Tags Port au Prince
Tag: Port au Prince
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 U.N. has threatened to pull out of Haiti. Oh, what a blessed seasonal gift that would be. Bon voyage, U.N.! Goodbye. We’ll help you pack. The Haitian people on the streets demonstrating are asking for YOU, for the U.N. to go. Take Clinton, the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission (IHRC) and the NGOs with you, please.
Obama denounced the recent “elections” in Burma as “neither free nor fair.” The Haitian “elections” are also neither free nor fair. The largest party, Fanmi Lavalas, is excluded, as it has been in every election since President Jean-Bertrand Aristide was ousted in 2004; 1.3 million earthquake victims are displaced; and cholera has already taken 1,600 lives.
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.
The threat of the recent cholera outbreak in Haiti has been intensified by Hurricane Tomas. The already bad sanitary conditions combined with the flooding from the hurricane is expected to cause the infection rate to jump.
Cholera, a "disease of poverty" caused by lack of access to clean water, has spread to Haiti's capital city of Port au Prince. At a small, desolate camp of ripped tents nearby, a gleaming water tank is propped up on bricks. But it’s empty.
The cholera epidemic has killed 250 Haitians and over 3,000 more are infected and may die. This cholera is caused by drinking dirty, toxic water. According to Haiti’s health minister, cholera “can kill in three hours because once the diarrhea starts it doesn’t stop.”
There is no food. The children are terribly hungry. The food aid program was terminated in April and nothing took its place. The authorities cut off the food so people would leave the camps, but where is there to go? Not a single cent of the U.S. aid pledged for rebuilding has arrived in Haiti. Don’t miss Randall Robinson discussing ‘An Unbroken Agony’ with Pierre Labossiere of the Haiti Action Committee and Walter Turner of KPFA’s Africa Today on Saturday, Oct. 16, 5 p.m., Black Repertory Theater, 3201 Adeline St., Berkeley.
There was high unemployment for Haitians, those educated with skills and the unskilled as well, prior to the earthquake. For a government official to tell a BAI representative that withholding food was a way to motivate lazy people looking for a handout to get to work is a gross misread of the problem.
The candidacy of Wyclef Jean is important because it makes this Haitian election a media “event” and gives it the illusion of credibility, when it’s real goal is to suppress the Lavalas movement and put a democratic front on a brutal military occupation.
I just got off the phone with Leslie, a friend and leader in Asanble Vwazen Solino (the Solino Neighborhood Assembly). Knowing the answer, he asked me: “Is it raining over where you are?” “Of course it is. But you know I have a house.” “We are all wet!” he intoned. “We won’t get to sleep tonight.”
Two things we know for sure: Hollywood and hip hop get media attention. And for Haiti, that translates into big media hype for actor Sean Penn and rapper-turned-presidential candidate, Wyclef Jean. How may we use this media glare to help the 2 million Haitians made homeless by the earthquake?
I am excited about going back to Haiti, which I visited at the four-month anniversary of the earthquake. It has been six months now and from what we have heard and seen from trusted media, the situation is not any better and for many people it is worse.
There is a growing discontent amongst the people in Haiti with the political establishment under the direction of President Rene Preval. Many people believe that Preval has mortgaged the nation to powerful multinational corporate interests and subjected the people to military occupation by the U.S. and the U.N. under the guise of providing “security.”
According to a July 14, 2010, statement from a fake website purporting to speak on behalf of the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, France will pay back to Haiti the Independence Debt it and its Euro/U.S. allies gathered together to force Haiti to pay. This amazing news is a hoax.
“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.
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.
Rea Dol and Dodo were at the airport with a sign with my name when I arrived. We then headed to the building site, where a wall is going up around the perimeter. Rea is the principal of SOPUDEP School in Port au Prince, founded as part of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s National Literacy Project. She’s building a new school to replace the one that was damaged in the earthquake.
On May 18, 1803, 207 years ago, the Congress of Arcahaie adopted the Haitian flag. Gen. Jean-Jacques Dessalines created it by ripping the white from the center of the French flag and uniting the red and the blue. Celebrate Haiti's Flag Day with exciting Haitian dancers and drummers and Wanda's account of her journey there.
The champagne bottles were popping at the U.N. for the pledging session’s success – $5 billion, $10 billion pledged for the future. Whose future? What Haitians in Haiti need is a hoe, a tractor, some lifting equipment, so they might not have to use their bare hands to dig out the corpses still under the rubble over three months after the earthquake. Just a hoe, a tractor – we’ll do the work.