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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 2/5/10

Sowing Panic on the Streets of Haiti

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"So you have people who were financing misinformation, on the one hand, and destabilisation, on the other, and who encouraged small groups of hoodlums to sow panic on the streets, to create the impression of a government losing control."
An Interview with Jean-Bertrand Aristide," July 20, 2006

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Pro-Aristide graffiti in front of the Haitian Presidential Palace (March 2008)

That statement was made by President Aristide in 2006, but it is still appropriate for the situation in Haiti now. A UN food convoy was reportedly attacked by an armed group of men trying to hi-jack the supplies. One has to wonder, who are these fools, who would try to hold up a vehicle with men armed with powerful automatic weapons? These men couldn't have been armed with guns. What's more, no one was injured! The UN only fired warning shots. Unbelievable! What of the occasions when the UN occupiers have committed massacres; firing into shantytown communities, killing mothers, fathers and babies; or when a few brutally beat up Haitian policemen in their own barracks; or shot and killed a young man attending PÃ re Gerard Jean Juste's funeral?

The carnage which began with Bush regime change did not stop when the UN occupiers took over, as chronicled by Ezili Danto's Witness Project:
April 1, 2005 to April 23, 2005 - Killed by UN soldiers (AUMOHD report)

1. Fedia Raphael, age 15. She was shot by the Peruvian MINUSTAH soldiers, April 9, 2005

2. Jean Brenel Jean, age 28, killed by several bullets to the head by Peruvian MINUSTAH soldiers, April 15, 2005

3. Paul Jean Emile, killed at Bois Neuf in Cità Soleil by MINUSTAH soldiers.

4. Andre Joassaint, killed April 1, 2005 by MINUSTAH soldiers

5. "Bord", so called, a former soccer player, killed outside the police station at Cità Soleil

6. Denis Gary, killed by MINUSTAH soldiers with a bullet to the head, Cità Soleil

7. Daniel Jimmo, killed by MINUSTAH soldiers, April 19th, at Drouillard

8. Marie Maude Fabien, age 28, shot by MINUSTAH soldiers April 23, 2005. She is still in the morgue because her parents haven't the means to bury her.

(AUMOHD report for Ezili Danto Witness Project, dated April 30, 2005)
Bush regime change brought a bloodbath to Haiti, with the attendant massacres and human rights abuses. It's hard to believe that the UN occupier's disregard for Haitian life has just turned on a dime in a matter of days and they are just firing warning shots into the air now. The UN specializes in head shots. Their intent is not to maim, but to kill.
"And then when it comes to 2004-6, suddenly all this indignant talk of violence falls silent. As if nothing had happened. People were being herded into containers and dropped into the sea. That counts for nothing. The endless attacks on Cità Soleil, they count for nothing. I could go on and on. Thousands have died. But they don't count, because they are just chimà res, after all." Jean-Bertrand Aristide
To be fair when the UN occupiers first came in June 2004, they just bore silent witness to the killings by the Haitian police and the goons who served the oligarchy. It was not part of their mission to stop the carnage, so they did not intervene to stop it. It was not until April 2005 that the UN began to systematically brutalize the Haitian population. The terror intensified in July and December of 2005 when Brazilian troops leading the "military component" of the UN mission committed bloody massacres in the shantytown of Cite Soleil.
"MINUSTAH has been shooting tear gas on the people. There are children who have died from the gas and some people inside churches have been shot. The Red Cross was with us. The Red Cross was just here and might have just gone on to pick up more children and adults who have gotten shot. The Red Cross is the only one helping us. The MINUSTAH soldiers remain hidden in their tanks and just aim their guns and shoot the people. They shoot people selling in the streets. They shoot people just walking in the streets. They shoot people sitting and selling in the marketplace."
Prior to the massacres, Cite Soleil had been the launching point of mass demonstrations calling for the return of President Aristide and an end to foreign occupation of their country. The targeting of Cite Soleil for terror, death and violence is documented as occuring before planned demonstrations.

Although Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme was targeted as a "gang leader," his people knew him as a Community Leader and hero. On July 6, 2005, 440 soldiers shot heavy guns at the fragile homes of the shantytown dwellers of Cite Soleil for seven hours from their tanks and helicopters. A total of 22,000 rounds of ammunition were expanded to kill one man, but killed in the cross-fire were an estimated 59 others; innocent men, women and children. Dread Wilme died a slow and painful death from a gut wound--he was not yet thirty when he died. His people celebrated Dread Wilme by giving him an honorific African funeral pyre by the seaside.
HLLN: "None of those calling Drà d Wilme "bandit" have ever shown he traveled outside his community to attack either the foreigner who came to kill him in his own home, nor the morally repugnant Haitian bourgeoisie who paid assassins to destroy his community, his nation. In contrast to the bi-centennial Coup D'etat traitors, Drà d Wilme is known to the people in his community as a defender of the defenseless and poor. Again, we say, as we did last April, Wilme covered himself in glory because he added value in his own community, and if, in fact, he lives no more, he joins the line going back to that first Neg and Negàs Ginen who can only - depi lan Guinen - live free or die. That unborn spirit, that Haitian soul, cannot die. It's rising."
In spite of all the terror and deaths, United Nations Destabilization Mission in Haiti has not been successful in stopping dissent in Haiti. When President Aristides' Fanmi Lavalas was banned from elections last April, the polling stations were empty due to a boycott. The same action was due to happen this February 2010, because once again the Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) decided to bar the country's most popular political organization (Fanmi Lavalas). To add insult to injury the Council approved the candidacy of Guy Phillippe's party. Guy had been one of the thugs leading the "rebels" calling for the ousting of Aristide. Astonishingly, Guy is supposedly the target of a DEA warrant.

MINUSTAH must have gauged that things would be coming to a head this month with the elections, and probably protests and boycotts. There were propaganda posters posted warning people that if they did not come out to vote, they could expect an increase in hunger for their country. The earthquake has preempted all that and now the elections have been postponed by the Haitian government.

Back to the convoy incident, it's hard to believe that the earthquake has so effected the aim of the "peacekeepers." Just this past November a man was shot who was part of a group of curious Haitians who approached a UN helicopter operating in the dead of night. Why was the UN mission that night so important that deadly force had to be used to repel unarmed townspeople?
"Residents of this quiet seaside town an hour west of Port-Au-Prince were awoken at about 1 a.m. on Nov. 10 by the sound of helicopters flying low overhead. A curious crowd amassed around the aircrafts.

One of the helicopters had mechanical trouble and had to make an emergency landing, said U.N. spokesperson Sophie Boutaud de la Combe. To lighten the load on the damaged helicopter, the Chilean crew moved white boxes of supplies into the other helicopter for several hours.

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Chantal Laurent is a Haitian-American who blogs about Haiti, socio-economic, environmental and political issues at thehaitianblogger
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