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IW 02

Latin America

Quagmire in Haiti

WHO THE LATIN AMERICAN GOVERNMENTS SERVE

It is not the first time that a natural disaster triggers a people's rebellion. The social reality is laid bare for all to see. In Haiti, the regime imposed towards the end of February by the Franco-Yankee invaders restored the old governing cliques under Duvalier and the tonton macoutes. The pacifist coalition ANSWER (Act now to stop war and end racism) called a mobilization in New York with the aim of denouncing that in the last few weeks, after the famine which caused by the floods and official negligence, "The police (of the Latortue regime) and the occupation troops have detained and murdered dozens of militants who oppose occupation". Since July, the main contingents acting under the umbrella of the UN are Latin American. In Haiti, moreover, a process of national uprising is in course. The humanitarian crisis only "made the patience of the common Haitians run thin" ( The Economist , 25 Sep). Before the hurricanes, and with the thousands of dead and hundreds of thousands of homeless it had caused, the Latortue government was in bankruptcy: of the 1.5 billion dollars promised by international "donors" to take the country out of civil war, "little had been paid out". Even worse, "many parts of the country are not under control of the government". "In order to keep order, the UN officials contracted local leaders of armed gangs" who were active in the coup, coming from the old army of Cedras and thetonton macoutes" (ídem). The government has lost the support of one of the main forces that drove the coup, the "Group of 184". As a consequence it has postponed the call for elections which justified at the time the violation of the constitutional order in Haiti.

The murky civil war taking place in Haiti has its origin in the collapse of the small owners in the country and the massive affluence of former peasants to the slums in the cities. The neo-liberal experiment that aimed to create an exports platform through the installation of big assembly plants, like in other Caribbean countries, ended up even worse than in the north of Mexico. The big capitalists moved their production plants to southeast Asia (as a result, even the 'Popular' Republic of China has joined the blue helmets in Haiti), after having left it without the basic self-sufficiency that characterized it in the past.

The 'left-wing' governments of Latin America are thereby executing a task in the service of imperialism that the Caribbean nations had refused to second.

What is occurring, for the first time, on a Latin American scale, is that a pro-IMF and bloody regime of the Haitian kind is sustained on the bayonets of 'left-wing' governments. Those who claim to be the continuation of Martí, Sandino and el Che, or Perón, have become, more than bootlickers of the Yankees, their police force.

The Argentine and Brazilian troops have been occupying themselves with the disarming of the followers of Lavalas, Aristide's party, while acting in conjunction with the right-wing forces. Far from serving the cause of "national reconciliation", the 'left-wingers' take a stand and all they do is deepen the civil war. The hollow statements are not even capable of hiding the disputes that divide them. Argentina may now receive the 'favor' of becoming a member of the UN Security Council, as a non-permanent member, while it opposes Brazilian pretensions of filling a "permanent seat" (rejected by the Yankees). The sending of troops to Haiti prepares the intervention of the armed forces in the domestic repression in the majority of our countries, which many politicians (Duhalde) are asking for, and others have already put into practice (Río de Janeiro).

200 years after the first great emancipating heroic act of the continent, that took place in Haiti precisely on January 1, the integration that our oppressed, indigenous and black America demands is the road of the socialist revolution.

NORBERTO MALAJ