Obama mum as US-funded elections inch toward violence
WASHINGTON, D.C. (sentinel.ht) – Despite $30 million plus in U.S. taxpayer money in Haiti’s elections, the Obama administration is keeping quiet about the post-electoral crisis, hoping the mounting calls for a transparency go away. This disposition, unfortunately, leaves very little options for Haitians, except those involving molotov cocktails, guerrilla attacks and riots.
The U.S. Embassy and State Department both refused to answer questions on the electoral crisis, referring the Associated Press to direct its questions to the totalitarian regime in Haiti. The State Department’s Haiti Envoy, Kenneth Merten, was asked about the transparency requests, his response was “we’re damned if we do, damned if we don’t.” “This is a Haitian election,” putting it curtly and, in all intents and purposes, falsely.
Haitians are massively protesting, nearly everyday, against elections that 90% consider results to be fraudulent. For the most part, these protests have been non-violent but the frequency of violent incidents within these movements have been steadily increasing.
Protesters are demanding a minimum request, something reasonable; transparency. A sample of election tally sheets have given them actionable evidence to continue to request more, and in the form of an independent commission for the purposes of reviewing all.
When 78 of 13,000 election tally sheets were randomly selected and reviewed by political parties and local observers, all 100% were found to fraudulent or containing irregularities sufficient for their removal. The Provisional Electoral Council’s (CEP), national tribunal reviewed these 78 sheets and agreed that they were fraudulent or needed removal. But a review of the entire process is being denied by the CEP’s President, Pierre Louis Opont.
Why Violence is Inevitable if Obama Doesn’t Act
Haiti does not need the Obama administration to come and fix Haiti’s problems, but it does need it to fix the problems the Obama administration created, starting with the nation’s president, Michel Martelly. Simply ending support for him, recalling the U.S. Ambassador, would suffice.
Michel Martelly was wrongfully propped up by the Hillary Clinton State Department in 2010, the year of the massive 7.3 earthquake, and seems this was to achieve the ends of her personal interests. Yet, since then, the Obama administration has continued to support Martelly, even through destroying all the institutions that would have made violent revolt unnecessary.
On January 12, 2015, the fifth anniversary of said massive 7.3 earthquake, Haiti’s Parliament, Supreme Court, local governmental institutions, security forces and many other critical institutions have become non-existent or under the control of hand-picked, politicized, zealots of the Martelly regime. Under these circumstances, these necessary institutions, the checks and balances they offer, the buffers of revolt, that would have made non-violent protest worthwhile in achieving change, are not in place.
For example, in the United States, ten people can get together and picket in front of city hall for a cause and a mayor will listen because his position is dependent upon the voters and these voters are very close to him. If he does not listen, there is guaranteed a contender who will take up the issue and gain voters on that matter. So even if the mayor doesn’t hear the calls, the people can count on free, fair and inclusive elections, regularly recurring, to make their voices heard.
But, likely that U.S. mayor would listen and take the issue to heart and, depending on the matter and the strength of the cause, may take it to the state representative for the district concerned. The state rep would bring it to the state legislature or the governor. This plea may even be taken to the U.S. representative, that state’s senator, and to the highest office in the land, the presidency, if it requires such attention to be resolved.
Of course all these steps are dependent upon the cause and those backing it, but none the less, the chain of response exists and it is supported by the recurring free, fair, inclusive elections, which force the voice of the people to be heard. In the United States, activists have a non-violent means of being heard.
In the case of Haiti, this not the case. There are no local government officials chosen by the people. In the case of Haiti, elections have little to do for the people’s will, more to do with money, guns, and connections, especially with a gang of diplomats calling themselves the “Core Group”. In the case of Haiti, there are not lawmakers to balance against the injuries that may be incurred by the executive administration. In the case of Haiti, the chain of influence by non-violent manifestation doesn’t exist.
Making matters worse, in Haiti, there is a politicized police force which attacks non-violent protesters with excessive chemical gas, rubber and real bullets, beatings and persecution. A sitting senator and a former senator, both presidential candidates, were shot in the face by a police officer in recent days of protests.
And it has always been the aim of Michel Martelly to establish a dictatorship. On at least two occasions, before being placed as president he expressed this program. In a 1994 article in Miami New Times, it was written:
“Still, Martelly is not afraid to reveal that he has given serious thought to his philosophy of government. “First thing, after I establish my power, which would be very strong and necessary, I would close that congress thing. La chambre des deputes. Le senat.” He claps his hands. “Out of my way.” For the first year he would outlaw all strikes and demonstrations.”
Yet still, Hillary and Bill Clinton saw it fit to circumvent all principles of justice and democracy to bring the fourth place candidate into the second round, eventually, the presidency.
The Obama administration is funding these elections in Haiti and should side with the Haitian people and tell its totalitarian regime and electoral council to allow for transparency; a minimum request.
The Obama administration doesn’t need to do much more than that, but if it wishes to work with all sectors to help find a solution to the problem, it should, but not dictate.
If the Obama administration continues to support Michel Martelly, when the first molotov is thrown, when the first police bullet hits and kills a protester, this blood will be on its hands. But it seems they don’t really care anyways.
The post Obama mum as US-funded elections inch toward violence appeared first on Haiti Sentinel.