A national emergency is taking place on the Caribbean island of Haiti. As reported by the Haitian Times, officials in Haiti have requested assistance from foreign law enforcement to combat the civil unrest taking place. The discord amongst the Haitian population is based on widespread concerns over corruption involving President Jovenel Moïse’s administration. According to Margaret Kimberley of the Black Agenda Report podcast, Moïse was assisted to power in Haiti by the US, a move that echoes a long history of interference and intervention, which has systematically been underreported in corporate news sources.
On February 7, 2021, protests in Haiti resulted in the arrest of more than twenty people, including a judge and a detective in the national police force. The protest was directed at the Haitian president, Jovenel Moïse, whom they accuse of ignoring public sovereignty in the country. The 2020 presidential elections were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This enabled Moïse to remain in power, which angered citizens. Since last year, as civil unrest grew, the rate of kidnappings has risen at an alarming rate, according to a United Nations document, reaching a 200 percent increase between January 1st and May 31st in 2020. For many Haitians, the common denominator behind the crisis is the United States and United Nations’ involvement in Haiti whom they view as having destabilized the Haitian government for decades. For many citizens, a dictator is now running their country and they are being policed by police squads brought in from other countries.
As of March 25, 2021, there was no corporate news covering the US and UN’s involvement in the recent domestic crisis in Haiti. An article by VOA News depicts protests by citizens of Haiti as a coup attempt while failing to report the intervention by foreign powers. The US’s relationship with Haiti is portrayed as that of a humanitarian effort. In contrast, as stated in Black Agenda Report, the impact of the US’s involvement continues to destabilize democracy in a sovereign nation, leaving the Haitian people with little power against the persistent interference of major world powers. Underreporting on establishment platforms is characteristic of corporate news considering the long and significant history of interference and intervention by both the US government and the UN in Haiti.
Source: Margaret Kimberley and Glen Ford, “US is Enemy of Haitian Democracy,” Black Agenda Report, March 9, 2021, https://www.blackagendareport.com/us-enemy-haitian-democracy.
Student Researchers: Shivin Bhatia, Jhonny Heredia, and Daniel Meere (Queens College, City University of New York)
Faculty Evaluator: Roopali Mukherjee (Queens College, City University of New York)