- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
by Stephen Lendman
Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2010 at 12:49 PM
Haitians again denied democracy
Haiti's Electoral Council Tries Alternate Ways to Legitimize Fraud - by Stephen Lendman
It's almost surreal following Haiti's November 28 elections, a process elevating fraud to a new level. So bad, in fact, most candidates demanded voiding it and starting over, but no matter. On December 9, New York Times Deborah Sontag headlined, "Haitian Vote Results to Be Reviewed," saying:
"Seeking to defuse the violent protests that have shut down this country for two days, Haiti's electoral council (CEP) promised....to rapidly review the widely mistrusted preliminary results...."
Honest observers and most candidates condemned them, citing brazen fraud, widespread ballot box stuffing, polling stations opening late, closing early, or not opening at all, staffing them with functional illiterates, omitting voter names from rolls, others told their ID cards were invalid, and numerous other examples of electoral illegitimacy, mocking a free and open process.
Nonetheless, the recount was ordered to validate it as well as placate angry voters and candidates. It didn't so diplomats considered Plan B, including France's Ambassador Didier Le Bret saying alternative solutions have been discussed to prevent Haiti from slipping into political chaos. They include:
-- disgruntled candidates given three days through December 15 to appeal;
-- establishing a transitional government to organize new elections;
-- letting all candidates participate in the scheduled January 16 second round; and
-- letting new approved ones participate, excluding those representing Fanmi Lavalas.
The Electoral Act's Section 40.1 (1) permits a runoff possibility with more than two candidates, stating:
"....if there is a tie between candidates who obtained the greatest number of votes in the first round, they all participate in the second round." An electoral tie or close to it may mean "very similar results between two or more candidates" because contrary to Section 42, there's no mention of "perfect equality."
As a result, perhaps compromise is allowed, Article 40.1 saying if first round balloting produces no majority winner, a runoff between the two highest vote getters will do so. However, in case of virtual ties among more than two, they can all participate in a second round.
The combination of mass protests, violence, public embarrassment, and rare dominant media indignation dictate something be done to resolve things, more than putting a brave face on transparent fraud, bad enough to bother some right-wing journalists who never met "free market" despots they didn't love, including in Haiti.
The Wall Street Journal's Mary O'Grady for one, an earlier article describing her unmatched extremism; her space a virtual truth-free zone; her language hateful and vindictive; her tone malicious and slanderous; her style bare-knuckled thuggishness; and her material calculating, mendacious, and shameless.
Yet on December 13 she surprised, in part at least, headlining her latest op-ed, "Haiti's Preval Tries to Steal an Election," saying:
"....Preval seems to regard election fraud as an entitlement." It's a refreshing change from her usual rhetoric, a nice try, but not good enough. Washington controls Preval. Blaming him takes the easy way out in lieu of pointing fingers where they belong - at Obama power brokers choreographing everything, blaming Preval for what went wrong, reportedly with marines close by aboard one or more ships ships, ready to storm ashore if needed to restore calm and take over.
Preval merely followed orders, what O'Grady won't admit, even while criticizing Arturo Valenzuela, Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, AWOL in Honduras on other business, not in Port-au-Prince where she wants him, resolving the electoral crisis before it spins more out-of-control than already.
Did he go? "Nope," and what about Haitians. Again she surprised, saying they "displayed near-saintly patience and stoic resilience (in spite) of Mr. Preval's dismal performance. (The election) was supposed (to) change horses. Mr. Preval and his henchmen had other ideas, and for good reason," ignoring the obvious, citing instead Haiti's "legendary....government corruption."
Nonetheless, she described a selection, not an electoral process for Jude Celestin (Preval's choice) and ruling INITE party legislative control. He made the runoff, finishing second while INITE candidates won a two-thirds parliamentary majority in first round balloting, angering even O'Grady by their brazen fraud.
"The US may be waking up to this reality," she said, disingenuously expressing "concern," not outrage like Haitians and honest observers. "The CEP responded (saying) it will 'recount' the presidential votes. That's not good enough coming from the institution that has had custody of the ballots for two weeks, and Haitians know it. Someone needs to break the news to Mr. Preval." More urgently, to Washington, the real scoundrel deserving blame, one O'Grady won't name, especially when extremist Republicans have control, her favorites.
A Final Comment
So far, two of top three presidential candidates, Mirlande Manigat, finishing first, and Michel Martelly, third best (both establishment figures) rejected the proposed recount. Others denounced the process, most demanding new elections.
Then on December 11, former Alaska governor, vice presidential candidate, and caricature of a political leader, Sarah Palin, arrived in Port-au-Prince with evangelist Franklin Graham (a pro-war, Islamophobe hatemonger) on a bogus humanitarian mission. Likely, it was a presidential aspirant's campaign stunt, one unqualified for any public office let alone the nation's highest. AP said her "trip was largely closed to the press and she declined to take questions at (a carefully orchestrated) news conference."
So far, Haiti's political crisis is unresolved. Sporadic violence continues. Greater eruptions may resume anytime. Raging cholera keeps spreading. Aid for stricken earthquake victims remains woefully inadequate, and Preval's CEP opened a hearing, inviting disgruntled candidates to appeal, trying to restore calm.
A joint US, France, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Spain, UN, EU and OAS statement "encourage(d) the use of all legal avenues to advance a credible electoral process to ensure that the final results fully reflect the will of the Haitian voters," stopping well short of condemning electoral fraud, demanding first round balloting be voided, and calling for new elections as soon as possible.
On December 12, AP reported that US deportations to Haiti will resume, saying:
ICE spokeswoman Barbara Gonzalez said "the US expects to begin flying deportees with criminal records back to Haiti in January in coordination with Haiti's government," no matter how dire the conditions. She left unexplained what alleged criminality she means or if something contrived is being used to remove unwanted people, ones America never welcomed and doesn't want now.
US Senator Patrick Leahy (D. VT) wants Haitian aid halted and visas for officials and their families suspended until a credible settlement is reached, or at least the appearance of one. Senator Richard Lugar (R. IN) blamed Preval for poor organization. Haitians demand justice, what Washington and world leaders refuse, manipulating events for some discrete solution, benefitting them, not popular need under real democratic governance.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.
Report this post as:
Change Links September 2018 posted
More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre
Site Outage Friday
Change Links August 2018
Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land
More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke
Change Links 2018 July posted
More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena
"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena
Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles
Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California
Change Links June 2018 posted
The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years
Unity Archive Project
Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi
CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police
Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies
California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings)
Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico
Change Links May 2018
Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
More Local News...
OUR HOUSE Grief Support Center Celebrates 25 Years with the House of Hope Gala
Against the Rent Madness and For a Nonprofit Orientation!
Cybermonde, cyberguerre, cyberespace, cyberterrorisme
Paraphysique de psychosomatique
Chuck Grassley: Women Abusing, Animal Murdering, Illegal War Supporting Criminal
Finance Capitalism and the Digital Economy
Muselières syndicales, muselières patronales
Jeff Bezos, Amazon, The Washington Post, Whole Foods, Etc
Why Choose Nut Milk Over Cows' Milk
Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement
The Dictatorship of Corporations
18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting
Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue
Shopping du bashing
After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again
“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen
Probabilités de fin d'humanité
Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW
Steer clear of work morality!
The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally!
August 2018 Honduras Coup update
Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges
Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts
Paraphysique de contextualité
Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism
Ex-voto de réification
Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh
More Breaking News...