This is how the ‘International Community’ (read the West) is responding to the tragedy in Haiti: still no aid, yet plenty of guns. US has taken control of the Port-au-Prince airport and according to Al Jazeera it is turning back aircraft with much needed aid from other nations.
Click here for video - scroll down to Haiti and the Instruments of Death
Reports: Blackwater is "protecting" in Haiti
The Big One Devastates Haiti by Stephen Lendman
January 16, 2010 -
...The country is a text book example of oppressive rule, exploitation, extreme poverty, widespread unemployment, and overwhelming human misery - largely because of US dominance since the 19th century.
From 1849 - 1913, navy ships entered Haitian waters 24 times to "protect American lives and property," and from 1915 - 1934, US Marines occupied and ravaged the country. Washington declared Haitians unfit to govern, imposed a new constitution giving US corporations free reign, and created repressive security forces to put down resistance and protect American interests.
To this day nothing has changed as Haiti is still occupied - by a repressive UN paramilitary peacekeeper force. Earlier, Washington supported successive despots, giving Haitians no relief except for their years under Aristide and Rene Preval's first administration. Aristide, in fact, had remarkable accomplishments despite facing formidable obstacles at home and from hostile Washington officials who never let up until they ousted him...
More: Aristide Haiti Return- Clinton, Bush & Obama of One Mindset
The Obama Doctrine is The Bush Doctrine-- a corrosive mindset that got us into Iraq and the "war on terror." This is evidenced by the appt. of Bush & Clinton to head Haiti relief. Obama also continues US policy of political interventions in Haiti.
More: The Haitian Tragedy and Mainstream Media Response
Ignored by most commentators is the truth of Haiti's historic and ongoing poverty -" in classic "blame the victim" coverage. E.g., it's not mentioned that Haitians fought their way out of slavery in 1804, and were celebrating their bicentennial when the U.S. kidnapped and exiled (for the second time) their popular President Jean-Bertrand Aristide who won two landslide victories in internationally monitored elections.
More: Too Little Too Late for Haiti? Six Sobering Points
Wake up world! Haiti is in much deeper trouble than mainstream media is showing.
More: The Militarization of Emergency Aid to Haiti: Is it a Humanitarian Operation or an Invasion?
The military component of the US mission tends to overshadow the civilian functions of rescuing a desperate and impoverished population. The overall humanitarian operation is not being led by civilian governmental agencies such as FEMA or USAID, but by the Pentagon. The dominant decision making role has been entrusted to US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM).
More: Haiti, Machete Gangs and Martial Law: Part 1
...First off, a little history. Haiti has a history of military dictatorships installed and controlled by the CIA.
"From 1957 to 1986, the Duvalier family reigned as dictators, turning the country into a hermit kingdom with a personality cult and corruption. They created the private army and terrorist death squads known as Tonton Macoutes. Many Haitians fled to exile in the United States and Canada, especially French-speaking Quebec. In the 1970s the United States funded major efforts to establish assembly plants for U.S. manufacturers. In the mid 1980s the US continued military and economic aid to the regime.26
In 1986 protests against "Baby Doc" led the U.S. to arrange for Duvalier and his family to be exiled to France. Army leader General Henri Namphy headed a new National Governing Council.26
In March 1987 a new Constitution was overwhelmingly approved by the population. General elections in November were aborted hours after dozens were shot by soldiers and the Tonton Macoute in the capital and scores more around the country. (source)
To prevent dissidents from gaining any real influence, the CIA trained "death squads" to hunt down and murder political opponents to its policies. A CIA front company was brought in:
"Moreover, US troops remained in the country until 1999. The Haitian armed forces were disbanded and the US State Department hired a mercenary company DynCorp to provide "technical advice" in restructuring the Haitian National Police (HNP).
"DynCorp has always functioned as a cut-out for Pentagon and CIA covert operations." (See Jeffrey St. Clair and Alexander Cockburn, Counterpunch, February 27, 2002, http://www.corpwatch.org/issues/PID.jsp?articleid=1988 ) Under DynCorp advice in Haiti, former Tonton Macoute and Haitian military officers involved in the 1991 Coup d'Etat were brought into the HNP." (source)
Many people still believe that the CIA was making the Caribbean Island safe from Communism. In reality, other motives were at work:
" According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Haiti remains "the major drug trans-shipment country for the entire Caribbean region, funneling huge shipments of cocaine from Colombia to the United States." (See US House of Representatives, Criminal Justice, Drug Policy and Human Resources Subcommittee, FDHC Transcripts, 12 April 2000).
It is estimated that Haiti is now responsible for 14 percent of all the cocaine entering the United States, representing billions of dollars of revenue for organized crime and US financial institutions, which launder vast amounts of dirty money. The global trade in narcotics is estimated to be of the order of 500 billion dollars.
Much of this transshipment trade goes directly to Miami, which also constitutes a haven for the recycling of dirty money into bona fide investments, e.g. in real estate and other related activities." (Ibid)
This fact was not lost on John Kerry's committee in the U.S.Congress:
The evidence confirms that the CIA was protecting this trade during the Duvalier era as well as during the military dictatorship (1991-1994). In 1987, Senator John Kerry as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Narcotics, Terrorism and International Operations of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee was entrusted with a major investigation, which focused on the links between the CIA and the drug trade, including the laundering of drug money to finance armed insurgencies. "The Kerry Report" published in 1989, while centering its attention on the financing of the Nicaraguan Contra, also included a section on Haiti:
"Kerry had developed detailed information on drug trafficking by Haiti’s military rulers that led to the indictment in Miami in 1988, of Lt. Col. Jean Paul. The indictment was a major embarrassment to the Haitian military, especially since Paul defiantly refused to surrender to U.S. authorities.. In November 1989, Col. Paul was found dead after he consumed a traditional Haitian good will gift—a bowel of pumpkin soup...
The U.S. senate also heard testimony in 1988 that then interior minister, Gen. Williams Regala, and his DEA liaison officer, protected and supervised cocaine shipments. The testimony also charged the then Haitian military commander Gen. Henry Namphy with accepting bribes from Colombian traffickers in return for landing rights in the mid 1980’s.
It was in 1989 that yet another military coup brought Lt. Gen. Prosper Avril to power... According to a witness before Senator John Kerry’s subcommittee, Avril is in fact a major player in Haiti’s role as a transit point in the cocaine trade." ( Paul DeRienzo, Haiti’s Nightmare: The Cocaine Coup & The CIA Connection, Spring 1994, http://globalresearch.ca/articles/RIE402A.html )
The names have changed, but the business has remained the same.
More: The Right Testicle of Hell: History of a Haitian Holocaust
Blackwater before drinking water
by Greg Palast for The Huffington Post - Sunday 17 January 2010
1. Bless the President for having rescue teams in the air almost immediately. That was President Olafur Grimsson of Iceland. On Wednesday, the AP reported that the President of the United States promised, "The initial contingent of 2,000 Marines could be deployed to the quake-ravaged country within the next few days." "In a few days," Mr. Obama?
2. There's no such thing as a 'natural' disaster. 200,000 Haitians have been slaughtered by slum housing and IMF "austerity" plans.
3. A friend of mine called. Do I know a journalist who could get medicine to her father? And she added, trying to hold her voice together, "My sister, she's under the rubble. Is anyone going who can help, anyone?" Should I tell her, "Obama will have Marines there in 'a few days'"?
4. China deployed rescuers with sniffer dogs within 48 hours. China, Mr. President. China: 8,000 miles distant. Miami: 700 miles close. US bases in Puerto Rico: right there.
5. Obama's Defense Secretary Robert Gates said, "I don't know how this government could have responded faster or more comprehensively than it has." We know Gates doesn't know.
6. From my own work in the field, I know that FEMA has access to ready-to-go potable water, generators, mobile medical equipment and more for hurricane relief on the Gulf Coast. It's all still there. Army Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré, who served as the task force commander for emergency response after Hurricane Katrina, told the Christian Science Monitor, "I thought we had learned that from Katrina, take food and water and start evacuating people." Maybe we learned but, apparently, Gates and the Defense Department missed school that day.
7. Send in the Marines. That's America's response. That's what we're good at. The aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson finally showed up after three days. With what? It was dramatically deployed -- without any emergency relief supplies. It has sidewinder missiles and 19 helicopters.
8. But don't worry, the International Search and Rescue Team, fully equipped and self-sufficient for up to seven days in the field, deployed immediately with ten metric tons of tools and equipment, three tons of water, tents, advanced communication equipment and water purifying capability. They're from Iceland.
9. Gates wouldn't send in food and water because, he said, there was no "structure ... to provide security." For Gates, appointed by Bush and allowed to hang around by Obama, it's security first. That was his lesson from Hurricane Katrina. Blackwater before drinking water.
10. Previous US presidents have acted far more swiftly in getting troops on the ground on that island. Haiti is the right half of the island of Hispaniola. It's treated like the right testicle of Hell. The Dominican Republic the left. In 1965, when Dominicans demanded the return of Juan Bosch, their elected President, deposed by a junta, Lyndon Johnson reacted to this crisis rapidly, landing 45,000 US Marines on the beaches to prevent the return of the elected president.
11. How did Haiti end up so economically weakened, with infrastructure, from hospitals to water systems, busted or non-existent - there are two fire stations in the entire nation - and infrastructure so frail that the nation was simply waiting for "nature" to finish it off?
Don't blame Mother Nature for all this death and destruction. That dishonor goes to Papa Doc and Baby Doc, the Duvalier dictatorship, which looted the nation for 28 years. Papa and his Baby put an estimated 80% of world aid into their own pockets - with the complicity of the US government happy to have the Duvaliers and their voodoo militia, Tonton Macoutes, as allies in the Cold War. (The war was easily won: the Duvaliers' death squads murdered as many as 60,000 opponents of the regime.)
12. What Papa and Baby didn't run off with, the IMF finished off through its "austerity" plans. An austerity plan is a form of voodoo orchestrated by economists zomby-fied by an irrational belief that cutting government services will somehow help a nation prosper.
13. In 1991, five years after the murderous Baby fled, Haitians elected a priest, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who resisted the IMF's austerity diktats. Within months, the military, to the applause of Papa George HW Bush, deposed him. History repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce. The farce was George W. Bush. In 2004, after the priest Aristide was re-elected President, he was kidnapped and removed again, to the applause of Baby Bush.
14. Haiti was once a wealthy nation, the wealthiest in the hemisphere, worth more, wrote Voltaire in the 18th century, than that rocky, cold colony known as New England. Haiti's wealth was in black gold: slaves. But then the slaves rebelled - and have been paying for it ever since.
From 1825 to 1947, France forced Haiti to pay an annual fee to reimburse the profits lost by French slaveholders caused by their slaves' successful uprising. Rather than enslave individual Haitians, France thought it more efficient to simply enslave the entire nation.
15. Secretary Gates tells us, "There are just some certain facts of life that affect how quickly you can do some of these things." The Navy's hospital boat will be there in, oh, a week or so. Heckuva job, Brownie!
16. Note just received from my friend. Her sister was found, dead; and her other sister had to bury her. Her father needs his anti-seizure medicines. That's a fact of life too, Mr. President.
Through our journalism network, we are trying to get my friend's medicines to her father. If any reader does have someone getting into or near Port-au-Prince, please contact Haiti@GregPalast.com immediately.
Urgently recommended reading - The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L'Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution, the history of the successful slave uprising in Hispaniola by the brilliant CLR James.
Author's Website: http://www.gregpalast.com/
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