As I watch the news coming from Haiti, the death, destruction and the rising chaos, my heart truly breaks for the people. Last night I watched as volunteer doctors and nurses delivered babies, performed amputations as well as other life saving operations, and dressed serious wounds on cots in the middle of the street… on men, women and children… without little or no anesthetic, sterilized equipment or clean bandages. A reporter pointed out that about 200 meters away from this street hospital, on the other side of a wall, was the airport where the much needed medical supplies were sitting on the tarmac.
There are the few stories of what could only be described as “miracles”… where babies and the elderly, have survived days under the rubble of a demolished building, without food or water and were rescued. Another reporter brought home a chilling fact though. After they are rescued, had their wounds treated and given some water and food , they are sent out to “nowhere” to fend for themselves… to make room for the other casualties streaming in. It’s become a revolving door of misery… a living nightmare. It’s been estimated that up to 200,000 are dead, hundreds of thousands more injured, up to 2 million homeless and millions more without adequate food and water.
While millions of dollars are being donated by governments and ordinary people to help the people of Haiti, at the same time 16,000 U.S. marines and paratroopers are now on the island to provide “security”. The U.N. has authorized an increase in their international “peacekeeping” army and police forces. The Obama administration has made it clear that any Haitian refugees after January 12th will be sent back to Haiti and already have tents prepared at Guantanamo Bay for Haitian “boat people” (economic terrorists) intercepted at sea by the U.S. Navy in case of a mass exodus (read here).
As I watched and reflected on all this drama, I started thinking about Pat Robertson and his statement that Haiti is cursed because the slaves who had fought and gained their freedom from the French, had succeeded due to making a pact with Satan. Looking at the current carnage and following the recent history of the social, political, economic and environmental calamities in Haiti, it’s difficult not to conclude that the Devil is indeed at work in the island… and has been for a long time. But it’s not the “Satan” that Pat Robertson was referring to.
I started researching the history of European and U.S. foreign policy in regards to Haiti. And as a Christian, I also wondered where did this propaganda that Robertson spews about Haiti originated. It’s all well and fine to rage against him, to clamor that he is an “old White racist”, or a “Christian”, or a “Christian Right Fanatic”, or an “old White racist Christian Right Fanatic”, but to really counter his arguments, to “nip it in the bud”, I wanted to get to the “root” of that poisonous plant.
I want to share a few articles which I found to be quite informative about Euro-American foreign policy in Haiti:
1. The Incapacitation of Haiti: Before and After the Quake by Ashley Smith
2. Why the U.S. owes Haiti billions by Bill Quigley
3. Profiting from Haiti’s Misery by Benjamin Dangl
4. Haiti 2010: An Unwelcome Katrina Redux by Cynthia McKinney
I also found this 3 part indepth article on Black and Christian.com, explaining how the story that the leaders of the Haitian revolution made a pact with Satan originated. “God, Satan and the Birth of Haiti” was authored in 2005 by Dr. Jean R. Gelin, a Haitian Christian minister.
The Haitian people will survive and overcome this latest catastrophe. They have God and history on their side. As they recover and once again move forward, they need to “stay alert and be vigilant, because their adversary the Devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour!” 1 Peter 5:8.