On May 3, the Boston based organization Physicians for Haiti released a report card titled Protecting Peacekeepers and their Public which evaluates the status of the United Nation’s efforts to eradicate cholera in Haiti. Two years later, the UN has failed to implement their own cholera eradication reccomendations, speaking volumes about their concern for the saftety of the Haitian people.
In the most trying of times, it is often said that it becomes much easier to tell real friends from the fake. Since the announcement by United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki Moon, claiming that the U.N. has legal immunity when it comes to their role in introducing cholera to the country, the Haitian people are currently learning that outside of Cuba, even supportive words are hard to come by within the rest of the Caribbean Community.
On December 11, the United Nations announced a long overdue initiative to end the cholera epidemic which has devastated Haiti for more than two years—taking over 7,750 lives and infecting 600,000 more. While the announcement by the Secretary General Ban Ki Moon is a welcome and much needed step, the ten-year plan is not without controversy.
In a near unanimous vote at the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, the vast majority of the world voted to put an end the U.S. economic embargo against Cuba. The last time the United States had normal relations with Cuba, the Andy Griffith Show was the most popular show on TV, African Americans couldn’t vote, McDonalds only had 228 locations, and Barack Obama would not be born for another year.
Guest post by Ansel Herz: In the Christian Science Monitor, the head of a prominent think tank advocates for a continuation of the UN's military presence in Haiti. To do so, he must avoid the UN's responsibility for the country's cholera epidemic, assaults and killings of civilians, and its corruption of Haiti's democratic institutions.
What MINUSTAH’s near certain renewal on October 15 essentially means is another year of impunity for MINUSTAH, whose mandate entrusts them with the protection of the Haitian people on paper, but routinely and unapologetically violates their human rights in practice. Better options are available but are not considered. Why?
Geographer and author Jared Diamond seems oblivious to the corrosive role of outside interference in modern Haitian history. In his recent op-ed in The New York Times, Diamond focuses on Haiti’s supposed cultural defects as an explanation for its lack of development, rather than the crimes of foreign powers.
On Tuesday, the UN General Assembly again voted overwhelming to condemn the U.S. embargo of Cuba. As international relations scholar Arturo López-Levy points out in the latest NACLA Report, the embargo itself violates basic principles of the human rights model established by the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights.