The Pendulum Swing Of Black Liberation

In June of last year, I wrote a piece about the call-and-response between movements for Black liberation in the United States and elsewhere, focusing on the upheavals that happened in Sudan in late 2018, and of course the protests that erupted in Minnesota and spread across the country after the murder of George Floyd in May of last year. In this piece, I encouraged all of us to refuse the enclosures of hemisphere, market, nation and language, to embrace urgency and refuse to concede to the divisions presented by nation, market and geography.

This piece focused on the activation of struggles, and less so on the reality that each movement for liberation was met with a deepening repression and political conservatism.

Continue reading

The Fierce Determination Of Ordinary People To Build An Extraordinary World

United States President Joe Biden has suborned 111 countries to attend his Summit for Democracy on December 9–10, ending on Human Rights Day. ‘We welcome all countries, organizations, and individuals to support the goals of the Summit’, the US State Department wrote. However, there are 82 countries that have not been invited, including two large countries that are permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (the People’s Republic of China and Russia) and two small countries from the Caribbean (Cuba and Haiti). In the name of democracy, the US government is pushing its own agenda to consolidate power and further its national interests.

Continue reading

The UN’s Criminal Enterprise And Ecological Catastrophe In Haiti

When we consider the current ecological threat to the earth and its inhabitants, we cannot forget the outsized place of war and empire in exacerbating climate change and enabling environmental catastrophe. The ongoing United Nations occupation of Haiti provides an example. As does the introduction of a cholera epidemic by UN soldiers. Cholera is an extension of the totality of violence – material, political, and ecological – enacted by a presumably humanitarian peacekeeping mission.

Continue reading

Coup Regime Sought To Assassinate Luis Arce

Bolivia’s Interior Ministry has revealed that Colombian mercenaries, who participated in the assassination of President Jovenel Moise in Haiti, entered Bolivia days before the 2020 election. Fernando Lopez, Defense Minister under Jeanine Añez, was in contact with mercenary groups, with whom he intended to carry out a second coup.

Continue reading

Haiti Aided Latinx Independence; Latinxs Return The Favor With Silence

In 1815, Spain’s defeat of Simón Bolívar’s revolutionary army in Venezuela nearly extinguished the dream of independence in South America. After the loss, Bolívar sought political asylum in the only free republic in Latin America: Haiti. At the time, Haiti was a safe harbor for revolutionaries and formerly enslaved Africans. Although the republic made promises to colonial powers that it would not intervene in freedom and independence struggles, Haiti continued to support rebellions, intercepted ships carrying enslaved people, and freed its human cargo. For Haiti, colonialism and slavery anywhere posed a threat to the republic’s own independence and humanity.

Thus, when a defeated Bolívar landed in Port-au-Prince, President Alexandre Pétion understood the significance of the man who led the liberation movement.

Continue reading

Why Is The GEO Group Getting Paid To Fly Deportation Flights To Haiti?

Deportation flights are a big business. Typically these flights are managed by ICE Air Operations – yes, ICE has its own airline. The chain of responsibility runs like this: Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE’s) office of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) is the entity responsible for deporting people. ERO oversees ICE Air Operations. ICE Air Operations owns none of its own planes. So, ICE signs a contract with a private vendor to coordinate removal flights.

The company that has the current contract is Classic Air Charter. For managing ICE Air Operations from October 2017 through the end of September 2022, CAC’s contract is potentially worth $739 million. Classic Air Charters doesn’t actually fly the planes either – that would be too easy.

Continue reading

Let Haiti Breathe – CORE Group Out Of Haiti

On a hot August afternoon, members from Solidarité Québec-Haïti, a group rooted in Canada’s Haitian diaspora community, gathered In front of the Canadian parliament buildings in the capital city of Ottawa. They chanted and waved placards displaying a straightforward but powerful request: “Let Haiti Breathe.”

Haiti could breathe, they argued, if the CORE Group was disbanded, taking its collective boot off of Haiti’s neck, and thus giving the Haitian people a chance to get out of an extended state of crisis.

Canada and the United States are central members of the CORE Group, a group of unelected, unaccountable power brokers in Haiti, that also include representatives from the European Union and Organization of American States.

Continue reading

Haitian Rights Are Migrant Rights

The International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly resolution in December 1990, took the Universal Declaration of Human Rights a step further, and other human rights conventions and treaties by the UN (United Nations) and the ILO (International Labor Organization), as well as the Convention on the Rights of the Child and was intentional to include migrants, both as they actively migrated and as they settled as immigrants, and categorized them as economic migrants, migrant workers, women, children who are particularly discriminated against, and therefore need their own targeted protection instruments that go beyond regions and intra and trans borders.

Continue reading

Black Alliance For Peace Condemns Biden Administration’s Order To Deport Haitians

When a white Fox News reporter used a drone to film the thousands of Haitian and other Black asylum seekers camped beneath a bridge spanning the Rio Grande and linking Del Rio, Texas to Ciudad Acuña, in the Coahuila state of Mexico, he immediately (and deliberately) brought a stereotypical image of Black migration: That of the teeming, African hordes, ready to burst the borders and invade the United States. Such images are as cheap as they are racist. And, typically, they erase the larger question: Why are so many Haitians at the U.S. border?

But before that question could be addressed, the Biden administration struck with a decisiveness not seen throughout its 9-month tenure in office in ordering Haitian refugees—many of them with legitimate asylum claims—to be summarily deported to Haiti.

Continue reading

US Envoy To Haiti Resigns

Exactly two months after his appointment, Dan Foote has submitted his resignation as United States Special Envoy to Haiti, citing a “deeply flawed” US policy toward the nation that includes continued political intervention and the administration’s recent decision to ramp up deportations. “I will not be associated with the United States inhumane, counterproductive decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees,” Foote wrote in his resignation letter, which was sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken on September 22.

The resignation comes as the Biden administration pushes forward with one of the largest mass expulsions of asylum seekers in decades. At least 12 flights have transported an estimated 1,400 individuals from Texas to Haiti in the past four days, and such flights are expected to nearly double throughout the week.

Continue reading

US Border Patrol Agents Whip And Corral Haitian Migrants

Several reporters described the actions of Border Patrol agents mounted on horseback as using the reins of their horses to threaten migrants who had waded across the Rio Grande—which is exceptionally low at this point. The El Paso Times reported Monday that an agent ”swung his whip menacingly, charging his horse toward the men in the river.”

The refugees assembled in a makeshift camp under the freeway bridge on the US side of the river have been crossing back into Mexico to get food and other supplies, rather than risk crossing through lines set up on the US side of the camp by the Border Patrol and Texas state police, who would arrest them and ship them off for immediate deportation.

Continue reading

The Return Of The Marines

A battalion of U.S. Marines from North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune left for Haiti on Wednesday, August 18 under the pretext of aiding the victims of the disasters that struck the departments of Sud, Nippes and Grand’Anse: a 7.2 magnitude earthquake on Saturday, August 14, and heavy rains, winds, and floods from tropical storm Grace which swept through the country, particularly the Grand-Sud, on August 16 and 17, 2021.

The provisional death toll provided by the Civil Protection Agency currently stands at 2,189 and more than 12,000 people have been injured. According to the Agency, the earthquake destroyed more than 7,000 homes and damaged more than 12,000, leaving around 30,000 families homeless. Schools, offices and churches had also been demolished or severely damaged.

Continue reading

Western Powers Undermine Haiti, Venezuela Shows Solidarity

On August 14, Haiti was devastated by a magnitude 7.2 earthquake originating from the southern Tiburon Peninsula, 150 kilometres from the capital, Port-au-Prince.  World leaders issued statements of solidarity, international charities began encouraging donations, and the United Nations started organizing emergency aid funds to assist the country.  Articles on this ongoing tragedy often emphasis two prior catastrophes which have compounded the quake’s impact on the Haitian people: the COVID-19 pandemic and political instability following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse. 

In such analyses, it is taken for granted that Global North countries and the United Nations should lead the international response to the disaster.

Continue reading

Once Again, The Vultures Circle Haiti

During a visit to Haiti in early April, 2010, I traveled with a friend to the Club Indigo Hotel. Club Indigo was located 45 minutes north of Port-au-Prince near the small community of Montrouis. Formerly Club Med Haiti (and currently the Royal Decameron Indigo), the resort was promoted as “a unique residential, leisure and business hotel complex” and a “naturally privileged, protected place.” Set in a large tropical park, Club Indigo was situated between the Côte des Arcadins, one of Haiti’s longest stretches of pure white sand beaches, and a long mountain range.

My trip to Club Indigo occurred just three months after the January 12, 2010, 7.0 magnitude earthquake that killed around 200,000 people and left more than a million people without homes.

Continue reading

The Haiti Earthquake And Its Invisibilities

Eleven years after that fateful January 12, 2010, Haiti once again suffered, last Saturday, August 14, 2021, the tremendous blows of an earthquake that has already claimed the lives of at least 1,400 people, according to the preliminary report released yesterday by the Haitian authorities.

The terrible news spread in real time throughout the world. The call for international solidarity with the Haitian people was not long in coming.

However, in the midst of the pain that the Haitian people are suffering, it is necessary to ask some questions about the actions and responses that are being given and will continue to be given to this difficult situation, from now on. We need to be vigilant, in particular, with the so-called humanitarian actions.

Continue reading