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Public Meetings in Ireland - Haiti: Catastrophe and the legacy of imperialism

category ireland / britain | imperialism / war | press release author Wednesday February 03, 2010 22:45author by WSM PRO Report this post to the editors

Solidarity not Occupation

Public meetings to be held in Cork and Dublin this week will pose the question of how the legacy of U.S. imperialism has impacted on the catastrophe visited on Haiti in the recent earthquake.

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The meetings, organised by the Workers Solidarity Movement, will be addressed by

José Antonio Gutiérrez of the Latin American Solidarity Centre who will speak on the relationship between the United States and Haiti and Elsie Haas, a Haitian journalist and film maker, who will speak on the reconstruction of Haiti and the role played by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the United Nations.

The Speakers

José Antonio Gutiérrez is from Chile works with the Latin American Solidarity Centre. He has worked closely with Haitian Solidarity both in Europe and in Latin America, publishing a pamphlet in 2004 “The dirty side of humanitarian intervention”, which critically examined South American military intervention in Haiti.

"We welcome the massive display of solidarity shown by people all over the world,” said José Antonio, “we, however, are wary of the second intentions of governments that see in this tragedy an opportunity to profit from the reconstruction tasks or to advance their own geo-strategic interests, as the US is doing by deepening their military presence in the Caribbean region. We should not confuse solidarity with occupation, and at this point our Haitian partners are telling us of the importance of mobilising solidarity by people in grassroots organisations to make sure that we never again have a Haiti built to benefit a privileged few while the majority starves".

Elsie Haas is an independent journalist and film maker. A native of Haiti she grew up in Africa and Europe and is currently resident in Paris. She was a director of the well respected left-wing newspaper the “Haiti Tribune”.

The meetings will take place in:

Cork - Solidarity Books, 43 Douglas Street, Tuesday 2nd February, 8p.m.
Dublin – Central Hotel, Exchequer Street, Dublin 2, 7p.m.

Further reading:
‘The forest behind the trees: what’s behind the US occupation of Haiti?’ by Jose Antonio Gutiérrez http://www.indymedia.ie/article/95572
‘Haiti - a history of intervention, occupation and resistance’ by Andrew Flood, Workers Solidarity Movement (personal capacity) http://www.wsm.ie/news_viewer/6319

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