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POV: why haiti? why now?  KAL-@aol.com
 Mar 03, 2004 06:04 PST 

 POV: why haiti? why now?

Why Haiti? Why Now?

By J. Damu

Submitted to portside

Black people across America and throughout the world,

in fact all people who love and honor democracy and

social justice, have to be outraged at what was surely

the cloaked in darkness gunpoint kidnapping of Haitian

President Jean Bertrand Aristide by U.S. militarists,

this past Sunday, February 29.

We must speak as one to denounce this latest

"lebensraum" (living space) foreign policy of the Bush

administration, which is beginning to resemble more and

more that of the German nazi era.

Despite this moral outrage committed against the long

suffering people of Haiti, the first anywhere to

successfully rise up against their slave masters, an

act of defiance for which they've never been forgiven,

the questions asked by many protestors, as hundreds

streamed from San Francisco's underground rail system

to demonstrate against Bush's latest crime, were, "Why

Haiti?" and "Why now?"

Both questions can be answered simply and succinctly

with just two words-Cuba, Venezuela.

The removal of Aristide has been a long simmering coup

in the making that dates back at least to the Clinton

presidency and the refusal of Congress to release

promised funding to the economically devastated island.

However the timing and execution of the Haitian coup

has to be placed within a regional and world context.

The coup, or extra-democratic process, which brought

George Bush to the White House, allowed him to hand

over U.S. foreign policy decision making, as it effects

the Western hemisphere, to naturalized U.S. Cubans

dedicated to the overthrow of the Cuban revolution.

Their policies, although geared to the overthrow of

Fidel Castro and socialism in Cuba, converge neatly

with U.S. designs to destabilize the Caribbean and

Central-South American region and insure U.S. supremacy

and access to Venezuela's all important oil.

Therefore it is no surprise Otto Reich's fingerprints

are all over this weeks kidnapping of President

Aristide. Otto Reich, you will re-call is the Under-

Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere who

helped to orchestrate the short-lived kidnapping and

ouster of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez. That

kidnapping was undone when the people rose up and re-

installed Chavez because the perpetrators of that

kidnapping had failed to remove Chavez completely from

the country. Not to make the same mistake twice.

In an overall strategy that parallels the world wide

concept of the Department of Defense to simultaneously

fighting one or one and half wars to extend U.S.

imperial power to control energy sources overseas,

under the cover of fighting terrorism; hard line,

reactionary Cubans within the U.S. diplomatic community

have been handed near carte blanche powers to

destabilize progressive regimes in the Western


In addition to Otto Reich, who as a diplomatic

appointee to Venezuela during the Reagan administration

helped to arrange the transferring and releasing to the

streets of Miami terrorist Orlando Bosch, mastermind of

the 1976 blowing up of the Cuban airliner is:

Reich's right-hand man Roger Noriega a former Jesse

Helms protégé who recently served as U.S. ambassador to

the Organization of American States and now is also to

the State Department's Western Hemisphere Bureau and:

John Negroponte, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations,

who also as a Reagan appointee served as U.S.

ambassador to Honduras and officially covered up if not

actually facilitated the dearth squads there in support

of that country's actions against Nicaragua's

Sandanista government.

There can be little doubt all three of these men, with

common roots in the hard line Florida community of

Cuban exiles and terrorists inside and outside the U.S.

played key roles in facilitating the events in Haiti

this week.

For instance it widely known that the thugs and

gangsters who make up the leadership of the so-called

Haitian rebels, Guy Phillippe, Emanuel Constant and

Jodel Chamblain were all trained at the U.S. held Manta

airbase in Ecuador.

This military installation, developed with U.S. funds

ostensibly to help launch strikes in the war against

the drug trade, is being used as a training and staging

area for paramilitary and military operations in the

region, much as Panama's Howard airbase was previously

used, according to former U.S. military's Southern

Command chief, General Charles Wilhelm. Published news

accounts say all three paid Haitian terrorists occupied

the same house at Manta airbase during their training

there and they admit to being on the CIA payroll for

some years now.

Of course there is an entire constellation of Haitian

and U.S. characters and organizations as well as

international policy and funding organizations that

helped create the machinery and climate for Aristide's

kidnapping and serve to diffuse attention from the

Cuban right wing policy makers. The Democratic

Convergence, the Group 184, the Republican Party

controlled National Endowment for Democracy, the

International Monetary Fund, the World Bank.

maneuverings are all well documented. The history of

U.S. Ambassador to Haiti, James Foley (he who led the

pre-dawn kidnapping raid against President Aristide)

ties to KLA terrorist organization in Kosovo is also

well known.

However, it is the existence in the United States and

within the naturalized Cuban community a fascistic,

hard line element exemplified by Reich, Negroponte and

Noriega, that not only denied the U.S. people a

democratically elected president but now has

successfully overthrown the democratically elected

President Aristide and stage manages and facilitates

the de-stabilization of the Western Hemisphere.

The overthrow of Aristide was relatively simple to

physically accomplish-but the larger message was to

Cuba and Venezuela and even to Brazil-that dangerous

times lie immediately ahead.

Finally African-Americans in particular must express

outrage and shame at the complicity of Black U.S.

foreign policy spokespeople Secretary of State Colin

Powell and National Security Advisor, Condoleeza Rice

(Otto Reich's immediate superior during the Venezuela

coup attempt by the way) in this great crime against

the Haitian people. As if capitulating to political

reaction by endorsing the U.S. invasion of Iraq were

not enough, both have now become hand puppets for the

Miami Cuban pro-fascists who would extend U.S. imperial

policy against our brothers and sisters throughout the


[J.Damu is the acting Western Regional Representative

for N'COBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for

Reparations in America. For more information about how

you can help Haiti or to become involved please contact

the Haiti Action Committee at (510) 483-7481 or write

HAC, P.O. Box 2218, Berkeley, Ca. 94702 or visit their

website www.haitiaction.org.]

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