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β˜… Miserere

'We ugly! But we here!' - JAMAICAOBSERVER.COM

bq. The so-called new prime minister of Haiti is one monsieur Latortue, who has a lot of chat for someone without a mandate from anyone except the US ambassador and his bosses. He is, he says, going to unite Haiti, so he has begun by boldly leaving out of his 'government' any representative of the people of Haiti. I give him three weeks.

John Maxwell continues to be the most outspoken commentator and the most trenchant observer of the ongoing situation in Haiti. What has happened to that country in the last 10 years is a farce of epic proportions. It would be funny if it wasn't tragic.

bq. The world should know that the United States and France bear the major responsibility for the predicaments in which Haiti now finds itself. It is a savage irony, that two of the three nations founded at the end of the 18th century on the ideals of the Brotherhood of Man should continue to hypocritically dismiss the third on no other visible basis but that Haiti is black.

bq. Racism is Racism is Racism. To describe Haiti as a 'failed state", to say that Aristide misgoverned his country, to allege that the mulatto elite in Haiti are capable of operating a democracy are sick jokes. The mulatto elite and the military have been the junior partners in the franchised predation of Haiti for most of its history.

bq. Aristide was not perfect. Nobody ever claimed that he was. But is George W Bush perfect? or Jacques Chirac? The money misappropriated when Chirac was mayor of Paris could feed a great many Haitians. Does that make Chirac unfit to lead France? Does the fact that Ken Lay of Enron was the largest contributor to President George Bush, or the fact that Vice-President Cheney's company is accused of overcharging the US army for food make either Mr Bush or Cheney unfit to govern the United States and the world??

Well, if it doesn't make them unfit, per se, it sure weakens their authority. Or, it would in a rational world.

bq. The behaviour of Kofi Annan and the UN Security Council was barbaric. They refused to help a UN member in good standing when his country was threatened by the most disreputable, bloodthirsty assassins. Yet, two days later, when Aristide had been overthrown, kidnapped or whatever, the same group felt impelled to send a 'peace-keeping' force to Haiti. And a few days ago, the World Bank held a donors meeting to consider aid for Haiti. The hypocrisy runs like blood in an abattoir.

I think the abattoir is an appropriate metaphor. We've turned Haiti into as effective a place of misery as a slaughterhouse, one we can turn our backs on and ignore as long as the meat keeps showing up on our plate.

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