Haiti 2004 – Life Under President Aristide (days before the coup)

Haitians Say Ngiyabonga (Thank You) South-Africa!
August 17, 2016
The Ottawa Initiative on Haiti
September 25, 2016

Haiti 2004 – Life Under President Aristide (days before the coup)

In December 2003, my wife, Manzè Choublak, and I decided to take our son Lanmoukaji with us to the bicentennial celebrations in Haiti.

Meanwhile in mainstream media, Haiti is described as a land of lawlessness and generalized mayhem, a dictatorship from which visitors are encouraged to stay as far away as possible.

In the following video reportage, I will share with you a glimpse of what we found out during the weeks we spent traveling the streets of Haiti, including an evening spent at the National Palace. As it was infamously known to be a torture dungeon during the years of U.S.-backed Duvalier dictatorships (1957-1986), I will let you discover from the video footage what happened to us as we visited President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and guests on January 1, 2004.

I’ve decided to start this series titled “Ayiti 2004: Se Pa Ti Koul”, with as little narration as possible. The date is January 25, 2004, three weeks after the National Palace visit (so much for my desire to make this suspenseful, nope! there was no ritualistic killing involving me seated in boiled water. However, there was a whole lot of this.

“Ayiti 2004: Se Pa Ti Koul”

 


Nan segman sa a, mwen envite nou koute 2 jounalis Radyo Ginen, ki te anime Ginen Aktyalite Magazin (GAM), yon emisyon ki te popilè anpil alepòk. Refleksyon Jean Lestin ak Leonne Alexis ede nou reviv kouman peyi a t ap respire nan epòk la, kote touris tap resevwa avèstisman “pinga ale Ayiti”, manifestan Grenn Nan Bounda (GNB) ki tap mache sou lobidyans André Apaid ak bòfrè li Charles Baker, epi Evans Paul (Kplim) te vle lari Pòtoprens rete cho jiskaske yo rive kapote gouvènman Prezidan Aristide la, ki limenm t ap fè preparasyon pou selebre bisantnè nasyon an. Annou suiv kouman sa te ye nan lari Pòtoprens, devan ekran televizyon, ak sou wout Jakmèl…

DESANM 2003…(Jakmèl, men nou!)

Leson peryod 2003-2004 yo dwe ede nou devlope estrateji, matirite, entèlijans, taktik, kouraj, sajès ki nesesè pou nou reponn fos k ap frape n tout tan an. Ane sa a, se pou eleksyon fèt san vot blan. Pa kite zangi yo foure dyol yo nan koze nou. Evite ti dife vole anbasad yo kontinye alimante nan peyi a, sou tout kalite pretèks.

Koute jenn etidyan nan videyo a, k ap rakonte nou aksyon brav zansèt yo, Dessalines ak Kapwalamo ki dwe enspire konpotman noumenm Ayisyen k ap viv toupatou jodi a.

Koute Louloup Louloup Patikoul ki raple nou, nan chante a, se “anbisyon pouvwa pitit ansyen kolon yo ki mete n la. ..depi 200 zan ou anpeche m mache…yo mete divizyon pou youn ka dechire lot…rezistans…tan pou n tounen Vyetnam, nou pito manje lam….rezistans!”

Bèl travay atizay nou wè nan vil la, bèl achitekti, bèl lanmè, bèl anbyans nannuit tankou …pu lajounen, se AYISYEN ki dwe jui sa kè kal nan peyi yo. Si nou pa fout kolon yo deyo se yomenm k ap kontinye fout nou deyo nan pwop peyi nou, jenerasyon apre jenerasyon.

Seswa jamè! Ayiti pou Ayisyen ak Ayisyen!

 

Pandan zanmi ak fanmi te kontinye debake Ayewopo Potoprens pou yo vin selebre ak majorite pèp Ayisyen an, jounal Ayiti ak aletranje, konsila ak anbasad peyi “zangi” yo tap voye mesaj avèstisman “pinga ale Ayiti”, manifestan Grenn Nan Bounda (GNB) ki tap mache sou lobidyans André Apaid ak bòfrè li Charles Baker, epi Evans Paul (Kplim) te vle lari Pòtoprens rete cho jiskaske yo rive kapote gouvènman Prezidan Aristide la, ki limenm t ap fè preparasyon pou selebre bisantnè nasyon an. Annou suiv kouman sa te ye sou wout ak nan vil Jakmèl nan finisman mwa desanm 2003…

A SMALL BUT ENTHUSIASTIC CROWD – Estimates the New-York Times.

As promised, I will continue to share some of the images and sounds I recorded while in Haiti for the bicentennial celebrations. In the next segment, you will get a glimpse at how, on January 1, 2004, the People of Haiti celebrated the end of white supremacist racial slavery on their island.

For reasons one can only guess, the New-York Times did its  best to downplay the importance of that event. While you may not fully get the words and feelings expressed on the upcoming video excerpts, if not fluent in Kreyol, I am sure, the images will, nonetheless, help you see right through the racist propaganda that once passed as journalism. Before the video evidence, I invite you to read the NYT’s report.

200 Years After Napoleon, Haiti Finds Little to Celebrate By

“Speaking to a small but enthusiastic crowd, Mr. Aristide called Haiti ”the mother of liberty,” and appealed to opposition groups, which have mounted ever larger demonstrations against his government, to agree to new elections this year”.



 

Note the so-called correction at the end…

“the article also referred imprecisely to the size of the crowd that attended the bicentennial celebration outside the presidential palace. While the government estimated it in the hundreds of thousands, and outside journalists’ estimates ranged as low as 15,000, the crowd was not small”.

 

PLEASE WATCH between 7:05 and 8:20. tell us your own estimation of the crowd: 15k, 100k, 1 milion+?

https://youtu.be/0gwpS-dAaxg
1 JANVYE 2004 – MEN KI JAN SA TE PASE… (Video -12 min)
– gade ant 7:05 epi 8:20. epi di konbyen moun ou estime ki te la: 15 mil, 100 mil, 1 milyon+?

“SOVE FRATÈNITE NÈG NWA” – Fraz sa a, ki nan chante Erna Letemps entèprete ak balè djaz mou wè nan finisman videyo a, se yon mesaj pou Ayisyen ane 2016 sa a.
Si, jou 1 janvye 2004 la kolon yo te ka pouse odas bay manti sou sa ki te pase tout bon vre. se pa nan eleksyon 2016 yo, pou nou ta atann yo di verite osijè kantite moun ki vote pou kandida ki asosye ak mas popilè yo.Kidonk, pou nou “sove fratènite Nèg nwa”, fok nou konte sou pwop fos nou, pwop je nou, pwop entèlijans nou, pwop lanmou nou pou sè nou yo, pou frè nou yo, pou san nou, lanmou pou nasyon nou.Manti kolon an deja pare….Noumenm, Ayisyèn, Ayisyen, èske nou pare pou nou defann diyite n. ak verite. lanmou epi jistis?Onè – Respè!

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