Danse Petro – Ides of March

As I meandered into the Valley of Artibonite, the stark harshness of the land set me into a profound melancholy. I wondered about the state of our countryside and the strength it required to survive in such an environment. As I neared the river the cool breeze from the stream washed over my face and gave em a sense of well being. Down the river the flow of the current carried debris and garbage, most of it plastic, with a used tire standing out in the less than cleat water. I remembered drinking from the river along with most who lived along the banks back in the sixties; we would sift the water through makeshift filters made of burlap and store it in clay containers. Sitting on a rock I let my hand play in the water; a snook appeared out of nowhere and looked at me accusingly,

“Are you going to throw your refuse in the water like all the others” he said with sadness in his eyes.

-“I am just sitting there wondering about the old days”, I replied curiously.

-“What are you doing here, and what is your business in these parts ?”

-I am just passing through spreading the good word to all who will listen. While we may all want to hear the truth sometimes truth is an illusion and falsehood becomes the norm trumpeted all over by precise machines that are fine tuned to spread the madness of human folly.”

The snook looked at me then plunged into the river wordlessly.

Looking at Haiti after the carnival period we are left with a few unanswered matters which will come to the forefront soon. The Petro Challenge is in the process of getting a second wind because the issue is far from completed. The Jovenel Moise administration is torn with the struggle between the President, Jovenel Moise and the Prime Minister Jean Henry Ceant with the winner hoping to keep power with the blessing of the international community. As this fight is carried on, both antagonists are hoping that the Petro Challengers have ran out of steam, but the future will prove them wrong because the people are not going to starve to repay money while a few enjoy the stolen fruit. It is only a matter of time before the issue turns to the forefront because the courts are slow but eventually they will act. Also many actors are monitoring the challenge and they are poised to begin mobilizing the population after the carnival hiatus.

It would seem as if Prime Minister Ceant is ready to move forward with measures to push the Petro Caribe trial. He wants to prosecute those responsible for the theft or we should say he says he wants to make the issue number one in his agenda. Is President Moise against him because he wants to protect the culprits who stole the billions since they are in his camp ? Ceant is also a friend of former president Martelly who is rumored to have put in a good word for the prime minister with Moise. So, we are left with an imbroglio where friendships and interest coincide or collide, depending on the point of view. The one constant in all this is that over three billion dollars were stolen from the Haitian people and as a result most of the population will have to starve and the diaspora will have to send more money to feed their relatives so that the government can repay this money. It is no secret that this debt is being repaid presently and this is one of the cause of the deficit in the budget of the Haitian Republic; while in the meantime the laundromat is working full time causing a shortage of dollars in the economy.

As the United States of America is vehemently supporting the uprising in Venezuela in the name of democracy in order to save the people from a government they feel is illegal because of an election they feel was rigged, they are supporting and allowing President Jovenel Moise to stay in power even though he was elected in a rigged election that had very little participation and the people have taken to the street to disavow him. Moise has managed to stay in power by violently suppressing the population, shooting at demonstrators, using tear gas indiscriminately and ordering extra judicial executions of young demonstrators. This double standard shows that just like President Donald Trump is not looking for democracy in Venezuela he is supporting an anti democratic regime in Haiti with no outcry from the international human rights organizations that were so loud back in 2003-2004 during the days of the revolt against former President J.B. Aristide.

Shortly after a visit from Under Secretary of State Hale in Haiti to bring the good word from the State Department the opposition to President Moise is torn apart with Jean Charles Moise accusing the other members of the opposition of wanting to negotiate with the sitting president. Senator Evaliere Beauplan represented the opposition in a meeting at the U.S. Embassy and after that all kind of accusations have been flying against Beauplan. It seems a bit convenient that the opposition is torn between warring branches just when it appears that President Moise is on the brink of resignation, but politics requires patience and fortitude for the path to righteous victory is long, with many strange twists and turns.

To think that the good citizens of Les Cayes allowed Michel Martelly to parade on a float cursing their elected senator while throwing mud at all residents truly shows that we are a peaceful people being starved, oppressed, ridiculed and kept in physical and mental bondage. Very few people will allow an outsider to come into their town, ride on a float and curse at them and their elected official, using vile words that children and youngsters were bombarded without a violent reaction. When Martelly tried to do the same in Brooklynn in New York he had to retreat under a deluge of bottles and objects thrown at him. The people in Les Cayes also did not approve but the former president was able to strut around only because he had well armed protection with rifles and machine guns from the HNP. Of course there were a few incidents where people threw rocks at the float to show their disapproval and disdain but that did not stop Martelly from showing his ignorant bravado behind the protective phalanx of well armed goons. We have a lot of young people who need education judging from the crowd which was following Martelly while repeating his stupid and degenerate curses. Many came from Port-au-Prince because most people in Les Cayes did not participate in this carnival for the starving.

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