Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Criminal overclasses.

"Our Governments Are Haiti's Gangs" (from Chabert)

"Haiti: the mildest hint of criticism" (from Lenin's Tomb)

"Haiti's Bourgeoisie Calls for Blood" (from Haiti Progres):

On Monday, Jan. 16, sweatshop magnate André Apaid's pro-coup "Group of 184" organized a small demonstration of about 200 people outside the headquarters of the United Nations Mission to Stabilize Haiti (MINUSTAH) in the capital's Bourdon district. The action was also supported by the "Group of Democratic Agreement," an alliance of nine political parties taking part in Haiti's upcoming elections, now scheduled for Feb. 7.

A week earlier, Haiti's bourgeoisie had called a general strike to protest the MINUSTAH's "inaction "in the face of the crime wave gripping Haiti (see Haïti Progrès, Vol. 23, No. 44, 1/11/2006). According to bourgeois leaders like Apaid and Haitian Chamber of Commerce and Industry head Réginald Boulos, Haiti's crime all emanates from the capital's giant slum of Cité Soleil, which they claim is infested with "bandits."

"It is necessary that the UN peace-keeping force of MINUSTAH take action against the bandits of Cité Soleil to free the population there, which has been taken hostage," Apaid told Radio Métropole in an interview just before his picket line. "During this gathering in front of the MINUSTAH headquarters, we will send a clear messages to the UN Secretary General and to the Brazilian government that MINUSTAH has to take up its responsibilities vis-a-vis the degradation of the security climate."

The picket, predictably, brought out a number of presidential candidates, such as Serge Gilles of the Fusion of social democrats, Paul Denis of the Organization of Struggling People (OPL), and independent candidate Charles Henri Baker, another sweatshop owner and leader of the "184." The latter read two letters addressed respectively to Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and to Kofi Annan, and then gave them to MINUSTAH personnel.

"We completely support the Group of 184, which has called this picket," said Fusion's spokesman Micha Gaillard. "There must be peace in the head so that fear does not prevent us from going to vote... We agree with civil society [i.e. the bourgeoisie] which questions and wants to force Minustah to take up its responsibilities."

In his letter to Kofi Annan, André Apaid charged that Cité Soleil's "bandits" support "a presidential candidate," a veiled reference to former president René Préval, whose popularity is unrivaled by any of the other 34 candidates. This has "made impossible any true election campaigning," Apaid said.

The day before the picket, Kofi Annan issued an official statement condemning the bourgeoisie's "smear campaign" against the MINUSTAH and his special representative, Juan Gabriel Valdés. "Kofi Annan invites the provisional Haitian government to publicly condemn this smear campaign which aims to discredit the work of the UN in Haiti and which could carry serious consequences for the safety and security of Minustah personnel," the note said. "This campaign of unjustified criticism also threatens the construction of a society based on democratic values and could put in danger the holding of free and fair elections."

Also on Jan. 16, Haiti's National Popular Party (PPN) held a press conference denouncing Apaid and the bourgeoisie for overthrowing Haiti's constitutional government with the US, France and Canada and "leading the country into complete failure."

The PPN's Georges Honorat noted that the bourgeoisie accuses Cité Soleil of being the source of Haiti's rash of kidnappings. But over the holiday season, "more than a dozen kidnappings took place in [the bourgeois district of] Pétionville and not in the vicinity Cité Soleil," Honorat said.
He said that the people of Cité Soleil were not terrorists, but terrorized. The bourgeoisie had enforced their general strike (in fact, a lock-out) a week earlier by a terror campaign of "continuous shootings of automatic weapons" around the capital, thereby "forcing the population to remain in all day," Honorat said.

The PPN noted the complete disarray and confusion surrounding the upcoming elections. Honorat speculated that Washington, if unable to "select" a suitable candidate, will "proclaim Haiti a failed state thereby justifying a more total supervision and occupation."

Calling the upcoming elections a "masquerade,' the PPN warned that "there could be a repeat of November 29, 1987," when soldiers and Tonton Macoutes aborted national elections with bloody massacres. "The PPN urges those holding national identity [voting] cards to not take part in the 'selection/elections' to avoid being victims... Do not go to the slaughterhouse into which the occupiers want to lead you."

Honorat closed by saying that "the population must mobilize in a peaceful way throughout the country to demand the release of all the Lavalas political prisoners and the return of Lavalas political exiles, including President Aristide, for there to be truly democratic, free and honest elections."


Post a Comment

<< Home