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Posted: Wed May 24, 2006 1:21 pm
[quote]Les organisations de la Société Civile signataires, demandent que des explications claires soient fournies pour expliquer les raisons qui auraient amené à l'incarcération du Directeur Général de l'UCREF. Elles exigent que M. Jean-Yves NOEL soit immédiatement libéré avec toutes les excuses qui s'imposent[/quote]
It is one thing to ask for reasons why someone is arrested. It is quite another to demand the person's release before they have appeared before a judge (and Jury) ...and in a reasonable time. Do the organisations listed believe in the rule of law or not? What is a reasonable time? What are clear explanations for an arrest and imprisonment?
Human rights and justice. One for all, and all for one.
Posted: Wed May 24, 2006 1:54 pm
[quote]Is this a sign that impunity and corruption will continue to prevail in the country, hidden under the guise of justice?
Exactly. Is this a sign, and are other cases a sign? Is this case more of a sign than other cases? Which sign is good and which sign is bad?....Are we reducing the concept of human rights and justice to a load of riddles? Whose justice? Whose human rights? I cannot help but ask these pressing questions. In whose interest.....?????
(Especially concerned about overcrowded detention facilities. Now. Today. But not yesterday.)
PS What are the real motives?
Posted: Wed May 24, 2006 1:58 pm
Is human rights dead? Is justice a joke? Maybe the George W Bush administration can tell us? Will we all end up in Guantanamo? Will anyone know we are there?
Posted: Tue May 30, 2006 10:33 am
Sorry, Michael, it is a shock to me to see the acronym RNDDH and the word "even-handed" in the same sentence!!
RNDDH, formerly NCHR-HAITI, has been anything but... Yes, at first they were making some valid critiques of the human rights situation under President Aristide (that many Lavalas sympathizers have refused to acknowledge), but in the end they behaved frankly like the most partisan of political parties, destroying their credibility in the process. Whatever your feelings about BAI/IJDH (I know that they are extremely negative), they have more stock in my eyes than RNDDH today.
Pierre Esperance, by the way, is a very sympathetic and very courageous individual. I had a lot of admiration for him at some point, but I don't quite know what happened to make him change from a good human rights defender to an anti-Aristide zealot. Of course, you will probably tell me that this was exactly the measure of how terrible Aristide really was. From a human rights organization standpoint however, I believe that Pierre Esperance made a bad turn by forgetting the absolute necessity of even-handedness when evaluating human rights abuses. It became clear to everyone that his foremost priority was to topple Jean-Bertrand Aristide, in other words he made that his personal cause, a no-no for the executive director of a human rights organization.
That's just the way I see it.
Posted: Tue May 30, 2006 3:52 pm
Well, Michael, I honestly do not know whether it ever was part of the mission of BAI/IJDH to criticize the Aristide government. We would have to review their mission statement and see how faithful they have been to it. BAI/IJDH has stock in my eyes for their well-publicized actions: the various trials of military leaders, found guilty of extreme human rights abuses. Do I give them credit for that? YES! Now, when it comes to RNDDH, I have never before seen a human rights organization go so savagely for the heads of specific individuals, most notably that of Yvon Neptune for his alleged mastermind of La Scierie massacre. To date, Michael, no investigative reporter has produced a smoking gun linking Yvon Neptune and the killings in Saint Marc. If I am wrong in this assessment, PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
You are the one who brought up the notion of even-handedness in this. It was not my point that BAI/IJDH have been even-handed in the selection of cases to prosecute. What I am saying, perhaps naively (but I am speaking from my guts on this), is that when I see one group prosecute the likes of Jodel Chamblain, and another group spend all of its energy in persecuting Yvon Neptune, even to the point of playing on the word "genocide" (and "the dogs ate their bones") to whip public sentiment against a constitutional president and prime minister, without ever producing the links that one would expect in those cases, then I know which group to place more stock in.
In a dark alley, who would you rather come across, Jodel Chamblain or Yvon Neptune? What we know for sure is that one is free while the other has been jailed for two years without a trial. I have read multiple statements from BAI/IJDH criticizing strongly those two outcomes. What from RNDDH?
Is the life of Yvon Neptune their ultimate pound of flesh?
Posted: Wed May 31, 2006 8:25 am
[quote]...From February 7th to 13th 2004, Yvon Neptune's cell phone, #558-1631, was used for 34,187 seconds or 9 hours 33 minutes and 46 seconds. 21,319 seconds of this time were used to make calls to leaders of police or security forces and members of "Bale Wouze" in St. Marc, including Amanus Mayette...[/quote]
Koumanman an an an....!!! I wonder what we'd know and how much we'd learn if this kind of precision was applied to the freedom fighters' cell phone records. Who did they call after crossing the dominican border? Who called them? How long were these calls?
Posted: Wed May 31, 2006 8:54 am
[quote][quote]...in its May 2005 release titled "Unwavering Dedication in the Face of Constant Adversity," RNDDH said the following:
"In the early days following its installation, the Boniface-Latortue government promised the Haitian people that one of its priorities would be to tackle the problem of impunity. For several months now, this has proved to be an empty promise…The non-guilty verdict in the Louis-Jodel Chamblain mockery of a trial in August 2004 only further solidified the growing belief that not only would this government not keep its promise to fight against impunity, but that it would continue to promote it with its actions."[/quote]
That strikes me as a pretty straightforward denunciation of how the interim government handled the Chamblain matter.[/quote]
That strikes me as a pretty MILD denunciation compared to the hysterical pitch of their denunciations against the Aristide government. Again, what brought about my intervention in this discussion is your characterization of RNDDH as "far more even-handed in its criticisms of Haiti's interim government than many people believe". Where you see even-handedness, I see a highly pronounced tilt. Much, much more has been made of the shamefully-termed "Genocide at La Scierie" than the massacres that happened under Gérard Latortue's watch in Martissant, Cité Soleil, and other popular quarters inhabited by Lavalas sympathizers. It is pretty obvious to me that the Boniface-Latortue government, backed by their "Conseil de Sages Revanchards" engaged in a systematic witchhunt of Lavalas party members, and RNDDH did not say much in that regard. Or perhaps, they spoke vigorously against it, from your perspective. But you certainly have not convinced me about their even-handedness.
By the way, I am sort of curious as to how the genocide at La Scierie compares to other genocides in World History... no let's limit it to the history of the island of Ayiti or independent Haiti, or even shorter or more recent historical periods for that matter. Certainly, we expect that a serious human rights organization could shed some light in that regard.
[quote]As to Yvon Neptune, from what I saw of the fact of the command structure of the police and the gangs in Haiti, I personally have a somewhat hard time believing a scenario that has Neptune ordering PNH units and gangs to Saint Marc to commit violence and anyone paying attention to him. That simply was not his realm of responsibility within the Aristide government.
However, as the Prime Minister is the President of the Supreme Council of the Haitian National Police (CSPN), I think one could make the argument that Neptune, every bit as much as Donald Rumsfeld bears direct responsibility through the chain of command of the fact that the United States is torturing its captives in jails around the world, bears responsibility for the killings that took place in Saint Marc...[/quote]
I am not going to take the bait. Donald Rumsfeld created the policies and is in the eyes of the civilized world a War Criminal. The comparison to Yvon Neptune is obscene. Nevertheless, Neptune has been in jail for the past two years, while Donald Rumsfeld has been free to design even greater atrocities, with the best accommodations that Big Oil can provide. Talking of genocides...but enough said.
[quote]Furthermore, on October 10, 2005, Yvon Neptune was indicted by investigating judge Clunie Pierre Jules for his alleged role in the killings in the Saint Marc neighborhood of La Scierie. This means that he is no longer being held without trial, but is in fact currently in the midst of judicial proceedings. Likely highly politicized proceedings, to be sure, but it makes his case somewhat different than those who have never been charged with a crime at all, who form the majority of those in Haiti's jails.[/quote]
Let's not mix apples and oranges. The judicial proceedings in Neptune's case have been a joke so far. Doesn't it make one wish that Gérard Latortue could have a taste of his own medecine??? It certainly does. I do not wish to continue the cycle of political retribution however, because it poisons every proceeding in Haiti and we need to get away from that, to swallow the illogical, so to speak, in order to create a more humane society.
As for those charged without crime, that's a far different topic. It should not happen in any society. But it happens in various degrees everywhere, including the United States of America. Perhaps you and I could make a trip together and visit the Elizabeth, NJ detention center. That is a major digression, however. As far as I am concerned, my comments are still in reaction to your defense of RNDDH as "far more even-handed..." (not as far as I can tell).
[quote]In its report on the indictment that day, Radio Kiskeya reported the following information from the evidence that had been gathered against Neptune:
From February 7th to 13th 2004, Yvon Neptune's cell phone, #558-1631, was used for 34,187 seconds or 9 hours 33 minutes and 46 seconds. 21,319 seconds of this time were used to make calls to leaders of police or security forces and members of "Bale Wouze" in St. Marc, including Amanus Mayette. The following people were called: Jean Gérard Dubreuil, Secretary of State for Public Security ; Jean Robert Esther, Central Director of General Services, responsible for financial matters at the Haitian National Police (PNH); Frantz Gabriel, police commissioner and pilot of the helicopter ; Oriel Jean, responsible for security at the National Palace ; Amanus Mayette, principal leader of " Balé Wouzé " ; Biron Odigé, coordinator of the same organization, director of the National Port Authority (APN) in the city ; Barthélémy Valbrun Jr, director of security services at the National Palace (USP-USGPN- Cat Team) ; Roland Dauphin (alias Black Ronald), self-proclaimed commissioner of St Marc at the time of the events.
You can decide if that is a smoking gun or not. I find it, at least, highly suggestive.[/quote]
Not only this is not a smoking gun, but it is rather laughable, and might even be thrown out of court by any reasonable judge. You said yourself that it was his job to talk to those people. One would think that he ought to keep in touch with them, while clearly a serious uprising against his government was under way. A defense attorney might even introduce those very circumstancial communications as evidence of his client's goof faith attempts to prevent a massacre, or "genocide" if you will. I am not a judge (nor do I play one on TV), but on the face of it, I think that this line of argumentation is laughable and probably inadmissible in court, as they cannot be proven to relate directly to the charges.
[quote]As to the IJDH, the mission statement of the IJDH states that the organization's mission is "to work with the people of Haiti in their non-violent struggle for the return and consolidation of constitutional democracy, justice and human rights, by distributing objective and accurate information on human rights conditions in Haiti, pursuing legal cases, and cooperating with human rights and solidarity groups in Haiti and abroad."
You will notice which goal takes precedence over all others.[/quote]
Which one? Would it be "the return and consolidation of constitutional democracy" ??? If it is, I would say that while it is not up to me to decide on the ranking of priorities for various rights organizations, I wholeheartedly believe that "the return and consolidation of constitutional democracy" in Haiti should have been top priority for all Haitians and those concerned about the welfare of Haitians. That's just my opinion, but indeed that is what I believe.
[quote]I think following the money speaks for itself in this instance. [/quote]
That's what Marilyn always says: "Follow the money." This would apply to RNDDH, as well. I am no financial investigator, however. Furthermore, it was not my intention to get involved in a comparison of BAI/IJDH and RNDDH. If you go back to my original intervention, it was simply to express my dismay at your characterization of RNDDH as "far more even-handed..." You still have not convinced me of their even-handedness or anything close to it.
Now, if others would want to see this dialogue evolve into a comparison of the finances of BAI/IJDH and RNDDH, I'll be glad to pull a chair, quiet down, and listen.
[quote]The IJDH's work in Haiti, in my view and the view of many others, has been neither objective nor accurate.[/quote]
I honestly do not know what that sentence says.
Question of objectivity aside (is it the same as impartiality or even-handedness?), could you tell me in which way the IJDH's work has been inaccurate. If you want to challenge IJDH on their "inaccuracy", I'll tell you right up front that I do not have the legal stuff or other professional background to challenge the IJDH on accuracy. Perhaps some legal-minded experts on this forum - who knows, Brian Concannon, himself - might be able to answer your challenge. I'll have to wait and see.
[quote]As I have said before, we must apply the same criteria to everyone. It was wrong for the Aristide government to hold Prosper Avril, for example, in jail without charge for two years, no matter how noxious a force he may be, and it was wrong for the interim government to hold Yvon Neptune in jail without charge, as well. Just as it is, and this is a point that I cannot stress enough, wrong to hold the thousands of nameless souls who may or may not be guilty of any crime, and who have been imprisoned by government after government in Haiti while never seeing trial.[/quote]
Michael, believe me, I care about "the thousands of nameless souls" as much as you do, but let us not broaden this dicussion to the point of leaving its essential points unfocused. I could take it one step further and talk about the fact that the U.S. Justice system systematically imprisons young black men and that among them, tens of thousands of nameless souls spend a lifetime in jail for minor reasons in a racially discriminating society, but how would this help me make my point about RNDDH? My point is that RNDDH has lost all credibility as a human rights organization, because of their obvious uneven-handedness.
[quote]I would also like to note that I feel this whole episode was more reflective of judge Perez Paul, who ordered the arrest, than Preval. [/quote]
Another sentence that I do not understand. How does Preval get into this?
[quote]If I am not mistaken, Perez Paul is the same judge who clapped Kevin Pina and Jean Ristil when they crossed him last year.[/quote]
Did Kevin Pina and Jean Ristil simply cross Perez Paul or were they crossing some higher authorities in their coverage of the search at Gérard Jean Juste's premises? Was Perez Paul just being temperamental or does he have to answer to his own bosses?
All those questions are worth exploring. However, the one about RNDDH's even-handedness is quite settled in my eyes.
Posted: Sat Jun 03, 2006 4:03 pm
[quote]I have never referred to what happened in La Scierie as a genocide, so I have nothing to add on that point.[/quote]
No, you haven't said that, but since you appeared to me to be defending the "even-handedness" of RNDDH (as opposed, "let's say", to BAI/IJDH's strict allegiance to Lavalas, as you seem bent to demonstrate) it is only natural that I bring up this particular exaggeration... It's like pointing to an elephant dancing with all fours on a soccer ball, in the circus of Haiti's polarized human rights field.
[quote]When you write about the massacres in "Martissant, Cité Soleil, and other popular quarters inhabited by Lavalas sympathizers" I ask you, where was the outrage of BAI and other organizations during the massacres in those exact same zones from 2001-2004?[/quote]
Conversely, where was the outrage of RNDDH about the massacres in Belair, Martissant, Cité Soleil, and other popular quarters inhabited by Lalvalas sympathizers? I can't speak for BAI/IJDH, and I am not going to try to do so, but your answering my question with another question seems akin to justifing the wrongs of one with the wrongs of another. A stellar instance of circular argumentation, but in no way does it enhance RNDDH's reputation for even-handedness or lack of.
Don't I wish we could leave BAI/IJDH and RNDDH's deeds or misdeeds to stand on their own, instead of one organization acting as the ghost or zombie of the other!
[quote]All of those quarters saw mass killings during those years, among the most notorious being the June 2001 when several dozen people were killed in Fort Mecredi by Felix Bien-Amié, the Lavalas-affiliated gang leader who later scored a patronage job as the director of Port-au-Prince's main cemetery and was "disappeared" by the PNH in September 2002. Talk about selective memory.[/quote]
"The Lavalas-affiliated gang leader..." Wasn't PNH "Lavalas-affiliated" as well? So, if Felix Bien-Aimé was rewarded for his crimes by the Lavalas Party, as you seem to imply, why was he subsequently liquidated by an affiliated unit of the same command, one would assume? What exactly happened at Fort Mercredi? Did "Lavalas" order Felix Bien-Aimé to murder several dozen people in Fort Mercredi and how did that play in Lavalas's interests? I just wish to understand...
[quote]I think your dismissal of telephone records linking Neptune to the authors of the killings in Saint Marc as "laughable" is puzzling. I don't think you would make that argument if a UN general's cell phone records showed him in communication with PNH units before they committed a mass killing in, say, La Saline, during the interim government. As I said, I have my own thoughts about Neptune's culpability or lack thereof with regards to La Scierie, but to dismiss these phone records before hearing them presented at trial I think would be pre-judging someone as innocent, which would be as bad as pre-judging thems as guilty.[/quote]
Unless you can supply a transcript of any of those conversations, the telephone records are indeed, in my view, irrelevant. It has absolutely nothing to do with pre-judging someone as innocent or pre-judging someone as guilty. Absolutely nothing. The fact of the matter is that the Aristide-Neptune government was at that time IN FULL CRISIS MODE, and in grave danger of being overthrown. As you describe Neptune's role yourself, it was his entire responsibility to be in constant communications with every agent that could help save the government. THIS DOES NOT PRE-JUDGE IN ANY WAY NEPTUNE'S ALLEGED GUILT IN ORDERING A MASSACRE IN SAINT-MARC, and I think you know that very well. Perhaps, to those who wanted to see the Aristide government fall, it was far more preferable for Neptune to be playing a fiddle while Rome burned, but I do not think that is realistic in modern times.
I think that, in the absence of hard evidence of any kind as to the nature of the communications, to qualify the open lines as "highly suggestive" of wrongdoing is a personal, preferential option. But, on the basis of Law, and particularly in the context of an armed insurrection against a constitutional government, I do repeat that I find such "evidence" to be irrelevant.
Now, would the continued attempts of the air traffic controllers to communicate with the hijacked planes on 9/11 be highly suggestive of their involvement in directing those planes into the WTC towers? Let's just ignore the verbal records of those communications, and concentrate only on how many minutes those air traffic controllers kept sending signals to the highjack planes zeroing on WTC... how highly suggestive is that? Ridiculous, of course! But why keep feeding rumours that may be damaging to Yvon Neptune, when no other serious evidence linking him to ordering the murders in question has surfaced???
[quote]I think that when Yvon Neptune assumed the role of Prime Minister, he did so knowing full well that the role included within it the Prime Minister's capacity as President of the Supreme Council of the Haitian National Police (CSPN). No matter what control Neptune did or did not have over the events in Saint Marc, by law Yvon Neptune was the supreme authority over the PNH. The comparison with Donald Rumsfeld is not obscene, it is accurate.[/quote]
The comparison is obscene for the reasons that I stated. If Donald Rumsfeld is remotely responsible for the tortures in the jails of Guantanamo and Baghdad, and the daily revelations of deliberate killings in Iraq - far surpassing in numbers any alleged genocide in Saint Marc - how come he is not languishing in jail like Prime Minister Yvon Neptune? How come he continues to be wined and dined, and praised for his masterful command of the situation in Iraq? In which ways has Donald Rumsfeld been held accountable for U.S. war crimes in Iraq?
The comparison is obscene! It only points to the fact that U.S. political and military leaders can get away with the filthiest crimes against human beings the world over, while creating a situation where the likes of Annette Auguste and Yvon Neptune may be put in jail without formal charges (for an incredibly long amount of time). If it were up to Donald Rumsfeld and his clique, the prisoners in Guantanamo would never see the light of day nor a natural judge. Any comparison between Donald Rumsfeld and Yvon Neptune is highly problematic, in my eyes. Donald Rumsfeld can do whatever the hell he wants, seemingly on the job, and certainly when he gets home. When was the last time Yvon Neptune was allowed to visit family and friends?
[quote]What is obscene is what the PNH, the National Palace security forces and Bale Wouze did in Saint Marc.[/quote]
I'll take your words for it, Michael. You were there (and saw with your own eyes, excuse the pleonasm) and I was not. By nature, I would not condone the violent murder of ANY human being, be it a gang member of this gang or of that gang. I do not subscribe to a death sentence or torture of any human being. But, intellectually, of course, I have to be interested in the motivation and modus operandi of both RAMICOS and BALE WOUZE as rival armed organizations. You mentioned "Bale Wouze". Now, could you tell me a bit about RAMICOS and their own activities? What were Ramicos's aim? How did it go about fulfilling its objectives? If RAMICOS had its way, would it do the same to BALE WOUZE as BALE WOUZE did to them? I do not, I repeat, I do not know the answers to those questions. Let me restate too my absolute opposition to any murder or serious human rights violation perpetrated by the BALE WOUZE gang against the RAMICOS gang. However, I happen to know, like everyone else who has a rudimentary knowledge of what happened in Saint Marc, that the RAMICOS gang had previously overrun government forces in Saint Marc in their quest to topple Aristide and that BALE WOUZE squarely stood in their path, as gang members paid to come to the defense of the constitutional government. That's about the extent of what I know with respect to the background of RAMICOS and BALE WOUZE. So, I confess to having some nagging questions as to what actually happened, and the guilt of innocence of the parties involved.
1) What was the game plan on both sides?
2) Did RAMICOS behave in a positive, revolutionary kind of way? Could they be referred to as the RAMICOS angels or unfortunately for now, the RAMICOS martyrs? In their quest to topple President Aristide, did they show respect for human life?
3) How should the government of Haiti have treated the takeover of Saint Marc by the RAMICOS gang? I truly would like to know. I do not see the treatment of any remotely comparable situation in the United States, in a positive light in terms of guiding in restraint. Think Waco, Texas: What would President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno done to safeguard the government of the United States? Certainly Haiti should be civilized in its handling of insurrection against its government and its 'law and order' forces. The nagging thought that comes to my mind however, is how the U.S. Armed Forces would have reacted; would the State troopers, Homeland Security forces (including FBI, CIA, and all other federal agents of any stripe), have reacted politely and showed the government of a small country like Haiti the PROPER WAY to handle the takeover of a town. I wonder if the rush to criminalize Yvon Neptune, by hook or by crook, in this matter of the massacre of RAMICOS gang members is uniquely fueled by human rights considerations... and not by the burning desire to see a higly placed member of the Aristide government, whoever it might be if not the chief himself, roast in open flames for having represented a particular party or "that government".
I honestly cannot dispel the speculation. I do not condone the murder of any human being. Those who are guilty of human rights abuses should be held accountable and pay the price for their inhumanity.
It's the rush to judgment and the shifting standards that give me pause to think however. As I asked before, is justice what is being served in this case or is the life of Yvon Neptune their ultimate pound of flesh?
[quote]>>>Could you tell me in which way the IJDH's work has been inaccurate.<<<
When my computer is up and running again, I will be happy to adress this in detail. [/quote]
I'll be waiting... (hopefully, this will not be super long and will give one of BAI/IJDH's legal staff the chance to answer this charge of "inaccuracy" in their work. I do not assume that it will be in my area of competence. I personally continue to praise BAI/IJDH, however, for the trials they have conducted against some former military killers in Haiti, unless and until you would invalidate their work.
[quote]However. I ask again, though there are quite a few documented instances of RNDDH criticizing the Latortue government for its violations of the rights of Aristide supporters, can you point me to a single instance in which the BAI/IJDH criticized the Aristide government and its supporters for violent/illegal/extrajudicial acts they committed? A single one between the years 2001 and 2006?[/quote]
I am not even going to try, Michael, to be quite honest with you. Better ask this question to the organization itself. Once again, my intervention in this discussion was to question your characterization of even-handedness or near even-handedness of RNDDH. As a result, I do not consider it up to me to show that RNDDH was more even-handed than this or that other organization. I did not start the discussion by telling you that IJDH was even-handed or near even-handed. I do not mind it if you wish to discuss the work of IJDH (preferably in another thread), but I do not take the challenge that you have issued as my very own.
[quote]As far many who have been in Haiti over the last years are concerned, when the IJDH writers "the return and consolidation of constitutional democracy," they are referring simply to the resurrection of the political fortunes of the political actor who was the paymaster of many of the IJDH advocates for many years. The attempts of the IJDH to discredit the vote that returned Rene Preval to office, before that vote even happened, attest to this.[/quote]
Interesting speculation... mais c'est une autre paire de manches!
Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 10:48 am
I agree with Guy's replies to MD's threads.
Myself, I can admit or agree with some of Aristide's involvements with corruption. But, I Completely disagree with the wrongful incarceration of Neptune and some other Lavalas members. It is wrong!
I also disagree with DB when he spoke about the arrestation of the Notorious Avril Prosper...
You know MD. I am beginning to think that you have ulterior motives!
I, myself, would tell the truth when need to be told. I am not on anyone payroll to spread any propaganda.
The Latortues as far as I'm concerned were Illegal Government who used their Power illegally. Either by wrongfull imprisonments, slaughtering of Lavalas Sympathizers, or any other activity by Youri(the de facto prime minister's Nephew). Trying to sugar coating their Crimes is simply unacceptable.
Once more, Guy, you've answered very eloquently and accurately. Therefore, I don't have to add anything more. Except to say that They do not have a right to hold Yvon Neptune, SO Ann and other Lavalas members in Jail . While, Youri is enjoying his Freedom as a Selected Senator...
L'union fait la Force,
Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 12:32 pm
It seems to me that a human rights organization should be held to a higher standard than you, Guy, me, etc., or in other words, the average person. If at any time, such a group should show partisanship or the opposite of it for any case involving human rights, they disqualify themselves for any other case they have pronounced themselves on. While we may not agree with causes they support, because of our partisdanship, we should at least respect their impartiality. Unfortunately, Lesperance and his people have at least showed once that they were taking positions that were not impartial. It is like, in medicine, exposing a sterile product to an unsterile environment. Once that happens, the product is no longer sterile. It is too risky to take a chance with it.
Like Guy said, the NCHR/RNDDH lost their credibility. While it is acceptable for a reporter like you to show a story through your prism, it is not for NCHR/RNDDH, Amnesty International, etc. They have to be held to a higher standard.
Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 12:37 pm
[quote]I am dismayed that your argument for, it would appear, not prosecuting Yvon Neptune to Anette Auguste for crimes they may have committed during the Aristide era is that "U.S. political and military leaders can get away with the filthiest crimes against human beings the world over."[/quote]
Nope. That is not even remotely my argument. Remember, you're the one who brought Donald Rumsfeld into this.
I fully stand by what I actually said, and I do not see any connection between Rumsfeld and Neptune, none whatsoever.
On the other hand... what is your argument? What were the formal charges against Neptune at the time of his arrest? If those charges emerged later, during his imprisonment, how long did it take the de facto government to cook them up???
Why did U.S. marines arrest Annette Auguste at her home in the middle of the night (in a style reminiscent of special ops in Baghdad) ?
Annette Auguste has spent two years in jail. What are the specific charges leading to her arrest? Who had the authority to order U.S. forces to break into her home? Why is she still in jail today?
Those are very simple questions that cried for answers, specially when the governments of the U.S., Canada, and France assisted in deposing the constitutional government of Haiti.
Michael, you obviously misunderstand my argument. I have no rights to break into someone else's home and spank their children for whatever wrongs they may have done. That would be assuming an awful responsibility. If, on top of that, it can be shown that I do not myself behave in a righteous manner, that does not change the previous argument but it points to the fact that what we are dealing with here is simply the law of the jungle. The U.S. administration does, simply because it can. The Boniface-Latortue administration did, simply because it received the full protection of its sponsors. That's all there really is to it.
When all is said and done however, the original questions stand. What charges were made against Neptune and Auguste at the time of their arrests? From what I can see, they fell victims to a witchhunt. Please refute me if you can. You could write many volumes detailing the wrongdoings of Jean-Bertrand Aristide and his government, but the enumeration of those wrongdoings in itself will not justify RNDDH's fatal obsession with Neptune nor the illegal nature of the Auguste's arrest.
Am I claiming that Neptune and Auguste are innocent of any conceivable charges brought against them? Not in the least. But since when is it acceptable in any system of justice to imprison people "for crimes they may have committed during the Aristide era"? What about crimes that you and I may have committed during the Bush era? If the U.S. marines came and picked me up in the middle of the night, would you expect the National Coalition for Haitian Rights to stand up and applaud them?
[quote]I was not in St. Marc on the days on the massacre, only its aftermath in February before the government fell, but what I saw then and the interviews I conducted were more than enough to convince me.[/quote]
They convinced you... of what exactly?
As for the Marika Lynch article, I will excerpt this from it:
[quote]''They don't want you to find the bodies. Nobody will ever find them. You'll just see parts of them,'' said Terry Snow, an evangelical missionary from Texas who has lived in St. Marc for over a decade, tears welling in his eyes. ``The dogs are no longer hungry in St. Marc.'' [/quote]
I have no words to add to this.