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jeudi 4 août 2016

JOCELERME PRIVERT ET JEAN BERTRAND ARISTIDE

Haïti se rappellera pendant longtemps ce 14 février 2016.
Cette date ne sera plus uniquement cette journée dédiée à l’amour et aux amoureux. Elle restera dans les anales la date des élections indirectes pour combler une vacance présidentielle de fin de mandat. Une situation inédite donc sans provision dans les pages de la Constitution. Le récit serait trop long pour expliquer comment on a pu aboutir à une pareille situation.
Ceux qui suivent avec assiduité l’actualité haïtienne se passeront de cette introduction. Pour ceux qui se trouvent entrain de lire ce texte sans avoir été intéressé par Haïti, je ferai un résumé le plus succinct possible. Ce qui est déjà assez compliqué dans le cas d’Haïti car chaque fois qu’il est nécessaire de remonter à la genèse d’un problème il semble qu’il faut aller à la genèse de cette nation en faillite.
En fait le président dont le mandat a pris fin le 7 Février dernier avec une exigence de passer la main à un autre président élu démocratiquement à l’issue des élections présidentielles libres, crédibles , inclusives et transparentes dont il avait la responsabilité. Mais avant les joutes présidentielles, d’autres échéances électorales prévues pendant le quinquennat ont été carrément oubliées. Michel Martelly n’en n’a organisé aucune.
Avec un parlement caduc il a pris son pied à gouverner par décret. Il comptait sur les élections présidentielles et législatives de cette année, avec la bénédiction/indifférence de la communauté internationale pour choisir son successeur à qui il passerait la bande présidentielle.
Ce qu’il n’avait pas prévu arriva. Malgré une insistance téméraire et menaçante de la communauté internationale, l’opposition rendit impossible la poursuite et la conclusion du processus électoral.
Les forces démocratiques venaient de gifler de plein fouet l’ensemble de la communauté internationale pour qui stabilité rime avec passation de pouvoir entre un président élu à un autre. Peu importe dans quelles conditions. Les standards sont tellement rabaissés en Haïti que ce qui est inacceptable ailleurs est célébré en Haïti avec Caviar et Champagne !
Toujours est-il que le 7 Février arriva sans président élu. Et il fallait bien trouver une solution car la gestion d’un pays est constante et permanente. Le quinquennat de Martelly s’est écoulé sans que son administration n’ait pensé à aucune institution.
On sait bien qu’en théorie le pouvoir exécutif s’exerce par une structure triangulaire composée du pouvoir exécutif personnifié dans le binôme présidé de la République /Premier Ministre, le pouvoir législatif et le pouvoir judiciaire.
Au sept février 2016, aucun de ces trois pouvoirs jouissait d’un fonctionnement normal capable de lui accréditer une légitimité pour prendre le contrôle de la nation.
En fait Monsieur Evans Paul premier ministre est considéré comme un premier ministre de facto car il a été nommé comme premier ministre d’un faux consensus ou de connivence pour une énième sortie de crise.
Le pouvoir législatif venait à peine de se reconstituer dans une ultime démarche du gouvernement pour valider les résultats des élections contestées alimentant la grogne d’une grande partie de la population.
Le pouvoir judiciaire est lui aussi bancal et peu fonctionnel car Martelly n’avait pas procédé à des nominations surtout au niveau de la Cour de cassation. Quand il a fallu trouver une solution de sortie de crise, le parlement récemment intronisé devint l’institution regroupant plusieurs identités et sensibilités politiques, se vit attribuer une étiquette de représentativité.
Le Parlement ne demandait pas mieux car certains élus sont contestés et pensent se mettre à l’abri ou en position pour négocier, avec cette prise de pouvoir. A partir de ce moment, comme l’avait fait les Forces Armées d’Haïti au départ de Jean-Claude Duvalier, cette prise de pouvoir s’est assimilée à un coup d’état dans la mesure où on peut considérer qu’il s’est accaparé du pouvoir de façon absolue et exclusive, sans tenir compte des forces politiques ni de la population qui ont fait échec au plan de Martelly et poussé à l’annulation du processus électoral.
Dans des circonstances particulières Monsieur Jocelerme Privert président du sénat haïtien se porta candidat au poste de Président Provisoire et se fit élire le 14 Février 2016. Cet ancien fonctionnaire de l’administration lavalas de Jean Bertrand Aristide qui, à la chute de ce dernier fit de la prison, scelle avec cette élection non seulement une victoire personnelle et individuelle mais aussi marque le retour de Lavalas au palais national onze ans plus tard.
Comme preuve infaillible circule une jolie photo de famille avec l’ex première dame de la République Madame Mildred Trouillot Aristide et Madame Maryse Narcisse candidate du parti aux élections inachevées.
Ce retour de Lavalas claironne à raison par divers secteurs et acteurs de la vie politique haïtienne a permis des scénarios des plus improbables dont une action de l’actuel Président qui viserait un retour de Jean Bertrand Aristide au pouvoir avec: - Le renvoi du parlement Création d’un CEP lavalaso-compatible
- Des élections parlementaires qu’emporterait avec une majorité absolue la mouvance Lavalas
- Modification de la Constitution
- Nouvelles élections avec Aristide comme candidat
Prise de but en blanc, on serait tenté de qualifier cette réflexion d’utopie caractérisée.
Cependant j’ai l’habitude de dire qu’en Haïti et l’imaginable comme l’inimaginable peuvent devenir réels. Tout dépend en effet de celui qui imagine ou cesserait d’imaginer !Il est vrai que l’aboutissement d’un tel projet relève d’une prouesse d’une envergure telle qu’elle ferait intervenir des actions et des comportements aujourd’hui difficilement acceptables.
Ma réflexion sur ce scénario se porte sur les deux protagonistes : JOCELERME PRIVERT ET JEAN BERTRAND ARISTIDE… (A SUIVRE)
Dr Jonas Jolivert

L’ILLUSIONISME DÉMOCRATIQUE EN DEDANS ET EN DEHORS DU LAND OF FREE

La démocratie se définit en fonction des systèmes et des individus. C’est justement mon approche personnelle de ce concept puisque j’ai fait le choix délibéré se ne pas recourir aux définitions classiques des dictionnaires et des encyclopédies.
Je refuse aussi de faire usage d’une citation quelconque prêtée à ce sujet de peur de ne pas la plaquer sans tenir compte du contexte de sa genèse.
Partant de ce principe on peut admettre que les systèmes démocratiques présentent des variantes dont il faut tenir compte si on se jugeait apte à les jauger ou les qualifier.
J’ai toujours en tête cet épisode de l’histoire cachée d’Haïti révélée sournoisement dans la collection du bicentenaire de notre indépendance par le professeur Jean Julien en rapport avec l’élection de François Duvalier.
D'après le chercheur, François Duvalier aurait appelé aux comices pour renouveler le parlement haïtien. Chaque bulletin de vote portait en bas de page en guise de signature un « François Duvalier Président de la République ». Après le vote, lors de la diffusion des résultats de ces élections législatives, le pays a été surpris par la proclamation de François Duvalier plébiscité comme président de la République avec cent pour cent des votes. A un journaliste français qui lui posa quelques temps après des questions sur cette façon erronée de se faire élire il eut à dire qu’il a été élu démocratiquement à l’haïtienne et qu’il ne fallait pas confondre cette démocratie avec la version occidentale.
Considérée de façon simple et sommaire la démocratie s’oppose à la dictature.
A un moment de la durée, alors que le communisme s’opposait au capitalisme, les américains assuraient la promotion de la démocratie comme le système capable de garantir les libertés. Et cette rhétorique se répandit en Amérique avec la prolifération de dictatures militaires chapeautées et choyées par les américains au nom de cette liberté. La formule paraissait simple : Passer par les dictatures (militaires) pour accéder à la démocratie ensuite. Nous vivions donc l’époque des coups d’état financés ou supportés ou acceptés si et seulement si la menace communiste pouvait être suggérée.
La configuration politique du monde suivait ce même courant avec l’émergence des blocs des pour des contre et des non-alignés.
Avec l’effondrement du bloc soviétique et de la chute du mur de Berlin comme étendard de victoire de la guerre froide ressentie comme celle du « Good over Evil », l’installation progressive de régimes civils en Amérique, la démocratie à l’américaine avait vaincu. Elle pouvait maintenant s’exporter vers l'Afrique ou vers l’orient où les européens font figures de petits bras.
Tout allait bien .Tout va bien. On est la seule grande et première puissance du monde.
Peu de gens s’accordent le temps de regarder ce qui se passe au sein même de la société américaine qui célèbre de grands noms et de grandes avancées. On ne se demande pas pourquoi quelqu’un qui naît Cassius Clay pense à se convertir et se faire appeler Mohamed Ali. Pourquoi on se convertit à l’islam pour retrouver une certaine identité et se retrouver ; pourquoi au lieu de John ou Johnson on se fait appeler Tupac Shakur …
Il a fallu les secousses du 11 septembre pour un semblant de réveil mais là encore l’Amérique est partie en guerre contre ses ennemis de l’extérieur en négligeant ses vieux démons, ses pires ennemis qui sont et qui ont toujours été de l’intérieur.
Leurs nouvelles croisades se sont soldées par l’élimination physique de ces individus étiquetés comme symboles du mal à l’américaine alors qu’ils demeurent aveuglés par leurs incapacités de reconnaître en cette pieuvre multi-céphale à tentacules profondes et nombreuses se reproduisant sous leurs nez.
La réalité de cette société malade mise à une à travers de multiples manifestations est encore faussement interprétée poussée par la volonté immuable du stablishment qui œuvre et qui ne jure que pour perpétuer le statut quo. Quand il laisse transparaître un essai ressemblant à un « jeter du leste », ça correspond plutôt à faire pousser un ou deux arbres ayant la vertu et la mission de plutôt cacher la forêt.
Mais les griffes du système restent aussi acérées prêtes à reprendre le peu de privilège concédé.
Ainsi les batailles restent toujours d’actualité malgré les victoires sournoises et souvent surévaluées.
D’où la nécessité d’un « black lives matter » après Black Power, Malcom X, Martin Luther King et Rosa Parks. Ou la justification d’un « Blue lives matter » malgré un Obama.
Pendant ce temps sur le plan politique il y a de quoi perdre son latin. La plus grande nation du monde avec son bipartisme a récemment aligné des présidents de légende surtout issus dans le camp conservateur avec en tête de liste et le recul, Ronald Reagan ce piètre acteur devenu grand Président et un Bush fils se passant de présentation.
De mon poste d’observateur désintéressé, je ne voudrais pas me lancer dans une évaluation des présidences démocrates ou républicaines. Toujours est-il que les pays développés sont assimilables à un train en marche dans lequel un conducteur monte à bord pour rassurer les gens qui auraient peur de savoir que le contrôle est assuré par un système de pilotage automatique et que le chef d’état fait plutôt office de figurant.
Je ne suis pas sûr qu’un américain puisse établir les différences perçues dans sa vie pendant l’administration Obama et pendant celle de Bush fils.
Le pilotage systématique est représenté par ce stablishment dont l’état d’âme est assujetti à des intérêts très puissants.
A force de ne pas voir en intramuros, l’Amérique est entrain d’offrir au monde un spectacle hideux, et affolant pour certain dans ces élections mettant face à face deux candidats impopulaires issus de deux partis politiques qui ne répondent plus à la réalité du pays.
Le parti Républicain, une institution détentrice d’une certaine vision des USA, s’est fait démembré par un individu digne des shows de téléréalité dont le seul mérité est d’être considéré comme quelqu’un d’important là où l’importance se calcule en millions de dollars.
Les choses ne sont pas plus nettes dans l’autre camp qui a ouvert son show avec l’étalage de pratiques douteuses ayant porté préjudice à un candidat qui semblait vouloir se dresser contre le stablishment et le statu quo. Résultat des courses le choix se porte sur Clinton tandis que la fraction représentée par l’autre candidat à l’investiture du parti refuse de reverser les votes dans l’escarcelle de la fille cooptée par le système.
En fin de compte, les américains ont eu droit à deux semaines de shows grandioses du style NBA All-Star Game ou Super Ball pendant lesquels les deux camps se sont arrangés les uns par le franc parler conservateur les autres par la bonhommie caractéristique des beau parleurs pour laisser comme tache à l’opinion publique de déterminer lequel des deux candidats serait le moins pire.
Ce que je n’ai su que ce matin c’est qu’il existe un troisième candidat sérieux marginalisé comme une fatalité par la polarisation abusive de l’activité politique à qui un sondage aurait attribué 12% des intentions de vote. Devant tout ça, au moment où le monde devient de moins en moins sécurisé avec la montée en puissance d’inadaptés et de non intégrés qui ont perdu même l’instinct de conservation, quand on considère que l’un des deux sera à la tête de la plus grande puissance de la terre, il est logique de perdre son optimisme et de se dire que la démocratie à l’américaine longtemps présentée comme l’objectif à atteindre s’est transformée en illusionnisme démocratique.
Et que le très haut ait pitié des terriens !
Jonas Jolivert 04/08/2016

Haitian-American Romantic Comedy FOREVER YOURS Screens Tonight in Newark

Haitian-American director Patrick Ulysse / UNIMIX Films 2015 feature release "Forever Yours" will be honored and screened at two separate events in Newark, New Jersey tonight, August 3, 2016.
The romantic comedy will first receive the "Honorable Mention - Long Form Narrative" Paul Robeson Award from the recent Newark Black Film Festival (NBFF) at a presentation at the Newark Museum (49 Washington Street ) at 4:30pm. A screening of the 105-minute film - along with the other NBFF Robeson award winners - will then take place at 7:30pm at CityPlex 12, (360 Springfield Ave.) in Newark.
Both events are free to the public but pre-registration is required for the reception. To register, call 973.596.6544, or email at rsvp@newarkmuseum.org.
http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwtv/article/Haitian-American-Romantic-Comedy-FOREVER-YOURS-Screens-Tonight-in-Newark-20160803

Ex Haiti leader won’t cooperate with Dominican Republic ‘Felix-gate’ probe

Santo Domingo.- Former Haiti president Michel Martelly has rejected a request by Haiti Senate president Ronald Larèche to provide information "deemed useful" to the ongoing investigation over the use of Petrocaribe funds and from other foreign sources, including Dominican senator Felix Bautista.
In a missive from aides, Martelly strong rejects the request and protests alleged "insinuations" in the letter sent July 28, on funds received of any amount, from entities or persons at some point. "We must remember that the rules dictated by the Constitution don’t give the President any allocation in the management of State funds."
"He denies that attempt at accusations against Martelly personality and reputation and reserves his rights," the missive says, and adds that the Senate probe "needs to be placed above partisan motivations."
The investigation also includes reported deposits of millions of dollars by Bautista for Martelly’s bid for the presidency, who once elected, secured lucrative public works contracts for the lawmaker’s companies.
http://www.dominicantoday.com/dr/local/2016/8/3/60195/Ex-Haiti-leader-wont-cooperate-with-Dominican-Republic-Felix-gate-probe

It Is Not “Ridiculous” To Reject Hillary; It Is Not Undemocratic To Disrupt The DNC

in World — by Kieran Kelly — August 4, 2016
In a post on Aotearoa’s The Daily Blog, a supposedly “leftist” blogger, Chris Trotter, took “Bernie’s die-hard supporters” to task for being “ridiculous”. He was endorsing Sarah Silverman’s words, but after some inconsequential waffle, he took it a bit further: “That makes the ‘Bernie or Bust’ crowd something much more than ridiculous, Sarah, it makes them dangerous.”
Trotter is not alone in this sentiment, but it is highly arrogant to presume to criticise without showing any insight or seeming to know much about the subject at all. Not only is the disruption and protest valid, the circumstances that lead them to it have a significance even broader than this US general election. Trump v. Clinton is the Alien vs. Predator election. Those who refuse to reject the two-party system agree that they prefer Predator, but they disagree about which candidate that is. Meanwhile a growing number of people, with varying levels of politeness, are trying to get them to realise that Alien and Predator are both aliens and both predators. But this predicament facing US voters is to some extent faced everywhere that neoliberalism holds sway, it is just more scary and funny when you put it in the deranged context of US electoral politics.
In my country, as fellow Kiwi Patrick Gower explained to Democracy Now!, we have a “morbid fascination” with the political rise of Donald Trump, but our media have been much kinder to Hillary Clinton. I can only liken the phenomenon to US news media reporting on Israel which is far more obsequious and uncritical than Israel’s own media. I don’t know why our media gloss over the faults, weaknesses, scandals and crimes of Clinton, but they do. They also followed a script in which Bernie Sanders was a wannabe spoiler, threatening to hand the USA over to Trump by prolonging his primary campaign and splitting the Democrats (a narrative similar to that in which Nader is blamed for giving the 2000 election to Bush).
In reality, if you look for them even from half a world away, there are clear reasons why Clinton is so unpopular with the people of the USA. In fact, she and Trump currently have equal pegging in dislike with both having “unfavourable” responses of 58% according to Gallup. No past Democrat or Republican candidate “comes close to Clinton, and especially Trump, in terms of engendering strong dislike.” In ordinary circumstances neither Clinton nor Trump would be electable with that level of public disdain. The very fact that either could become POTUS is purely because they face each other.
These are strange times. We should reflect on the fact that each party can afford to put forward such a loser of a candidate only because both parties are doing so at the same time. Polls clearly showed that Bernie Sanders would have been able to beat Trump overwhelmingly in the popular vote (despite the vagaries of the electoral college system, this is historically reliable as an indicator of who will win ). Even though they come many months before the election these polls are not just an irrelevance and they probably even understate the advantage Sanders would have had over Trump. Like Clinton, and unlike Sanders, Trump is embroiled in ongoing scandals (over taxes, business practices and child rape allegations) that would in ordinary circumstances have made a presidential campaign highly problematic. Moreover, his campaigning style is key to his base of supporters, but the same theatrics and incendiary rhetoric inevitably make most people dislike him all the more. The only thing that keeps Trump in the race is Clinton, and vice versa.
Instead of feeling entitled to lecture and scold from afar, Chris Trotter should have taken the time to engage with the substance behind the discontent of Sanders delegates (not to mention the masses of protesters on the streets of Philadelphia, far greater in number than those protesting the RNC in Cleveland). To be “ridiculous” or even “dangerous”, as Trotter claims, the dissident Democrats would have to have no grounds to contest the legitimacy of Clinton’s selection as Democratic presidential candidate, no grounds to contest the legitimacy of the dominance of the two main parties in the electoral process, and no grounds to reject Clinton as morally unacceptable and insupportable as an elected representative. On all three counts those who refuse to accept Clinton have very safe and justifiable grounds
. Clinton’s selection as candidate has been far from democratic. She did not, as Trotter claims, win “fair and square”. There is evidence of systematic fraud in the Democratic primaries (the source is not a peer-reviewed paper, but this Snopes article confirms that there is substance to the claims). Similar findings come from a more recent non-partisan report (written in collaboration with Fritz Scheuren, former President of the American Statistical Association). In addition there has been voter suppression, most significantly in the psychologically and politically important states of California and New York. Then there is the media bias against Sanders (not to mention CNN dramatically biasing the electorate on the eve of the California primary).
Moreover leaked DNC emails clearly show that the primary process was unfair. DNC officials on DNC time were conspiring against a candidate and, by extension, the democratic process itself. How could anyone in good conscience simply brush this off as unworthy of examination? How much these DNC officials biased the process may be up for debate, but the fact that they did cannot be questioned. They were acting in bad faith all along, and decisions such as when and where to debate seemed to favour the Clinton campaign throughout. Politifact fatuously claims that there is no evidence in the DNC emails that they set out to rig the debates, but it is clear that important DNC staffers were willing and able to work to get Clinton the nomination, and her weakness as an orator is well recognised. To ignore these impacts also reeks of bad faith.
Perhaps we should also consider the fact that one of the leaks from Guccifer 2.0 showed that DNC staffers were planning Clinton’s strategy against the GOP “field” of candidates in May of 2015. This means that as far as they were concerned Clinton was already the anointed presidential candidate of their party. They were right: even though Clinton is highly unpopular; had to fight off a Sanders insurgency; and has been plagued by scandals about DNC emails, her own emails, and an FBI investigation, they were right to presume that she would get the nomination. The implications of this are that democracy is not really a factor in Democratic primaries and that insiders do not expect it to be.
And then there is the role of money in US politics. In simple terms, Clinton was given a lot more money than Sanders. According to the BBC in March, Sanders had received large numbers of small donations, but Clinton’s money was mostly from large donations with the finance industry being a crucial source. I would call that undemocratic whichever way you cut it, and while money is so crucial to the US electoral process, it can never ever be called “fair and square”.
Even if the #NeverHillary people did not have every right to reject the Democratic primary process in itself, they would still have grounds to reject it as part of a greater undemocratic system that maintains a duopoly of political power. Third parties are systematically excluded from publicly visible politics by the corporate news media. Social media has allowed third parties make a small amount of headway, just as soapboxes and pamphlets once did for Populists and Socialists, but now, as then, it is far from a level playing field. There is a media “blackout” of third parties. This became an issue in 2012, and it will be an even bigger issue this time. Not only are they quantitatively biased, but there is a qualitative bias in the news media with mentions of third parties being dismissive, mocking or negative. If Trump wins, for example, you can be certain that they will use the spoiler argument about Jill Stein, even though the most clear and direct cause will be the alienation of voters by the DNC’s decision to put forward a right-wing corporate-linked hawkish Clinton-Kaine ticket. And then there is the money thing, because the big corporate interests and billionaire donors have a huge sway in US elections (because of “Citizens United”) and they don’t like independent parties.
Yet the two-party system has never looked more undemocratic, more ridiculous, nor more fragile. The Republican primaries have become some sort of freak show and the party itself seems to teeter on the edge of a descent into a comical mash-up where crass aspirational consumer capitalism collides with Fascism and Torquemada’s Spanish Inquisition. The Democrats, meanwhile, continue a process that dates back to 1968 (though it has changed somewhat) of carefully canvassing their support base to find who would best represent everything that epitomises Democrat ideals, and then trying their best to paint their pro-corporate elitist neoliberal candidate as being something like that person.
The chaos in both parties shows that the chronic malaise of democratic deficit that has been eating away at the US for decades, has entered a terminal phase. Chris Hedges, prophet of doom and hope par excellence, has changed his metaphorical placard by crossing out “The End is Nigh!” and replacing it with “Told You So!”.
People have every right to reject Clinton’s selection and to disrupt this burlesque parody of a democratic process because it is demonstrably undemocratic and because their rights are being violated, but they also have a clear moral claim to reject and disrupt as a matter of conscience. Make no mistake that among other things Clinton is a grade A war criminal with the blood of thousands on her hands. Even as First Lady she took a key role in Operation Desert Fox (an air war, justified with blatant lies, which killed thousands of Iraqis). She was a key exponent of the Libya intervention which, after securing UNSC approval, immediately (and with clear premeditation) exceeded its legal mandate and became a regime change operation. That is the crime of waging aggressive war, the greatest war crime that there is. Libya has been turned into a nightmare that quite literally makes Ghadafi’s period of rule seem like a Golden Age of freedom and prosperity. As Eric Draitser reports, we can now confirm that accusations of atrocities against the Ghadafi regime were lies; that the US intent was always regime change; and that Libya is now a festering sore of instability, ethnic cleansing, terrorism, militia violence, political repression and economic disintegration.
Libya has also been used to ship arms and fighters to Syria, fuelling a civil war which has caused 250,000 deaths. Not only do these arms go to some very brutal people in their own right (from the FSA leader who bit into a dead enemy’s heart or lung in 2013 to the US-backed Islamists who posted video of themselves beheading a 12 year-old boy last week) but, predictably, they have also been a major source of arms for the self-proclaimed “Islamic State”. As for Clinton’s part, Jeffrey Sachs writes that “In 2012, Clinton was the obstacle, not the solution, to a ceasefire being negotiated by UN Special Envoy Kofi Annan. It was US intransigence – Clinton’s intransigence – that led to the failure of Annan’s peace efforts in the spring of 2012….” She supports current US airstrikes in Syria, such as that killed at least 28 civilians just this Thursday (only a week after a nearby strike killed at least 74 civilians). Because the Syrian government has not given permission, these airstrikes are themselves war crimes. Not only are acts such as this crimes, threatening such acts is itself a war crime. Therefore Clinton, who advocates imposing a no-fly zone on Syria, is both advocating and arguably committing a war crime as a central plank of her campaign. Given that military and diplomatic officials reject the plan as unworkable and irrational this is Clinton’s equivalent of Trumps’ wall except that it is also a war crime. She even has a bizarre “Mexico will pay” twist in that she has proposed “sharing” the no-fly zone with Russia. She should be pilloried, but she gets a free pass because people don’t understand what a no-fly zone is. This, in turn, is because they have intentionally been left in the dark in order that they think of a no-fly zone as a passive act, rather than what it is: a violent form of aggressive warfare that requires the destruction of all air defences on the ground as well as the destruction of aircraft.
Another country that owes much suffering and loss of life to Clinton is Honduras. After a coup there, as Adam Johnson of FAIR writes: “Fifteen House Democrats joined in, sending a letter to the Obama White House insisting that the State Department ‘fully acknowledge that a military coup has taken place and…follow through with the total suspension of non-humanitarian aid, as required by law.’ But Clinton’s State Department staunchly refused to do so, bucking the international community and implicitly recognizing the military takeover. Emails revealed last year by the State Department show that Clinton knew very well there was a military coup, but rejected cries by the international community to condemn it.”
Post-coup Honduras has seen the return of right-wing death squads and political murders such as that of Berta Caceres, an activist who, before her death, had herself singled out Clinton as responsible for the coup. Ironically, Clinton’s running mate Tim Kaine frequently refers to his time in Honduras in 1980, decrying the dictatorship without ever acknowledging that it was installed and supported by the US, and showing no shame over sharing a podium with someone who helped destroy democracy and unleash violence there 3 decades later.
But if there is a people that has suffered most at the hands of Hillary Rodham Clinton, it may actually be the people of Haiti. In January of 2011 Hillary Clinton flew into Port-au-Prince to resolve an electoral dispute in this manner: the person who came third in the first round of Presidential elections should be bumped up to 2nd place because the US thinks he should and he should then compete in the run-off election. That is how Michel Martelly came to be President of Haiti. After 3 years the terms of the parliament’s deputies all ended, with Martelly refusing to hold elections. He ruled for a year by decree (without the international news media seeming to care in the slightest) before holding elections that were so fraudulent that they were scrapped after 8 months (in June). New elections are set for October of this year.
All of this was happening in a country tortured by an earthquake in 2010 that killed 220,000; a UN “stabilisation” mission, MINUSTAH, that acts more like a hostile violent occupying force; a cholera epidemic brought by MINUSTAH that has killed thousands; rampant corruption; and brutal political violence against the poor and the left. Meanwhile, Bill Clinton was put in charge of a much of the overseas construction funds and Hillary announced that they would test “new approaches to development that could be applied more broadly around the world.”
Instead of rebuilding Haiti it was decided to “rebrand” Haiti. After 5 years $13.5 billion of aid had been spent with little or no assistance being given to those affected. The money is systematically disbursed in ways that make the poor poorer and the rich richer. It goes to line the pockets of US contractors. It maintains a privileged class of NGO executives who wield regnal rights (those usually reserved for the sovereign) as if they were feudal lords. It goes on constructing enterprises that destroy farms and small enterprises to return only a pittance in slave wages (incidentally, during Clinton’s time heading the State Department, US embassy staff opposed a minimum wage rise and cables released by Wikileaks in 2011 show that they helped block a law passed unanimously in Haiti’s parliament raising minimum wage from $US0.24 to $US0.61).
“Reconstruction” money also gets spent on luxury facilities for the rich on the theory (or rather the pretext) that poor homeless people will be able to get jobs. The US Red Cross raised $500 million for Haiti and only built 6 permanent houses, (note: this is not the International Red Cross, but rather the US organisation which also gained notoriety and condemnation for their response to Hurricane Sandy).
Meanwhile connected people from the US have found that Haiti is “open for business” (the actual slogan promoted by Clinton), with natural wealth to plunder and cheap labour to exploit. Among them is Hillary Clinton’s brother Tony Rodham, whose company scored a “sweetheart” concession to mine gold that had not been given for 50 years. The mining threatens to inflict severe environmental and humanitarian consequences. So when Clinton castigates Trump for ripping-off small businesses and workers, as she did in her acceptance speech, just bear in mind that her corruption hits people who are even more vulnerable. Like the no-fly zone issue she gets away with it because nobody knows about Haiti.
These are just some of the moral grounds on which people can legitimately refuse to support Hillary Clinton. Others have been highlighted by Black Lives Matter, often dating back to Bill Clinton’s terms as President. She was supportive of welfare reform, the drug war, and justice reform which all led to the current neoliberal security state. Complementing this are her ties to Wall Street, her immense wealth, her obscene speaking fees, and her clear political expediency and flexibility on issues that should be matters of conscience. Any real leftist should loathe Clinton in the same way that they would loathe Tony Blair and George Bush. They are a new aristocracy that have proven that they will steal and kill. These are all warmongering neoliberal neoconservative neofeudalist neofascists and it is time we finally understood that none of those labels is in conflict with any other of those labels. People like Trotter have an authoritarian streak that makes him far more offended by those who try to make themselves heard by disruption from below, then he does by a stinkingly corrupt decadent system that is far more offensive. His tone suggests that he views himself as being well above the ill-behaved rabble as if, despite his evidently ignorant and vulgar apprehension of the issues, he has some paternal wisdom. It is not a good look, but he is hardly the only example of his species abroad. He also has prior form: in 2007 when armed police terrorised an entire rural community with “anti-terror” raids on Māori and anarchist activists, he wrote “it wasn’t the actions of the police that provoked my fury, but of those who’d forced their hand.”
And yet, Hillary Clinton and the undemocratic behaviour of the “Democratic” party are not the only things that make disobedience and disruption a legitimate response. The Democratic National Convention showed extremely disturbing signs of militarist nationalism and fanatical fervour. Eddie Glaude described it as “retooling Ronald Reagan’s morning in America, the shining city on the hill”. That day a 4-star General marched out to a military drum-roll proclaiming Clinton’s credentials as a war leader. He scowled and yelled, probably trying to look like Churchill, but actually ending up looking more authentically Mussoliniesque than Trump: “To our enemies; we will pursue you as only America can. You will fear us!”.
And then there was the unforgettable end of Joe Biden’s speech. Long considered a non-entity only distinguished by his blinding teeth, Biden became a man possessed: a fist-pumping spittle-flecked vessel for the spirit of GI Joe and John Wayne: “We are America! Second to none. And we own the finish line. Don’t forget it! God bless you all, and may god protect our troops. Come on. We’re America! Thank you.”
Most significant of all was the moment that many considered the highlight of the entire conference. The crowd erupted when Khizr Khan, the father of a GI who died in the illegal and immoral occupation of Iraq, rhetorically asked Trump: “Have you even read the US constitution?” And then proffered his own copy from the left-hand shirt pocket (next to the heart).
Judging from the response on twitter Khan’s act was adored by nearly everyone, and that itself should be frightening because the moment carried many implications, and not one of them is good. Firstly we need to recognise that this is a ritual gesture popularised by the nationalistic right-wing Tea Party movement and linked in the public mind to that ideology. Secondly, as the US-Iraqi activist and writer Dahlia Wasfi commented: “the message that a ‘good Muslim’ is one who kills for US empire, oil, and Israel is no less offensive to me than whatever Trump has to say about Muslims or Islam.” Thirdly this is a type of disingenuous appropriation of Islam equivalent to greenwashing, pinkwashing or femiwashing. Even Piers Morgan tweeted: “Something very distasteful about Hillary using Khans as political pawns vs Trump given she’s partly responsible for their son’s death”. Fourthly it signifies that in the space of just 8 years, the Democratic Party has gone from viewing the Iraq War as a “war of choice” (which has connotations, if noticeably inexplicit ones, of immorality and illegality) to viewing the Iraq War as a fight to protect US freedoms.
The entire DNC was so nationalistic and militaristic that the actor and activist Margot Kidder was evidently driven to publish a cri de coeur in Counterpunch: she begins “the words are gagging my throat and my stomach is twisted and sick and I have to vomit this out”, and ends: “And there you all are tonight, glued to your TVs and your computers, your hearts swelled with pride because you belong to the strongest country on Earth, cheering on your Murderer President. Ignorant of the entire world’s repulsion. You kill and you kill and you kill, and still you remain proud.” My question is this: if Margot Kidder can see this clearly from within the belly of the beast (well, Montana), how can Chris Trotter, an Aotearoan and putative leftist, be such a blithe apologist for a mass-murderer like Hillary Clinton.
In all I have written I have focussed on morals and reasons of principle. They alone should make it clear that only thing that is “ridiculous” is the conceit of loftily condemning those who refuse to be drawn by fear into supporting the insupportable. I am aware, however, that there are many practical issues I have not dealt with. I am aware that some people will think that US voters, facing the possibility of Trump, do not have the luxury of rejecting Clinton. These are very important issues, because time and again even those who refuse to be chained to the “lesser-of-two-evils” cede the realist high-ground to intellectually and morally compromised dullards; dullards who insist, like broken records stuck in the era of vinyl, that we must play the game and change it from the inside. I do not intend to leave such claims unchallenged, so check back here for Part 2 of this article in which, amongst other things, I will test how strong “chains of rhetorical steel” are (hint: about as strong as chains of rhetorical butter).
Kieran Kelly blogs at On Genocide.
http://www.countercurrents.org/2016/08/04/it-is-not-ridiculous-to-reject-hillary-it-is-not-undemocratic-to-disrupt-the-dnc/

Haitian Mothers of Children Abandoned by UN Peacekeepers Initiate Paternity and Child Support Claims

Press Contact:
Mario Joseph, Av., Managing Attorney, Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI), Mario@ijdh.org, +011 509 2943 2106/07 (Haiti) (speaks French and Kreyol)
Nicole Phillips, Staff Attorney, Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH), Nicole@ijdh.org, +1 510 715 2855 (United States) (speaks English, French and Spanish)
Port-au-Prince, August 3, 2016 – Today, human rights law firm Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) initiated paternity claims to nine United Nations peacekeepers from Uruguay, Argentina and Sri Lanka on behalf of nine Haitian mothers who were forced to take sole responsibility of the child(ren) after being abandoned by the soldiers who fathered them. One of the mothers was 17 years old when she gave birth, which amounts to statutory rape under Haitian law. The mothers ask that the biological fathers assume legal and financial responsibility per a Haitian Decree of September 14, 1983 that authorizes child support claims.
The mothers also served notices on Sandra Honoré, the head of UN peacekeeping mission in Haiti (known by its French acronym “MINUSTAH”), and Pierrot Delienne, Haiti’s Minister of Foreign and Religious Affairs, requesting their cooperation with the paternity claims, including identifying the defendants and releasing DNA tests.
According to Mario Joseph, BAI managing attorney who represents the mothers, “The UN Secretary General adopted an official ‘zero tolerance’ policy in 2003 that prohibits sexual relations between peacekeepers and recipients of UN assistance, as well as the abandonment of children born out of these sexual relationships. Nonetheless, the UN has not taken sufficient measures to assist victims and children or maintain accountability for those who break these rules.”
The paternity claims come on the heels of increasing reports of UN sexual exploitation and abuse by UN peacekeepers in Haiti and other countries, as well as lack of accountability for their acts. The UN has also refused to accept responsibility for injuries MINUSTAH peacekeepers caused by contaminating the water supply in Haiti with cholera, which has so far resulted in 800,000 reported illnesses and over 9000 deaths.
Nicole Phillips, staff attorney with the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti says she hopes these paternity claims will “challenge the UN to comply with its own principles and its promises to better address sexual exploitation and abuse by peacekeepers in Haiti and around the world.”
Joseph cautions that if the peacekeepers responsible, Ms. Honoré and Minister Delienne do not respond within 30 days, the mothers will take legal action in a Haitian court.
Haitian Mothers of Children Abandoned by UN Peacekeepers Initiate Paternity and Child Support Claims

Can Haiti win a medal for the first time since 1928?

Thursday, August 04 2016 by SNTV
Frantz Mike Itelord Dorsainvil is aiming to secure Haiti's first Olympic medal since the 1928 Games in Amsterdam.
It's been nearly 90 years since Haiti earned a medal at the Olympic Games, but swimmer Frantz Mike Itelord Dorsainvil is aiming to break that dry spell.
Haiti's last medal was at the 1928 Games in Amsterdam when Silvio Cator claimed a silver in the men's long jump.
The 25-year-old swimmer who only began to swim competitively six years ago is arguably the most unlikely Olympian on Haiti's small team.
The swimmer, who has never lived abroad unlike many athletes who typically represent the impoverished Caribbean country, trains in an 18-metre pool, instead of an Olympic-sized pool which is 50 metres.
SOUNDBITE: (Creole) Frantz Mike Itelord Dorsainvil, Haitian swimmer going to the Rio Olympics:
"One of the difficulties that I have, is we don't have a Olympic size pool to train for the competitions. I'm training for the 50 and 100 metres but I train in a pool that is 18 metres. This is a huge difficulty."
Swimming barely exists as a sport in Haiti, where there are few pools but Dorsainvil is hoping to change all that.
SOUNDBITE (Creole) Frantz Mike Itelord Dorsainvil, Haitian swimmer going to the Rio Olympics:
"That's the dream of all Olympians, is to go to win. I am ready to go win. I'm ready to fly the flag for our country everywhere we go."
http://www.7msport.com/video/20160804/29091.shtml