Thursday, January 14, 2010

"To the people of Haiti we say: you will not be forsaken, you will not be forgotten"

"In this your hour of greatest need, America stands with you. The world stands with you."

So said President Obama yesterday.

It's reassuring to hear but will he keep his promise?

The long-suffering people of Haiti, whose venerable ancestors were the Caribbean's tribunes of freedom, have been abandoned for too long.

Meanwhile former president Jean Betrand Aristide, affectionately known as Titid, has described the earthquake as "a tragedy that defies expression."

"My wife and I stand with the people of our country and mourn the death and destruction that has befallen Haiti," he said in a statement.

"It is a tragedy that defies expression; a tragedy that compels all people to the highest levels of human compassion and solidarity."

"From Africa, the ancestral home of Haiti, we send our profoundest condolences and love to the thousands of children, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters worst affected," he said.

"To the entire nation, our love and wishes for strength and courage in this most difficult of times," he added.

Titid, a former Catholic priest, was the country's first democratically-elected leader who said and promised many exciting Maurice Bishop like things. And just like Bishop he would not be allowed to remain in office. Titid was ousted in 1991 by a military junta drawn from Haiti's snooty mulatto elite.

The 1994 US invasion, Operation Uphold Democracy removed the hated Raoul Cedras and his men but Titid remained - still remains in exile in South Africa.

Why is this?

And why was Titid's party, Fanmi Lavalas banned from participating in June's senatorial elections?

This is the country of Toussaint L'ouverture, for God's sake.

Hat tip: Andy Newman.


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