Posted by: petertluce | March 15, 2011



3.15.11 The news bulletin of Hurah, Inc.

(Human Rights Accompaniment In Haiti, a 501(c)(3) corporation
dedicated to non-partisan, non-violent basic human
rights action in Haiti)

Tom Luce, Editor


Dear Human Rights Advocates,

Many bloggers and posters to list serves are speaking about the “Second Round” of elections with Ms. Manigat and Mr. Martelly as the only choices for the people. The issue of the will of the people of Haiti–
from a human rights point of view– is being ignored by most of the postings here of late regarding the “elections” and the return of Aristide. This is a travesty that exemplifies the roots of lawlessness everywhere it is practiced.

Postings assuming the validity of the “Second Round” are  participating in the shredding of the law of the land even as they purport to support a Haiti under the rule of law. They are backing blatant foreign intervention in Haitian affairs perpetrating the lie that the people have a real “choice” for their government. There is ample evidence that the Nov. 28 elections were invalid, both by the exclusion of major parties and in the carrying out of the election without adequate preparation. The US push for the “Second Round” along with the OAS observer team stacked by the US (3 US, 2French, 1 Canadian, 1 Jamaican) is but the latest instance of foreign interference in the violation of the rule of law. There is no authorization by the CEP or the Préval government.
There is no justification for this unlawfulness, not the “let’s-get-on-with-it” argument, not the purported “popular support” argument, not the “this-is-the-way-its-done” argument. Flouting the law this way is a monument to the hypocrisy of those who do it, especially the US with all its talk about democracy. The will of the people is to follow the rule of law, democratically established. The will of the lawbreakers is what prevails now and this should be stopped before March 20th if people want to save money and conflict. Otherwise these lawbreakers will be the cause of unrest and any subsequent violence.

The will of the people was illegally and violently stolen from the Haitian majority prior to the violent coup of 2004. No amount of propaganda demonizing the Artistide administration will change the facts. The will of the people clearly was obtained overwhelmingly in the lawful 2000 election of Aristide as president. The so-called flawed parliamentary election in the spring of 2000 was resolved legally but has no bearing on the presidential election in any case. The violent suppression of a duly elected president and every duly elected official down to dogcatcher was supported by Haitian lawbreakers and their foreign power supporters. The political juggernaut arrived at in 2003 should not have been solved by violence but by the rule of law. There was no “popular uprising” of the people against Aristide. It was only a small band led by criminals armed from CIA depots in the DR. They were using violence, killing civilians and creating havoc against a majority of unarmed, non-violent Haitians. <>
Apologists for the use of armed force to settle disputes–witness the articles by Mr. Diebert and his citations from biased media (Radio Quisqueya, Metropole)– have published propaganda pieces trying to show that the Haitians, like the Egyptians, “rose up” and obtained their justice against a murderous dictator in February 2004. Not true.

Mr. Deibert claims his reporting of grassroots violence in Gran Ravin and Martissant is more valid than others that he stigmatizes–unprofessionally–as done by out-of-country observers. He perpetuates the all-too-real “war by proxy” wanting us to believe that it is all just a simple matter of rival “gangs” settling old accounts, shooting up one another in a vicious cycle of political revenge. He implies we should believe
that the carnage is understandable, even justifiable, implying that post 2004 it was still Aristide partisans getting their “comeuppance”. He wants us to believe that having gotten rid of Aristide, Haiti would,
of course, return to the rule of law.

Mr. Deibert’s writings omit damning facts like the killing of innocent men, women, and children by such criminal gangs as Lame Timanchet in collaboration with the Haitian police in 05, their torching of homes creating a stream of 1000’s of refugees from Grand Ravine in 06. He doesn’t cite the report
ordered by the new Director General of the Haitian Police, Mario Andresol, implicating both the police and the LameTimanchet. <>

He omits the Lancet study of 06 <> documenting 8,000 killed and 35,000 raped. These victims were targeted, truly or falsely, as being Aristide supporters.

He omits the story of Esterne Bruner, a double victim of the home burnings in 05 after the soccer massacre and the killings/torchings in 06, and brutally assassinated on Sept. 21, 2006. Why was Bruner killed? Not because he was an armed violent partisan of Artistide. He was targeted because he was the leader of a movement of citizens from Grand Ravine and Martissant committed to non-violent and non-partisan advocacy for human rights for their communities. He was the second courageous leader of the Grand Ravine Community Human Rights Council (GR-CHRC). He was the enemy of doing-business-as-usual,
the control of whole populations through intimidation and calculated slaughter of innocents demonstrating that the rule of law is the real “chimère”, or “hallucination”. The GR-CHRC has survived constant violent threats and is still operating, trying to get the majority of honest people to work non-violently for their rights. Where is the main stream reporting about this? See some of the Gran Ravin story at <>

Flaunting the rule of law by violence, by propaganda, by bribes, is flaunting the will of the people. The unheralded return of Baby Doc and the 7 years of conniving to keep Aristide from returning home–long before the “elections”–are simply the continuation of the foreign intervention by the US on behalf of those–in Haiti and abroad–who believe their will should prevail, be damned democratic elections. They want to impose their solutions for social justice on the people. Why should the US make any noise about Duvalier?  The US supported both dictators who have been condemned internationally for their wild and violent injustices. So what if Aristide returned home before the 20th? What if there was an “uprising” of the people, in the non-violent manner we have seen from hundreds of thousands of Aristide supporters? Would the US, would the anti-Aristide diaspora and Haitian nationals, give the people the respect given to the protesting Egyptians? Or would the people be repressed, sabotaged by provocateurs?

In anticipation of being denounced as a pro-Aristide partisan, let me repeat that my organization has operated on a strict non-violent, non-partisan basis, seeking to support the truth–condemnations, as well as support, of official government actions. We look at the facts and the laws and the process for redress of wrongs that people use. I am fairly familiar with people who lost confidence in Aristide. I had a classmate, Fr. Max Dominique, who, along with the people in his inner circle supported Aristide in the beginning, decided not to support him after 2000 because they believed he had retreated from a strict non-violent philosophy of fighting for the rights of the poor. I believe that the case against Aristide is fraught
with wild propaganda. With the violence of the Duvaliers, the military regimes, the armed overthrow of 1991, it is understandable that Aristide could adopt a self-defense philosophy. Not withstanding the withdrawal over non-violence, these one-time supporters did not/would not support Aristide’s violent overthrow.

What I write here is no more, no less, than supporting the rule of law, democratically established. In the case of the repression of rights, I certainly support non-violent action to pressure for redress. I cannot
condemn those who use violence in self-defense. Non-violence, though, is my moral choice. Haitians deserve the restoration of their rights, via non-violent action at least. There is no need to hide the fact that
the policies of Aristide were pro-poor, that he was working for universal access to education for the masses, universal health care, the right of workers to unionize, a living wage–all policies that have powerful enemies–just as we are seeing here in the U.S. These solutions to equality will be fought by those who espouse capitalism, the trickle down economic theory, and the spiritual jingoism distorted from the bible (Mt. 26:11) that “the poor you will always have with you.” This is the real contest. A contest that should be fought with ballots, not bullets. But we can’t have it both ways, rule of law and rule of the gun and dirty money.

The will of the people even after decades of repression as we’ve seen in Egypt will become evident. The question is which side are we on? When will we make justice ring out?

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