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Home Publications Blogs Haiti: Relief and Reconstruction Watch "Brazil, MINUSTAH, Need a Timetable for Withdrawal" - Mark Weisbrot in Folha de Sao Paulo

"Brazil, MINUSTAH, Need a Timetable for Withdrawal" - Mark Weisbrot in Folha de Sao Paulo

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Thursday, 21 July 2011 14:10

CEPR Co-Director Mark Weisbrot wrote in Folha de São Paulo, Brazil's largest circulation newspaper, yesterday:

U.S. diplomatic cables now released from Wikileaks make it clearer than ever before that foreign troops occupying Haiti for more than seven years have no legitimate reason to be there; that this a U.S. occupation, as much as in Iraq or Afghanistan; that it is part of a decades-long U.S. strategy to deny Haitians the right to democracy and self-determination; and that the Latin American governments supplying troops – including Brazil – are getting tired of participating.

One leaked U.S. document shows how the United States tried to force Haiti to reject $100 million in aid per year – the equivalent of 50 billion reais in Brazil’s economy – because it came from Venezuela. Because Haiti’s president, Préval, understandably refused to do this, the U.S. government turned against him. As a result, Washington reversed the results of Haiti’s first round presidential election in November 2010, to eliminate Préval’s favored candidate from the second round. This was done through manipulation of the Organization of American States (OAS), and through open threats to cut off post-earthquake aid to the desperately poor country if they did not accept the change of results. All of this is well-documented.

The UN troops were brought to Haiti to occupy the country after the United States organized the overthrow of Haiti’s democratically elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, for the second time, in 2004. Some 4,000 Haitians were targeted and killed in the aftermath of the coup, and officials of the constitutional government jailed while the UN troops "kept order." Many more would perish after the earthquake because Haiti’s public infrastructure was crippled during the four-year international aid cutoff that Washington organized to topple the elected government.

Read the rest here.

Tags: aid distribution | aristide | disease | election | minustah | UN | wikileaks

 

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