Haiti

Haiti Rises: A Time for Solidarity

by Nia Imara and Robert Roth

The Haitian people forced the cancellation of yet another U.S.-imposed electoral fraud. A transitional government promises to hold another round of elections sometime in the future. But, "How can elections proceed to a second round if the first round was hopelessly illegitimate?" If there is a full investigation of the last bogus election, as grassroots organizations are demanding, Dr. Maryse Narcisse, of Fanmi Lavalas, might sweep the field.

No More Electoral Coups: OAS is Not Welcome in Haiti

by Èzili Dantò

Since 2004, the Haitian people have been occupied: first by U.S. troops and, next, by an international force under the United Nations. Then, following the 2010 earthquake, the Organization of American States and the U.S. rigged an election to impose the dictatorship of Michel “Sweet Mickey” Martelly. “The people of Haiti have an exit plan: to conduct free and fair elections after Martelly leaves” on February 7.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of February 1, 2016

A Reprieve for “Child Lifers” in Prison

Thousands of inmates serving life sentences for crimes committed when they were juveniles may be eligible for release from prison in the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that such sentences amount to cruel and unusual punishment. “I get a chance to return to society and show people that I’m not the animal that they were portraying me to be,” said Kerry Shakaboona Marshall, a contributor to Prison Radio, who was 17 when he was charged with murder, 25 years ago. However, Marshall said the State of Pennsylvania “really doesn’t want to carry out the spirit of the Miller decision. They want child lifers to die in prison.”

UN Tallies U.S. Crimes Against African Americans

A United Nations panel of experts has released its report on human rights violations against Blacks in the U.S., after soliciting testimony in five cities, last month. The report on the various “forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, Afrophobia and related intolerance” in U.S. society, will be a “ready reference” for both activists and UN member states, said Efia Nwangaza, director of the Malcolm X Center for Self Determination, in Greenville, South Carolina. “I think that China, which does its own annual human rights report, will find it very useful,” as will African countries that are abused by U.S.-based corporations.

Tribunal: Michigan Officials Guilty of Crimes Against Humanity

The denial of water to poor people in Detroit and the poisoning of Flint, Michigan’s water system were not just Republican crimes, said Monica Lewis-Patrick, co-founder of We the People of Detroit. “You had local leadership, you had Black clergy, you had city council people, you had mayors all across this great state that participated in this structural violence, and who are prepared to commit genocide on the people in this state,” said Lewis-Patrick, at a People’s Tribunal on Water Crimes. A people’s jury convicted Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, and two appointed emergency financial managers.

Adolph Reed’s Case Against Reparations

The demand for reparations for Black Americans “doesn’t add anything to a call for redistribution” of wealth and resources, said Dr. Adolph Reed, the noted Black public intellectual and professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania. Reed, who supports Bernie Sanders for president, said it’s folly to demand “a designer program that will redistribute only to one’s own group.” Education, jobs and criminal justice, he said, are “Black issues.”

Western “Panic” Drives Syria Talks

The talks getting underway in Geneva, Switzerland, on the war in Syria are “a combination of public relations and panic on the part of the western powers,” said BAR editor and columnist Ajamu Baraka, a co-founder of the U.S. Human Rights Network. “This is a replay of Geneva I and Geneva II,” said Baraka. “The only thing that has really changed is that the western powers and the Gulf Cooperation Council are more concerned about the possibility that the whole strategy of regime change is coming apart.”

Haiti Factions Jockey for Spots in Interim Government

Massive protests against rigged elections forced cancellation of a presidential run-off vote in Haiti, last month, paving the way for appointment of an interim government. The U.S.-installed president, Michel “Sweet Mickey” Martelly, is constitutionally required to leave office on February 7. “There is a lot of posturing, a lot of theater going on,” said Pierre Labossiere, of the Haiti Action Committee. “What upset the cart has been the entry of the grassroots” into the equation, including the Fanmi Lavalas party of former president Jean Bertrand-Aristide, who was overthrown in a 2004 U.S.-backed coup. The massive popular opposition to the Martelly regime shows that “the Haitian people have to have their say” in the next government, said Labossiere.

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The Blood of the Earth: Agriculture, Land Rights, and Haitian History

by Ricot Jean-Pierre

This month marks the sixth anniversary of the earthquake that killed hundreds of thousands of Haitians. The survivors face the aftershocks of disaster capitalism, in which the Haitian elite and foreign corporations – backed by the US government, World Bank, and Inter-American Development Bank – are grabbing lands for extraction and mega-development projects. The author tells how inequitable control of land has devastated Haitians throughout history.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of January 18, 2016

U.S. Demands Global Respect, But Disrespects Its Own Black Citizens

President Obama’s polices, “both foreign and domestic, are the same as any leader of the Empire,” said South Carolina activist and author Kevin Alexander Gray, editor of Killing Trayvons: An Anthology of American Violence. U.S. corporate media “cried” about Iran forcing U.S. sailors to put their hands up, but the sailors “were given a greater amount of deference and respect than Tamir Rice got from the police, and that Michael Brown got from the police,” said Gray. “It seemed that Iran respected America’s sailors’ rights more than America and American police departments respect the rights of Black people” in the U.S.

Obama Most Aggressive Imperial President

Over the last seven years, Barack Obama has “asserted imperialist power more than any other president,” said Black Agenda Report senior columnist Margaret Kimberley. “Reagan tried to kill [Libyan leader Muammar] Gaddafi, but then said, Oh, never mind; Obama actually did it,” said Kimberley. “Other presidents thought about trying to take out the Syrian president, but it was the Democrat, Obama, who tried to make that a reality.” Obama has “left no stone unturned in attacking the rest of the world.”

Obama Set Venezuela Up for Subversion

The “deceptive nature of President Obama” fooled lots of world leaders into thinking his tenure would be different, said Cynthia McKinney, the former six-term congresswoman from Georgia and 2008 Green Party presidential candidate. “During the campaign, candidate Obama was Abraham Lincoln, he was Franklin Roosevelt, he was John Kennedy, he was Martin Luther King Jr., he was all of those personalities we revere,” said McKinney, whose PhD dissertation was on the late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez. “I think the openness with which people received President Obama was abused, and allowed the nefarious polices” of U.S. subversion of Venezuela’s government.

Haitians Say No to Another Rigged Election

Another round of Haitian elections is scheduled for January 24, despite opposition from nearly everyone except the ruling party and its U.S. backers. Irregularities marred almost half the ballot sheets in the first round of elections. “It’s not just opposition politicians who are formally against this process, but also a wide range of human rights organizations, diaspora organizations, religious leaders, etc.,” said Jake Johnston, a researcher for the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research.

U.S. Continues Legacy of Oppression in Congo

The United States is trying to influence upcoming elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo, luring student activists with offers of money. Washington is always up to no good in the Congo, according to Kambale Musavuli, of Friends of Congo. “The United States was the first country to recognize Congo as the personal property of [Belgian King] Leopold in the late 1800s,” said Musavuli. “The United States backed the killing of Patrice Lumumba, the first elected prime minister of the Congo. They supported a dictator who was imposed on the Congolese people for 32 years,” and “they supported an invasion of the Congo by Rwanda and Uganda that has taken the lives of millions of Congolese.”

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Haiti: An Occupation in Blackface

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Jemima Pierre

The U.S. invaded and occupied Haiti from 1915 to 1934, and again occupied the country in 2004 after overthrowing the democratically elected government. The United Nations then partnered with the aggression, installing MINUSTAH, a largely Black and brown military force that brought a cholera epidemic, looting of mineral resources, rape, assassinations and a criminally corrupt puppet regime.

The NYT Turns a Blind Eye While the Clintons and Mexico's Richest Man Feast on Haiti

by Ezili Dantò

The corruption that surrounds U.S.-backed Haitian President Michel “Sweet Mickey” Martelly is deeply entwined with the billion dollar deals revolving around Bill and Hillary Clinton and a Mexican billionaire. Martelly now rules by decree, while the Clintons prepare to reoccupy the White House. President Obama’s legacy is that he and Hillary “finished the Bushes’ project to destroy democracy and installed outright dictatorship back into Haiti.”

Caribbean Nations Outraged at Dominican Racism

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The Dominican Republic, which defines itself in opposition to Haiti, has enraged its Caribbean neighbors by preparing to deport a quarter million residents of Haitian descent. Dominican racial views are well known. “They are perpetually resentful that the deep Black presence of Haiti is always there to remind them of their own indelible African origins.”

Blame the Illegal Military Occupation for the Cholera Outbreak in Haiti

by BAR editor and columnist Jemima Pierre

In addition to killing thousands of Haitians through the introduction of cholera into the country, the United Nations “is generally understood as the force propping up the illegitimate governments of Haiti over the past 9 years, particularly the US-chosen Michel Martelly.”

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