by Ezili Dantò
As part of the rationale for stealing Haiti’s sovereignty, the U.S., Canada and France point to Jamaica and the neighboring Dominican Republic as countries that have benefited from the tourist trade. “But there's more violence and crime in these countries than in Haiti. Their people own less land than Haitians.” That’s why the enslavers have come to take Haiti’s land.
Tourism is Not Development: Haiti, Liberate Yourself!
by Ezili Dantò
“We must kick out the US occupational forces out of Haiti first and get our sovereignty back.”
A job as a maid, butler, busboy, cashier or sexual receptacles for Northern tourists will not create wealth for Haiti. The international hotel chains circulate little of their profits and capital in the Caribbean countries their in. The tourists mostly spend the bulk of their monies in their own countries. Paying travel fees to the international airlines, car rental chains, hotel chains, international vacation package chains. What's left to spend in Haiti is for small arts and crafts, which is also now big business as the internationals discourage the locals from littering their pristine hotel gift stores.
Haiti wants the world to come and see its riches, but that would be another, more Haitian interaction with foreigners – an interaction that preserves and protects local Haitian interests, values and dignity. This means we must kick out the US occupational forces out of Haiti first and get our sovereignty back first. First things first.
The Western tourism template doesn't work for a free Haiti. Like US sweatshops, it does nothing to help with what Haiti really needs, which is more local production, local manufacturing, local agriculture, local distribution, local industries run by local Haitians.
“The DR is fourth in the world for prostitution trafficking.”
Responding directly to a guy that spewed the colonial line on Haiti, I said:
“The Dominican Republic is the biggest tourist location in the Caribbean and every other week you’ve got Dominicans getting in dangerous boats to get to Puerto Rico so they can say they’re Americans and get out of the DR, find work, school and a better life in the United States and elsewhere.”
The Dominican Republic is the biggest tourist location in the Caribbean but this tourism is unabashedly sexual tourism. Dominican women have to sell themselves to feed their families. The DR is fourth in the world for prostitution trafficking.
Is that what you're calling development?
If tourism is “development” for the DR, how do you explain the women that are leaving the DR to go sell themselves all over the world, how do you explain Dominicans taking boats to go to Puerto Rico and past themselves off as Puerto Ricans in order to get to the US? So many of the DR people are going to work in Haiti as prostitutes. DR women and now more and more Eastern women people the upscale brothels in the Haiti. If tourism is so good in DR why are all the construction workers in Haiti Dominicans who can't find life and work in their own country?
“The Dominican Republic would not be able to oppress its masses without the 70,000, mostly US-trained military.”
Perhaps, life in Haiti is not as bad as the international gangsters with less IMF/WB grip on it than they have in the DR, Jamaica, Bahamas, et al.
The "Life and Debt" documentary on the Jamaica situation illustrates why tourism is not development for local Haitians. It shows why tourism, an export economy, sweatshops and privatization of pubic assets are not development for Haiti, Africa, the Caribbean. The Dominican Republic would not be able to oppress its masses this way without the 70,000, mostly US-trained military, running around daily silencing protest, protecting filthy, perverted resorts and communes hiding pathology. Protecting the one percent there – the local overseers servicing the international bankers and warmongers ruling our planet.
Only this force, along with the IMF/WB economic hit men’s death policies, keeps the people in the DR, in the entire Caribbean, from taking back their coastlines and sovereignty.
Jamaica, like the Dominican Republic, is a tourist haven. But there's more violence and crime in these countries than in Haiti. Their people own less land than Haitians. The land is what the enslavers have come to take in Haiti. That's why the UN is there and not in the Dominican Republic or Jamaica. They already own those nations. Haitians are still fighting. The people of Île à Vache are not going to give up their lands.
It's a certainty the US intelligence folks have already scoped out who on the Island they've got to silence, bribe, or co-opt to take this Haiti territory. With probable plans and counterplans to the counterplans. The old Western ruse they'll use is that displacing the fisherman, farmers and craftsman to bring in tourists is "helping Haitians." Tell that to the people of Île à Vache and the other offshore Haiti islands whose properties have been illegally taken through eminent domain by a US-selected puppet president.
Learn the truth, and spread the truth.
Ezili Dantò is an award winning playwright, a performance poet, author and human rights attorney. She was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and raised in the USA. She holds a BA from Boston College, a JD from the University of Connecticut School of law. She is a human rights lawyer, cultural and political activist and the founder and president of the Ezili’s Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (HLLN). She runs the Haitian Perspectives on-line journal and the Ezili Dantò Newsletter. She can be contacted at http://www.ezilidanto.com/zili/contact-us/.