“We should not forget that the freedom you and I enjoy today; that the freedom that eight hundred thousand colored people enjoy in the British West Indies; the freedom that has come to colored race the world over, is largely due to the brave stand taken by the Black sons of Haiti…. When they struck for freedom… they struck for the freedom of every Black man in the world.” – Frederick Douglass
Toussaint Louverture, Haitian revolutionary leader
Bridled and driven by the corporate news cycle, world and North American attention stampeded to Haiti in 2010 with the catastrophic magnitude 7.0 earthquake. Anti-historical by design, the earthquake coverage said nothing of Haiti as the site of history’s only successful slave revolt, which if not the most important revolution in history is certainly the most underappreciated. Since that revolution – so masterfully told in the Caribbean Marxist CLR James‘ The Black Jacobins – Haiti has long been re-savaged by colonial and neo-colonial domination at the hands of France, the USA, and Canada. Canadian philosopher and journalist Peter Hallward’s superb Damning the Flood lays this out in careful detail (see his DN! interview here). By contrast, if the benevolence of modern-day corporate slavers is more your “thing,” you can tune into Canada’s public broadcaster, CBC radio, to learn of the benefits of multinational sweatshops in Haiti today. Here however I present a new video featuring journalist Kim Ives, who walks us through Haitian history and discusses the situation today.
Kim Ives, journalist and co-founder of the international weekly newspaper Haiti Liberté, explains the current political situation in Haiti and neighboring countries, the struggle of the people for control of their economy against US imposed policies undermining pro-people economic development, and resistance to President Martelly’s and Bill Clinton’s pro-rich orientation that is turning Haiti into a modern labor camp.