By Abayomi Azikiwe
Haitian President Jovenal Moise was assassinated in his private residence during the early morning hours of July 7 in Port-au-Prince. The circumstances surrounding his death continue to unfold within various news agencies and investigative efforts inside and outside of Haiti.
Many of the links to those arrested as suspects in the killing of the former president lead right back to the United States through the Pentagon and federal law-enforcement agencies. Although the administration of President Joe Biden has said that it does not have the “deployment of troops on its agenda” in regard to Haiti, they have admitted that a team of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agencies have been sent to Haiti. These federal agents are now inside the Caribbean country while Marines are being dispatched ostensibly to protect the U.S. embassy.
Moise had enjoyed the monetary and diplomatic support of Washington since he was elected as president under very controversial circumstances in 2016. It would take months for Moise to be seated as president during February 2017. Almost immediately mass demonstrations and strikes erupted in response to his policies which negatively impacted the working class and poor.
Yet despite his close ties with the previous administration of President Donald Trump, it was not enough to stabilize the situation politically. Eruptions of social unrest occurred from 2018 to the present. In recent months, there has been the rise of organized criminal gangs which were in support of Moise and his Tet Kale Party (Bald Headed) as they terrorized and destroyed several communities in the capital of Port-au-Prince.
The majority of the suspected assassins come from the South American state of Colombia, a longtime close ally of the U.S. The Colombian security forces have received enormous assistance from successive administrations in Washington in an effort to stave off revolutionary movements which have broad support among the population.
A number of the Colombian suspects were trained by the Pentagon. The U.S. Defense Department often provides military training to personnel from countries throughout Latin America, Africa and Asia in order to maintain influence and even dominance within the security apparatus of oppressed nations that are aligned with Washington.
Even the Voice of America, the media outlet for the State Department, wrote on July 16 that:
“Some of the Colombian nationals detained by the Haitian National police in connection with the assassination of President Jovenel Moise took part in ‘U.S. military training and education programs,’ a Pentagon spokesperson confirmed in a statement emailed to VOA. The information came to light during a review of training databases, Lt. Col. Ken Hoffman said, without specifying when or where the training took place. ‘Our review is ongoing, so we do not have additional details at this time,’ Hoffman said. The development was first reported by The Washington Post. The U.S. Defense Department says it trains thousands of military people from South America, Central America and the Caribbean each year.”
Three of the Haitians who have been apprehended all have U.S. citizenship. Two of them were captured alongside the operatives from Colombia. They reportedly worked for a military services firm which does security for governments, wealthy individuals and corporations.
Compounding these ties to the U.S are reports that the armed individuals who arrived at President Moise’s private home identified themselves as agents of the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Some of the suspects have been quoted as saying they were at the location to serve a search and arrest warrant for Moise.
At least one person linked to the assassination has been identified as a “source”, meaning an informant or operative, with the DEA. Haiti for a number of years has been accused of being a conduit for drug trafficking into the U.S.
Cuba and the Ongoing Blockade Prompts Subversive Attempts by Washington
In the aftermath of the assassination of President Moise, on July 11, reports emanating from the corporate media in the U.S. claimed that thousands of people had taken to the streets in several Cuban cities to protest the lack of food, medicines and civil liberties. The focus of the demonstrations was said to have been directed against the ruling Cuban Communist Party.
Nonetheless, there was no mention of the economic crisis engendered by the six decades-long blockade of Cuba by the U.S. which extends itself internationally. Over the last two decades, Cuba has relied on the growth in tourism and the opening up of the national economy to U.S. currency and forms of small and medium business enterprises.
Since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic the entire world economic system has suffered mass unemployment, impoverishment and dislocation. Healthcare systems in the most advanced capitalist countries of the U.S., Britain, France, Germany and Japan, have been overburdened with coronavirus patients.
Cuba had done well in containing the spread of the pandemic until recent months when the country began to reopen in the tourism sector. Over the last several weeks there has been an escalation in coronavirus infections just as the government is rolling out its own domestically produced vaccines. The rise in cases is not limited to Cuba. Inside the U.S., the emergence of the Delta variant and other mutations are fueling hospitalizations particularly in the southern region of the country.
Cuban solidarity groups and anti-imperialists are echoing the position of the President Miguel Diaz-Canel in saying that if the administration of President Joe Biden is so concerned about the humanitarian situation inside the socialist Caribbean state, then he should through executive order lift the restrictions placed on U.S.-Cuban relations enacted by his predecessor Donald J. Trump.
The measures imposed by Trump limited the ability to provide remittances from Cubans living in the U.S. to their homeland. Other draconian executive orders by Trump were an attempt to undermine the path towards normalization begun by former President Barack Obama. Although Obama re-established diplomatic relations with Cuba, the blockade and sanctions will have to be eliminated by the U.S. Congress.
An article published by the Venezuelan-based Telesur news agency notes:
“On Friday (July 16), Cuba’s President Miguel Diaz-Canel questioned U.S. President Joe Biden’s concern about the crisis on the Island and argued that Washington has failed to destroy the Revolution despite wasting billions of dollars in its attempts to do so. ‘If Biden had sincere humanitarian concern for the Cuban people, he could eliminate the 243 crippling sanctions imposed by former President Donald Trump as a first step towards ending the economic blockade,’ Diaz-Canel stated. The coercive measures, which have contributed to Cuba’s worst economic crisis in decades, limit the travel of U.S. citizens to the Island, restrict the sending of remittances, and sanction foreign companies doing business with Cuba. Cuban officials and many analysts charge the reactionary Cuban-American community, which has a strong political influence on Florida State, for driving the U.S. policy on Cuba.”
The Biden administration immediately spoke out in support of the July 11 anti-government protests in Cuba. Such an approach merely reinforces the economic plight of the Cuban people while stoking animosity between the revolutionary government and Washington.
Role of Anti-imperialists in the U.S.
Of course, the task of those committed to liberation and world peace within the imperialist countries in the face of attacks against the oppressed nations and socialist states, is to support the Cuban Revolution. The gains of their socialist revolution domestically and internationally deserve the maximum solidarity of the progressive forces in the industrialized states.
In the case of Haiti, which was founded in 1804 after a revolutionary war waged by enslaved Africans which lasted for twelve years against France, England and Spain with the backing of the U.S., Washington from its inception has strangled the capacity of Haiti to develop as an independent nation. There have been numerous blockades and direct military interventions in Haiti along with neighboring Dominican Republic which shares the island of Hispaniola. France, in exchange for the diplomatic recognition of Haiti, forced the Caribbean state to pay “indemnity” for the destruction of the sugar plantations and other properties owned by the French colonial enslavers.
Irrespective of the political character of recent Haitian administrations, anti-imperialists must defend the sovereign rights of the masses of workers, farmers, youth and all democratic forces to the right of self-determination. Haiti cannot develop in its own interests as long as the U.S. continues to interfere in its internal affairs.
Cuba cast off the yoke of U.S domination which was consolidated after the so-called Spanish-American War which took place at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. The revolution of 1959 became radicalized through the necessity of safeguarding the genuine independence of the island-nation. The attempted U.S. sponsored invasion at the Bay of Pigs in April 1961, decades of CIA sponsored attacks and subversion and a never-ending blockade has defined relations between Washington and Havana for 62 years.
The Haitians and Cubans are not the enemies of the people within the U.S. Imperialism must not be allowed to divide the working class and oppressed of the industrialized states from their counterparts in the oppressed and socialist nations. Only the unity of the proletariat and oppressed globally can create the conditions for the building of equal relations between the peoples of the world.