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Thread: The Ironies of Haiti (2nd Edition)

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    Default The Ironies of Haiti (2nd Edition)

    Well, I just noticed that my new thread meant to bring to light certain ironies regarding the things DR is often criticized for often happen to be the things for which Haiti is not criticized has been closed. Thanks guys for going with the off topic discussions that caused the closure of such thread. For this reason, this second edition is designed to make the information available, easily reachable, and with zero risk of having the threas die a premature death. In other words, it will be closed to comments, but it will be updated periodically.

    Remember that any graph, article, image, etc that may be bigger than the width of the post, simply right-click and then click on 'open in new tab' and that should make the full image visible.

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    Irony 1: Modern Slavery

    Irony 2: Haiti Rejects Black Diplomats

    Irony 3: More Than 30 Massacres Committed in Haiti in 20th Century

    Disclaimer. I don't want anyone to get the idea that I may be enjoying this. I don't like to talk bad about other people's countries, but I think way too much nonsense has been said about the DR for the benefit of Haitians and Haiti. I think its time to put things in perspective, and that's the purpose of this thread.
    Last edited by NALs; 03-11-2015 at 02:43 AM.

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    Default Irony 1: Modern slavery

    Dominican Republic sometimes is presented as a country that 'enslaves' Haitians and even as the 'slave capital of America' as I once read.

    Yet the reality is that Haiti is actually the enslaver of Haitians because the country ranks first in America and second or third worldwide (depends on the source) in having the most people in conditions of 'modern slavery.'



    Haitians enslaving Haitians like no other group (except two nationalities) of people enslave their own people or others.

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    Default Irony 2: Haiti Rejects Black Diplomats

    This was published in August 1891, perhaps sheds some light into this. The more I pick up on the ironies of Haiti, the more I'm convinced that Haiti's political class and intellectuals criticisms of Dominicans or Dominican society are mere projections. Its almost as if Haiti has historically used attacks on the international image of the DR as a way to divert attention away from similar or identical problems Haiti itself appears to suffer. The end result is that the DR is condemnes internationally for things the world ignores of Haiti.

    This Frederick Douglass is the son of the more well known Frederick Douglass.


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    Default Irony 3: More Than 30 Massacres Committed in Haiti in 20th Century

    It has been fashionable among certain Dominican and foreign intellectuals to remind everyone of the massacre committed by orders of Trujillo. This event is often used as a pressuring mechanism against modern Dominican interests, because it helps reduce Dominican credibility on anything that has to do with Haitians.

    Perhaps that is the reason why not many people are aware that more than 30 massacres, a large number of them committed by the Haitian government against its own people, took place in Haiti during the 20th century. Lets keep in mind that the 19th century is also filled with multiple massacres of Haitians killing Haitians, in additionto the most extensive and devastating massacre that has ever been committed against Dominicans or against a nation on its own soil. In the American continent, the only event that perhaps surpasses the degree of devastation that Dessalines had on the Dominican part of the island is the almost annihilation of Paraguayans that Brazil-Uruguay-Argentina perpetrated on Paraguayan soil (most of Paraguayan men were killed in that event.)

    I'll cite some of the more than 30 massacres committed in Haiti by the Haitian government.

    1957 (June 15-16): The Haitian army killed between several hundred (Leconte, 1999) and three thousand (Pierre-Charles, 1973) supporters of President Fignolé — who was popular among the disenfranchised sectors of the capital city — after having overthrown him and forced him into exile. Most of the victims had lived in the poor neighborhoods of Bel-Air, La Saline and Saint-Martin. General Kebreau, who was responsible for the killings, was nicknamed General Thompson, in reference to the automatic weapons used by his soldiers. Backed by politician François Duvalier, Kebreau proclaimed himself head of the executive branch of government and organized the September 22 elections, later won by Duvalier. It was during this period that the army established the basis for a totalitarian order (Trouillot, 1990: 152).
    * (Pierre-Charles, 1973: 38 and 44; Leconte, 1999: 38)

    1957-1986: François Duvalier, known as Papa Doc, was elected president with the army’s support in 1957 and ruled Haiti until his death in 1971. His son, Baby Doc, then replaced him and ruled until 1986. Papa Doc’s regime, the more brutal of the two, is said to be responsible for 30,000 to 50,000 assassinations and executions.

    1963 (April 26): In Port-au-Prince, macoutes carried out a series of assassinations of the families of alleged opponents to the government after a failed attempt to kidnap Papa Doc’s son Jean-Claude. macoutes typically raided a house of alleged opponents, killed its inhabitants, including elderly people, children and servants, with guns and machetes, before moving to another house of an alleged opponent of the regime. The Benoît, Edelyn and Paris families were exterminated and their bodies left in full view in front of their houses. The Vieux family lost four of its members. Other individuals were killed in the street or while driving their car. The total number of victims was close to a hundred. Several dozens of people were also taken to the Fort-Dimanche prison in Port-au-Prince and were later “disappeared”, a method used afterward by the military regimes in Chile (1973-1989), Argentina (1976-1983) and Brazil (1964-1985). Most of the victims were from the military, social and intellectual elites of the country. The attempted kidnapping had been orchestrated by Clément Barbot, a macoute and former head of the secret services of Papa Doc, to whom he was close.
    *** (Pierre-Charles, 2000: 85-86; Avril, 1999: 146-149; Interviews with witnesses)

    1964 (August): Event known as the “massacre des Vêpres jérémiennes.” In the locality of Jérémie (in the Southwest of the country), army soldiers led by Lt. Abel Jerome, Lt. Sony Borge, Col. Regala and by macoutes Sanette Balmir and St. Ange Bomtemps killed 27 individuals (men, women and children); almost all of them belonged to educated mulatto families. All the perpetrators knew the executed families well. Several families from Jérémie (the Sansericq, Drouin and Villedrouin families) were entirely wiped out. A four-year child, Stéphane Sansericq, was tortured in front of his relatives before being killed. Macoutes Sony Borges and Gérard Brunache extinguished their cigarettes in the eyes of crying children.

    1969 (July 22): Massive execution of left-wing political prisoners, who had been arrested during the previous days and weeks. They were taken from Fort-Dimanche and executed, at night, in Ganthier, a village Northeast of Port-au-Prince, and then thrown into a mass grave.
    * (Pierre-Charles, 2000: 125-129)

    1986 (January 31): Army soldiers led by Colonel Samuel Jérémie killed nearly one hundred people in Léogane (Southwest of Port-au-Prince) during a demonstration of peasants who were (prematurely) celebrating the departure into exile of Jean-Claude Duvalier. (No subsequent reports from international human rights organizations mention this killing).
    * (NCRH, 1986: 27-28)

    1986-1991: According to Pierre-Charles (2000: 208), more than 1,500 people disappeared between 1986 and 1990, most of them under the rule of General Henri Namphy, between March and October 1987.

    1991-1994: The military ruled until September 19, 1994, when US President Clinton ordered the US marines to intervene and reinstall democratically elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. The de-facto regime relied on paramilitary death squads known as FRAPH, which carried out most of the executions and persecution of opponents and alleged opponents. The total number of victims of this 3-year regime varies from 10,000 to 30,000 people according to different sources. Observers note that the poor were the main target of repression, although many well-known figures from the middle class, such as Aristide’s Minister of Justice, Guy Malary, and businessman Antoine Izméry, were also murdered by paramilitary groups.
    Massacres perpetrated in the 20th Century in Haiti - Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence

    Its safe to say that no one kills more Haitians as Haitians do. The single Dominican to have ever killed large numbers of Haitians was of partial Haitian ancestry himself, yet his numbers pale in comparison to what full blooded Haitians did to their own people in the 20th century alone.

    There were many massacres committed in Haiti during the 19th century. When I find sufficient documentation on all of these, they will be posted.

    Anyway, no one talks about these multiple atrocities on Haitian soil, but they sure do love to talk about what happened once in the DR. Lets all wonder why...

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