A year ago this month, Haiti was flattened by a seismic catastrophe. It was hardly the only tragedy that the tiny nation has faced in its 220-year history as the first republic born of a slave revolt.
The latest figures for Haiti are $333 million donated to the Red Cross but only $106 million spent, while thousands of Haitians are dying preventable deaths and only half of the 1.3 million homeless have even a tarp as the rainy season begins. Send YOUR donations to the Haiti Emergency Relief Fund at HaitiAction.net! Now, in a video just added to this post, a Haitian journalist reports he can find no evidence that any of the $106 million was actually spent to meet the life and death need in Haiti.
Despite the fact that over a million people remained homeless in Haiti one month after the earthquake, U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Ken Merten is quoted at a State Department briefing on Feb. 12, saying: “In terms of humanitarian aid delivery … frankly, it’s working really well. And I believe that this will be something that people will be able to look back on in the future as a model for how we’ve been able to sort ourselves out as donors on the ground and responding to an earthquake.”
In Venezuela, solidarity with Haiti is based on humanistic and historical reasons. Haiti played an important role in Venezuela’s battle for independence, and as the world’s first Black republic it served as an inspiration to Venezuelan patriots. Since the earthquake, Venezuela has rushed tons of food, tents and fuel to Haiti and forgiven all debts.
The young man who appears to have been gunned down by U.N. occupation troops after a funeral last month received an all but secret funeral himself on July 14 in Port-au-Prince because the priest and family were fearful of U.N. and Haitian government reprisals.