Haitians Denounce US-Funded Denial of Democracy

LATIN AMERICA & THE CARIBBEAN, 7 Dec 2015

Marilyn Langlois – TRANSCEND Media Service

Marilyn LangloisA Haitian educator I have known for 11 years visited last week with members of the Haiti Action Committee in California to share her first hand experiences with election fraud in Haiti and massive journalistic fraud on a global scale.

If you happen upon one of the few international news articles about the October 25 first round presidential election in Haiti, and it fails to mention Fanmi Lavalas, Haiti’s largest and most popular political party, and its candidate, Maryse Narcisse, you can be sure the report is part of a well-orchestrated media black-out.

One mainstream media outlet apparently didn’t get the memo from the US State Department on time. On October 26, Voice of America correctly noted “Maryse Narcisse, a physician who has the backing of former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide” as a serious contender, though it still didn’t name her party. VOA was likely reprimanded and later toed the line, parroting the mainstream myth that two other candidates, one of whom was hand-picked by Haiti’s widely despised sitting president Martelly, led the field on October 25 and will proceed to the run-off in December.

The Haitian educator told us of her experiences on election day witnessing rampant voter suppression and ballot box stuffing, with similar stories documented all over the country. She explained how Fanmi Lavalas presented compelleing evidence to contest the published results on legal grounds. Under the approving eye of US sponsors of fake democracy, the Haitian judicial review acknowledged widespread fraud and irregularities in the election but still affirmed the official results, a clear slap in the face to Haitian voters.  Now Fanmi Lavalas is taking the case to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

We were told about the other strategy being pursued vigorously in the streets of Port au Prince and other Haitian cities, but routinely ignored or misreported. When international media talk about “violent protests” of the election results, make no mistake, the violence is not coming from the protesters. Fanmi Lavalas supporters have been demonstrating nonviolently by the tens of thousands on a daily basis, while the violence has come from Martelly’s armed thugs attacking and shooting at them.

The US government, dominated by Big Money and Wall Street, funded the election process in Haiti and is clearly determined to get its money’s worth, which means leadership that will comply with US and Big Money interests, as has been the case with Martelly, who was installed after fraudulent elections in 2010-11 with the blessing of then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Martelly can’t even prove his Haitian citizenship, a constitutional requirement for serving as president, and he is known to possess and use a US passport.

Our guest told us how Martelly has raided the state coffers for his personal benefit and raised taxes on the poor. Ever finding humor in grave situations, Haitians satirically call him their “legal bandit”, referring to both his flagrant abuses in office and the name of a song he recorded in his former career as a night club singer.

In Haiti, Wall Street sees an abundance of cheap labor close to home, easy access to exploiting the country’s many natural resources, and the on-going challenge of not allowing formerly enslaved Black people to show the world that they can, in fact, define their own destiny. If Haiti can free itself from the fetters of big capital, then others will too. Haitians, however, refuse to give up asserting their humanity and their right to self-determination. As our guest put it, “The hole to bury the truth is never deep enough.”

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Marilyn Langlois is a member of the Haiti Action Committee and of TRANSCEND USA West Coast.

 

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 7 Dec 2015.

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