Christmas in Hell
by John Maxwell

US Policy On Haiti Needs Adjusting, Congresswoman Says

Bon Ane 2008! - Mèm Amou: New Year Message from President Jean Bertrand Aristide from Petroria, South Africa|(in Kreyol) | Dec., 2006 (mp3 audio)

Vaccinate Haiti! and Defamed! -Page 1, - Page 2, Pg. 3, Pg. 4, Pg. 5 and, Pg. 6


Commentary: Haiti, the international scapegoat!

The Revolutionary Potential of Haiti, its creeds, values and struggle



Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent, Lawyer, Performance Poet, Founder and Chair of the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (Photo Gallery/ Carnegie Hall)



It's Neither Hope nor Progress when the International Community is Running Haiti by Marguerite "Ezili Dantò" Laurent, Haitian Perspective

Haitian Americans fault report on spreading AIDS


Three ideals of Dessalines


Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!


The Two Most Common Storylines about Haiti and Haitians ********************
Media Lies and Real Haiti News
U.S. Patterns in Haiti

Jean Jacques Dessalines


To subscribe, write to erzilidanto@yahoo.com
zilibuttonCarnegie Hall
Video Clip
No other national
group in the world
sends more money
than Haitians living
in the Diaspora
Red Sea- audio

The Red Sea

Ezili Dantò's master Haitian dance class (Video clip)

zilibuttonEzili's Dantò's
Haitian & West African Dance Troop
Clip one - Clip two

So Much Like Here- Jazzoetry CD audio clip

Ezili Danto's

to Self

Update on
Site Soley

RBM Video Reel

Angry with
Boat sinking
A group of Haitian migrants arrive in a bus after being repatriated from the nearby Turks and Caicos Islands, in Cap-Haitien, northern Haiti, Thursday, May 10, 2007. They were part of the survivors of a sailing vessel crowded with Haitian migrants that overturned Friday, May 4 in moonlit waters a half-mile from shore in shark-infested waters. Haitian migrants claim a Turks and Caicos naval vessel rammed their crowded sailboat twice before it capsized. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

Dessalines' Law
and Ideals

Breaking Sea Chains

Little Girl
in the Yellow
Sunday Dress

Anba Dlo, Nan Ginen
Ezili Danto's Art-With-The-Ancestors Workshops - See, Red, Black & Moonlight series or Haitian-West African

Clip one -Clip two
ance performance
zilibutton In a series of articles written for the October 17, 2006 bicentennial commemoration of the life and works of Dessalines, I wrote for HLLN that: "Haiti's liberator and founding father, General Jean Jacques Dessalines, said, "I Want the Assets of the Country to be Equitably Divided" and for that he was assassinated by the Mullato sons of France. That was the first coup d'etat, the Haitian holocaust - organized exclusion of the masses, misery, poverty and the impunity of the economic elite - continues (with Feb. 29, 2004 marking the 33rd coup d'etat). Haiti's peoples continue to resist the return of despots, tyrants and enslavers who wage war on the poor majority and Black, contain-them-in poverty through neocolonialism' debts, "free trade" and foreign "investments." These neocolonial tyrants refuse to allow an equitable division of wealth, excluding the majority in Haiti from sharing in the country's wealth and assets." (See also, Kanga Mundele: Our mission to live free or die trying, Another Haitian Independence Day under occupation; The Legacy of Impunity of One Sector-Who killed Dessalines?; The Legacy of Impunity:The Neoconlonialist inciting political instability is the problem. Haiti is underdeveloped in crime, corruption, violence, compared to other nations, all, by Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent
No other national group in the world sends more money than Haitians living in the Diaspora



Jean Jacques Dessalines, said, "I Want the Assets of the Country to be Equitably Divided" and for that he was assassinated.
That was the first coup d'etat, the Haitian holocaust - organized exclusion of the masses, misery, poverty and the impunity of the economic elite - continues (with Feb. 29, 2004 marking the 33rd coup d'etat). Haiti's peoples continue to resist the return of despots, tyrants and enslavers who wage war on the poor majority and Black, contain-them-in poverty through neocolonialism' debts, "free trade" and foreign "investments;" These neocolonial tyrants refuse to allow an equitable division of wealth, excluding the majority in Haiti from sharing in the country's wealth and assets.



Christmas in Hell

Christmas in Hell by John Maxwell, December 29, 2007

Christmas in Jamaica is bad enough. One good thing about Christmas Day is that it means the end of weeks of aural assaults by mindless rhymesters perverting songs of worship to paeans of praise for hucksters of all kinds, from shopkeepers to banks, from auto parts dealers to purveyors of cheap, non-returnable, eminently breakable, non-biodegradable trash tricked out in plastic, tinsel and lead paint to lure innocent children and entrap their parents. And, as a bonus, there are the sound-system parties, which allow you to dance in your own home to music played two miles away.

An Alternative Scenario
If you think this is bad, consider another scenario.

Consider that you are a citizen of another land, one steeped in history – a history of resistance to oppression, a history which includes the first proclamation on Earth that all people were equal, including women and children.

This land, which for convenience we'll call Ayiti, was introduced to Christianity by a bunch of marauding savages bearing swords and caparisoned in the fierce colours of their leader, a Genoese adventurer named Cristobal Colon, aka Christopher Columbus. This character had induced Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand, the monarchs of two Spanish kingdoms –Aragon and Castile – to bet their farms on the discovery of a new route to China, then as now, the fabulous land of magical herbs, spices and other goods which would make life bearable for the inhabitants of Europe, just emerging from the Dark Ages.

Our hero had managed to convince Ferdinand and Isabella on the basis of a map obtained from an African who claimed to know the way to China aka Cipangu. If the Spanish got to Cipangu before their European cousins, great wealth and power would be theirs; all the tea in China would be theirs for the asking, in addition to carpets, silks and luxuries only dreamt of in Europe.

When Columbus' "doom burdened caravels" hove to in Ayiti, the million or so people who welcomed him could never have guessed that they would soon be history. Within thirty years the populations of the West Indies had been so reduced that in the four larger islands now re-christened the Greater Antilles) less than a thousand remained alive in 1519. This is according to the testimony of Bartholomew de las Casas, a Spanish monk who came with the conquistadors and was an eyewitness to the Conquest. Another historian, Gonzalo Oviedo, estimated that of the one million Indians on Ayiti when the Spaniards arrived, less than five hundred remained half a century later– the "natives and … the progeny and lineage " of those who first occupied the land.

‘They died in heaps, like bedbugs …’

In the Caribbean and in Mexico, Peru and Colombia smallpox and other diseases introduced by the Spaniards killed the 'Indians' by the million. Relatively small Spanish expeditions were able to conquer huge empires because the native populations were swept away by diseases to which they had never been exposed and for which they had no immunity.

Toribio Motolina, another Spanish priest, wrote that in most provinces in Mexico "more than one half the population died; in others the proportion was a little less; they died in heaps, like bedbugs."

More than a hundred years after Motolina, a German missionary writing in 1699, said the so-called Indians "die so easily that the bare look and smell of a Spaniard causes them to give up the ghost."

The destruction of the 'American Indian' populations and cultures has meant an incalculable loss to human ethnic and cultural diversity. It was they who gave us words like barbecue, canoe, hammock and hurricane and crops like corn, potatoes, cassava and tomatoes. The people of ancient Egypt, the pyramid builders seem very far away in time; the Olmecs, Maya, Aztecs, and Incas, who also built pyramids and played games very much like basketball, soccer and Jai alai, seem much closer.

To Jamaicans and people of the Caribbean, the sense of loss is almost palpable in relation to the lost civilizations of Africa, destroyed by the slave trade, which, like globalization, set brother against brother, tribe against tribe and nation against nation.

Africa was targeted because the Europeans knew that their own people could not survive for long in the hot, humid, mosquito-ridden Indies and that sugar, replacing gold, as the commodity most likely to make men rich, was too hard a work for them.

Turning to Africa meant the devastation of many ancient civilizations – many disappearing almost without trace, further impoverishing mankind's cultural diversity and robbing Africa of the populations and skills it needed for its own development.

Although the Europeans found large quantities of gold, silver and copper in the "New World’, gold was never as lucrative as sugar and the cotton and rubber extracted from the plantations of the Americas. And nothing was as lucrative as the slave trade.

As Sybille Fischer remarks in her book Modernity Disavowed: “Colonialism in the Caribbean had produced societies where brutality combined with licentiousness in ways unknown in Europe. The sugar plantations in the new World were expanding rapidly and had an apparently limitless hunger for slaves.”

'A wretch like me!'

One of the modern Jamaicans' favourite hymns at funerals is 'Amazing Grace' penned by a slave trader after he retired from the trade, rich and comfortable. It was his way of atoning for his crimes, and perhaps, of saying thanks to God.

Nothing can atone for the misery and degradation imposed on the 25 million or more people transported into slavery or the millions more slaughtered when they fought to avoid capture. Nothing can atone for five hundred years of racist victimization, nor the five hundred years of brutality and dangerous behaviors, beaten, inculcated and burned into the psyches of the enslaved and their descendants.

The inhabitants of Ayiti, now almost all African, like the people of all the enslaved islands and lands of the Americas, were engaged in an unending struggle to destroy slavery.

In Surinam, in Barbados, and Grenada in the United States of America, in Nicaragua and in the Caribbean the slaves rose time after time to break their chains. In Jamaica they had some success. The Maroons fought the much better armed British to a standstill and wrested from them a treaty of non-aggression and non-interference in 1739. It was a treaty soon broken by the British.

Desperation and the will to be free fuelled the Tacky rebellion of 1760. This rebellion dwarfed the Maroon Wars and was an islandwide conspiracy, which lasted six months. The aims of the leaders included driving out the white population, and partitioning Jamaica into principalities in the tradition of the Akan-speaking Koromanti who were at the heart of the rebellion. One of them, a man called Boukman, fled to Ayiti when the rebellion was finally crushed.
There, in Ayiti, he ignited a struggle for freedom, which ended with the expulsion of the last foreign soldiers from Ayisyen soil.

In 1804, after ten years of warfare, the rebel slaves and their free allies defeated the armies of Napoleon (twice), and of Britain and Spain. Dessalines declared Ayiti independent and free and declared the country a refuge from slavery anywhere.

He also pronounced the first known declaration of universal human rights, giving legal equality to all human beings, men, women and children.

It was a hundred and forty four years later, in 1948 that the world caught up with Ayiti in producing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Next December 10, almost exactly a year from now, the world will celebrate the sixtieth anniversary of the United Nation's proclamation of the Universal Declaration.

The preamble to the Declaration is not very well known. It goes like this:
" Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,

, disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts, which have outraged the conscience of mankind;

And the advent of a world, in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,

Whereas, it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law,

Whereas it is essential to promote the development of friendly relations between nations,

Whereas, the peoples of the United Nations have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,

Whereas, Member States have pledged themselves to achieve, in co-operation with the United Nations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms,

Whereas, a common understanding of these rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the full realization of this pledge,

"Now, Therefore, THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY proclaims THIS UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction."

The declaration then proceeds to list the basic principles of the declaration beginning with Article 1, which says that

"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood."

And it continues to explain in Article 2 that

“ Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty”.

The declaration is intended to be universal, as was Dessalines’ declaration in 1804. Unfortunately for us there are billions of people in this world including many in this country, who do not enjoy all the benefits of this universal declaration. But some are much worse off than others. Among those are the people of Iraq, of Palestine and right next door to us, the people of Ayiti, that imaginary place where slavery was abolished by the slaves themselves.

In Ayiti, aka Haiti, these rights and the Universal Declaration do not apply.

Rather like the captured Islamists in neighbouring Guantanamo Bay, a little to their northwest, the Haitians all 8 million of them, live in a concentration camp.

The Haitian version is designed to stifle their freedoms and liberties and engineered to prevent them from being led by leaders of their own choice.
Nearly four years after US Marine were landed there for the third time in a hundred years, the freely elected president of Ayiti is in exile in South Africa. He was kidnapped from the presidential palace by US Marines led by the US Ambassador to Haiti and transported, as "cargo" with his family to the Central African Republic – the American idea of hell on earth. From there he was rescued in a mission led by the black US congresswoman Maxine Waters and TransAfrica founder Randall Robinson. They chartered a plane and headed off to the Central African Republic themselves to bring President Aristide and his wife Mildred back to the Caribbean. It took them hours of negotiating with the country’s dictator to get him to release the Aristides.

President Aristide came to Jamaica where the government felt constrained by tradition and popular sentiment, to welcome him, but found itself unable to resist US pressure to get him out of the Caribbean.

Aristide's sin was to want to fulfill the mission of his ancestors, to build a paradise on the dung heap left behind by Haiti’s colonizers and exploiters.
Nearly four years later a Haitian president is in office but Aristide's and his people’s enemies are in power.

The country is ruled by the US Ambassador, and is policed by a so-called United Nations force – MINUSTAH whose second commander, a Brazilian General killed himself after a friendly chat with leaders of the Haitian elite.

MINUSTAH’s only distinctions are killing a large number of women and children in their pursuit of so-called bandits who seem to be mainly pro-Aristide youth, and the rape and other sexual abuse of young Haitian children, some as young as ten.

A Dread of Black Freedom

From the earliest days as an independent nation the Americans have feared and dreaded Haiti. As an asylum for escaped slaves, it threatened the slave system in the American south. And after France extorted billions of dollars in gold from Haiti in 'compensation' for the loss of capital (slaves) and land, in Haiti, the US lent money to the Haitians to pay the debt and ruined them with the interest.
As I have said before: while arms never subdued Haiti, it was defeated by the power of financiers in a sinister preview of the modern tactics of the IMF and the World Bank.

Despite all the harassment, the 10,000 murders of activists and leaders, the Haitian people, united in the Fanmi Lavalas, have continued to support their leaders and their culture. A few months ago one of their leaders, Dr. Lovinsky Pierre-Antoine, was kidnapped after a meeting with some Americans. He has not been heard from since. A few weeks later another leader, Dr Maryse Narcisse, was kidnapped but released when there was a tremendous howl of Haitian and international outrage that apparently embarrassed the powers that rule Haiti.
And so the Haitians survive, without rights, at the mercy of a United Nations corrupted and intimidated by the power of the United States, Canada and France acting in concert.

The United States, Canada, France and Haiti all signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948.

They all agreed that “… disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts, which have outraged the conscience of mankind and they promised to make the world a more civilized place.

The spectacle of these three self-styled democracies combining to crush the rights and hopes of 8 million poor people is obscene, but perhaps not as revolting as the fact that Haiti's relatives and friends in the Caribbean, Jamaica and the others, but especially Jamaica, can sit and watch the Haitians’ sojourn in Hell as if they were watching a Disney fantasia or a Christmas Pantomime.

Copyright©2007 John Maxwell




US Policy On Haiti Needs Adjusting, Congresswoman Says By Candia Dames, Dec. 31, 2007, The Bahama Journal

The United States’ foreign policy as it regards Haiti needs to be overhauled, according to Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who was the special guest on the JCN programme "Jones and Company", which aired Sunday.

"I think the first thing we all have to do is recognize that Haiti is the poorest in the hemisphere and they need help, and Haiti has been exploited for far too long by too many and I think we can include in all of that Canada, France, the United States etc.," Congresswoman Waters said.

"It has always been seen as a place where someone else can make money off the backs of the people and it has always been supported by major powers in ways that would allow dictators to keep their feet on the necks of the people while other people make money through exports, imports etc."

She said the United States needs a "well intentioned" foreign policy for Haiti that would help the country.

"What we need to do is support Haiti getting its government together, training and development and putting its institutions in place," she said.

"They have to have the court system; they have to have the criminal justice system; they have to have the support for their elections – all of that. Then we have to support rebuilding that infrastructure…and education."

Congresswoman Waters said failure to pay greater attention to Haiti and its needs would mean greater immigration problems for The Bahamas and the United States.

"I think it’s incumbent upon all of us to do that because if we don’t people are going to be fleeing Haiti, looking for what people look for when they don’t have food to eat, they don’t have decent places to live; They’re going to come to The Bahamas; they’re going to try and get into the United States," she said.
"Our policy is not good on Haiti…We have a policy for Cuba that allows Cubans to come into the United States if they put one foot on dry land, but the Haitians are turned back, as you know."

The show’s host, Wendall Jones, suggested that this policy was discriminatory and Congresswoman Waters agreed.

"We need to have a policy that would help Haitians to stay in Haiti because we’re helping to develop Haiti and making it a place where Haitians want to live, and it’s going to take a lot of work," she said.

Congresswoman Waters again expressed regret that Jean Bertrand Aristide – Haiti’s (former) democratically elected president – was overthrown during a rebellion in February 2004.

"People would argue about whether they like the way Mr. Aristide managed his country, but he was elected by the people," she said. "He was a priest that came with the liberation theology. He was a person that spoke to the people in ways that they had never been spoken to before. He spoke their language. And so, he was a threat to the way things have always been."

Mr. Jones pointed out that some Haitians would argue that Mr. Aristide was also oppressive.

Congresswoman Waters acknowledged that this is what some people would say.
But she said, "We have to respect that Mr. Aristide was elected by the people. He had the biggest political support that poor people had ever had in Haiti for a president. Lavalas (his party) was real.

"If in fact Mr. Aristide was not doing what the people wanted it was incumbent upon the people to not re-elect him, to form political parties that would oust the Lavalas-elected president. That’s what democracy is all about…democracy at work is what we all hope for."




Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!

"When you make a choice, you mobilize vast human energies and resources which otherwise go untapped...........If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want and all that is left is a compromise." Robert Fritz

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