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Haiti: Street Testimonies

Ezili Danto: Today it hurts me to give voice to what I am hearing. There's just hopelessness, despair or maybe it's my Western programming that can't take this.

For years I've given voice to the voiceless in Haiti. And generally I've understood and sympathized with the message. Today it hurts me to give voice to what I am hearing. There's just hopelessness, despair or maybe it's my Western programming that can't take this. But even though it hurts, I'm writing it, the street view, right now in Port-au-Prince. This is what I just said in an interview and wrote in a comment. I reiterated HLLN's Haiti message to US Embassy in Haiti: The Will of the People . How they're tripping over lying tongue about "the will of the people" and then detailed the street view, the Haiti ground echoes I spoke with this morning.

haiti martelly

I'm not sure I see principles, goals and I may not have the capacity to see whether this spontaneous "coalition?" will have sufficient organization to sustain itself, and perhaps listen to more deliberate heads in order to minimize the cost to our people --without sacrificing principles to Martelly ("Switch Micky")'s personal objectives. Don't know enough, don't have a crystal ball, to hazard an educated guess.

What I can say is that neither Martelly nor Manigat, I'm told, have any parliamentary back up to sustain an effective presidency. So, how will either rule without their own Senators and Deputies? But with a Preval's INITE parliament? Haiti heads are reeling from all the inhuman treatment that's swell into this cacophony of sound and feelings. The Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission (IHRC) with Clinton and the NOAH click, some say, are perhaps pushing US-favorite, Mr. Guy Theodore, to fill in. There's lots of finger pointing at what's left of community leadership. Seems to me, the Haiti leadership vacuum has never been more profound.

The Street View

Let it burn. It's been a long time coming. It's too late. Too many Haitians have died. Haiti has been made into a haven for the internationals and a burning hell for the masses since 2004. Those left have died a thousand deaths and they're ready to make it real. There will be no calm.

The earth is dying, ground is burning. U.S. and internationals wouldn't listen, were drunk with their power. By the time Haiti is finished, there is every likelihood, the UN will have suffered such a fatal blow, with importation of cholera and it's proxy slaughter of the people on behalf of the US elite that maybe, these past deaths, these Haitian deaths to come, will help save the planet. Change things in Rwanda, Congo, all over Africa and the planet for the poor and powerless.

Even the comfortable US masses are paying attention to this noble and courageous people in little Haiti. Some Haitians are saying that the Martelly card came out of nowhere and took the arrogant international community by surprise.

Haitian analysts are saying the Internationals didn't see this coming. That this is not the Lavalas Movement they've already marginalized and demonize. No. This is SOMETHING ELSE and it's not controllable. This is all the years of Haiti resentment, all the frustrations of total marginalization and people disenfranchisement the US Embassy, UN, Haiti puppet government and the 16,000 charity organizations, collecting funds on their misery have strummed up.

This is young and not so vested in the system to be co-opted as per usual. Unlike President Aristide, who was always calm no matter the crisis imposed by the US/Euros, the STREETS animate Martelly at this moment. Whatever his original intentions, events may have overtaken him. Unlike Aristide, he's got no diplomatic words up his sleeve. This is the STREET speaking. And they don't give a "F" as someone just said to me. Don't care about no law to confuse them that's not applied to the rich, the Haiti Oligarchy, to the US Embassy.

Haitian analysts say that if the run-off goes between Manigat and Martelly. No doubt Martelly will win. And Martelly's followers have no diplomacy, no calm words, they've got a soundtrack,
"we don't need no UN cholera water let the mfker burn burn mfker burn!" Martelly has street back up.

If only Celestin and Manigat go to the run off, Haiti will burn. There won't be a place for any foreigners unless they nuke Haiti off planet earth. Or, send in the Marines and start firing drone missile into civilian crowds like in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The over-taxed US public may not go for it. The US might-make-right people are stuck, some say. Never saw this coming.

By the time this is over, they'll wish Bush, Jr had left the priest to rule.


UPDATE on: Dec. 9, 2010
Port-au-Prince totally blocked. Burning tires, road blocks, American Airlines has canceled all flights in and out:

An SOS for help to the press and doctors from wounded Sweet Mickey partisans sent to HLLN.

SOS received this afternoon at 2:43, Dec. 9, 2010 via email.

Apparently, in the streets of Port-au-Prince right now , in order to pass, you must be wearing a Sweet Micky T-Shirt. Certain elements are putting on Sweet Mickey T-Shirts in order to kill his partisans and scatter their protests. HLLN on the ground confirms this. So this SOS makes sense.

Here's the SOS, in French original:

"Des partisans inites portent des maillots de micky...Ils battent et tirent sur les vrais partisans de micky Des armes et. De l'argent sont distribues now au stade sylviocator Des blesses et morts (partisans micky) victime d'inites sont abandonnes a l'hopital general. Il n'y a pas de medecin. Faire passer a la presse pr qu'on fasse appel a medecin sans frontiere pr qu'aille a leur aide. C'est une information sure."

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English translation:

"INITE supporters are wearing Sweet Micky T-Shirts" They are beating and shooting the real supporters of Micky. And are armed and. Money is being distributed now at the Sylvio Cator stadium. The wounded and dead (Micky supporters), victims of insider dealing, have been abandoned at the (State-run) general hospital. There is no doctor. Get this news out to the press. We must call on Doctors Without Borders to come to their aid. This information is sure."

UPDATE: December 10, 2010:
Urgent information on the current situation in Haiti: Direct testimony from the streets of Haiti obtained by HLLN

The world is being purposely misinformed and mis-educated about the current election disaster in Haiti. Yesterday the Haiti electoral council said they would do a recount. It's clear from reading the latest State Department Bulletin Op-ed, published in the New York Times, that the US and its international partners set up this Haiti explosion and will come in with military boots to put back order, as per usual! No change.

Two wings of the macoutes will go to a run-off on January 16: Martelly and Magnigat. It's very simple, not so complex but it's up to those who can see to guide and educate. To that end, we publish the following testimonies. The irony is that even the folks being manipulated don't know they are being manipulated.

Many of the starving and desperate young Haiti men, in the streets of Haiti, right now, asking that Martelly be made president as a result of an exclusive, blatantly fraudulent, not fair, not free election, believe that would be CHANGE! and REVOLUTION! Right now the long-suffering neocolonial subjects getting the most press from Haiti are those who have reduced revolution in Haiti to: "anything is better than Preval or Celestin."

HLLN was told last night there is a US warship at the Port au Prince harbor since Tuesday, December 7, the day the 's'election results were announced. We've also been apprised that there are "cholera drops" - some think its not cholera medical air drops, but US military. That info is not confirmed. Yesterday we got an SOS asking for help for wounded Martelly supporters who we were told were being denied medical help at the General hospital. We circulated that SOS. This additional report on the incident came to HLLN today, Dec. 10, 2010, via email from an HLLN collaborator.

Events in Haiti on December 9, 2010 on the Champ de Mars, according to a trusted source:

"You know that we had the election on November 28th. It was a mess that day in some polling centers in and outside Port-au-Prince. In some neighborhoods close to Cite Soleil or in Tabarre the process for vote for some of them did not start and for others they were forced to stop for many reasons: people got upset because they did not find their name on the list sticks on the wall outside of the vote centers or people went inside with gun to intimidate the persons working inside and for several other reasons. In the countryside it was even worst.

So everyone was waiting for the results on December 7th. Early in the afternoon people was rushed to go back home as the Electoral Council announced the results for 6:30 pm. I was in Petion Ville and I have seen people running on the streets because close to the big street market (not too far from where you stayed the first time), they were throwing stones and bottles and even burning tires at some corners. So it was panic. This day after 5 o'clock the streets were completely empty. I left Petion Ville by 7 pm and I've met only policemen who were blocking the area where the Council was about to deliver the results.

Around 8:30pm the results were out and people did not take too much time to react. Very fast many streets in PAP were blocked with everything they could find (big stones, tires, bricks, pieces of wood, pipes made in cement for drainage, cars, big garbage dump...) That night they even broke some stores in Petion Ville. I was not at home and I had to wait 1 am to drive back home when those people went to sleep.

Since then everything is closed in Haiti (Schools, businesses, stores even no vendors on the streets) Supporters of Martelly are demonstrating with big posters everywhere. Some groups are calm but others are very violent. Today, they even assaulted a young female journalist who was working on a motorbike with a driver.

(This is what) happened on the Champ de Mars. I was not in PA, I was in Carrefour when I heard about it. Some people wearing Celestin's t shirt were demonstrating on the Champs de Mars by 1 pm. (wearing Celestin's t-shirt don't mean anything to me cause anyone can do it, anyone who wants an explosion in Haiti - it could be Celestin or anyone else)

So they were around 50 according to witnesses. They had a car and a few motorbikes with them. As they were singing, dancing and walking on the streets some people on the champs de Mars started to yell "Micky, Micky" (Martelly's artist name) and one of the bikers got a bottle on his head. So he stopped his motorbyke and walked towards those people.

He took his gun and shooted people just like , from one block of LePlaza and two blocks from the main police station of PAP. They talked about three to five people were killed and many injured. The closes health care facilities is the General Hospital. Dr Alix Lassegue ( who you met ) talked on radio to say that the hospital can still provide health to people sick or people injured, of course everything is not ok as usual because of the situation of the street but he needed help this afternoon because the X Ray lab is not working and the people injured needed Xray in emergency.

Many things are happening now. Rumors say that the Senator Lambert went to Cite Soleil today (December 10, 2010) and made big distribution of guns and bullets and very soon people from Cite soleil will come to PAP to face supporters of Martelly. That's the reasons why I left Carrefour fast because people were afraid and they were blocking again all the streets to avoid confrontation. So we don't know what tomorrow will bring to us.

For two days now I've heard that two battleships from the States are in the Bay but I do not have any confirmation of this. What I know is that on Wednesday afternoon Preval had problems at his home. The protesters were in front of his house and he felt unsafe. The house was under siege and he had to ask the Minustah to come and help him move from his house.

A new day just started, we don't know how it will be. Our very fragile economy does not allow us to lose many days. Many vendors from the marginal sector live day by day and they are certainly suffering from this situation. In the country actually many clinics, hospitals, CTCs, UTCs have no more medical supplies. It is obvious that we will have a pic of death of cholera during those days.

I am working with an orphanage in Jacmel and the person in charge called me this morning to tell me that five kids (4 boys and 1 girl) died yesterday because of cholera. She needs to come to PAP to get supplies but the highway is blocked. So what will be the end of this, only God knows."

Ezili Danto

Ezili Dantò

Human Rights lawyer Ezili Dantò is dedicated to correcting the media lies and colonial narratives about Haiti. A writer, performance poet and lawyer, Ezili Dantò is founder and president of the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (HLLN). For updates, join the Ezili HLLN’s Listserve. Learn more at the website at: