Danse Petro: Is the end near?

Hostage in your own home

Recent developments in Haiti demanded that we step back and try to see the various hidden forces dictating the actions of various groups of persons. As heard on more than one radio program, analysis by commentators have pointed to the palace wizards working to dismantle the Haitian National Police, PNH, in order to replace it with their own force. Others have said that de facto president Jovenel Moise is using the gangs to take over the PNH in order to better suppress the population and all political opposition. In both cases, the government, or what is left of a machine in the grips of incompetent, corrupted and lazy persons more interested in dancing in carnival than facing urgent problems, is playing a dangerous game. De facto president Jovenel Moise thinks that once he is able to secure his post through fake elections and his gangsters shooting up any opposition, he will be able to rein them in. In Mexico, politicians sought to use gangsters in similar fashion, only to have those henchmen become the actual rulers in many cases. Moise is playing out a script handed by his handlers, while Haitian society is slowly disintegrating. All social indicators are in the red, and the youth is marginalized every day. The end is near though because the population is not giving up, and the de facto dictator is losing his grip slowly and surely. His plan has run into too many obstacles, and time is running out. The last moves by the government are desperate measures to stem the tide, and it is clear they’re panicking.

The PNH is barely able to survive and provide some protection to a population that is held hostage by the situation at all social levels. Poor persons are living in hell in places like Martissant, Cite Soleil, Lower Delmas, Lasalin, Fontamara with gangs shooting it out every night, and occasionally in broad daylight, sending merchants and motorcycle taxis rushing for safety. Many persons in those areas have been hit by stray bullets because they have nowhere to run to. Most persons living in the fight zones have run away, on foot and motorcycle, carrying whatever they could salvage. All of this is happening under the lights of most international media who have decided to boycott any news from Haiti. More on that later in this post. As we have said, the PNH is still present, despite efforts to break it down. It is the only official force with a presence in all the communities in the country. Jovenel tried to have the BSAEP, a supposedly environmental police force to protect fragile areas of ecological importance, become a parallel force, but the group made of mostly thugs with no training became an embarrassment bordering on the clownish. So, the de facto president Jovenel Moise cannot easily remove the PNH totally and maintain control of the country. The international advisors who dictate most policies are divided on the issue, and some of them are working against the plan to weaken and destroy the institution.

Most police officers in the rank and file do not like the government because it has done very little for them in terms of social benefits and decent wages. These officers do not want to submit to gangs and lose their position of authority in the community, so they are working behind the scenes to try to maintain morale in their troops. The inspector who was killed near Cite Soleil is an example of police officers resisting the macabre plan put forth by Moise and other PHTK. This has become an obstacle to Jovenel taking over for years to come. But attempts to control the force have not been successful because in the provinces police officers live and interact a lot with the population. In those areas, the police cannot be used to suppress persons, and the gangs are not well established.

There is a historical pattern to the satrapy we see in Haiti nowadays. A friend and talented content creator Alix Conde has offered a sequence of images to touch upon this. Alix is a videographer, producer, pianist and recording expert who has a lot of archived material, both audio and video. This is a short production for you to enjoy.

https://youtu.be/fxkt8jhdZK0

Mobilizing by all means at hand is the only path to free and fair elections, similar to what we had in 1990. Young militants need our support to bring the end of this suicidal regime. In the upcoming days we will need to force the media here in the U.S. to talk about what is happening in Haiti. There is definitely a conspiracy when so many persons are shot, killed or made homeless right here a couple of hundred miles from Miami, and no one is talking about it. Members of Congress are concerned and are harassing the Biden administration for answers, but the press is mum. We need to find who are the dark forces that are keeping the news suppressed. Time to shine the light on their actions, and let people know what’s going on.

Danse Petro: No to Referendum

School built with funds from Petro Caribe

The planned referendum to change the constitution of the Republic of Haiti is the next battleground pitting the population against de facto president Jovenel Moise and his foreign handlers. As he blusters and puffs his chest, while making idiotic and quickly forgotten sayings that make little sense, the true enemies of democracy behind Jovenel are the ones scripting his actions. The illegal referendum is a process that will determine the future of Haiti for years to come, if allowed to pass. The proposed constitution by de facto president Moise and his handlers is concocted by a band of persons who love and want to install a dictatorship. These persons made their fortune during and after the dark years of the two Duvalier regime, enjoying unlimited power to oppress and annihilate millions of people, while serving their foreign boss. Their handlers from intelligence services, mainly from the U.S., also make a lot of money from various businesses associated with providing logistics and service to the dictatorship. So, this planned referendum is to pave the way for Haiti to return to the good old days, except this time starvation and a non existent health care system are causing a lot of death and diseases in the population. Since only poor persons are associated with hunger and sickness, no one seems to care that this referendum will cause millions to go starving, while thieves and criminals will rule.

Grassroots organizations and political opposition leaders are mobilizing within the population, setting up resistance to this insane plan to take the country backward to a time long gone. In Jean Rabel recently, influential members of the population chased away persons who came to talk about the referendum, just like other towns in Grande Anse, the North and Artibonite have rejected any mention of it. The whole population of the Republic is against this project to legalize gangsterism and destroy the fabric of society. With this plan, the country will become a favorite destination for sexual perverts to come enjoy a place where anything is permitted, while the population is mired in poverty, crime and oppression. Impunity for all crimes committed by Jovenel and his gang will become normal with this new constitution, while all kinds of sexual perversion will be allowed and even encouraged.

Many militants are gearing to fight this ignominy by setting barricades and taking to the streets. In Champs de Mars, persons are setting up to defend their turf, as they call this park in the heart of Port-au-Prince.

Nou Pap Domi and the Petro Challenge movement are meeting with militants, setting up resistance to the illegal referendum. Young people are at the forefront of this fight for democracy. It is reminiscent of that time back in 1990 when Haitians in New York City made the Brooklyn Bridge shake, and invaded the famed Wall Street area, demanding an end to discrimination by the CDC which had claimed that persons from Haiti had AIDS. With no cell phones or internet, by using land line telephones, young Haitians in New York, New Jersey and surrounding areas mobilized over a million of us to march and demand results. This led to the CDC changing their tune, while Haitians regained their dignity. This is the spirit that must be rekindled to help our country make a turn away from satrapy, ignorance, greed and massive starvation. We need to once again mobilize for the return of our pride. It is of paramount importance that young Haitians take the lead, and bring this much needed change that we need. Persons of like mind need to come together to support the movement to stop de facto president Jovenel Moise and his international backers. In Haiti no one supports this madness, save for the PHTK, the G 9 and the other allies of Jovenel. It is time to coalesce and support those who are at the front lines.

#cleanupHaiti2024 : stop the madness

After a heavy rainfall the night before, streets in Port-au-Prince are filled with mud and dirty puddles of stagnant water. In those puddles you will find all kinds of stuff floating, the stench overpowering. The air is filled with microscopic particles that settle on your skin, clothes and under your fingernails, if you’re walking, the trip is a truly a battle when you try to negotiate your way around all this mud, trash and excrements. Cars trying to avoid obstacles will splash dirty water on you if you’re not alert. This is purgatory or hell, and we still talk and act as if the abnormal is okay.

It is not normal that Delmas is overrun with piles of garbage at every corner daily, and persons have to resort to setting them on fire. It is not normal in the twenty first century that persons breathe garbage burning because no one picks it up. It is not normal when persons buy food from a large tray serving items cooked in open air on charcoal stoves next to piles of smelly garbage. It is not normal that mud and dirty pools of water are inside the open air market where most people buy meat and vegetables, yet at Croix des Bossales, the biggest open air market in Haiti it’s like that all the time. For us to continue living like this is abnormal and we need to do something about it. We bristle with anger when foreign reporters expose our dirty reality, when they show how the people live. Many of us even complain that these foreigners are sabotaging tourism by not showing the beautiful beaches and resorts in Haiti, as opposed to always presenting the ugliness. Lest we forget, the ugly environment we allow to fester is real. There is garbage on the road leading to the beach, and let’s not talk about the water. In Haiti, many of our compatriots live like animals, with garbage and excrement everywhere, smelly and putrid. We act as if it’s ok since “these people” are not our friends or relatives. Yet in Thomassin, where mostly the well to do live, piles of trash are on the main road, blocking traffic and hindering persons walking. Instead of the smell of pine trees and vegetation, you smell garbage and dung. While driving through rich and poor look at and smell the same sh-t, so it’s a problem shared equally by all, regardless of social status.

#cleanupHaiti2024

It is time to stop the madness. It’s time for us to come together and do something about it.

#cleanupHaiti2024 is not a project that I want to start. I do not have the strength, resources and the capacity to lead such an effort. It must be an idea that many of us will help become a reality by starting an avalanche of groups dedicated to making our country a better place. Each group will choose a small town or a neighborhood within a larger town to implement a practice of cleaning the environment. Each group must be autonomous with no one being an over all leader. This is not a personal program to earn kudos, but rather it must become a movement to eradicate trash from our daily lives. We need to come together as a people, while working separately with the goal of getting something done by 2024. I’m asking all of you who read this post to begin thinking about this and how you can participate.

#cleanupHaiti2024. Make it viral.

#cleanupHaiti2024 on The J & P Show # 2

#cleanupHaiti2024 once again was the first segment of the J & P Show this past Sunday as co-hosts Philippe Montas, author of this blog and Jimmy Moise, CEO of Le P’ti Club, inc. of Miramar, explained the idea behind the hashtag. #cleanupHaiti2024 is not a project by a person which is added to the many other endeavors attempted before. And it certainly is not my personal crusade to fade after my energy level diminishes. It is an idea that needs to be owned by everyone who cares about the health and appearance of Haiti. Listening to the morning news roundup this morning on Zenith FM, once again I heard a reporter talk about piles of garbage around Delmas 31, the smell was overpowering. Another reporter in Carrefour Feuilles said that a huge pile of trash blocked the sidewalk and threatened to block the street.

Pedestrians are really affected by all the garbage, animal and human excrement, and the various other obstacles hindering their movement. If you travel on foot in Port-au-Prince you have to negotiate a path carefully to avoid being as dirty as the street you’re traveling on. Between the trash, the mud and standing water with floating trash, and the cars that will splash you if you’re not watching, walking around is an ordeal. As The J & P Show highlighted on its last broadcast, the problem is getting worse day by day, with our historical sights soiled and used as garbage dumps. Our health is affected because the air carries particles from the mounds of trash which get into our lungs with each breath, and under our fingernails, which become dirty at the end of the day. Something must be done about this situation before it’s too late, and our environment becomes polluted forever.

#cleanupHaiti2024. An idea that needs to become viral wherever Haitians live. Like I said before it is not a project, but a starting point; an idea that will fuel many projects by many different groups all over the world. Anyone can take the idea, let’s clean our home, so that by 2024 it does not look soiled and dirty. The idea needs to be owned by everyone in every neighborhood, small town and eventually all over the republic. Recently, I spoke to a comrade who has similar concerns about how Haitians are living. Ashley Toussaint is working with a group that is doing a clean up job in Little Haiti before the annual May 18th celebration of Haiti’s flag. Toussaint and his comrades are cleaning up areas of Little Haiti that are notoriously dirty and used by some as dumping ground. They want the neighborhood to be clean and show a proud face for flag day. This should become an effort done all year round, or perhaps 3 or 4 times a year to maintain our face, as it is said.

We need to instill the need to have a clean environment everywhere we live, and especially in our home. #cleanupHaiti2024 is the idea that will serve as fuel for all groups that want to help keep our environment clean. I want to urge all who want to participate in getting Haiti and everywhere we live beautiful again to begin talking with friends, and those in your network to see what can be done. Like the internet, each project will work on its own, with its own members dedicated to help within their capacity and willingness. We should all look toward January 2024 as date that is key. Let’s hope that by then we have accomplished enough to make the country attractive enough to invite persons to come with no shame about how we look, smell and operate, cleanly like people should be.

#cleanupHaiti2024 sounds unattainable to some if we just look at obstacles to this idea becoming a reality. Insecurity is one of the main things detractors have mentioned. My good friend Alix said he would need a war helmet, a good bulletproof vest and protection to go clean up in Haiti these days. Of course to implement the idea you will have to start in areas that are not dangerous, with persons living there. The Grande Anse would be the best place to start. Abricots, Dame Marie and small towns in the department could be the starting point. Using young people who live there we can begin to spread the pride and sense of belonging that used to be there before. We will have to provide them tools and resources to begin on a small scale, cleaning streets and squares where people gather, and identifying an area to be used to begin a form of recycling. This is where experts from the diaspora could provide help in providing a plan for garbage disposal that will include making compost, recycling rubber and plastic along with proper handling of toxic waste like car batteries, cell phones and other stuff that pollute the environment. The compost will be used to help agriculture and money will be made selling it along with what will be made from recycling. All this can become reality, by starting to spread the idea we will bring it to fruition.

Let’s begin by making #cleanupHaiti2024 become a viral message all over the world, so everyone please share it, share this simple message:

#cleanupHaiti2024

#cleanupHaiti2024

Danse Petro: State of Siege

Last week was an ordeal for many persons in Haiti, from the actual state of siege that affected Petit Goave to residents of Lalue and Avenue Lamartiniere in Port-au-Prince being subjected to thick clouds of smoke from burning tires not only blocking traffic, but causing persons all kinds of problems trying to breathe. In Cite Soley, guns seemingly woke up from a short slumber to terrorize residents who had to take cover, refraining from normal day to day activities. All areas of the country continue to suffer from large mounds of garbage, hindering traffic and smoldering in some cases causing all kinds of problems breathing. Champs de Mars has been in a virtual state of siege, with militants battling police, cars getting damaged by rocks thrown at them and people having to scurry around because of the violence and the tear gas. Ti Blan, a militant from the group on Champs de Mars was assassinated and his fellow militants are accusing the government and they promise retaliation. Drivers have learned to avoid the area around the School of Ethnology because of barricades and frequent rock throwing incidents.

Haiti is in a state of siege because ordinary people are trapped between kidnappings, demonstrations because of those kidnappings and bad governance, and gangs ruling vast areas with no police to counter their actions. De facto president Jovenel Moise recently told the UN that he had dismantle 64 gangs out of the one hundred active criminal groups he had catalogued. It was a blatant lie because even the police had not made such an announcement and no gang leader had been arrested. Rather the opposite because as part of the ransom they received, the gang called Mawozo, which operates between the capital and the border with the Dominican Republic, got some of their members who were in jail released in exchange for the priests and the nuns kidnapped a couple of weeks earlier. This kidnapping was a warning to the Catholic Church hierarchy to stay out of politics and stay away from joining forces with the opposition and the captive population. Churches, schools and activities of the church stopped in protest, as many other schools joined in the closure all last week. Finally, the priests and nuns were released when a ransom was paid and gang members were released from jail.

So the de facto president tried to blame the kidnappings on opposition leaders by saying that the taking of persons was 80 % political in essence. First, how does he know that, since the police has not arrested anyone, and the courts are paralyzed from a recent strike anyway. We have to ask if Jovenel has direct contact with the kidnappers in order for him to have such information. Second, we have to ask why those political leaders who are sponsoring the kidnappings are not facing justice, or at least in jail for nearly two years without being tried, like former Depute Arnel Belizaire. Third, maybe Jovenel is just saying that to have an excuse to put more opponents in jail without a trial, like Arnel Belizaire and some militants from Champs de Mars, busted in the war going on there.

The police seems powerless in the face of the increase in kidnappings of persons in the population. All over Haiti persons are taken and ransoms are paid, causing financial ruin for those taken along with their friends and family members, especially those living abroad who must contribute to free a loved one. Curiously, in the vast majority of cases only Haitian persons of modest means have been taken. Back in the days of Martelly, kidnap victims were mostly well to do business persons with businesses who could afford to pay big money. Nowadays even poor street merchants are taken by gangsters who demand astronomical amounts of money for their release. A driver who is working for the Tax Office – DGI – was kidnapped this week, and because of that enraged fellow employees staged a strike, while they barricaded Avenue Christophe where the main office is located. In a curious and somber anecdote heard on the radio, many witnesses related that there was an attempted kidnapping in their neighborhood. The kidnappers got spooked when persons in the area started to stop them from taking the person, so they escaped in their car. Two brave citizens gave chase on a motorcycle, but a police squad composed of members of the specialized unit BOID gunned down the chasing citizens on the bike, allowing the bandits to escape escape. More than three persons who were there testified the same thing, and the reporter graphically described the victims laying in a pool of blood. Were the police acting as cover? Or was it a mistake? The police issued no statement about the incident, and two more people died trying to fight against kidnapping. It is an example of not only the police not fighting the kidnappers, but perhaps being in cohort with them, working together to keep de facto president Jovenel Moise in power by terrorizing the population. So, as he said, the kidnappings are politically motivated by those in power.

Change needs to happen because conditions are worsening and persons are becoming desperate in the face of the Ogre. Life in Haiti nowadays is a struggle to just survive because no one is truly living there, just surviving in almost all cases.

#cleanupHaiti2024 on The J & P Show

#cleanupHaiti2024 was on Tele Anacaona, TATV channel 18.7 in the greater Miami area and channel 38.5 in Orlando in the State of Florida. Yours truly, author of this blog, along with Jimmy Moise, CEO of Le P’ti Club, inc., Miramar, presented the idea for the project on our show, the J & P Show, which airs every Sunday at 2:00 PM on this past Sunday, twenty fourth day of April. It was a great show, as we spoke about passages from my recent blog post which highlighted the problem with us just letting garbage invade our space with little being done about it. Touristic venues, which used to be highlights of a proud past, are left to be treated as garbage dumps, like Vertieres, the entrance to Cap Haitien, victimized by squatters and shantytowns on the hills surrounding. People who live in those places do not have anywhere to throw their garbage, so they dump it in any place they find. The tomb where Emperor Dessalines is buried at the entrance of Port-au-Prince, at Pont Rouge, has become a garbage dump, full of feces. Milo, which is in the North, and where we have major tourist attractions, often shows dirty streets, especially near open air markets.

#cleanupHaiti2024

Let’s make this idea viral. The idea can become the motto for many different projects or group endeavors, much like a spider web, spreading while each link is strong and independent. Each town, or area in the country will start to claim ownership of their project, which is to clean their space and make it livable and attractive. We need for the population to see this endeavor as their own, something they will invest time, energy and resources to accomplish. In order for this to happen we must reach out to as many people as possible, and spread the idea worldwide. This can become a starting point to solve many other problems because once people start working together the sky is the limit. Haitians in the diaspora must participate, not only because in 2024 we will be there, back in Haiti to welcome persons from Africa, The Americas, Asia and any place where people value freedom and respect the Haitian revolution.

#cleanupHaiti2024

It will be two hundred and twenty years since Haiti fought and conquered independence; a shot that was heard around the world ✊🏽. Black power over the best white armies in the world. We must have a clean country to celebrate this event with dignity. Too many times, persons look at how we live and compare us to animals because only the beast allows himself to be mired in refuse. There is an inherent ugliness in the way our country looks, with all this trash, refuse and toxic waste laying around. There is no pride in being ugly and dirty, so if we want to restore our pride, let us begin with our physical appearance. Clean the body, then the mind will be free to rise to higher spheres.

A picture from the past should serve as a catalyst for action. Nostalgia is useless because times have changed, and the population has grown tremendously. Back in the fifties and sixties, the population was smaller and more homogeneous. Persons had pride in where they lived, their “quartier “ or neighborhood. We need to restore that pride and sense of belonging by starting in small towns, and let the idea grow to encompass the whole country. We must start at least talking about ways we can start picking up our pride and restore our “face” as the old sayings go. The body is the temple where the spirit can soar to great heights. Same with our country, the environment is the body, and we the people are the spirit, waiting to soar, leap forward, and conquer our space.

#cleanupHaiti2024

Make it viral

#cleanupHaiti2024

There it is my friends, #cleanupHaiti2024, let’s get together and do something about how persons live in Haiti. 2024 should be a year we can point to as a time to proudly invite others to visit our country. It will then be two hundred and twenty years since our independence and the fight that signaled the birth of the Republic of Haiti as an independent nation and a world power in the Antilles. To celebrate the achievements of our ancestors in dignity let’s clean up our doors, parks, rivers and neighborhoods in order to receive our guests. The first thing you do to signal a new start is to clean up your environment. It’s like cleaning the body prior to engaging in a spiritual quest. You bathe carefully and anoint the body with essences to prepare for a passage into another timeframe.

So it is with our country, where people live next to mounds of garbage daily. Every time you hear a news roundup on radio broadcasts from Haiti, the reporters invariably mention piles of trash everywhere. The other day on Radio Zenith, a reporter spoke about mounds of trash near Fort Jacques, a major tourist attraction for locals and schoolchildren, along with the putrid smell that filled the area. In marketplaces, merchants sit next to garbage, selling food items with no regards for health and diseases, with flies everywhere. After listening to a reporter describing how persons in a neighborhood set fire to a huge mound of garbage because it was there too long, I remembered how this same thing used to happen in front of my house in Boudon, until we managed to stop this from happening. It was a nightmare, with the acrid smell of the smoke practically driving you out of your home to get away. The population has no idea about what to do with trash. It has become necessary to change course before it’s too late because we are exposing ourselves to all types of diseases that can affect anybody, regardless of how much you have.

We need to come together and clean up the country so that in a couple of years Haiti looks truly like a pearl of the Antilles. If we cannot come together and instill in each other the pride that comes from cleanliness how can we think of uniting to do anything else. We need to look at this campaign as a simple achievement that will require huge, but manageable efforts.

#cleanupHaiti2024 is a simple idea. Let’s make it viral, so that all who want can get onboard, anywhere and at any time. This is not my movement, or my organization; it’s an idea that needs to grow where we become a network, much like the internet, with no one in charge, but each group working toward that goal of physically cleaning our country neighborhoods by neighborhoods, town by town and beyond. Stopping the population from living in garbage, and jeopardizing their health will necessitate a change in mentality. With the physical removal of garbage we will need experts to help deal with recycling and reuse of household trash into compost for agricultural production. All of this is not a new idea, and I’m sure there are many reports gathering dust in file cabinets or on USB keys talking about that. In Haiti, I believe there are small efforts at recycling plastic items already in place, but they only scratch the surface, and plastic along with toxic materials are polluting our island. Old out of date telephones are a perfect example of toxic waste, with their batteries thrown out anywhere with no one realizing the danger associated. So not only do we need to clean the environment, we also need to change our mentality and not accept the garbage that comes from the U.S. and Canada. A lot of that second hand stuff is garbage sent to save the sender from the proper disposal some of those items require, like old computers, telephones and many other toxic materials.

#cleanupHaiti2024. On January First of that year let’s have a clean house, so that persons coming for the first time, or returning for the celebration, can feel clean and happy. If everyone, or nearly everyone is involved, we can achieve this great feat with a genuine common effort. Each can participate as much as his/her capacities allows. It only requires all of us wanting to see our country clean and free of toxic waste. Our children require that we clean the environment, so that their health is not jeopardized. 2024 is a good year to have that turn around implemented fully, with everyone onboard, all resulting from our efforts now.

#cleanupHaiti2024 would like for all readers of this blog to take this idea and help make it real. Think about how you and your friends can come together and become a branch of this tree that will bear cleanliness to our place of living. This idea needs to germinate and become a reality, so that we can begin the cleansing that will help us begin a better life. Before we change our ways we must clean the body, so that the spiritual quest can take place. We have a simple beauty that starts from the inside, and spreads into a rainbow of creativity unparalleled. We just need to clean up , that’s all.

Danse Petro: Kidnapping and Anarchy, New Norm

Businesses are suffering and the social fabric of Haiti is heading down a path of destruction because of a de facto president and his allies stubbornly insisting on maintaining power. Kidnappings and murders happen in broad daylight, as gangs are taking over the country. In Les Cayes today, persons took matters in their own hand to stop the kidnapping of two schoolchildren on their way to school. Women selling in the marketplace saw the action and bombarded the car, which contained the children, with coconuts smashing the windows and allowing police to intervene. This is a good example of the population taking matters in their own hands in a show of unity to defend themselves. But with every heroic action by people in the population, there is also bad news, like the murder of a well known businessman yesterday in Canapé Vert.

On Champs de Mars yesterday, the battle continued between militants throwing rocks and bottles and police officers still supporting the tyrant. The hostilities started in the afternoon when militants set up flaming tires and started throwing rocks, which led to police officers tossing tear gas canisters and firing rubber bullets and real rounds in between. Journalists and onlookers were forced to leave the square, as cops blanketed the area with tear gas. Militants kept throwing rocks and bottles even as they retreated from the tear gas. Another day in the turf war where militants from Petro Challenge and other groups have vowed to resist. A state of anarchy is descending on the country slowly, as education, health, justice and the police force are mired in inescapable doom because of ineptitude, corruption and the rule of gangsters. Bandi legal has become bandits in charge of almost all aspects of public life, shamelessly hiring known musicians to entertain the troops. The only choice to this descent into hell is resistance, like the militants in Champs de Mars are doing.

All progressive persons need to forget their differences and unite to fight this plan concocted by the international community to place the country under tutelage. That’s right, either the U.S., or more likely the Dominican Republic will take over our government and all institutions that rule our daily life. With kidnappings becoming a business, more persons will be affected, and the fear will lead to people longing for any force to stop this macabre existence. The nearly four million persons in a situation where they do not eat enough food everyday to sustain themselves want a better way of life. The price of food is rising beyond what most persons can afford, with one meal a day being quasi normal. As I said in a previous post, by destroying the agriculture Martelly and Moise have managed to starve the population as well as make money for their allies, the food importers. This is the most cynical policy of the past ten years that is leading to famine for the population. Soon the situation will lead to intervention, unless the population is united in a broad front to pull the country out of the mess brought by the bad governance, especially the last ten years.

The first step is the fight against the referendum to change the constitution that is being pushed by de facto president Jovenel Moise. The international community wants to change our constitution to allow the control of Haitian institutions for years to come. By having Jovenel and his cronies in charge of government, while they receive their orders from above, foreigners can control all our resources, mining and human labor force, which will be used and disposed of much like persons during the slave trade. How ironic that the country that fought successfully against slavery has its population reduced to slavery again two hundred years later, ruled by foreign chiefs who decide everything. With Jovenel in power we are not far from that scenario. Soon, the only solution will be total destruction, as Bob Marley used to sing. 1791 may come around once more with the violence and destruction which was the norm then. The only way to avoid this is to unite in a broad coalition to stop the madness.

Danse Petro: Bel Air vs the Ogre

A row of houses burned down, with smoke still wafting in the air; the few people remaining, according to the reporter I heard were there because they had nowhere else to go, with a few claiming to resist. Everyone else had left during that weekend of terror before Easter Sunday when Bel Air became the scene of another massacre of people whose only crime is living in an area where most people oppose de facto president Jovenel Moise. Sarajevo has come to Haiti; snipers are shooting at people who must run through certain areas to get through, much like it was in Bosnia, except on a larger scale back then. We heard persons explaining that a lot of people have been shot by guys from Delmas 2, shooting high powered rifles at anyone going through the street. To get from one area to the next you must run, while ducking low behind walls. The massacre started on Thursday before Easter, as gunslingers from the G9, the federation of gangs allied to the government, came during the night lobbing tear gas, and shooting at people. Persons speaking on radio talk about a night of terror, when they had to run away from home in the middle of the night with bullets flying and houses set on fire. Women grabbed babies and children hiding before running away.

The drama in Bel Air is still going on now with little noise made from media in Haiti and abroad. There is no information on the amount of people killed, some say nearly a hundred as of today, but there is no official number. There are three important police units close to where this is happening, so close that you can walk to Champs de Mars and the presidential palace, yet all through the shooting and cries for help they never reacted. The UN and the Core group of handlers of the de facto president are silent, hiding behind the claim that it was gang violence. All around Champs de Mars, persons have taken refuge once again away from their home, with little in hand.

The police union, the SPNH or Syndicate for the National Police had no choice but put themselves on the side of the opposition to de facto president Jovenel Moise and the illegal Director of Police Leon Charles. Members of the union are being persecuted and put in jail, like Abelson Gwoneg, or in hiding like Yannick Joseph. The police officers are poorly paid, with no benefits to speak of. No medical benefits for them or their family, no insurance if they die on the job; no education stipend for children or even for themselves, no money for uniforms, comfort and well being. So the need for a union to negotiate a better treatment with a pension that is viable is very important, I would even say critical. Police officers need a voice that will represent them in shaping a good contract and better treatment for young men and women who only want to serve their country. By denying them a decent living, the higher ups are forcing them to do bad things to survive and feed their family. Most police officers cannot afford a car on their measly pay, but many of them drive expensive SUVs, makes you wonder.

Seven runs around the palace to purge it of the evil within. That was the goal of the different militant groups fighting de facto president Jovenel Moise this past Wednesday. Seven passes which started well, according to reports. Just like Jericho fell, the evil within this palace will come to pass. The plan in the works is the totally illegal referendum to change the constitution. Jovenel and the PHTK have anointed themselves as the only persons needed to decide the future of the country. They have decided to change the constitution even though everyone else in the country does not agree with them. The majority of associations, almost all the political parties not allied with the PHTK and all the organized religious groups are against this unilateral action by a de facto president who is decried by most. If this referendum passes the international community will rule Haiti for the rest of the century, while the population will starve and look to leave the country. You have to wonder if Haiti still exists as a country, and if Haitians still want to have a home.

Danse Petro: On to 2024

This is a call and a challenge to all of us Haitians to set a goal that will bring some pride in ourselves and in our country. As it is, there is no need to remind you of the many ills affecting Haiti, our mother country, and looking at the situation, things will get worse, unless concerted positive action is taken to stop, and reverse this descent into hell. 2024 will be the two hundred and twentieth year of our independence, gained in 1804 with blood from our ancestors. We need to look at that year, 2024 as the time to show respect to ourselves, our environment and our ancestors. Let us start to gather our strength at all levels and look toward that year, 2024, as a time when Africa and the Caribbean will meet in Haiti to help and enjoy celebrating the two hundred and twentieth year of our revolution, which provided a call for freedom worldwide. It is this call for freedom, back in 1804 which echoed all around the world, and has engineered a coalition of countries, which dominated and are still controlling much of the world to ensure this never happens again. The so called international community stills wants to make us pay for foolishly thinking we could change the world order.

So, there are a lot of people who do not want Haiti to succeed, as a leading country in the Caribbean region. If you look at our geographic location, right in the middle of the Caribbean Islands with all major trade routes around the island, Haiti has the potential to be a major hub for maritime commerce in the area, as well as a gateway to Europe, much like the DR. Unless we look at ourselves and our country in a new way, we stand the risk of wasting generations of our people, as the rest of the world watches us in fake pity, while we’re being stepped on.

We need to set a goal for all of us who favor progress over staying on this suicidal course. I challenge all of us to look toward and beyond 2024. Whatever small action you can do, even talking about it now, in order to plan, let’s make 2024 a year where our country can be clean. You cannot invite people to come stay in your home if you have not cleaned it for awhile. The smell is offensive and you look ugly. As my friend Patrice Douge can attest, Haiti is a beautiful country, and from Grande Anse to Cap Haitien, he has taken beautiful pictures, some of which have been published. Patrice is a great photographer who needs to share more of his work with the rest of us, and he can attest to the physical beauty of our home, along with the beautiful people who live there. So let’s clean our country. This should be the first step toward bettering ourselves. I would like for all readers of this blog to think about joining a effort to stop the country from always being full of garbage, unchecked and unprocessed. I know you may think I’m going crazy, or wasting my breath, but there comes a time when we need to look in the mirror and hate what we see.

2024. Let’s challenge ourselves to bring change to a population that really needs it in order to truly be in the twenty first century. Three years to start a new revolution of the body and of the mind. It should be a year that either begins or continues huge work sites to build an environment that will help make the country not only a place where persons can live in dignity, but a place that will attract investors and cutting edge development. We have a lot of human capacities and abilities in Haiti and in the diaspora, so why is our country doing so badly? There is a reservoir of young persons ready and wanting to build a new country where they can live and contribute, rather than survive with no dignity.

2024. This is a goal we should set for all Haitians to come together and make our environment a nice place to live. A place we will invite the world to come celebrate our show of respect to our ancestors who fought to give us this beautiful land. Time to step back and stop going down. Time to clean up the garbage and remove all things that deface the environment and make our country unhealthy. Garbage brings bad health and ruins the environment. This should be our first effort toward 2024. Let’s clean up. We must look at cleaning our minds after we clean our streets, parks, rivers and beaches. Haiti needs all of us included in a massive joint effort to change our focus from denigrating ourselves to appreciating and loving ourselves. Starting with our language, Haitian Creole, which I prefer to call Haitian, continuing with our music and artistic talent we are a beautiful people with gorgeous creativity that only needs a catalyst to explode, just like the butterfly coming out of its shell into life. We must clean our minds after bathing our country.