Haiti: getting the picture

By Richard Seymour

So, if we can summarise. Haiti is a country which is subject to “progress-resistant cultural influences”, such as:

the influence of the voodoo religion, which spreads the message that life is capricious and planning futile. There are high levels of social mistrust. Responsibility is often not internalized. Child-rearing practices often involve neglect in the early years and harsh retribution when kids hit 9 or 10.

This (rather than this), says neoconservative David Brooks, explains why Haiti is so poor. The appropriate response is imperial disdain for Haitian culture, and paternalistic intervention. Such a culturalist reading of social institutions and political economies is not exclusive to neoconservatives, but it is their preferred variant of the liberal defence of murder. As you would expect ftom the savages described by Brooks, though, they have responded to the disaster of the quake by looting and building roadblocks from the dead. The security situation (a phrase worth unpacking) is… what, you tell me – ‘deteriorating’? ‘Testing’? ‘Tricky’? ‘Challenging’? What is the bromide of choice these days? At any rate, the state of affairs arising from said “progress-resistant cultural influences” is so baleful that it is compelling the US to use its military power to obstruct the delivery of aid, because delivering aid will – so Obama’s defence secretary tells us – lead to riots.

Brooks is not alone in hoping that American power can be used to discipline the hapless natives. As Obama sends in the marines and the 82nd Airborne, precisely to deal with the above-mentioned “security situation”, the American Enterprise Institute insists that such forces are used to “ensure that Haiti’s gangs—particularly those loyal to ousted President Jean‐Bertrand Aristide—are suppressed.” The worry about the prospect of a return of the elected president, Aristide, which “can only create further mischief”. The AEI, I would confidently wager, has no reason to fret over this particular exercise in humanitarian intervention. Obama is committed to maintaining the coup government, the sweatshop oligarchy and the phoney elections. The troops are there because the Haitian population is seen not merely as pathetic supplicants but as a threat. The very sophisticated networks of community and solidarity that have been developed in Haiti under dictatorship and terror, and which are best placed to deliver assistance to those in need of it, are precisely the problem as far as the US government is concerned. It is they, the ‘gangs’ who refuse to assimilate to America’s benevolent programme of racial uplift, whom successive US governments have attempted to destroy, whether through the IMF or the Tonton Macoutes. It cannot be long before the marines find themselves gunning down some restless ingrates, and there is certainly no prospect that the Obama administration will allow Aristide to return to his country.

Just as well, then, that we have been apprised of all these horror stories about bodies doubling as road-blocks (as if people in need of aid would actually try to block the roads), machete wielding ‘looters’, security breakdowns, gang violence, etc. Otherwise we might have been inclined to misunderstand the situation, and wonder whether in sending trained killers into a disaster area the Obama administration isn’t hijacking a catastrophe according to a premeditated plan, a pre-conceived set of priorities, and a prefabricated story.

Source via Uruknet


  1. January 17, 2010 at 20:55

    […] in the Marines! Haiti needs to be annexed before its niggers are fed! For God so loved the world that he drowned everyone in it. –Athwart Babbit God hated the world […]

  2. rehmat1 said,

    January 17, 2010 at 23:13

    The US has worked to break Haiti for over 200 years. We owe Haiti. Not charity. We owe Haiti as a matter of justice. Reparations. And not the $100 million promised by President Obama either – that is Powerball money. The US owes Haiti Billions – with a big B.

    The US has worked for centuries to break Haiti. The US has used Haiti like a plantation. The US helped bleed the country economically since it freed itself, repeatedly invaded the country militarily, supported dictators who abused the people, used the country as a dumping ground for our own economic advantage, ruined their roads and agriculture, and toppled popularly elected officials. The US has even used Haiti like the old plantation owner and slipped over there repeatedly for sexual recreation.

  3. January 18, 2010 at 04:29

    Aircraft carriers have gigantic hospitals with competent medical staffs, logistical support facilities and equipment, and the helicopters necessary to transport it all — and if I were an aid worker, I’d be pleased to have the Marines guarding the place where I got my few hours of sleep and helping me distribute the things the Haitian people need — while preventing that country’s corrupt politicians and criminals from getting those things first. When people get desperate, some of them become real predators. I’ve seen it first-hand. President Obama is putting the biggest muscles he’s got at the service of those people. Who else would you send? Nuns? Priests? ACORN?

  4. babette said,

    January 18, 2010 at 14:54

    Everytime you think USrael has finally run out of murderers (troops) to invade yet another country, it squeezes out more battalions!

    Their “Project for a New American Century” must have required for them to clone millions of these crazed killers to do their bidding.

    Haiti’s earthquake, like Katrina, the tsunami in Indonesia and the China earthquake, was a man-made event (HAARP).

    USrael has unlimited ‘secret’ weapons it’s itching to unleash on humanity.

    HAARP and Chemtrails are only two.

    USrael is totally out of control.

    Let’s pray some higher force steps in soon to stop the Beast.


  5. January 19, 2010 at 05:17

    Hey babette – have you been skipping your happy pills again? Haven’t you learned that there are severe consequences for you when you go off of your meds? Aside from the paranoid delusions that you are spouting, well, quite frankly, your writing is indicative of someone experiencing a full-blown psychotic break – it is essential that you check yourself into a psychiatric ward as soon as possible.

    Of course, if you don’t take these actions of your own accord you can rest assured that the Men in Black will be around for you soon enough … your attempts to post anonymously are useless given the current technology and their ability to track back through the ISP spiders that are currently (un)available. Given their propensity to remove anyone that stands in their way I can’t imagine you psychosis being an issue for that much longer.

    Enjoy the ride. Send a postcard … if you can.

    Wie viel ist Aufzuleiden!

  6. babette said,

    January 19, 2010 at 11:34

    Aufzuleiden, you must be (or have been) a member of that “boots on the ground” gang.

    Don’t be upset. Try actually reading the article, Sir. It is smartly written, veracious and might enlighten you on the subject.

    For example: “Otherwise we might have been inclined to misunderstand the situation, and wonder whether in sending trained killers into a disaster area the Obama administration isn’t hijacking a catastrophe according to a premeditated plan, a pre-conceived set of priorities, and a prefabricated story.”

    As for HAARP and Chemtrails, there are numerous informative sites related to these weapons.

    I have a little advice for you, if I may; try presenting your argument sans ad hominem attacks… it would make you sound more ‘grown up.’

    auf Wiedersehen,

  7. January 19, 2010 at 17:45

    Babette, please do not take my glib remarks towards you as a misunderstanding of the situation in Haiti or, for that matter, a lack of having read the above mentioned article. I have never been a gang member and, for that matter, am far from a ‘boots on the ground’ supporter – unless the situation calls for the use of those boots.

    I have been following the situation in Haiti since a few hours after the quake last Tuesday evening and am fully aware of the fact that there have been cases in which certain roads have been blocked – fully barricaded – by blockades constructed with dead bodies.

    There are some areas where some Haitians were yelling at aid workers – wanting the white workers to go home. These are not ‘speculative’ situations – they are facts – confirmed by witnesses and reported by numerous sources.

    The presence of the 82nd Airborne in Haiti is as an aid distribution group and, as necessary, as an adjunct security force to assist the barely existing remnant of the Haitian police in Port-au-Prince.

    Pray tell, who do you think would be better equipped to carry out this task?

    I can’t imagine that someone in the Obama White House – or Obama himself – was sitting there on Monday waiting, wringing their hands, muttering to themselves, ‘oh, if only we could have a major, devastating earthquake somewhere so we can send in our troops and take over the operation of their government … that would just be perfect.’

    Seriously – the idea is not only perverse, it is psychotic – in every sense of the word. Quite frankly, it is a pathological perversion of everything that represents the term ‘humane’ and ‘humanitarian’. Why is it so difficult to imagine that the motives of an individual are simply that which they have stated? What is needed here is more trust and less casting of aspersions – less judgment and more hope that the aid being sent to Haiti will save as many lives as possible and help as many of those devastated individuals who have lost their homes and everything else to rebuild their lives.

    People do not see that this is not an short term situation that will be resolved in a few weeks or months, this is a catastrophe that cannot be cleaned up (no pun intended) without the literal rebuilding of the city – from below the ground – the infrastructure – up. I would rather see the 82nd Airborne deployed on a humanitarian mission, rebuilding Haiti, than fighting in Afghanistan or Iraq. Saving lives for a change is a noble thing for the American army to be doing; let’s give them the opportunity to help while the people of Haiti continue in their hours of desperation.

    I have also looked into the issue of HAARP and the idea that these stationary antennas, aimed at the stratosphere, can cause tectonic events. I must admit, this is one of the best of the loony-toon conspiracy theories that I’ve encountered in a while. Okay … let’s begin with this: they are aimed … AWAY from the planet …? No, that’s too easy. How about, they are stationary, tied to the ground, and … aimed at the sky? No … that was also probably too easy … I’ll just stop.

    HAARP is a research tool. Can it be weaponized? I’m quite certain that it could be, at some point in time, but at this point it is doing something entirely different – it is being used to study the atmosphere – high atmosphere.

    If you look hard enough you could probably find something being developed by DARPA or Lockheed Martin and find something that looks like it is going to be used to end all life on our planet. After all, Lockheed has their ultra-secret ‘skunkworks’ where things like the U2 and the SR-71 were developed in complete secrecy. If you look under enough rocks, if you look hard enough, you are going to convince yourself that something unsavory is taking place. You may only be seeing the shadows of the lifted rocks, however, running the risk of scaring yourself with your own shadows and stories of nightmare scenarios.

    By the way, my comments towards you were not ‘ad hominem’ – your comments were, unquestionably, within the Twilight Zone and, subsequently, were deserving of everything that was written.

    Wie viel ist Aufzuleiden!

  8. babette said,

    January 19, 2010 at 19:22

    Ad hominem: Latin: “argument toward the person” or “argument against the person.”

    Read your comments to me again, or don’t. Nobody cares.

    Take a peek outside your box once in a while and you’ll be astonished at how many of us “loony-toons” are up and about.

    “What is needed here is more trust and less casting of aspersions – less judgment and more hope…”

    As you are convinced that you, and you alone, know fact from fiction, I’ll simply close by saying, “Let’s ‘hope,’ reallyreallyhard, you are right.”


  9. desertpeace said,

    January 19, 2010 at 19:27

    I hope this is a ‘close’ Babette….

  10. bubba said,

    January 19, 2010 at 22:02

    why the americans try to control the world ???? i dont like how the americans control haiti they think that they can arrieved and control everything the airport etc evrebody in haiti say that the americans dont help the people they only want to control haiti they dont know how help people they only know everytjing about the war

  11. January 24, 2010 at 20:11


  12. babette said,

    January 25, 2010 at 12:54

    “Haiti Full Of Oil’ (1-28-08) – US HAARPs Quake And Grabs Oil?”

    “US Army Takes Haiti – US Blocks Some Aid Flights

    “Why Is The US Military Occupying Four Airports In Haiti?”

    “Haiti – ‘There’s No Help. We Need Food, Water Urgently'”

    “The Myth Of Haiti’s Lawless Streets”


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