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Caribbean Views: Haiti, Antihaitianismo, and the Dominican Republic
Haiti
By The Public Archive
November 14, 2013 - thepublicarchive.com


On September 23, 2013, the Constitutional Court of the Dominican Republic ruled that the children of “irregular” migrants born in the Dominican Republic after June 21st, 1929 would be stripped of their Dominican citizenship. The ruling – which could render 250,000 Dominicans of Haitian descent stateless – came as a result of a challenge by Juliana Deguis Pierre against the Dominican Electoral Board. The Electoral Board refused to issue Pierre an identification card. They argued that although she was born in the “national territory,” because she was the daughter of migrants in transit she did not have the right to Dominican citizenship. They based their ruling on article 11.1 of the Dominican Constitution of November 29, 1966 which held sway when Pierre was born.

While Ms. Pierre was the subject of the Constitutional Court’s ruling, it also targets all Dominicans of Haitian descent. The decision also formalizes a process of exclusion, racism, and harassment that had already construed Dominicans of Haitian descent as second-class citizens in their own country while marginalizing Haitian immigrants. Indeed, even before the ruling, Haitian immigrants had been subject to demeaning raids and dragnets by the Dominican security forces while in the past thirteen months, since August 16, 2012, almost 47,700 undocumented Haitians were expelled from the country – more than twice the figure of 20,541 expelled during the previous year.

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Caribbean Views: How Serious is the Caribbean Reparations Suit?
Slavery
By Glen Ford
October 31, 2013 - blackagendareport.com


“Real reparations means nothing less than a revolution in global power.”

Twelve English-speaking Caribbean nations, plus Haiti and the South American country Surinam, are going to court demanding reparations from their former colonial masters for the crime of slavery. Great Britain, France and the Netherlands, all of [which] grew fat from generations of captured African labor, would be defendants in a trial before the International Court of Justice, the world body that adjudicates disputes between nations. The Black countries have hired the British law firm Leigh Day, which won a settlement for victims of British torture in Kenya. Judging by the way the lawyers tell it, this is going to be a very polite affair, in which the Caribbean countries will angle for some type of relatively modest money settlement.

By “relatively modest,” I mean that real reparations would be enough to forever sever the relationship of subservience of the former slave colonies to global systems of white supremacy and European rule. Real reparations means nothing less than a revolution in global power, because without such a revolution, those nations that became rich from slavery will maintain their position as overlords deep into the future. Ten or even fifty billion dollars in payments divvied up among the plaintiffs in a lawsuit will not change the basic master-slave relationship that has obtained since Europe embarked on world conquest, 500 years ago. Unless there is a fundamental political change within these Caribbean nations, such as occurred in Cuba, then any exchange of money will only reproduce the existing neocolonial relationships. If the leadership of Caribbean governments is incapable or unwilling to build new social relations at home, they cannot be expected to use reparations money to build true independence, internationally. I strongly suspect that what is really on the table is an “aid” package in “reparations” wrappings – which would be an insult to the ancestors and a deception of the living.

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