This article was first published in October 2009.
Oil in Haiti and Oil Refinery – an old notion for Fort Liberte as a transshipment terminal for US supertankers – Another economic reason for the ouster of President Aristide and current UN occupation (Haiti’s Riches:Interview with Ezili Dantò on Mining in Haiti)
There is evidence that the United States found oil in Haiti decades ago and due to the geopolitical circumstances and big business interests of that era made the decision to keep Haitian oil in reserve for when Middle Eastern oil had dried up. This is detailed by Dr. Georges Michel in an article dated March 27, 2004 outlining the history of oil explorations and oil reserves in Haiti and in the research of Dr. Ginette and Daniel Mathurin.
There is also good evidence that these very same big US oil companies and their inter-related monopolies of engineering and defense contractors made plans, decades ago, to use Haiti’s deep water ports either for oil refineries or to develop oil tank farm sites or depots where crude oil could be stored and later transferred to small tankers to serve U.S. and Caribbean ports. This is detailed in a paper about the Dunn Plantation at Fort Liberte in Haiti.
Ezili’s HLLN underlines these two papers on Haiti’s oil resources and the works of Dr. Ginette and Daniel Mathurin in order to provide a view one will not find in the mainstream media nor anywhere else as to the economic and strategic reasons the US has constructed its fifth largest embassy in the world – fifth only besides the US embassy in China, Iraq, Iran and Germany – in tiny Haiti, post the 2004 Haiti Bush regime change.
The facts outlined in the Dunn Plantation and Georges Michel papers, considered together, reasonably unveil part of the hidden reasons UN Special Envoy to Haiti, Bill Clinton, is giving the UN occupation a facelift so that its troops stay in Haiti for the duration.
Ezili’s HLLN has consistently maintained, since the beginning of the 2004 Bush regime change in Haiti, that the 2004 US invasion of Haiti used UN troops as its military proxy to avoid the charge of imperialism and racism. We have also consistently maintained that the UN/US invasion and occupation of Haiti is not about protecting Haitian rights, security, stability or long-term domestic development but about returning the Washington Chimeres/[gangsters] – the traditional Haitian Oligarchs – to power, establishing free trade not fair trade, the Chicago-boys’ death plan, neoliberal policies, keeping the minimum wage at slave wage levels, plundering Haiti’s natural resources and riches, not to mention using the location benefit that Haiti lies between Cuba and Venezuela. Two countries the US has unsuccessfuly orchestrated regime changes in and continues to pursue. In the Dunn Plantation and Georges Michel papers, we find and deploy further details as to why the US is in Haiti with this attempted Bill Clinton facelift to the UN’s continued occupations.
For, no matter the disguise or media spins it’s also about Haiti’s oil reserves, and about securing Haiti’s deep-water ports as transshipment location for oil or for tank sites to store crude oil without interference from a democratic government beholden to its informed population’s welfare. (See Reynold’s deep water port in Miragoane/NIPDEVCO property– scroll to photos in middle of the page.)
In Haiti, between 1994 to 2004 when the people had a voice in government, there was an intense grassroots movement to figure out how to exploit Haiti’s resources. There was a plan, where in the book “Investing In People: Lavalas White Book under the direction of Jean-Betrand Aristide (Investir Dans L’Humain), the Haitian majority “were not only told where the resources were, but that — they did not have the skills and technology to actually extract the gold, to extract the oil.”
The Aristide/Lavalas plan, as I’ve articulated in the Haiti’s Riches Interview, was “to engage in some sort of private/public partnership. Where both the Haitian people’s interest would be taken care of and of course the private interest would take their profits. But I think it was around that time we had St. Genevieve saying they did not like the Haitian government. Obviously, they didn’t like this plan. They don’t like the Haitian people to know where their resources are. But in this book, it was the first time in Haitian history, it was written in Kreyòl and in French. And there was a national discussion all over the radio in Haiti with respect to all these various resources of Haiti, where they were located, and how the Haitian government was intending on trying to build sustainable development through those resources. So that’s what you had before the 2004 Bush regime change/Coup D’etat in Haiti. With the Coup D’etat now, though the people know where these resources are because this book exists, they don’t know who these foreign companies are. What they’re profit margins are. What the environmental protection rules and regulations to protect them are. Many folks, for instance, in the North talk about losing their property, having people come in with guns and taking over their property. So that’s where we are.” (Haiti’s Riches: Interview with Ezili Dantò on Mining in Haiti.)
The mainstream media, owned by the multinational companies fleecing Haiti, certainly won’t lay out for public consumption that the UN/US invasion and occupation of Haiti is to secure Haiti’s oil, strategic position, cheap labor, deep water ports, mineral resources (iridium, gold, copper, uranium, diamond, gas reserves)ï¿½ï¿½, lands, waterfronts, offshore resources for privatization or the exclusive use of the world’s wealthy oligarchs and US big oil monopolies. (See, Map showing some of Haiti’s mining and mineral wealth, including five oil sites in Haiti; Oil in Haiti by Dr. Georges Michel; Excerpt from the Dunn Plantation paper; Haiti is full of oil, say Ginette and Daniel Mathurin; There is a multinational conspiracy to illegally take the mineral resources of the Haitian people: Espaillat Nanita revealed that in Haiti there are huge resources of gold and other minerals, and Is UN proxy occupation of Haiti masking US securing oil/gas reserves from Haiti).
In fact, the current Haitian authority-under-the-US/UN-occupation that is in charge of regulating exploration licenses and mining in Haiti does not explain, in any relevant or systematic manner, to the Haitian majority about the companies buying up, post 2004, Haiti’s deep water ports, what their profit shares with the Haitian nation are, where are the accounting of said shares owed to the people of Haiti, nor explain the environmental effects of the massive excavations of Haiti’s mountains and waters going on right now. Instead, the Director of Mining in Haiti blithely maintains that “further research will be necessary to confirm the existence of oil in Haiti.”
In an excerpt taken from the article posted Oct 9, 2000 by Bob Perdue entitled “Lonnie Dunn, third owner of the Dauphin plantation,” we learn that:
“On November 8, 1973, Martha C. Carbone, American Embassy, Port-au-Prince, sent a letter to the Office of Fuels and Energy, Department of State, in which she stated that the Government of Haiti “…had before it proposals from eight different groups to establish a trans-shipment port for petroleum in one or more of the Haitian deep water ports. Some of the projects include construction of a refinery….” She further commented that the Embassy was acquainted with three firms: Ingram Corporation of New Orleans, Southern California Gas Company and Williams Chemical Corporation of Florida.. (According to John Moseley, the New Orleans company was probably “Ingraham”, not Ingram.)
In the November 6, 1972 issue of Oil and Gas Journal, Leo B. Aalund commented in his article “Vast Flight of Refining Capacity from U.S. Looms”,.: “Finally, ‘Baby Doc’ Duvalier’s Haiti is participating with a group that wants to build a transshipment terminal off Fort Liberte, Haiti”. One of the proposals referred to by Carbone was undoubtedly submitted by Dunn interests.
Additionally, we learn from this article that “Lonnie Dunn who owned the Dauphin plantation “planned to straighten and widen the entrance to the [Fort Liberte] bay so that super tankers could be brought in and the cargo distributed to smaller tankers for transfer to U.S. and Caribbean ports that could not accommodate large ships…” (Photo of Fort Liberte, Haiti).
We’ve put on the Ezili’s HLLN website the other relevant portions of this paper that talks about the corporate eye the US has had, for decades, on Fort Liberte in Haiti as an ideal deep water port for the multinationals to establish an oil refinery.
In the 50s and 60s there was little need for Haiti’s ports or oil as the Middle Eastern monopoly was gushing dollars galore. No need for these oil monopolies to undercut themselves by putting more oil on the market to cut their profits. Manipulated scarcity thy name is profit! or, did I mean capitalism?
But the oil embargo of the 70s, the advent of OPEC, the rise of the Venezuelan factor, the Gulf Crisis followed by the Iraq war for oil, all has made Haiti a better bet for the three-piece suits and their military mercernaries called “Western governments”, yep, a way easier place to pillage and plunder behind the “bringing democracy” or “humanitarian aid” public covers.
Serendipitously with Haiti’s 2004 Bush-the-son Regime Change, a follow up to the 1991 Bush-the-father’s military coup, we find, flurries of Congressional “discussions” about off-shore drillings in preparation, perhaps, to the eventual “revelation” as written in the Dunn paper years ago, that “there is a need for supertankers that require deep-water ports which are not readily available along the U.S. East Coast – nor …welcome…for environmental and other consideration will (not) permit the construction of domestic refinery capacity on the scale that will be required.”
We underline that Haiti is an ideal dumping ground for the US/Canada/France and now Brazil, because environmental, human rights and health issues and other considerations in the US and in these other countries, would probably not permit the construction of domestic refinery capacity on the scale that new explorations of oil in this hemisphere will required. So, why not pick the most militarily defenseless country in the Western Hemisphere and dot it with such unsafe initiatives behind a UN multi-national “humanitarian” mask and fatherly Bill Clinton’s snowy white hair and smiling face?
It is relevant to note here that most of Haiti’s major deep water ports have been privatized since the Bush 2004 regime change in Haiti. It is also relevant to note here what I wrote last year in the piece titled Is the UN military proxy occupation of Haiti masking US securing oil/gas reserves from Haiti: “If there’s substantial oil and gas reserves in Haiti, the US/Euro genocide and crimes against the Haitian population has not yet begun. Ayisyen leve zye nou anwo, kenbe red. Nou fèk komanse goumen. (Read again, John Maxwell’s Is there oil in Haiti.)
The revelations of Dr. Georges Michel and the Dunn Plantation papers seem to positively answer the question that there is substantail oil reserves in Haiti. And our Ezili Dantò Witness Project information is that it’s indeed being tapped and contracted out, but not for the benefit of Haitians or Haiti’s authentic development. That’s why there was a need to marginalize the Haitian masses through the ouster of Haiti’s democratically elected Aristide government and put in the UN guns and UN occupation that today masks the US/Euros’ (with a piece to the new power that is Brazil) securing Haiti’s oil and gas reserves and other mineral riches such as gold, copper, diamond and underwater treasures. (Majescor and SACG Discover a New Copper-Gold in Haiti, Oct. 6, 2009; See, Haiti’s Riches and There is a multinational conspiracy to illegally take the mineral resources of the Haitian people: Espaillat Nanita revealed that in Haiti there are huge resources of gold and other minerals.)
Today, the US and Euros say they are happy with Haiti’s “security gains” and “stable” government. To wit: the last elections the US/UN presided over in Haiti excluded Haiti’s majority party from participation. Haiti’s jails are filled, indefinitely detained without trial or hearings, since 2004, with thousands upon thousands of community organizers, poor civilians and political dissenters that the UN/US label “gangsters.” Site Soley has been “pacified.” There are more NGOs and charitable organizations – about 10,000 – in Haiti then in any where in the world since 2004 and the Haitian people are a million times worst off than they were before this US/NGO civilization (otherwise also known as the “International Community”) and their thugs, thieves and corporate death squads came and disenfranchised nine million blacks. Food prices are so high, some resort to eating dirt in the form of cookies to assuage Clorox hunger.
Lovinsky Pierre Antoine, the head of Haiti’s largest human rights organization was disappeared in 2007 in UN occupied Haiti with no investigation done. Between 2004 and 2006 under the Western occupation, first by the US Marines then the UN multinational troops headed by Brazil, from 14,000 to 20,000 Haitians, mostly who opposed the occupation and regime change, were slaughtered with total impunity. More Haitian children are out of school today in 2009 than before the US/NGO “civilization” came post 2004. Under the US-imposed Boca Raton regime ,Haiti’s Supreme Court was fired and brand new and paid-for judges, without any Constitutional authority inherited from the people of Haiti’s mandate, took the place of the legitimate judges and law officers and are still metering out paid-for rulings in 2009 under the UN occupation and international community’s tutelage.
And, as a matter of power, privilege, inequity and the violence of neocolonialism, white-sex abusers and pedophiles are having a hay day and human trafficking of Haiti children are at an all-time high. It is no revelation that in the stakes of corruption in Haiti or in Africa that a great many of the foreign NGOs along with their bourgeois/elite/pastors/priests and others are destroying poor children’s life with absolute impunity while being painted as “saints” in their press back home the better to raise more funds to masturbate on Black pain some more.
Yet, Special UN Envoy, Bill Clinton, tells us “I am serving the next two years as a US Special Envoy to Haiti…This is the best chance in my lifetime that Haitians have ever had to escape the chains of their past…” The former President added, “If Haiti pulls out of this it will be in no small measure because of the efforts of non-governmental organizations.”
What that means is perhaps this is the Haitian subcontractors, ruling oligarchs and US/Euro military industrial complexes’ best chance to finally impose their chains on Haiti for good. Tap Haiti’s oil, keep it so poor it will be grateful for slave wages at sweatshops. Let sexual tourism and the white sex-abusers do as they will. Transfer quickly more Haiti properties to foreigners and render the “good” Haitians as maids, butlers and servants in US/Euro-owned Haiti tourist resorts like the rest of the Caribbean. Militarize Haiti so that dissent is not possible even as a thought. That’s perhaps UN Envoy, Bill Clinton’s “best chance in my lifetime” scenario for Haiti. Nothing else makes sense. (See, HLLN comment on new IMF figures indicating Haiti is no longer the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and Does the Western economic calculation of wealth fit Haiti -fit Dessalines idea of wealth distribution?NO! and Comparing crime, poverty and violence in the rest of the Hemisphere to Haiti and Pointing Guns at Starving Haitians: Violent Haiti is a myth and The Western vs the Real Narrative on Haiti and No other national group anywhere in the world sends more money home than Haitians living abroad.)
Going shopping in Haiti:
“It is organized violence on top which creates individual violence at the bottom. ——Emma Goldman
Though they exist and form the exception to the rule, there are very few Paul Farmers, Margaret Trosts or Bill Quigleys in the Haitian world. And even amongst “the exceptions,” the number whittles down to almost zero in terms of foreign heroes who can be expected to go the lifetime-distance without making “unusual alliances” or joining the status quo that vies for the soul of Black folks. Few who would HEAR, Lila Watson who said, “If you have come here to help me then you are wasting your time, but if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine then let us work together.” This sort of thinking that inspires self-reliance not dependency and provide the respectful conditions for those in great need to, in liberty, dignity and identify, realize their own needs is not what compels the International Community in Haiti right now.
For, in the age of humanitarian imperialism, globalization, financial colonialism and neocolonial-violence obfuscated behind forced assimilation and cultural imperialism, what exactly do some whites or modern missionaries go shopping in Haiti for: sex, self-esteem, adulation, fun, challenge, adventure, the boost in serotonin-consumption, to exploit cheap labor, plunder Haiti’s natural resources, for self-improvement, recovery, to use Haiti as in excuse to raise funds for their salaries and living expenses to live the old Dixie’s planters’ life with exploitation black sex on tap, or as an easy way to gain international expert credentials in any field and move up the socio-economic ladder at home and/or for securing the good tropical lifestyle with mountain and oceanfront houses, the waiters, maids, gardeners and seafood they couldn’t obtain as easily in their Euro/US countries where they are the majority, ordinary, can’t use the white privilege inheritance without some scrutiny and are not as exotic and special as in neocolonial devastated Haiti. It’s all hidden, of course, behind the mask of being good humanitarians, altruistic charity workers and helping Haitians. (See also, Ezili Dantò Reviews Travesty in Haiti: A true account of Christian missions, orphanages, fraud, food aid and drug trafficking (a book by Timothy T. Schwartz, Ph.D.); The Slavery in Haiti the Media Won’t Expose ; Haiti’s Holocaust and Middle Passage Continues; UN Peacekeepers and Humanitarian Aid Workers raping, molesting and abusing Haitian children; The-To-Tell-The-Truth-About-Haiti Forum 2009; I am the History of Rape: HLLN Letter to UN asking for investigative reports on UN soldier’s rapes in Haiti; and, Proposed solutions to create a new paradigm.)
Marguerite Laurent/Ezili Dantò is an award winning playwright, a performance poet, political and social commentator, author and human rights attorney. She was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and raised in the USA. For more go to Marguerite Laurent/Ezili Dantò website at http://www.ezilidanto.com