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17491: (Hermantin)Miami-Herald-Haitians need more support from black-American leaders (fwd)

From: leonie hermantin <lhermantin@hotmail.com>

Posted on Tue, Dec. 02, 2003

Haitians need more support from black-American leaders

Raoul Peck accurately and appropriately addressed the need for black
Americans and our leadership organizations to look critically at Haitian and
African leaders with an eye toward social justice in his Nov. 20 column,
Black leaders in U.S. ignore Aristide's tyranny.

He asks: ''Why aren't the traditional allies of Haiti's democratic struggles
among black Americans standing alongside the Haitian people?''

Black Americans and our leadership organizations have time and time again
rallied behind an immigration policy that treats Haitian and Cuban
immigrants alike. But for all this support U.S. immigration policy hasn't
changed: Cuban immigrants are accepted, whereas Haitians are repatriated as
a matter of course.

Perhaps Peck's keen eye would be better turned on the rationale behind this


Raoul Peck failed to mention political or financial incentives that the
Congressional Black Caucus or TransAfrica might be receiving from Haitian
President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. They advocate releasing foreign aid to a
nation where a simple priest is now a multimillionaire president.

Countless abuses occur daily in Haiti. Free press and free speech, if not
supportive of the government, are savagely curtailed in Haiti.

Aristide is using a retribution demand of France as a distraction from the
fact that he has turned into a despot similar to ''Papa Doc'' Duvalier, if
not worse. Haiti's heroes of the independence must be turning in their


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