Congratulations for making it to the list of a thousand police officers heading to Haiti to restore law and order. Most likely than not, you are a shareholder of Kenya Limited and may even have had to pay some good amount of money to be on that list. No one can blame you for that. It’s the way our country is.
As you leave, is important for you to know a bit of what Haiti is about beyond the obvious information that you will be given.
Haiti Island was a large territory with French, British and Spanish colonies where a large population of African slaves was used to produce sugar and coffee for export. There were so many slaves, over 500,000, that they made up almost ninety percent of the population of the island. They were mostly from West Africa and some from Central Africa.
Haiti is the first African independent Republic
After three hundred years of being enslaved, the Africans in Haiti rose up against their colonisers and carried out a revolution. It is the first recorded successful slave revolt. Haiti declared its independence on 1 January 1804. It became the world’s first African republic. It was also the second country in the Western Hemisphere to gain independence from European rule. The first was the United States.
In their fight to liberate themselves from their slave masters, these Africans made major racial statements for which, it is believed, the “Whites” never forgave them.
For one, they successfully fought off an army of over forty thousand men who were marched on them by none other than the legendary French military conqueror Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.
They then proceeded to revenge against the French people in the island and they carried out what some historians have called a “white genocide”. They bloodily massacred over 50,000 French men, women and children. The head of the Haitian revolution, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who had ordered the killing of all French people on the island, boosted; “we have repaid these cannibals, war for war, crime for crime, outrage for outrage.”
Dessalines had called for the annihilation of the French people in Haiti in the following words;
“It is not enough to have expelled the barbarians who have bloodied our land for two centuries; … We must, with one last act of national authority, forever assure the empire of liberty in the country of our birth; we must take any hope of re-enslaving us away from the inhuman government …. In the end we must live independent or die.”
Haiti then declared it was a country for Africans alone and an article of its Constitution said;
“No Whiteman of whatever nation he may be, shall put his foot on this territory with the title of master or proprietor, neither shall he in future acquire any property therein.”
The constitution also decreed that all citizens of Haiti, regardless of skin color, were to be known as “Black”.
“All acception of colour among the children of one and the same family, of whom the chief magistrate is the father, being necessarily to cease, the Haytians shall hence forward be known only by the generic appellation of Blacks’, the Constitution said.
They then started supporting other countries in South America to fight for their independence from colonialist. One such country the Haitians successfully assisted was Venezuela. Haiti gave refuge and military support to its freedom fighter Simón Bolívar who successfully liberated his country from Spanish colonialism.
Haiti was punished
Haiti’s racial activism did not go unpunished. Firstly, France, United States of America and most European countries refused to recognise them as an independent country. Despite the Haiti declaration of independence in 1804, USA did not recognised Haiti as a country until 1862.
As for France, the French said they would only recognise Haiti if the former slaves agreed to compensate France for the revenue it had lost by the loss of slave labour when the Haitians freed themselves from slavery. They demanded for 150 Million Francs.
Further, France sailed its navy to Haiti and pointed more than 500 cannons on Haiti. The ultimatum was that either the Haitians pay or France would flatten the island.
When the Haitians pointed out that they had no money, France arranged for international lenders to give Haiti expensive loans to pay France, which Haiti had to take and give the money to France.
Haiti did not finish paying these loans until 1947.
Immediately France stepped out, USA stepped in. Using every tool in the manual of neo-colonialists, they brought in their banks and gave more expensive loans to the Haitians. The loans were so many and so expensive that at some time, twenty five percent of all revenues generated by Haiti went to paying American banks.
When Haiti was unable to pay, US President Woodrow Wilson send in the American army and occupied Haiti in 1915. And just before the army came in, the Americans robbed Haiti, in a blatant robbery, of its gold. The New York Times captured the situation as follows:
“In the drowsy hours of a December afternoon, eight American Marines strolled into the headquarters of Haiti’s national bank and walked out with $500,000 in gold, packed in wooden boxes.
“They drove the loot by wagon to the shore, past American soldiers in civilian clothes who kept watch along the route. Once at the water, they loaded the boxes and sped to an awaiting gunboat.
“The gold was in the vault of a Wall Street bank within days”.
The American military occupation of Haiti went on for 19 years and even when it was ended, the USA left behind financial experts who continued controlling the Haitian economy for another 13 years.
The Kenyan assignment in Haiti is an “Uncle Tom” mission.
Afande, you can begin to understand why most Africans do not support your mission to Haiti. Reading the history of what America has taken Haiti through, it is plausible to say that the USA has no genuine interest in helping Haitians. They have never had any.
Indeed, some of the worst dictators in Haiti have been American puppets. The worst is a man called Francois Duvalier, nicknamed “Papa Doc”. Between 1957 to 1971, “Papa Doc” ran one of the most despotic regimes with the full approval and support of America. He is estimated to have killed over 60,000 of his opponents and critics.
And it is not just in the history. Haiti has nothing to show for the American “concern” for it. Haiti is the poorest country in Latin America and the Caribbean, the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and in the year 2021 was ranked 163 out of 191 in poverty among the world’s countries in the United Nations Human Development Index.
Nearly 60% of Haitians live below the poverty line.
Many people believe that Haiti is still being racially punished and will be deliberately kept destitute by America and other “Western” countries so that it may remain as evidence of the inferiority of the African and that the successes of Haiti at independence were not evidence of the capabilities of Africans to dream of a prosperous future and to control their destiny.
Indeed, the Secretary of State when Woodrow Wilson occupied Haiti Robert Lansing said that he believed that “the African race are devoid of any capacity for political organization”. An American military General in Haiti was also quoted saying that the Haitians are just “niggers who pretend to speak French”.
Many Africans are therefor seeing Kenya as an “Uncle Tom” and see you, Afande, no better than a home guard sent by America to further a neo-colonial agenda.
Don’t believe anything the Cabinet Secretary of Foreign Affairs is saying. Africans hate Kenya for this and they will hate you too.
Now let’s talk about the current situation in Haiti
How is Haiti today ?
Problems in Haiti begun with a controversy over the term of the President and also an election dispute. In the controversy, the President, Jovenel Moïse, was accused of misinterpreting the Constitution so that he could rule for an extra year. This resulted in demonstrations that paralysed the country.
His election itself had been controversial and was described by rights groups as an “electoral coup de tat”. America was accused of overseeing this coup and, when he refused to leave office, America supported him.
Calls for him to step down soon became overwhelming but America stood by him.
While this was ongoing, a troop of gun men made up of locals and foreigners broke into the presidential palace and killed the president. It is said it was a conspiracy between drug cartels and political competitors. The Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, was mentioned as one of the conspirators.
In the absence of a President, Ariel Henry, with the support of America, usurped power and started running the country. One of his immediate measures was to remove fuel subsidies.
Fuel prices went up. He then told Haitians that the price of fuel will continue increasing. The result was a full blown revolt headed by a cartel of criminal gangs that came together to act like a peoples militia.
Afande, it is this gang that you are being sent to disarm. Let me tell you a few things you need to know about them
- They are lead by a former policeman called Jimmy Chérizier. Chérizier is a former officer with Haiti’s National Police.
- Jimmy Chérizier is nicknamed “Barbeque”. Though he denies it, it is claimed he got the nickname for setting people on fire.
- His role model is the late Francois “Papa Doc” Duvalier, the dictator who killed over 60,000 opponents.
- His criminal cartel is called “G9 Family and Allies”. The gangs are known for their violence. They have proclaimed an armed revolution and say that they will put a gun in the hand of every child in Haiti if they have to.
5.He has threatened to kill members of the foreign intervention forces if they commit any abuses. “We must protect our dignity. We must defend our sovereignty so that we can live as human beings”, he said. “We will fight against them until our last breath. It will be a fight of the Haitian people to save the dignity of our country.”
Now you understand why I tweeted the other day and said you may come back to Kenya as cargo. I will advise you as follows:
- Don’t trust your bosses on everything they are saying. You are not being given the full picture. Read for yourself. All the information is on the internet.
- Demand to have your pay coming directly from the United Nations. If your allowances for beating Azimio people on the streets is sometimes eaten, what do you expect for the millions that will come from the United Nations ?
- Discuss life insurance. Don’t take empty assurances. This job is risky. And don’t come and load us with burdens if you go and cross the path of Jimmy “Barbeque”. Make sure your policy covers funeral expenses.
- Don’t lie to yourself. Your mission has no honour. In the eyes of your fellow Africans, it is shameful that you are engaging in this racial onslaught on the reputation of your fellow Africans. You and your children will carry this shame for the rest of your lives.
- If this doesn’t work out well for you, may you Rest in Peace.