[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
8858: This Week In Haiti vol.19 no.21 8/8/01 (fwd)
"This Week in Haiti" is the English section of HAITI PROGRES
newsweekly. For the complete edition with other news in French
and Creole, please contact the paper at (tel) 718-434-8100,
(fax) 718-434-5551 or e-mail at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Also visit our website at <www.haitiprogres.com>.
"Le journal qui offre une alternative"
* THIS WEEK IN HAITI *
August 8 - 14, 2001
Vol. 19, No. 21
OAS "MEDIATORS": WHERE DO THEY WANT TO LEAD HAITI?
"What we are seeing in Haiti today is a replay of what happened
in Nicaragua in 1990," said Ben Dupuy, secretary general of the
National Popular Party (PPN), in a radio interview last week.
"Washington gradually dismantled the Sandinista revolution
through a combination of demanding endless concessions and
negotiations, creating and funding an opposition front, and
applying military pressure, thereby pushing the Sandinistas into
flawed elections. "
In July 1979, the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN)
came to power in a hugely popular revolution which overthrew the
Somoza family dynasty. But almost 11 years later, on Feb. 25,
1990, the Sandinistas lost a Washington-demanded election to the
National Union of the Opposition (UNO) after a decade in which
Washington had funded and armed a Honduras-based contra force,
largely composed of former Somozista soldiers, to wage a
debilitating war against the country. Meanwhile, the U.S. had
economically strangled the country with embargos and aid cut-
"It was one of the most fraudulent elections in the electoral
history of America, or of any other part of the world," declared
former Nicaraguan Foreign Minister Miguel D'Escoto. "There was an
enormous electoral fraud perpetrated by the United States. Fraud
whereby something prevents the sovereign will of the people to be
freely expressed" (see Haïti Progrès, Vol. 8, No. 12, 6/20/1990).
In that sense, the fraud was not performed technically, D'Escoto
explained, but rather through the "economic and psychological
torture" of the country.
Today the parallels with Haiti are obvious. The Haitian UNO is
the Democratic Convergence (CD) opposition front, funded at least
$3 million from the U.S. government. Last weekend, former Haitian
soldiers operating out of the Dominican Republic (today's
Honduras) launched coordinated attacks against Haitian police
stations (see Haïti Progrès, Vol. 19, No. 20 8/1/2001), perhaps
the opening salvo of a new contra war. The Dominican daily El
Siglo reported last week that 300 former Haitian soldiers and
policemen were involved in the new offensive, of which the
Dominican government was aware. Meanwhile, Washington and the
European Union have placed a de facto aid embargo on Haiti.
One other key player in this international operation to roll back
the 1990 democratic nationalist Lavalas movement is the
Organization of American States, which Cuba calls "Washington's
Ministry of Colonial Affairs." The OAS is playing the role of
"mediator" between the CD and the government of President Jean-
Bertrand Aristide. But this "mediator" is far from "neutral."
Take, for example, the lead OAS negotiator to date, Luigi
Einaudi, the OAS assistant secretary general. Aristide has
generally considered Einaudi to be "sympathetic" to his
government and an ally in his current wrangling with the CD.
But, in fact, Einaudi is a career U.S. diplomat who has zealously
defended Washington's interests and crimes in Latin America,
through both Republican and Democratic administrations, for over
On Aug. 3, the Miami Herald revealed that Einaudi was one of the
U.S. officials who recruited Vladimiro Montesinos, the former spy
chief of fugitive Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori, to be an
agent of Washington. The Central Intelligence Agency paid
Montesinos $1 million a year over the past decade "to fight drug
trafficking, despite evidence that Montesinos was also in
business with Colombian narcotraffickers," the Herald reported.
Montesinos is now in jail in Peru as authorities conduct 168
criminal investigations into his former activities.
According to State Department documents, "the U.S. Embassy in
Lima identified Montesinos as a potential ally and took him to
Washington in 1976 when he was an obscure army captain," the
Herald reports. "Despite Montesinos' low rank, he was brought to
the United States from Sept. 5 to Sept. 21, 1976, and met with
Robert Hawkins in the CIA's Office of Current Intelligence along
with military officials and the State Department's longtime Latin
America policy-planning chief, Luigi Einaudi..." At that time,
Einaudi was at the Policy Planning Staff of the State Department,
according to CovertAction magazine (Number 49, Summer 1994).
Einaudi went on to become in 1990 the U.S. Permanent
Representative to the OAS, a post he held during the 1991-1994
Haitian coup, during which time he met Aristide. He was replaced
in April 1993.
Luigi Einaudi is the classic "good cop," a real diplomat who says
different things to different people, depending on the
circumstances. For example, in Dec. 1992, Einaudi began openly
pushing for the Haitian coup to be taken up by the United Nations
Security Council, the body which eventually provided the cover
and "legality" for the second U.S. military intervention of Haiti
on Sep. 19, 1994. But, well aware of the Haitian people's
distrust of U.S. military intervention and trying to hide
Washington's intentions, Einaudi declared: "We accept the
principle of nonintervention which is the cornerstone of the
But when addressing two House of Representatives subcommittees on
May 1, 1990, Einaudi closed his remarks with a quote from Bernard
Aronson, then Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American
Affairs: ""The conventional wisdom holds that our historic
mistake in Latin America has been interventionism. I would argue
the opposite is true."
Luigi Einaudi also proved that he was ready to defend even the
most naked U.S. aggression, such as the Dec. 1989 invasion of
Panama. Before the House subcommittees, Einaudi criticized "the
unwillingness of OAS member governments to take the admittedly
tough decisions involved," i.e. invasion of a sovereign state.
In OAS forums, Einaudi also regularly attacked Cuba, charging
that its "government can be said to repress human rights as a
matter of official policy." He also argued that "as long as Cuba
and Fidel Castro remain obdurately Stalinist then the United
States will oppose, and oppose strongly, Cuba's readmission to
the OAS." He charged that "the government led by Fidel Castro
remains fixed in time, paralyzed by ideology and isolated by its
leader from the great currents of history." He called on Fidel
Castro to bow to this U.S. demand: "Hold free and fair elections
under international supervision." Would the U.S. allow
"international supervision" of its own electoral farce last fall?
Finally, Einaudi is a veteran of the low-intensity war against
the Sandinistas. For instance, during their invasion of Panama,
U.S. troops "mistakenly" raided the Nicaraguan Embassy in Panama
City on Dec. 29, 1989, an event very similar to the "erroneous"
bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade during the 1999 war
against Yugoslavia. Nicaragua, which was the object of countless
other U.S. aggressions, called for an extraordinary meeting of
the OAS. But the U.S. and a handful of countries under its sway,
like the newly "liberated" Panama, boycotted the meeting. The
U.S. made an "expression of regret," Einaudi said, so "I consider
that this extraordinary meeting, therefore, is useless."
Meanwhile, Einaudi borrowed a tactic from the thief who cries
"thief" after committing a crime. "Is Nicaragua prepared to give
the Government of Panama and the international community
assurances that it will comply with its international and
hemispheric commitments and with the Central American peace
accords, and that it will not supply arms to guerrilla and
paramilitary forces in neighboring countries?" Einaudi asked
rhetorically. This question comes from an ambassador of a nation
which, it has been repeatedly proven, is the foremost backer of
death squads, paramilitaries, and contra forces around the world.
President Aristide and his Lavalas Family party have consistently
underestimated the hypocrisy of U.S. officials like Luigi Einaudi
and resolve of Washington to turn back Haiti's popular movement
just as it did (with only partial success) in Nicaragua. A glance
at history might help them see how the "Nicaraguan formula" and
Einaudi's craft are once again being applied in Haiti today "to
protect U.S. interests"
Artist Alexandre Gregoire Dies
by Charles Arthur
Considered one of the best of Haiti's first generation of
so-called "naive" artists, Alexandre Gregoire died at his home in
the southern coastal town of Jacmel on July 28, 2001. The
painter, whose works now command four figure sums in US
galleries, spent most of his adult life in the army, and did not
turn to painting until late in life.
He was born in Jacmel, a once thriving coffee port in southern
Haiti, on August 29, 1922, and his primary schooling from 1930-37
was with the Christian Teaching Brothers. For two years, he
studied cabinet making at the Jacmel vocational school, but then
in 1939 he joined the army, where he played the tuba and
saxophone in the army band. In the 1950s, during the presidency
of Paul Magloire, Gregoire left the army and joined the band at
the National Palace.
It was not until 1968 that his interest turned from music to
painting. At the urging of his friends, the painters, Préfete
Duffaut and Pierre-Joseph Valcin, and with encouragement from the
Centre d'Art in Port-au-Prince, Gregoire soon developed a unique
style. His oil on canvas paintings featured humourous and
playful representations of both historical scenes and everyday
life. In an interview with Michele Grandjean for the book
"Artistes en Haiti", Gregoire said, "My life is a prayer and the
painting is a sister to the prayer."
His work is included in the permanent collections of the Musée
d'Art Haitien in Port-au-Prince, the Waterloo Museum of Art in
Iowa, and the Milwaukee Art Center. In 1997, his paintings
featured in Island on Fire, an exhibition of Hollywood film
director Jonathan Demme's Haitian art collection, at the
Equitable Gallery, New York.
Born: August 29, 1922. Died: July 28 2001
All articles copyrighted Haiti Progres, Inc. REPRINTS ENCOURAGED.
Please credit Haiti Progres.