November 17, 2013
At great personal risk, Haitians demonstrated massively in cities throughout the country on Sept. 30 and Oct. 17, calling for President Michel Martelly to step down. By choosing historically significant dates marking past coups, the Haitian grassroots majority is clearly saying they want an end to 10 years of military occupation. Martelly’s police force brutally broke up some demonstrations with tear gas and beatings.
September 2, 2013
On the 20th anniversary of the demise of my father, Fred Ali Batin Sr., the 18th anniversary of the Maafa Commemoration San Francisco Bay Area – the Ritual Sunday is Oct. 13, 2013; see http://maafasfbayarea.com/ – and approximately the 60th day of the hunger strike to end the inhuman conditions in California’s Security Housing Units or SHUs, I just want to pause and reflect.
June 3, 2013
The Feb. 29, 2004, kidnapping and coup d’état began a brutal ongoing U.S.-U.N. occupation that aimed to suppress Haiti’s people’s movement and roll back the hard-won democratic gains since the ouster of Baby Doc Duvalier in 1986. Soldiers from other nations, including Ecuador and Brazil, later joined this occupation army, named MINUSTAH, which currently numbers 9,357 uniformed personnel.
March 14, 2013
The funeral of President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela took place on International Women’s Day – a fitting day of departure. Chávez was not the first movement leader who went on to head the government, to have understood women’s centrality to creating the new society they were striving to build. Presidents of Tanzania and Haiti have also benefited from making women central to progress.
March 8, 2013
Back when Mumia was a member of the Black Panther Party, he traveled west to work with the Oakland chapter – an important time in his evolution as a radical journalist. Now the story of his life and revolutionary times comes to The New Parkway Theater. Read about it and all of Wanda’s Picks for March 2013.
September 7, 2012
Haiti’s brutal army was disbanded in 1995, yet armed and uniformed paramilitaries, with no government affiliation, occupy former army bases today. Join Haiti Action Committee for a discussion on the roots of paramilitarism in Haiti at La Pena Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, featuring Jeb Sprague, author of ‘Paramilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti.’
March 12, 2012
Portraying community and political activists as violent gang leaders and violent criminals was employed in the run-up to Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s ouster in 2004 and gained momentum in the years afterwards. The continued demonization of militants and activists is exemplified in the defamation campaign against grassroots activist Samba Boukman.
August 17, 2011
As one of his first measures in office, Brazilian Defense Minister Celso Amorim plans to conclude Brazil’s participation in the notorious United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). Various sectors of the Brazilian government, including Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, agree with Mr. Amorim, who says that the important thing now is to formulate an exit strategy. This story has now been translated into French and Spanish; the translations follow the English version.
February 25, 2011
Several prominent figures from the international anti-apartheid movement have sent South African President Jacob Zuma an open letter “in the hopes that he can assist” former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and his family in returning to Haiti “as soon as possible.”
February 23, 2011
This “run-off” presidential election, scheduled for March 20, helps to explain the re-emergence of Jean-Claude (Baby Doc) Duvalier, since both candidates, Mirlande Manigat and Michel Martelly, have links to the Duvalier past. Manigat’s husband is said to have advised Duvalier to create the dreaded tonton macoutes. And Martelly, who was himself a tonton macoute in his youth, has pledged to make Duvalier one of his advisers. Join the Haiti Action Committee for “Seven Years after the Coup in Haiti: Democracy at the Crossroads” at Humanist Hall, 390 27th St., Oakland, on Tuesday, March 1, 7 p.m.
February 11, 2011
Join your voice with the roar of the crowds in Egypt and Haiti to demand that President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton end support for Mubarak and support the Egyptian people’s will and allow Aristide to return and allow real democracy in Haiti.
January 23, 2011
Confidential U.S. diplomatic cables from 2005 and 2006 released this week by WikiLeaks reveal Washington’s well-known obsession to keep exiled former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide out of Haiti and Haitian affairs. “All efforts must be made to keep Aristide from returning to Haiti or influencing the political process,” the U.S. embassy told Brazil, which heads the U.N. occupation of Haiti. Did those efforts include covering up the assassination of the Brazilian general in charge who had no taste for slaughtering Haitians who simply want their president back?
January 19, 2011
Today, Haiti’s first democratically elected president, Jean Bertrand Aristide, whose return to Haiti is demanded daily by his people – he was kidnapped Feb. 29, 2004, in a U.S.-engineered coup and has since lived in South Africa – wrote the following letter to the South African and Haitian governments seeking to return home. But, asks Ezili Danto, who forwarded his letter, “If Duvalier can, without trouble, travel on an EXPIRED Haitian passport, why can’t President Aristide do the same?”
November 20, 2010
Haitians say protests are the inevitable outcome when troops who have occupied Haiti for five years with seeming impunity have introduced a deadly, misery-multiplying disease.
October 12, 2010
The situation for the homeless in Port au Prince is so grim that a 10-minute rain storm with high winds on Sept. 24 left at least five people dead, hundreds injured and thousands of shelters – tents, tarps and sheets – destroyed.
October 12, 2010
“We are not going to the election in tents. We want housing before elections.” These words were chanted in Kreyol and held high on placards during a recent demonstration at Haiti’s crumpled National Palace.
June 4, 2010
“We are living in the mud. We are wet and we are hungry. Those in charge have left us without hope. If they have a plan, we do not know it. We are asking about the future. And we want our voices to be heard.” Each Saturday a thousand or more Haitian earthquake survivors meet in the auditorium of the Aristide Foundation for Democracy to talk about the future of their country.
May 21, 2010
When the Aristide Foundation for Democracy launched our mobile school project in late February we wanted to do two things quickly: support children living in refugee camps across Port au Prince and offer immediate employment to young Haitians at a time when the whole economy has collapsed.
March 4, 2010
Dr. Chris Zamani, who led the medical contingent of the medical-media team that Minister of Information JR took to Haiti, writes of the oppression in Haiti as “the imperialists … warning of what will happen to those that dare to grasp their own destiny and establish freedom for their descendants by any means necessary.” Watch the unforgettable film of their trip and meet them in person: “Back from Haiti” Thursday, March 11, 7 p.m., Black Dot Cafe, 1195 Pine St., West Oakland, and Thursday, March 18, 7 p.m., SF State, 1600 Holloway Ave., San Francisco.
February 24, 2010
The People’s National Party of Belize organized a Kayak for Haiti Kayakathon to raise funds for the victims of the quake. Despite the inclement weather, Kayak for Haiti was a success because the target was met and surpassed. The total amount raised was $1,404. The money will go to the Haiti Emergency Relief Fund.