti's main problem. It is US orchestrated political instability, economic greed and psychotic obsession to "pacify" and dominate the Haitian masses that is responsible for the legacy of impunity, endemic poverty and violence in Haiti. (http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/impunity.html )
No mainstream reporter will underscore or tell this to the world ad nausea and still keep their mainstream jobs and access for long.


(See: Two Most Common Neocolonial Storylines About Haiti, August 27, 2007
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/campaigns/campaignone
/presswork/lovinsky2.html#kym07
; Veil of Blood: Ezili Danto Responds to Kerr's "Bringing the Love to Haiti"; and Haitian Riches
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/sfbayview.html#riches.)


Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent, Esq.
Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network ("HLLN")
May 11, 2008

See also "Continuing the discussion of Media Lies:When Haiti Was Free - Video evidence of media lies"
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/sanba_zakafest.html#4dred

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Graveyard quiet of huge Haiti slum signals progres By Tom Brown, Reuters, May 11, 2008

CITE SOLEIL, Haiti (Reuters) - It is a measure of success for President Rene Preval that calm prevailed in Haiti's largest and most violent slum during recent food riots in the Caribbean nation.

The pacification of Cite Soleil, a teeming warren of shanties south of Haiti's capital with sufficient size and guns to undermine governments, is one of the few concrete achievements of Preval, who starts his third year in office this week.

Residents offer scant praise for the 65-year-old president. Some suggest that peace in a place so crowded that some families sleep in shifts is more like the quiet of a graveyard than a sign of hope in one of the poorest places in the poorest country in the Americas.

"Many people just don't have the energy to take to the streets and demonstrate here the way they used to," said Sergo Pierre, a Cite Soleil shop owner.

"Nobody's really helping the people of Cite Soleil," he said. "The people in Cite Soleil are doomed."

Soon after taking office in May 2006, Preval authorized the U.N. peacekeeping force in Haiti to launch a crackdown on the notorious armed gangs of Cite Soleil, whose leaders were mostly loyal to ousted former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and who ruled their domains like warlords.

The gang leaders have since been arrested or fled but community activists say the government has failed to fill the power vacuum left behind.

And unlike Aristide, who remains immensely popular in Cite Soleil, Preval is no longer seen as a champion of the poor who swept him to office. His government has been buoyed by international aid but is widely seen as slow to address the needs of people like those in Cite Soleil who scrape by on less than $2 a day.

Ferocious poverty in Haiti means a recent surge in food prices cut deep. The prime minister was forced out of office last month after food riots resulted in six deaths.

A number of poor countries have been rattled by violence over rising food prices blamed on growing demand in Asia, the use of crops for biofuel, record oil prices and speculation.

Unrest in Haiti could erupt again at any moment, posing new challenges to Preval's efforts to establish a stable democracy in a country that has suffered upheaval and dictatorship since it threw off French rule more than 200 years ago.

There is some hope for change under Ericq Pierre, the former Inter-American Development adviser expected to be sworn in as prime minister this week. But change has never come easily amid the deep divides separating Haiti's tiny elite from its impoverished masses.

"COOL IT"

"This is not a hands-on, hard-charging manager," Dan Erikson, a Caribbean expert at Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, said of Preval. "He does have leadership capabilities but in a country like Haiti where you really need to knock heads together to get anything done it's a big question whether Preval is up to the task."

Preval's initial reaction to the food riots in early April was: "Poze," meaning "cool down" or "chill" in Creole.

His words offered little solace to people like Marie Joseph, an emaciated mother of six who lay resting in an abandoned storefront in Cite Soleil at midday on Friday.

"We're dying of misery and hunger here," said Joseph, 44. "I haven't seen any improvement."

"Things got better without the gangs," said Magalie Jean-Noel, a former school nurse unemployed since she was crippled in a skirmish between gangs and U.N. troops in September 2005.

"People are no longer running for their lives all the time, but the situation of misery and hunger is still here."

Few seem to think Preval will be ousted, like so many other elected Haitian leaders have been, before his term ends in 2011. He became the only leader to win a democratic election, serve a full term and peacefully hand over power when he first served as president from 1996 through 2001.

But underscoring the fragility of his government, national security commission head Patrick Elie said Preval could easily have been toppled by protesters who sought to storm the national palace last month.

The only thing preventing that was the U.N. peacekeeping force, said Elie.
(Additional reporting by Joseph Guyler Delva; Editing by Michael Christie and Alan Elsner)

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The Veil of Blood - Ignorance is no Defense : Ezili Danto responds to the article entitled "Bringing the love to Haiti"

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The Veil of Blood - Ignorance is no Defense :
Ezili Danto responds to the article entitled "
Bringing the love to Haiti"
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Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent, Lawyer, Performance Poet, Founder and Chair of the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (Carnegie Hall/ Breaking Sea Chains, Red Sea, Capsized)




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US Poverty Pimps masturbating on Black pain,
the Christian NGO's Veil of Blood and the mainstream media’s role in this ongoing travesty and untold crime against Haiti and humanity:
Ezili Danto responds to one of the two common
storylines about Haiti
- Kerr's "
Bringing the love to Haiti"
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D. Allan Kerr

In an article, dated May 9, 2008 entitled
"Bringing the love to Haiti" you extol the virtues of those, who, like your Mom, Dad and others from the PID Christian organization, go overseas to help others in Haiti. 'Bringing the love to Haiti" is your title.

Stereotypically, your article indicates how beautiful the Haitian people are.
Why not? For, of course, they provide you, Mom and Dad with the
opportunity for benevolence. But also typically the article promotes the
facile notion that the root cause of Haitian poverty, is, as you identify:
"The country has been ruled by thuggery and incompetence throughout
its history, and as usual the populace pays the price."


Allen Kerr that's not "Bringing the love to Haiti." But perpetuating a racist assertion and palpable lie which denies the Haitian people their very humanity while absolving the US of its historic thuggery and incompetence for deliberately stripping Haiti of its resources, gold reserves, destroying its national production, continuing the deforestation that started with European enslavement, bringing occupation and 33 coup d'etats to Haiti and otherwise, in every way and by every US military, diplomatic, and economic means keeping Haiti and Haitians in poverty, agony and painful misery to feed the notion of white privilege, domination and supremacy.

Allen Kerr, before you blithely start writing about the cause of the food riots in Haiti and singing the song of US benevolence as represented by your parents and Christian friends and NGOs in Haiti, and explaining the reason why Jesse Jackson ask for cancellation of Haiti's debt, perhaps you should learn more about whose "thuggery" destroyed Haiti's self-sufficiency and ability to feed its own people.

Any US citizen who truly wants to help Haiti, should not go to Haiti with handouts, but go to Washington with questions and demands for better, more humane representation of the US citizenry abroad. Ask Washington to stop its thuggery in Haiti, its bullying, its endless IMF/World Bank debts, financial colonialism and neoliberal, privatization programs that maintain and sustains Haiti's containment in poverty. That, Allen Kerr, would be more productive than the short term charity give-aways which seems to provide you occasion to write in your local paper, with such exultant emotional relief, about the goodness of you and yours, while perennially reinforcing the big lie about Blacks being unable to rule themselves because of their innate "thuggery and incompetence. "

Sad to say, but yes, this Haitian savage cannot let such a lie stand and be always grateful for emergency handouts, when Haiti is perfectly capable of self-sufficiency and Black self-rule were it not for the false benevolence and financial colonialism of the Euro/US governments, their transnational corporations, subcontracted Haitians, their globalization and NGO charities, gleefully masturbating on Black pain in the name of "bringing love," "security," "development" and "democracy" to Haiti and Haitians.

The time has arrived, with all the information out here on the worldwide web, Allen Kerr, when your ignorance, when your lack of knowledge of the truth behind the headlines, and your plugging in to the half-truths and outright lies being perpetrated by the simplistic mainstream media about Haiti, is no defense for your insulting Haiti, Haitians, our competence, love for ourselves and ignoring the authentic plight of all those valiant Haitians, down the annals of time, who've fought against dependency, re-enslavement and US containment in poverty; all those Haitians who die, everyday, in shark infested waters since the Middle Passage, fleeing the hell made of Haiti by Washington and its multi-national subcontracted Haitians.

Ezili Danto
Li led li la
April 9, 2008
www.ezilidanto.com
****
See also "Continuing the discussion of Media Lies:When Haiti Was Free - Video evidence of media lies"
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/sanba_zakafest.html#4dred
*********************

Comments on Ezili's Danto's response to D. Allan Kerr (Source: email)

*
From: "P.....<p...@hotmail.com>
To: erzilidanto@yahoo.com
Subject: [ezilidanto] Veil of Blood: Ezili Danto responds to one of the two most commonstorylines about Haiti
Date: Mon, 12 May 2008 17:39:35 -0400

My name is M...P. I've been going through your E-mails for quiet some time now. And let me tell you, I'm so glad to know someone like you can explain to them so nicely. These Americans leaving the U.S to go to Haiti should be forced to take a 2 history courses from someone like you, who don't see them as Haiti's saviors. But as perpetrators, who just want to finish what they ancestors didn't do, but this time they go with some handouts to throw in front of us, and try to be a super star at our expanse. They are more dangerous than their forefathers, at least we knew what they were up to.

Pale pou tout sa yo ki pa kapab pale sister. Ayibobo pou Fanm vanyan tankou w.

MP
*****************************

Date: Mon, 12 May 2008 21:25:45 -0400
From: M<...@gmail.com>
To: erzilidanto@yahoo.com
Subject: Your response to Kerr 's article

Dear Marguerite,

You did the right thing by replying to Kerr 's article because it was an educated and pro-active response. Usually I do not encourage the reply of most of the stupidity on the net. But that one deserved a response and you did it the right way.

They need to know that many of us are watching and not remaining silenced. You not only are bringing forth the truth but possibly enlightening those that are too blind to see the real reason those "so-called foreigners love Haiti" . You said it like it is.

M

*************

From: S
Date: Mon, 12 May 2008 13:30:53 EDT
Subject: Re: [ezilidanto] Veil of Blood: Ezili Danto responds to one of the two most c...
To: erzilidanto@yahoo.com

Dear Ms Laurent,

I don't see why you even bother to correct this absurd, publicity-seeking, misguided at best, deceitful at worse, Mr. Kerr. But there is another angle with these "charities" that is often ignored. They use photos of their mission, no matter how meager, to try and raise big money at various congregations in the States, where some people try to assuage their conscience by donating to what they are made to believe is a grandiose cause. It is worthy to note that in the forties and fifties, such "missionaries" were purposefully sent as a vanguard into the jungles of Bolivia and Equator to pave the way for Standard Oil. They helped in the social and physical dislocation of the indigenous inhabitants to clear the land for oil exploration.

Now, I know nothing of Mr. Kerr's organization and therefore making no comparisons. But history has thought us to be weary.

S
*********************************

Mon, 12 May 2008 21:12:47 -0400
From: "Margaret Mitchell Armand"
To: erzilidanto@yahoo.com
Subject: Poem " Lets our conscience speak"

Hi Marguerite,

Your e-mail made me go through one of my poem published a few years ago. If you want to post it, It is fine with me. You may add that it was previously published at:

A publication of the MCC U.S.
Conciliation Quarterly. A journal of Conflict Resolution. Mennonite Conciliation Service. Winter 2004, Vol. 23, No. 1

Let our Conscience Speak

For the trees that are cut to make
The charcoal we are buying
using it for our cooking
and building benches for their churches

For the vote we are not casting
helping the politicians that are lying
For the taxes we are not paying
pretending that the poor are the culprit
For watching the thieves take over
Haiti and selling
It piece by piece
While our friends are helping in the doing
We are saying nothing
For letting the sick in this filth
For the schools not built and Haitian children
not knowing
The values of their ancestry
For letting the foreign not for profit organization
coming in our homeland and living
lifestyle of colonizer
while their churches buy souls

With second hand clothes and a few cans of goods
Getting the tax rebate in their own country
While Vodou is persecuted
Our tradition is not respected
We are selling the future of our children
Day by Day
Lets our conscience speak
Let it scream
Enough is enough!!!

Margaret Mitchell Armand, Author

(Previously published: A publication of the MCC U.S.
Conciliation Quarterly. A journal of Conflict Resolution. Mennonite Conciliation Service. Winter 2004, Vol. 23, No. 1)


*********************************
Date: Fri, 9 May 2008 15:48:09 -0400
From: "AAA"
To: "zili danto" <erzilidanto@yahoo.com>
Subject: your article Kerr

Well said woman.
His lack of honesty, hiding behind the veil of Chistian NGO. He has not notice
this veil is clotted with the blood of Haitian people.
--
AAA
Conflict Resolution Consultant
"Tell me how you behave in conflict. I will tell you how much peace culture you
have." - Johan Galtung TRANSCEND
*******************************

Date: Fri, 9 May 2008 15:52:44 -0700 (PDT)
From: BBB...@aol.com
Subject: "Bringing the Love to Haiti" \ Poverty Pimps masturbating on Black
pain and the Christian NGO's
To: "zili danto" <erzilidanto@yahoo.com>

Greetings Marguerite:

I read this article - AS IF...... that (**) starts out with the assumption
that there is no love in Haiti or Haitians are unlovable....what has a white
missionary ever brought anywhere in the world except disease, pedophilia,
disenfranchisement, underdevelopment and oh yes their specialty devil
worshipping.!!

BBB
**********************************
*********************
Bringing the love to Haiti
By D. Allan Kerr | the_culling@hotmail.com | May 09, 2008 12:08 PM
http://www.seacoastonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article? AID=
/20080509/OPINION0502/80509023/-1/ OPINION


The Rev. Jesse Jackson spent three days visiting Haiti last week after the island nation was rocked by food riots. When he returned to the United States, Jackson brought further attention to the crisis and called for Haiti’s international debt to be canceled. He saw a problem and did something about it.

In the meantime, my folks were doing the same thing — not under the glow of the global spotlight, but on a more intimate, local scale. They spent the week on the front lines of Haiti’s war on poverty, and in the process helped resurrect a suspended campaign.

My dad is a retired minister, with four decades behind the pulpit including 10 years at First United Methodist Church on Miller Avenue. My mom is retired from Piscataqua Savings Bank. Their visit was part of a church mission organized through Partners in Development Inc., out of Massachusetts.

This was my old man’s fourth trip to Haiti, dating back to April 2001; it was my mother’s first. Some of their fellow team members have been over many more times. But PID has had to suspend its missions there for nearly three years, after a governmental coup threatened the country’s fragile stability. Last week marked the organization’s initial return to Blanchard, a struggling suburb of Port-au-Prince.

Those fortunate enough to find employment earn an average of about $2 a day, and it takes about 38 Haitian dollars to equal one American dollar. In other words, even those with actual jobs will only earn the equivalent of several cents a day, according to my old man. Many residents have to make food or crafts — like trinkets or carvings — at home and then bring their goods to the city to try to peddle them in the street. Some will take old rice sacks and re-stitch them into carrying bags to sell at the airport.

“They’re making it any way they can,” he says.

My dad has been there enough times that residents refer to him as “Pastor Dave,” and last week they called my mom — who usually goes by Faye — “Madame Pastor.” During this most recent trip, their team distributed rice, beans, corn, cooking oil, children’s clothes, shoes and medicine. They made sure residents were getting their medical checkups and youngsters sponsored by Americans through PID were receiving their donations.

Through PID, volunteers like my folks have helped to build 40 new homes in Blanchard, as well as a medical clinic. My old man has baptized babies there in the past as well, including one who was left abandoned at the clinic doorstep. About five years ago, he helped install Blanchard’s first well; now there are two more. The neighborhood also, finally, has a transformer to provide electricity.

“It only works a couple of hours a day, but at least it’s something,” he says.

But sometimes it seems the fates have a perversely Cowellian sense of humor. Extreme poverty, unpredictable violence and constant hunger are formidable hurdles as it is, but a flood last November brought six feet of water into some of the homes built by the PID volunteers.

Rescuers had to remove the roofs of homes to evacuate the occupants. A woman my father had befriended in years past, now bedridden from a stroke, almost floated right out her front door when the rising water lifted her bed. Family members had to carry her to the upper floor to save her. I mean, these people just can’t seem to catch a break.

My folks came back with photos showing huge mounds of garbage along the downtown streets. A shortage of food sparked violent riots in the weeks preceding PID’s return visit, which of course was not reassuring news to those family members left behind. The country has been ruled by thuggery and incompetence throughout its history, and as usual the populace pays the price. But the Haitian people are beautiful, my folks say, and while they may be poor and hungry and at times afraid, their spirit remains buoyant.

Now, friends in the medical profession say they want to make the trip to offer their services as well.

Jackson, upon his return home, swore to help provide food supplies to the tiny nation. He called for Haiti’s $1.5 billion debt to world banks to be canceled so its people can claw their way back to self-sustenance, arguing the money could be used for education, health and rebuilding efforts.

I give Jackson his due for helping to bring attention to the crisis in Haiti, but the reverend is a busy guy. He was in Houston this week to host an energy symposium, and he also managed to weigh in on the Barack Obama-Jeremiah Wright controversy.

But while Jackson was running his media tour, my parents were there in Haiti on the front lines. And while they deserve to be saluted for their efforts to help improve the lot of those less fortunate, they also were able to return home at the end of the week.

Meanwhile, Gale Hull, PID’s president and chief executive officer, has devoted her life to helping the desperate poor of Haiti and Guatemala. In addition to helping people build new homes, her Christian organization also provides small business loans and sends children to school. She sounds like a remarkable woman.

But ultimately she, too, gets to return home to the United States.

We can, and probably should, provide the opportunities and the means that will allow these people to dig themselves out from the hell most of them have always known. It’s only by random chance we’re all lucky enough to live in this country as they struggle to survive in theirs, but still, at the end of the day, all we can do is provide them with the shovel.

D. Allan Kerr isn’t the type to go overseas to help others, but he has the utmost admiration for those who do. He may be reached at the_culling@hotmail.com.

http://www.seacoastonline.com/the_culling
*************
Haitian Riches
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/sfbayview.html#riches

Continuing the discussion of Media Lies:When Haiti Was Free - Video evidence of media lies
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Spanish reporter shot by foreign soldiers in Haiti- family By Teresa Larraz, Reuters, May 9, 2008

MADRID, May 9 (Reuters) - Spanish journalist Ricardo Ortega was shot dead by foreign soldiers in Haiti in 2004, according to a court order from the Caribbean country, the contents of which were made public by Ortega's family on Friday.

Ortega died while covering a demonstration pitting supporters and detractors of ousted president Jean-Bertrand Aristide in March.

Originally Spanish media reported that Ortega was killed by gunfire from Aristide's supporters during the protest in the capital, Port-au-Prince.

But Ortega's mother, Charo Fernandez, told Reuters her son and his translator died more than 90 minutes later, hit by fire after coming out from a patio where they had been sheltering.

"I want this to be brought into the open, that's all. We don't intend to take anyone to court, we're tired of it," Fernandez said.

Foreign forces and U.S. marines had been sent to the poorest country in the Americas to try to keep the peace after the bloody rebellion by gangs and former soldiers against Aristide.

The court order said there was no evidence to try the nine Haitians accused of Ortega's murder, and asks that they be freed, Fernandez said, although she was not immediately able to provide a copy of the court order.

"On the basis of (...) eyewitness accounts, foreign soldiers shot the Spanish reporter in the chest, causing his death," the web site of newspaper El Mundo cited the court order as saying, adding that it had not been possible to identify the soldiers concerned.

(Translating by Elisabeth O'Leary)


***********************

Haiti's violent image is an outdated myth, insist UN peacekeepers

By Reed Lindsay in Port-au-Prince
Guardian.co.uk | The Observer, Sunday May 11 2008

This article appeared in the Observer on Sunday May 11, 2008 on p44 of the World news section. It was last updated at 00:03 on May 11 2008.
Port-au-Prince, Haiti

A food market in Port-au-Prince, which is 'no more dangerous than any big city'. Photograph: Eric Thayer/Getty images

It was recently named among the world's 10 most dangerous destinations, alongside Iraq and Somalia, by Forbes magazine, and the US government keeps a permanent warning against travelling there. Diplomats, journalists and aid workers who do land on Haitian soil spend much of their time holed up in fortified hotels.

But now, according to new statistics from security experts and United Nations officials, Haiti is far less violent than many other Latin American countries. 'It's a big myth,' said Fred Blaise, of Haiti's UN peacekeeping force. 'Port-au-Prince is no more dangerous than any big city. You can go to New York and get pickpocketed or held at gunpoint.'

The UN says there were 487 homicides in Haiti last year, or about 5.6 per 100,000 people. A joint UN-World Bank study put the Caribbean average at 30 per 100,000 in 2007, with Jamaica registering nearly nine times as many murders - 49 homicides per 100,000 people - as those recorded by the UN in Haiti.

In 2006 the neighbouring Dominican Republic had 23.6 homicides per 100,000, according to the Central American Observatory on Violence. The United States had a murder rate of 5.7 per 100,000 in 2006, according to the US Department of Justice.

'There is not a large amount of violence [in Haiti],' said General José Elito Carvalho Siqueira, the former commander of the UN military force. 'If you compare the levels of poverty with those of São Paulo or other cities, there is more violence there than here.'

Security improved markedly last year and kidnappings fell by nearly 70 per cent, as the UN wrested control of Port-au-Prince's battle-torn slums from armed groups. President René Préval, elected in February 2006 with strong support from the poor, managed to mollify Haiti's political opposition and tiny elite.

Gunshots are now seldom heard in the city, and in the countryside violent crime has always been rare. Attacks on foreigners are rare and recent flights from Miami to the capital have been packed with Christian missionaries.

'If you compare Haiti to Iraq, to Afghanistan, to Rwanda, we don't even appear on the same scale,' said Patrick Elie, who heads a government commission studying the creation of a new security force. 'We've had a tumultuous history, that is true, one characterised by political instability,' he said. 'But except for the war to obtain our freedom from the French, Haiti has never known a level of violence comparable to that waged in Europe, in America and countries in Africa and Asia. Our country has been one of the least violent.'

Viva Rio, a violence reduction group from Brazil, found Haiti's armed groups more receptive than those in Rio de Janeiro's favelas. For most Haitians, the pressing issue is rising food costs. Rice prices have nearly doubled since September and tens of thousands took to the streets last month. But after the President gave a televised address, the protests ended as quickly as they began.

'Our problem isn't violence,' said Yvner Meneide, a Port-au-Prince artisan. 'If we were violent, we would organise demonstrations every day, we would be destroying things. But Haitian people are very moderate. We might be hungry, but we are calm.'

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2008

*
See also:
Paradise Lost: the Caribbean's shocking secret, August 3, 2008
**************
Violence, murder and social breakdown are threatening many small states in the Caribbean


*********************
BRIEFING: Haiti's image of fear 'a big myth' to some, The Washington Times, March 4, 2008 By Reed Lindsay - PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti —

U.N. peacekeepers in Haiti say they are battling an image of fear that is keeping the Caribbean nation mired in hunger and disease, with little hope of attracting foreign visitors and investment.

Forbes magazine has named Haiti one of the world's 10 most dangerous destinations, along with Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.

The Associated Press has called Port-au-Prince the kidnapping capital of the Americas.

The U.S. government maintains a perpetual travel warning on Haiti, while diplomats, journalists and aid workers spend much of their time holed up in fortified hotels.

The image stems largely from two violent years after the 2004 U.S. ouster of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide when the slums of Port-au-Prince erupted in gunbattles between gangs, Haitian police and U.N. peacekeepers, plus a wave of kidnappings.

Today, Haiti's reputation is undeserved, say security analysts and officials from the U.N. peacekeeping mission. They argue that Haiti is no more violent than any other Latin American country.

"It's a big myth," said Fred Blaise, spokesman for the U.N. police force in Haiti. "Port-au-Prince is no more dangerous than any big city. You can go to New York and get pickpocketed and held at gunpoint."

Reliable statistics are scarce in Haiti, but U.N. data indicate that the country could be among the safest in the region.

The U.N. peacekeeping mission recorded 487 homicides in Haiti last year, or about 5.6 per 100,000 people.

A U.N.-World Bank study last year estimated the Caribbean's average homicide rate at 30 per 100,000, with Jamaica registering nearly nine times as many — 49 homicides per 100,000 people — as those recorded by the United Nations in Haiti.

In 2006, the neighboring Dominican Republic notched more than four times more homicides per capita than those registered in Haiti: 23.6 per 100,000, according to the Central American Observatory on Violence.

Even the United States would appear to have a higher homicide rate: 5.7 per 100,000 in 2006, according to the U.S. Justice Department.

"There is not a large amount of violence [in Haiti]," said Gen. Jose Elito Carvalho Siquiera, the former Brazilian commander of the U.N. military force in Haiti. "If you compare the levels of poverty here with those of Sao Paolo [Brazil] or other cities, there is more violence there than here."

The U.N. peacekeeping mission, known as Minustah, arrived in Haiti in June 2004, three months after U.S. troops whisked Mr. Aristide into exile amid an armed rebellion.

The U.S.-backed interim government then waged a campaign against Mr. Aristide's supporters, igniting two years of gunfights in Port-au-Prince's slums.
A wave of kidnappings also swept panic through the capital. From 2005 until 2006, Minustah registered 1,356 kidnappings.

Kidnappings have become common in many Latin American countries, but were rare in Haiti before Mr. Aristide's ouster.

"The kidnappings shocked everyone because they hadn't happened in the past," said Mr. Blaise, the U.N. police spokesman. "Still, when you compare the number of kidnappings here, I don't think it's more than anywhere else."

Security improved markedly last year. The number of kidnappings dropped by nearly 70 percent, and the U.N. peacekeeping mission wrested control of Port-au-Prince's battle-torn slums from armed groups.

President Rene Preval, elected in a landslide in February 2006, has mollified Haiti's political opposition.

Gunshots are now seldom heard in Port-au-Prince. Violent crime in the countryside has always been rare. Attacks on foreigners are few and far between, and in recent months American Airlines flights from Miami to the capital have been packed with Christian missionaries and aid workers.

Even when the instability was at its peak, observers say, violence usually was limited to a few Port-au-Prince slums.

"If you compare Haiti to Iraq, to Afghanistan, to Rwanda, we don't even appear on the same scale," said Patrick Elie, who heads a government commission studying the creation of a new security force.

"We've had a tumultuous history, that is true, one characterized by political instability," said Mr. Elie. "But except for the war that we had to wage to obtain our freedom and independence from the French, Haiti has never known a level of violence comparable to that which has been waged in Europe, in America and the European countries in Africa and Asia. Our country has been one of the least violent."

Viva Rio, a Brazilian-based violence reduction group that came to Haiti at the request of the U.N. mission's disarmament program, has found Port-au-Prince's armed groups more receptive than those in Rio de Janeiro's slums.

Last March, the organization persuaded warring gangs in Bel Air and neighboring downtown slums to sign a peace treaty, in which they swore to abstain from violence in exchange for youth scholarships. Since then, the area has been peaceful.

"This would be unthinkable in Rio," said Rubem Cesar Fernandes, Viva Rio's director.

The humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders classified the "raging violence" in Port-au-Prince as one of the world's 10 most underreported stories in 2006. Even then, only one of every 10 patients at its trauma hospital was the victim of a bullet wound. Most had been injured in car crashes and domestic accidents.

"It's not the insecurity, not the bullets, not the conflict between gangs and police," said Yann Libessart, the former head of the Doctors Without Borders mission. "What's killing people in Haiti is not being able to give birth to a baby in a hospital or not having access to medical care because they don't have enough money to pay."

While the international community has made security the priority, the dominant concern for most poor Haitians is the rising cost of food. The prices of staples such as rice and beans have nearly doubled in the past three years, a devastating trend in a country where about 80 percent of the population earns less than $2 a day.

"Our problem isn't violence," said Yvner Meneide, an artisan living in downtown Port-au-Prince. "If we were violent, we would organize demonstrations every day, we would be destroying things. But the Haitian people are very moderate. We might be hungry, but we are calm."

***********************  


INTERVIEW-Haiti not descending into instability - minister
| Tue Apr 8, 2008 2:44pm EDT
By Michael Christie

http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSN08372356


MIAMI, April 8 (Reuters) - Violent protests against soaring food prices are not going to tip Haiti back into the political instability that has haunted it for decades, the Caribbean country's finance minister said on Tuesday.

Finance Minister Daniel Dorsainvil said that while the government of the impoverished nation was concerned about high food and energy prices, it had programs in place to boost agriculture and create jobs that would generate income and help its people cope with the cost of living.

"That is not my reading," Dorsainvil told Reuters in an interview in Miami when asked if the angry mobs storming through the capital Port-au-Prince on Tuesday threatened Haiti's stability.

"I think we have made great progress and we'll continue to make great progress," the minister said on the sidelines of an annual meeting of the Inter-American Development Bank.

Five people have been killed in a week of demonstrations over high food prices in the poorest country in the Americas. A man died in gunfire on Monday and four others were killed during a riot last week in Les Cayes, when an angry mob looted a food warehouse and attacked U.N. peacekeepers.

The protests escalated on Tuesday when crowds erected flaming barricades and threw rocks at police in the streets of Port-au-Prince. U.N. peacekeepers fired rubber bullets to prevent demonstrators from storming the presidential palace.
The United Nations says it is concerned the unrest could destabilize the relative peace that Haiti has enjoyed since the election of President Rene Preval in 2006.

In response, Preval's government has announced a multimillion-dollar package of economic investments aimed at lowering the cost of living.

Dorsainvil said he had spoken to his cabinet colleagues and been assured the money needed was available.

LONG-TERM ISSUE
Programs were already in place to distribute school lunches, develop the country's struggling farms and build labor-intensive infrastructure, and would be boosted, he said.

"We need to put a focus on income-generating projects," he said, adding that Haiti had to ensure stability to attract foreign investment.

"In addition of course we are turning to our partners to make additional resources available," Dorsainvil said, mentioning the IADB, the World Bank and donor nations.

High food and energy costs were clearly going to be a long-term issue, he said.
In a speech to the IADB, Dorsainvil said high food prices and energy costs had pushed inflation in Haiti above 10 percent compared with 8 percent at the end of last year.

Prices in Haiti for some items, such as rice, have doubled in the last six months as drought in grains-producer Australia, rising demand in emerging markets like China and competition with biofuels pushes up world food costs.

"Rising prices are clearly a source of great concern for the government, and the Haitian people, like those of other countries in the region, are facing great hardship," Dorsainvil said.

He said the government's strategy of investing money in agriculture and infrastructure would be examined, and its financing agreed to, at a donors meeting on April 25 in Haiti. (Editing by Tom Brown and Eric Beech) (For more stories on global food price rises, please see here)


© Thomson Reuters 2008. All rights reserved.

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Video - United Nations and Aid workers raping and abusing children

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Haiti's tourism dreams deferred by riots
The Associated Press
Friday, May 30th 2008, 4:00 AM

The tourism minister was waiting, bound proposals in hand, for an international donors conference to secure money to turn the impoverished country into the Caribbean's next vacation hotspot.

Then violent street protests in April over soaring food costs killed at least seven and injured hundreds. Travel warnings grew more dire.

"Whatever happens in Port-au-Prince has an immediate impact on the image of Haiti as a vacation destination," said former Tourism Minister Patrick Delatour, who lost his job when the Senate fired Prime Minister Jacques Edouard Alexis over the food riots.

(Go to: Ezili Danto's counter-narrative to AP's Neocolonial Narrative: Don't believe the hype. The violence in Haiti is not caused, as this AP report tells it by hungry, starving Haitians...).

It may seem like an odd dream in a place where Royal Caribbean cruise ships dock at a locked and guarded beach compound, and kidnappings of foreigners run rampant. But many Haitians see tourism as the country's way out of crisis.
Other than the 500,000 cruise passengers who visit the Royal Caribbean peninsula — billed until recently as "Labadee, Hispaniola" — few venture into Haiti, even from the Dominican Republic next door.

Meanwhile its Spanish-speaking neighbor brings in more than $3.5 billion in revenues and millions of visitors to sprawling resorts and designer golf courses, according to the U.N. World Tourism Organization.

Jamaica claims $2 billion from tourism each year despite high crime rates. Cuba pulls in similar tourist revenue, even with a U.S. embargo.

But Haiti's meager tourism industry earned less than 5 percent of that in 2005, according to the most recent available U.N. data.

Delatour and others believe the key is keeping people away from the rancor of the capital and bringing them to the relatively tranquil countryside.

"Port-au-Prince is hell," said mango exporter Jean M. Buteau, touting the well-preserved forts and one of the Caribbean's largest caves along the pristine southern coastline near the city of Les Cayes.

"Haiti is outside of Port-au-Prince, and I love it ... there are still places to be discovered."

It wasn't always this bleak.

Tourism was a pillar of the Haitian economy under the oppressive but stable dictatorships of Francois and Jean-Claude Duvalier, with hundreds of thousands drawn each year to its tropical vistas and voodoo rhythms.

Then came the 1980s, the AIDS epidemic and political upheaval.

Pristine beaches emptied. Historic hotels once frequented by Mick Jagger and Jackie Onassis fell into disrepair.

Chaos continued periodically up to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's ouster in a bloody 2004 rebellion.

More than 140 American citizens have been kidnapped since 2005, the U.S. embassy says, though most are not tourists.

The country has averaged one abduction a day so far this year, including a Canadian intern seized outside her home this month.

But just before the April food riots, it looked as if Haiti could be on the verge of a tourism comeback.

With a 9,000-member U.N. peacekeeping force patrolling the country, the Organization of American States rolled out $233,000 last year to train hotel, restaurant and tour-company workers.

A Haitian-American state lawmaker began studying how countries known for conflict, including Ireland and Israel, succeeded in promoting tourism.

Royal Caribbean announced plans in February for a $25 million pier expansion to take in larger ships.

And Delatour crafted a $270 million tourism plan, much of it focused on improving access to the vast Citadelle, a 108,000-square-foot stone structure with five-story walls and a stockpile of cannonballs that was hiked by a young Franklin D. Roosevelt and inspired a Harry Belafonte song.

The Western Hemisphere's largest fortress, it was built atop a 3,000-foot mountain in the tumultuous years after Haiti broke from France in an 1804 slave revolt and became a symbol of triumph over bondage for descendants of African slaves everywhere.

The trip there is a two-hour crawl over unpaved roads and through garbage-strewn, traffic-clogged streets of Cap-Haitien.

The final ascent, a steep cobblestone path, is traversed on foot or on undersized horses beaten with sticks by local guides.

The reward is a spectacular view of the surrounding valley, several towns and the sea, plus walks along ramparts every bit as impressive as Puerto Rico's El Morro castle.

Delatour's plan would expand the airport at nearby Cap-Haitien and build new local highways from the Dominican border so visitors could avoid the capital.
Royal Caribbean has taken interest. The fortress could be "one of the No. 1 things to see in Haiti if not the Caribbean," said John Weis, the cruise line's private destinations director. "I've been there. It's incredible."

That future seems more remote now.

Riots also broke out in quiet southern peninsula towns officials have targeted for tourism development, and bandits and protesters attacked a food warehouse in Cap-Haitien.

The country is in its second month without a prime minister, with a cabinet of lame-duck ministers stripped of their authority by parliament.

 

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For evidence of Ezili HLLN's counter-narrative to AP's Neocolonial Narrative, go to: AP's INTERVIEW-Haiti not descending into instability - minister"; Comparing crime, poverty and violence in the rest of the Hemisphere to Haiti; Ezili Danto's Note: Economic proposals that make sense for the reality of Haiti - The Western economic model doesn't fit an independent Black nation;; When Haiti Was Free - Video Evidence of Media Lies; Media Lies: The two most common neocolonial storylines about Haiti - May 14, 2008 & August 27, 2007 ; Media Lies and the Real Haiti News, August 12, 2007; HLLN Links to US "free trade" fraud promoting famine in Haiti ;and Video - United Nations and Aid workers raping and abusing children.

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Paradise Lost: the Caribbean's shocking secret
, August 3, 2008

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Violence, murder and social breakdown are threatening many small states in the Caribbean

Many Haitians want exiled Aristide back
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Standing on truth, living without fear – Supporting Barack Obama’s vision of what can be…
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Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!


"When you make a choice, you mobilize vast human energies and resources which otherwise go untapped...........If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want and all that is left is a compromise." Robert Fritz

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