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Author Topic: The War Waged Against Us  (Read 7128 times)
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« on: January 14, 2006, 12:37:24 AM »

Photos: ©2006 Darren Ell - Bwa Neuf is patrolled by several APVs 24-hours a day. Residents claim that at any given hour wherever people congregate to talk about the community or share ideas with one another, they open fire with automatic weapons.
Cite Soleil resident describes UN attacks. A resident of Cite Soleil who refused to give his name out of fear of reprisals describes the events of July 6 and recent UN attacks on the community.
Resident holds projectile fired by UN forces. Journalists saw many such small hard metal projectiles residents claim are sprayed from a weapon mounted on UN APV's. Residents said that the weapon fires thousands of rounds in a matter of seconds.
UN whitewashes massacre amid new attacks in Haiti
Haiti Information Project - January 11, 2006

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Haitian Strike, terror and Dead Generals

HIP - Haiti — "It was a campaign of fear. Didn't you hear the radio? They told people that if they left their homes they would be arrested by the police and the U.N.," stated Jean Joseph Jorel, a representative of the National Commission of the Family Lavalas Cell of Reflection. Jorel made the comment from Cite Soleil on January 9, the same day the Haitian Chamber of Commerce had called a national strike to condemn insecurity in Haiti and a recent spate of kidnappings throughout the capital. Roadblocks manned by the Haitian National Police and the U.N. went up throughout the capital on January 9 and traffic remained sparse as most residents stayed in their homes.

Jorel made his comments from Cite Soleil, a bastion of support for ousted president Aristide and current presidential candidate Rene Garcia Preval. It has served as a launching site for massive demonstrations demanding the return of Aristide and most recently as a staging ground for large Preval campaign rallies. Residents of Cite Soleil accuse Haiti's business community of pressuring U.N. forces to commit a massacre there on July 6, 2005.

The January 9 strike came two days after the death of the commander of U.N. military forces in Haiti Lt. Gen. Urano Bacellar. His death was initially reported as a suicide but U.N. Special Envoy to Haiti Juan Gabriel Valdes has implied in recent interviews to the Haitian press that it may have been an assassination by forces trying to disrupt the electoral process. And finally, the right-wing opposition of president Mbeki in South Africa with ties to Haiti's elite ridiculously implied that a sniper from their country, at the behest of Aristide, killed the general.

For their part, the Brazilian police have officially stated that they consider the death a "suicide" citing their own autopsy results. The investigation into all of the evidence continues.

For Jorel and most residents of Cite Soleil, the Chamber's call to shut down businesses and transportation is an ominous and frightening portent of things to come. They do not see the strike as a call for national unity to combat crime and violence; rather they view it as another attempt by Haiti's wealthy elite, and those attempting to forestall upcoming elections, to force the U.N. to launch military attacks against the neighborhood. They see it as a repeat of events that led to the massacre of July 6, 2005.

"This is Apaid, Boulos and Baker working to force the U.N. to come in here and commit another massacre like they did on July 6" declared Jorel in a familiar refrain heard throughout Cite Soleil. Andy Apaid is a wealthy sweatshop owner and the leader of an organization that dropped the 0 from Haiti's year of independence, 1804, to create a civil society organization named Group 184 that was heavily funded by the United States, France and Canada. The Group 184 helped to build opposition to Aristide's government and Apaid was among the first to refer to para-military forces that invaded Haiti from the Dominican Republic as freedom fighters as they killed police officers and Lavalas officials in their bid to oust Aristide. Dr. Reginald Boulos is the president of the Haitian Chamber of Commerce who is implicated in the death of 60 children after his company, Pharval Pharmaceuticals, produced a poisonous cough syrup distributed throughout poor neighborhoods of the capital. Boulos had also pushed the U.N. to make armed incursions into pro-Aristide neighborhoods last May that many view as having led to the massacre in Cite Soleil on July 6. Charles Henry Baker, another sweatshop owner, helped to create the Group 184 and is currently a presidential candidate seen as the preferred choice of Haiti's wealthy elite and business community.

"Why do they keep postponing these elections when everyone knows that Preval is the people's choice? Why are they afraid of democracy when they claim that removing Aristide was for democracy? We still believe they kidnapped our president and forced him out. Now we stand ready to vote again for Preval and they keep delaying the vote. Is it because they want to rob us of our democratic rights once again? Is it because so many people are getting rich from the coup of Feb. 2004 that the international community is so blind they can't see the truth?" asked Jorel.

Edline Pierre-Louis shows scar from a life-saving operation performed on July 6, 2005, after the UN opened fire, hitting her in the stomach and killing her unborn baby. "They killed so many people and I praise God that I am alive to call them liars"
Zapada Price, a man described as “fou” (crazy) by the community, ventured too close to the U.N. checkpoint. His body lay on the road for four days because every time his family came to collect the corpse U.N. forces reportedly fired at them as well. 
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"Don't go there. There are killers and bad people."

As the jeep of journalists approached the two Armored Personnel Vehicles (APVs), manned by Jordanian soldiers and two Haitian police officers, they motioned for them to stop. Everyone got out of the car to have their identification checked as the soldiers assured themselves that the lone Haitian driver was not kidnapping them. The journalists were about to enter the fabled land of poverty and misery that has been targeted recently as a repository for kidnapping victims in the Haitian press and mainstream international media. One of the Jordanian soldiers cautioned, "Be careful. Don't go there. There are killers and bad people."

After being followed by another APV, the Haitian driver finally negotiated his way to the central marketplace in Cite Soleil on a street named Bwa Neuf. Bwa Neuf is the site of a monument erected in honor of another supposed Lavalas "bandit", Emmanuel "Dread" Wilme. U.N. forces assassinated Wilme and four of his armed lieutenants on July 6 and residents accuse them of targeting unarmed civilians during the raid. Dread, as residents of Cite Soleil refer him to, was an orphan who grew up in La Famni Selavi, the organization founded by Aristide to help homeless street children. Like so many others, he saw his parents killed by the military following the coup that ousted Aristide in 1991. While the US-installed government, the Haitian elite and the U.N. demonized Dread as a criminal, the impoverished residents of Cite Soleil put their pennies together and built a monument to his memory.

"They killed my wife and have left me to take care of our nine children."

Bwa Neuf is patrolled by several APVs 24-hours a day. Residents claim that at any given hour wherever people congregate to talk about the community or share ideas with one another, they open fire with automatic weapons. According to the testimony of residents, four women were killed by U.N. forces in the marketplace of Bwa Neuf on January 6. Dieunord Edme, 51 years-old, described how his wife Annette Moleon, 45 years-old, was gunned down by U.N. forces on that day from a passing APV: "They started shooting everywhere for no reason. They killed my wife and have left me to take care of our nine children. Why did they do that?"

The fear was palpable as residents of Haiti's poorest neighborhood continued to surround the group of journalists to respond to the news that the U.N. had announced the results of an investigation into the events of July 6. APVs passed by several times and residents said the only reason they didn't open fire was because of the presence of white foreigners. Yet so many killings by U.N. forces have gone unreported by the press and human rights organizations. For example, Zapada Price, a man described as "fou" (crazy) by the community, ventured too close to the U.N. checkpoint. His body lay on the road for four days because every time his family came to collect the corpse U.N. forces reportedly fired at them as well.

"The blue helmuts are lying. They killed so many people and I praise God that I am alive to call them liars," shouted 30 year-old Edline Pierre-Louis who was 6 months pregnant when the U.N. opened fire on July 6. Showing us the scars on her stomach, she exclaimed, "I lost my unborn baby to U.N. forces on July 6. If they say there was not a massacre then tell me where is my child? Where is my brother who bled to death in the street? The U.N. is lying. They are the ones embarrassing themselves with this lie. Look at how many victims have come forth to tell you the truth."

On Jan. 8, residents of Cite Soleil also spoke against a campaign by Haiti's wealthy elite to destroy them because of their fidelity to the cause of ousted president Aristide and their support for the campaign of Rene Preval. "My brother has been shot and killed by the U.N., my cousin was shot and killed by the U.N. on July 6. The U.N. is lying. Look at my stomach and the operation they performed to save my life. The U.N. is lying!" stated Amavil Joudain. He was shot in the stomach by U.N. forces on July 6, 2005. Other victims of July 6 who gave testimony to journalists included:

Pierre Samson, 37, bullet in the stomach
Carole Janvier, 52, bullet to the chest
Mimose Gabriel, 52, home fired upon, stray bullet to the stomach
Leonise Cenard, 46, bullet to the stomach.
During the raid of July 6, not a single ambulance or medical unit accompanied U.N. forces as they opened fire in the community with what was described by residents as "a hail of bullets." The U.N. ultimately relied upon witnesses and testimony presented to them by the Haitian police and human rights "expert" Jean-Claude Bajeux to dismiss the evidence. Bajeux is a member of the Group 184 and known for his bias and visceral hatred of Lavalas. The U.N. to date has never interviewed nor spoken to a single resident of Cite Soleil. Despite direct testimony by victims of the July 6 U.N. military incursion, the official report by the MINUSTAH forces concluded: "The targeted victims were either individuals suspected of having been the informants of MINUSTAH, or of the people who imprudently expressed their joy at the announcement of the supposed disappearance of Dread Wilmé and some of his close associates." In other words, the U.N. ultimately concluded that the victims were shot and killed by members of Lavalas in retaliation for informing and expressing "joy" for their [the U.N.'s] military incursion.

The U.N.'s dismissal of the testimony of victims of July 6 and the recent pressure applied for another raid in Cite Soleil by virtue of the strike called by the Haitian Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 8 was foreshadowed by another dark event on December 30, 2005. The Canadian government, responsible for the reformation of Haiti's corrupt judiciary, stood by and watched without comment as Judge Jean Pérs Paul ordered the release of the following individuals implicated in kidnapping in Haiti but never mentioned by the Chamber of Commerce during their strike:

Stantley Handal
Wilfrid Francois, Haitian police officer Agent 1
Sony Lambert, Haitian police officer Agent 3
Rénald Cinéus, Haitian police officer Agent 4.
Handal is a member of one of Haiti's wealthiest families that supported the ouster of Aristide in 1991 and 2004. He was initially arrested along with eight members of Haiti's police force for running a kidnapping ring after he attempted to use a stolen credit card taken from one of his victims. The judge that released them, Jean Pérs Paul, is responsible for keeping Father Gerard Jean-Juste behind bars and for the arrest of journalists Kevin Pina and Jean Ristil on September 9, 2005. The police officer responsible for the initial investigation into Handal's case has reportedly been forced into hiding. The U.N. and the Canadian government have not commented on the case since Jean Pérs Paul ordered the suspects released.

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See Also:

Urgent Action Alert from the Haiti Action Committee
Stop UN's plan for a new massacre in Haiti
As UN's Brazilian commander is found shot dead on his hotel balcony, new UN massacres in Cite Soleil could come any day now. Be on the alert. The situation in Haiti is dangerous and moving fast.

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