Security Kills: U. S. Fear of Democracy in Haiti by Mark Weisbrot
Six days after the earthquake in Haiti, the U.S. Southern Command finally began to drop bottled water and food (MREs) from an Air Force C-17. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates had previously rejected such a method because of "security concerns." The Guardian reports that people are dying of thirst. And if they do not get clean water, there can be epidemics of water-borne diseases that could greatly increase the death toll. But the United States is now sending 10,000 troops and seems to be prioritizing "security" over much more urgent, life-and-death needs. This is in addition to the increase of 3,500 UN troops scheduled to arrive.
Cancel Haiti's Debt by Sarah van Gelder
Haiti has a painful history with debt. When it won its independence in 1804 -- just the second country in the hemisphere to do so -- it was required to pay restitution to France. Haiti went millions of dollars (billions in today's dollars) into debt to compensate the French for their loss of property -- including the lost profits from slave trading. Only by paying this restitution could Haiti end a crippling embargo by the French, British, and Americans. Money that the new government might have invested in building a new nation poured into loan payments that continued until the loan was paid off in 1947.
IMF chief in U-turn as Venezuela cancels Haiti debt
International Monetary Fund head Dominique Strauss-Kahn has made a U-turn on the US-dominated financial institution's attempt to burden earthquake-devastated Haiti with another $100 million (£61.7m) of debt. Mr Strauss-Kahn declared that he now supported efforts to "delete all the Haitian debt, including our new loan," following criticism from leaders such as Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who announced his own country's immediate cancellation of a $295m (£182m) debt on Monday.
Comprehensive ALBA Project to Help Haiti
A comprehensive project for emergency aid, restoration and reconstruction of Haiti was approved on Monday in Caracas by the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA).
ALBA countries allocate $120 million in aid to Haiti
The Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) politico-economic bloc, at a special meeting in the Venezuelan capital on Monday, adopted a plan aimed at giving aid to Haiti in the elimination of the aftermath of the devastating earthquake and in the restoration of that Caribbean country.
Chavez Writes Off Haiti's Oil Debt to Venezuela
President Hugo Chavez announced Monday that he would write off the undisclosed sum Haiti owes Venezuela for oil as part of the ALBA bloc's plans to help the impoverished Caribbean nation after the devastating Jan. 12 earthquake. "Haiti has no debt with Venezuela, just the opposite: Venezuela has a historical debt with that nation, with that people for whom we feel not pity but rather admiration, and we share their faith, their hope," Chavez said after the extraordinary meeting of foreign ministers of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas, or ALBA. He also announced that ALBA has decided on a comprehensive plan that includes an immediate donation of $20 million to Haiti's health sector, and a fund that, Chavez said, will be at least $100 million "for starters."
Operation Haitian Earthquake Freedom by Ted Rall
The US made ZERO effort to help Haiti. Soldiers made aid shipments wait four (!) days to arrive while they established "command and control." Then for three more days, the aid sat at the airport, locked up and guarded...meanwhile, tens of thousands of people who could have been saved...died.
"Reconstructing Haiti" on starvation wages by Bill Van Auken
Government ministers, international bankers and aid agencies gathered in Montreal Monday to discuss plans for reconstructing earthquake-ravaged Haiti. At the heart of their proposals is the exploitation of Haitian workers at poverty wages. The conference offered nothing concrete in terms of new assistance, instead scheduling a donors meeting at the United Nations in March. Much of the rhetoric coming out of the gathering seemed to bear little relationship to the situation on the ground in Haiti, where 150,000 people have been confirmed dead, hundreds of thousands more are wounded and over 1.5 million are homeless.
Focus on Haiti – The Politics of Rice by aljazeera.net
In 2008, in the midst of the global food crisis, we travelled to Haiti to look at the politics of rice – how such a fertile country became dependent on food aid. In the wake of this current disaster, that dependence is – initially – going to deepen.
Haiti and the 'Devil's Curse'
While everyone piles on Pat Robertson, the rest of the mainstream media is making the same error he did, attributing Haiti's misery to the supernatural. Avoiding any discussion of the true history of Haiti, and the role of foreign intervention in bringing about Haiti's poverty and political instability.
Varieties of eating dirt: US, Haiti & Nicaragua by Toni Solo
The US government and its international and regional allies view real autonomy and independence for Caribbean nations and for Central and South American countries as a threat. The US government response has been to militarize Latin America and the Caribbean with new bases, principally in Panama and Colombia. Now, President Obama's administration has exploited the catastrophe in Haiti to militarize that country under the pretext of providing security for humanitarian relief operations.
My Pride and Hope for Haiti by Michèle Pierre-Louis
It is an image of apocalypse. The National Palace and the ministries that were the heart of Haiti's government are in ruins. The beautiful court of justice collapsed. Building after building, street after street. Two weeks after the earthquake, the residents of Port-au-Prince make their way through heaps of rubble. There are still corpses in piles of debris. Survivors who still have homes sleep in the streets scared by the aftershocks. The lucky have mattresses. If they have food, they cook outside. On these streets I hear people praying and singing. And I see solidarity.
New quake rescue defies survival odds
A man has been rescued alive from the rubble of a hotel 11 days after the Haitian earthquake.
Haiti and Toxic Waste by Mitchel Cohen
Every year, thousands of tons of "recycled" waste from the U.S., deceptively labeled as "fertilizer," are plowed into farms, beaches and deserts in Bangladesh, Haiti, Somalia, Brazil and dozens of other countries. The Clinton administration followed former President George Bush's lead in allowing U.S. corporations to mix incinerator ash and other wastes containing high concentrations of lead, cadmium and mercury with agricultural chemicals and are sold to (or dumped in) unsuspecting or uncaring agencies and governments throughout the world. (Greenpeace Toxic Trade Campaign, "United States Blocks Efforts to Prohibit Global Waste Dumping by Industrial States," December 2, 1992.)
Cubans first to Haiti's rescue
One of the things that happens in moments of a natural disaster is that information, even in this age of instant satellite television broadcasts, can be partial. Today I want to introduce some other facts and issues so that our understanding of reality is balanced. Thus it has not been reported that the first country to provide real assistance to Haitians was Cuba. There were already more than 400 Cuban medical professionals in Haiti at the time of the earthquake, this being part of Cuba's ongoing solidarity with Haiti. It should be noted that over the last few years some 400 Haitians have been trained as health care professionals in Cuba on full scholarships so that over time, Haiti can reduce its dependence on foreign doctors. On January 13, the day after the earthquake, more than 60 Cuban health care workers arrived in Haiti, equipped and trained for emergency situations.
Occupation in Humanitarian Clothing Jesse Hagopian
Everything you need to know about the U.S. aid effort to assist Haiti in the wake of the catastrophic earthquake can be summed up by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's touchdown in Port-Au-Prince last Saturday: they shut down the airport for three hours surrounding her arrival for "security" reasons, which meant that no aid flights could come in during those critical hours.
Chavez Nixes US Plan for Regional Domination
The Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said on Sunday that the US military intervention in Haiti is a new strategy that aims at regional domination. The president said in his Sunday program "Las lineas Chavez" that the intervention is a counterattack over Latin America and the Caribbean. It is developing a fatal triangulation between Colombia, Honduras and Haiti, he condemned.
Haiti rescue and search phase called off
The Haiti government has called off the search and rescue phase of the humanitarian effort after an earthquake struck eleven days ago.
Haiti: the real looters are sitting in Washington by Viv Smith
FOUR DAYS AFTER the disaster in Haiti, the media shifted its attention from images of suffering to those of looting. Talk has turned to keeping "law and order". Haitians are increasingly depicted as savages. But the real savages and looters are the US ruling class. Instead of helping to rebuild Haiti's infrastructure to meet people's needs, the US is ensuring that the rich who have plundered Haiti for 200 years get even richer.
Haiti: overthrowing slavery and resisting the IMF by Sadie Robinson
THE SUFFERING of Haiti's people today is rooted in slavery and imperialism. The Times newspaper has described Haiti as "the unluckiest country" while the racist US evangelical Pat Robertson said that Haitians had "swore a pact to the devil" when they rose up against slavery in the 1790s. But it is imperialism, not the resistance to it, which has been the problem.
How US imperialism has devastated Haiti by Peter Hallward
THE EARTHQUAKE in Haiti caused, and continues to cause, such terrible destruction and loss of life because the country is so poor. There are three main reasons for that. Firstly, it is the only place where slavery was overthrown solely by slaves. But it meant a war that lasted 12 years, killed a third of the population, destroyed virtually every city and town, and gutted every plantation.
SA medics en route to Haiti, calls for Aristide
by Gia Nicolaides and Jean-Jacques Cornish
A South African medical team will be landing in New York on Saturday morning before heading to the earthquake devastated island of Haiti.
Meanwhile survivors of the quake are calling for the return of their ousted former president. Another man in the group, who identified himself as Auguste, said that it is remarkable that a concrete monument constructed by Aristide over the road from the palace appears unscathed.
The hate and the quake in Haiti by Sir Hilary Beckles
Buried beneath the rubble of imperial propaganda, out of both Western Europe and the United States, is the evidence, which shows that Haiti's independence was defeated by an aggressive North-Atlantic alliance that could not imagine their world inhabited by a free regime of Africans as representatives of the newly emerging democracy.
Raw Video: Miraculous Haiti Rescue of Woman
Doctors in Haiti are trying to save the life of a 69-year-old woman who was pulled from the rubble in Haiti, 10 days after the earthquake struck there.
Exploitation Nation? Naomi Klein worries Haitians won't have a role shaping their future by Naomi Klein
Bottom feeders follow closely on the heels of disaster. After Hurricane Katrina, private security contractors landed in New Orleans, hired to guard against looters. After the Indian Ocean tsunami, governments in Thailand, Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, and the Maldives pushed aside coastal villages to make way for resort developers. That kind of profiteering is standard fare. But is it organized? That's what author Naomi Klein says in her book The Shock Doctrine, arguing that "disaster capitalists" take advantage of post-crisis chaos to push through a set of free-market reforms that further their own interests, rather than those of the victims.
Revisiting The Shock Doctrine in the Wake of Haiti Disaster by Naomi Klein
In the aftermath of the January 12th earthquake that ravaged (and continues to ravage) Haiti, as we witness the bravery and dignity of survivors and relief workers, we are wise to examine the deeper outlines of the historical roots that created the conditions for such a massive loss of life. We must simultaneously, however, begin to ponder what lies ahead for the people of Haiti as they emerge from the immediate calamity of the quake.
Haiti: An Unwelcome Katrina Redux by Cynthia McKinney
President Obama's response to the tragedy in Haiti has been robust in military deployment and puny in what the Haitians need most: food; first responders and their specialized equipment; doctors and medical facilities and equipment; and engineers, heavy equipment, and heavy movers. Sadly, President Obama is dispatching Presidents Bush and Clinton, and thousands of Marines and U.S. soldiers. By contrast, Cuba has over 400 doctors on the ground and is sending in more; Cubans, Argentinians, Icelanders, Nicaraguans, Venezuelans, and many others are already on the ground working – saving lives and treating the injured.
Haiti, Katrina, and Why I Won't Give To Haiti Through the Red Cross
What's charitably given isn't always charitably distributed. In 21st century American and its empire, our corporate and military elite wield immense power. Corporate philanthropy serves corporate interests, not human interests, and corporate control over government, culture and media ensure that even funds donated by ordinary citizens can be directed and harvested for elite purposes too.
Chalkdust: Haiti needed world's help years ago by Michelle Loubon
Liverpool said: "The Haitian question is one that the world should have done something about years ago. The world should not have waited for an earthquake. The great powers of the world created that situation in a sense." Among the factors responsible for Haiti's socio-economic demise were: The blockade imposed after the Revolution in 1804; the destruction of Haitian agriculture; and having to resort to borrowing monies from the United States to pay its indemnity. "The Haitians had to borrow monies from the United States to pay its indemnity to France," he said. France demanded 90 million gold francs – the equivalent of US$20 billion — be paid to them by the victorious Haitians.