Haiti - We Must Kill the Bandits (2010)
English | 1h 6m | FLV | 700Kbps | 720x480 | 29fps | MP3 | 128kbps | 447.11MB
Blood literally runs in the streets through the chronicle of Feb. 2004's forced ouster of Haiti's elected President Jean Bertrand Aristide and the terror of its citizens that followed. Aristide and his Lavalas political party were democratically elected in 2000 by Haiti's poor majority.
The film shows thousands of Aristide supporters gathered to celebrate his inauguration; he promised political and social change, better education, food, and health care for the masses. But not everyone was in favor of change. Haiti's business community and intelligentsia worked against Aristide from the very beginning. And they wouldn't accept, it seems, that a poor man's vote is worth as much as a rich man's.
Internationally, most mainstream media reported only negatively on Aristide. At his ouster, they gave the impression that Aristide fled to South Africa out of concern for his safety. A transitional government was put in place as tens of thousands of pro-Aristide people took to the streets to demand his return. Over and over again the film shows marches and rallies of hope-filled people uniting in peaceful protest. Their voices fell on deaf ears. Calling the demonstrators bandits, the Haitian police commit well-documented shootings, arrests and killings. Ironically, members of the UN are filmed telling people to listen to and respect the police.
As the year 2010 closes the United Nations is facing a serious crisis of credibility. Whether in Ivory Coast , in the Congo or in Haiti , U.N. troops sent to “keep the peace” are repeatedly accused of perpetrating grave human rights violations, including mass murders. This note shall focus on the track record of the Mission des nations unies pour la stabilisation d’Haiti (MINUSTHA), which has been in operation in this Caribbean island nation for the past six years. We shall also see, at the end of this brief text, what all this has to do with Barack Obama.
In a recent interview, Brazilian diplomat Ricardo Seitenfus accused the U.N. of “transforming the Haitians into prisoners on their own island”. Within a matter of hours, Seitenfus was called back to Brazil and summarily fired from his post as Special Representative of the Organization of American States in Haiti .
In recent days, former Cuban President Fidel Castro spoke publicly in support of Seitenfus. However, is there tangible evidence in support of Seitenfus’ grave assertions? American investigative journalist Kevin Pina hasjust released a powerful documentary that should help answer this specific question without ambiguity.
Pina’s We Must Kill the Bandits is 66-minutes long. Its “in your face” style is both provocative and irresistible. Packed with video evidence, "Bandits" leads the viewer to a desturbing yet unescapable conclusion: As per Patrice Lumumba’s 1960 Congo, in 2010 Haiti, the United Nations is mobilized as a deadly tool of repression in the hands of powerful countries that are bent on robbing Haitians of their right to self-governance and democratic rule.
From the onset Pina makes the point that the U.N.-attributed murders documented in his film continue to occur up to the current year.
Among several powerful footages in We Must Kill the Bandits, I propose these segments, listed in chronological order, which are especially deserving of attention:
* Pina provides historical context for the term “bandits”. He uses archive footages of U.S. invasions of Haiti in 1915 and 2004 (see minutes 5:43 to 8:07)
* Pina interviews U.S. author Randall Robinson who shares specific details surrounding the ouster of President Aristide by U.S. military personnel and diplomats, the evening of the February 29, 2004 coup d’etat (8:08)
* The author painstakenly documents how a campaign of military repression and psychological warfare intensified immediately following Aristide’s ouster. He illustrates this with a March 2004 incident whereby U.S. troops gunned down Spanish reporter Ricardo Ortega and maneuvred to have the latter’s killing blamed on Aristide supporters (10:09- 12:50).
* With a one-of-kind video interview of former Haitian Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, the filmmaker presents undisputable proof that Neptune knew that Haitian President Aristide was taken out of Haiti against his will and that the post-coup puppet president (Boniface Alexandre) was illegally installed by foreign diplomats (13:24-15:00).
* Convincingly, Pina describes the process by which former military tough guy and CIA-operative Herard Abraham was remobilised to orchestrate, in conjonction with Canadian special forces, a resurrection of Haiti ’s hated Forces armees d’Haiti (FadH) and its paramilitary arm FRAPH, by recycling their membership within the Haitian National Police. (15:50 – 17:55)
* The camera follows the campaign to silence popular folk artist and political activist Annette (So Anne) Auguste (20:15- 22:08)
* U.N. massacres which happened between September 30 and December 2004 as well as the arrest of human rights activist Father Gerard Jean-Juste are presented with graphic details (26:10- 36:00).
The second half of the documentary exposes how the U.N. campaign of repression continued unabatted throughout 2005 and 2006. A number of specific confrontations are highlighted: First, between pro-democracy demonstrators and Brazilian U.N. General Heleno (37:00-46:00) - it is noteworthy that Heleno’s successor, U.N. Commander Urano Teixeira Da Matta Bacellar, met a tragic end under yet to be elucidated conditions at Hotel Montana, on January 7, 2006. Then, between masked Haitian policemen operating with full U.N. support and the journalists, including producer Kevin Pina, whom they try to intimidate into silence. Yet another “must watch” footage (48:50 – 50:53).
Particularly disturbing and graphic are the final footages of the documentary where the producers describe U.N. massacres in Cite Soleil which occurred May 31, 2005 (50:54 – 54:25), July 6, 2005 (56:11 – 1:00: 43) and December 22, 2006. In the latter piece, a blind man nursing several shot wounds grabs a guitar and offers a song to the foreigners (“blan”- “whites”) whom he accuses to have shot him and killed his two children. « blan MINUSTAH sa m genyen ak ou?” – (What have I done to you MINUSTAH foreigners?).
"We now live in a world where powerful countries - all of them so-called democracies - manipulate multilateral bodies to the great disadvantage and suffering of the poorer developing nations". Rolihlahla (Nelson) Mandela
Please be warned! This well-researched documentary is graphic and highly disturbing. The film should not be viewed in the company of small children.
Although this documentary is a chronicle of oppression, the courage and hope of the poor masses of the Haitian people is by far the most unforgettable element of the story.
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