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Haiti: 205th Anniversary of Haitian Independence

After the disasters they went through in 2008, Haitian people celebrated the start of 2009 more or less happily – in Haiti, January 1st marks not only New Year, but also the date when in 1804, the island got independence from France, becoming the first black democracy in the world.

Some French-speaking Haitian bloggers pay homage to the anniversary while readying themselves for the difficulties their country will have to face in the future:

Darlie explains the historical events which led to the island's independence but also tells of the traditional celebration inherited by Haitians: eating “soup joumou” on January 1st [Fr]…

On raconte que du temps de la colonie, à Saint-Domingue, la soupe était très en vogue et réservée uniquement aux maîtres d'esclaves et dans la plupart des cas à certains esclaves domestiques communément appelés esclaves talentueux comme par exemple Toussaint Louverture.
Le parfum envoutant du mariage des légumes exotiques et de la viande bovine ajoutée sur les multiples revendications que les esclaves des champs murmurèrent déjà, suscitèrent chez eux le désir de révolte.

It is said that at the time when Santo Domingo was a colony, soup was in fashion, but only for the slave masters and mainly some house slaves, called Talented slaves, like Toussaint Louverture.
The enticing smell of local vegetables and beef meat added to the numerous claims that slaves had already secretly provoked their desire for revolt.”

While she wishes her people “a good meal”, her Season's Greetings sound more like a plea for solidarity [Fr]:

Vivons en vrai, vivons ensemble, marchons unis sur le chemin de la fraternité, de la paix et de la réconciliation

Let's live truely, together, let's walk united on the path to brotherhood, peace and reconciliation

These words from Darlie are all the more interesting given Haitian President René Garcia Préval‘s forecast that 2009 will be “a difficult year…for Haitians” (as reported by Romandie News [Fr]) during his official visit to Gonaïves in northern Haiti. Coincidentally, Gonaïves is the historical birthplace of Haiti's independence – and also the region that suffered most from 2008's devastating hurricanes.

In the blog HaitiRectoVerso, Decky Lakyel relates with a certain amazement the early arrival of the Haitian government officials in Gonaives, one day before the official date of the celebration. Blogging about an interview heard on Radio Kiskeya, he explains the double motivation of this early visit:

Le ministre confie que le séjour inhabituel de 48 heures des membres de l’Exécutif dans la Cité de l’indépendance pour marquer les 205 ans de l’épopée haïtienne, représente une « manifestation de reconnaissance de l’importance symbolique » de lieux fondateurs de l’histoire nationale.
Outre les activités officielles, le Président Préval, la Première ministre Pierre-Louis et leurs principaux collaborateurs auront l’occasion de s’entretenir avec les victimes des intempéries qui avaient durement frappé les Gonaïves.

The Minister confesses that the surprising 2 day visit of the Executive officials to Independence City (Gonaïves) to celebrate the 205th anniversary of the Haitian epic, represents the “acknowledgement of the symbolic importance” of those founding places in Haitian national history.
Besides the official program, President Preval, Prime Minister Pierre-Louis and their team will have the opportunity to talk with the victims of the disasters which struck Gonaives so brutally.

But after reading the last post of Haitian blogger Stanley Lucas in Solutionhaiti, it is quite obvious that not everyone is convinced by these efforts.

5 comments

  • SHARON WALKER

    Dear Friends:
    May Haiti see the day that they become a state! At least think of this. Protection from under our constitution and many other benefits. A state of which you make your laws as long as they are not in conflict with our constitution. Religions recognized around the world as accepted and those in the origins of religions. I pray for you! The future may it be more! Remain a free society and nation. Amen.

    REGARDING AN ARTICLE ON MSN 9 MUSLIMS REMOVED FROM A PLANE.

    Dear Friends:

    There is a fobia of some who fly on planes! It is real! There are those who hear through their fear, which may be part of the time we are in where world events includes war also amoung nations with religious historical beginnings. It is with sincerity and trite that I say this I hope the Airlines have good insurance and the individual who responded knows the difference of hate crimes. You have both been wrong!

    Not all Arabs or Jewish are evil in thought or action. Most of the planning of 9/11 occurred on the ground. In this time of our Lord 2009 may we all think of the Birth of Christ. There amoung and surrounding the child, the Savior, are Arabs and Jews. So to today christians are of all faiths. So too are we reminded to live in peace to not over react to conversation or thought about where they are on a plane. They were on the plane with you just as those amoung and surrounding Jesus at his birth. I too have thought or said where is the door or looked at the closeness of the engines to my physical being on a plane. A natural instinctive behavior. Does it matter what faith, religion or color of my skin or age?

    Perhaps the person who complained may seek counseling religious and medical for peace of mind and peace to be with you.

    May I say this that christians believe that all souls and those of the past and present will be on the earth at the time God comes to fight Satan. This would be all those that would be born and unborn, in fetal stage or before, aborted, misscarriaged and all. Judgment day will then be when God fights and destroys all parts, memory of Satan and his followers. Osama Bin Ladin and all his followers or all who have a part of him in him will be judged and burned in hell. All 6 million killed by Hitler no matter what faith will be there and God will save their soul and spirit his chosen people are amoung them and the offspring of those who lived are amoung us today! He could not destroy them. Abortionist you also will be judged for all and each and every murder you commit or committed and all your hateful parts of you amoung them piece by piece. So to those who made cases that allowed this murder. Let us not fear flying nor our neighbor for this the fear of words, conversation, condemned 6 million. How many have been murdered by a knife or suction machine by abortionists? Are they amoung you? Genecide? Are they amoung you?

    Ladies and Gentlemen love thy neighbor and fear not their feet movement in a bathroom and set them up where other such actions occur or occurred as in Ted the Senator of Alaska. God help me if I move my feet pulling up my close or adjusting them, or reach for paper or say something about where the door is or the person next to me. Where is the fire extingquisher in relationship to a bathroom or plane engine? Someone smoking reality or with words? Call the police, arrest him, call the FBI, put them off a plane, political garbage and or predjudice. It is written Fear not the darkness, for I am with you. Any one know where? Lady on the plane, conversation you invaded their privacy by listening and oh fear!

    Get a lawyer! You committed hate crimes against them and showed you were predjudice. Peace be with you and let it begin with me. Amen. Send a copy of this to the Pope and all religious leaders and Psychologists and Psychiatrists. Please, I am serious! Amen.

    IMAGINE SOMEONE WANTING TO WATCH THEIR MOVIE ON A PLANE BEING REMOVED. BUT I WANT TO WATCH THE MOVIE! KICKING AND SCREAMING. COULD THIS HAPPEN?

    A CHILD OR ADULT HOW WOULD YOU REACT?

  • Merci!

  • thezenhaitian

    But after reading the last post of Haitian blogger Stanley Lucas in Solutionhaiti, it is quite obvious that not everyone is convinced by these efforts.

    Stanley Lucas is an operative and “point” man for U.S. interventions; he specializes in installing puppet governments. As an efficient stooge, Stanley does not hesitate to use any means necessary.

    “Jul 16, 2004 | On Feb. 8, 2001, the federally funded International Republican Institute’s (IRI) senior program officer for Haiti, Stanley Lucas, appeared on the Haitian station Radio Tropicale to suggest three strategies for vanquishing Haiti’s president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide. First, Lucas proposed forcing Aristide to accept early elections and be voted out; second, he could be charged with corruption and arrested; and finally, Lucas raised dealing with Aristide the way the Congolese people had dealt with President Laurent Kabila the month before. “You did see what happened to Kabila?” Lucas asked his audience.

    Kabila had been assassinated.”

    from the article “The Other Regime Change” by Max Blumental

  • manuchca

    HAITI IS IN A SAD STATE , THE SICK THING HER CHILDREN DON’T EVEN REALIZE IT.HUMMMM MOTHER HAITI HAS BEEN RAPE, ABUSE, USED, LIE ON, BURNED, HAIR PULL OUT(TREES) MOTHER HAITI CHILDREN TALK DOWN TO HER LIKE SHE ISN’T JACK. MOTHER HAITI YOU HAVE HORRIBLE CHILDREN THAT LOVE THEIR SELF ONLY. SELFISH, SELF SEEKING INTERSED.MOTHER HAITI ALL OF YOUR CHILDREN SEAT ON THEIR HANDS IN YOUR DARKEST HOUR WHAT A PITTY.

  • It is sad that ultimatley the revolution which destroyed San Domingue and created Haiti (a truly inspiring event with global ramifications) was the high point of western Hispaniola’s history since colonisation to the present. Unfortunatley, since around 1820 it has been downhill for the fractured nation that emerged from the revolution. Charismatic leaders have tried and ultimately failed unite the country and improve its standing. Estime and perhaps Aristide are just two examples.

    READ THE BLOG:
    http://www.craigdylan.blogspot.com

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