A border-River called El Massacre

Northeast Haiti, February 2009, 5:00 am. A river with some dreadful name provides a natural boundary with the Dominican Republic. The River Massacre has been the theater of several horrible killings in the stormy history of the island. The river was renamed River Massacre after some Spanish conquistadors murdered French buccaneers in its waters in […]

Ritual baths

They are named Erzulie, Cousin Zaka, Ogoun Feray. They are the lwas in Creole language, the voodoo pantheon of spirits. They are bridges between humans and the Bondye, the Supreme Being viewed as inaccessible by Voodoo believers. Every July, thousands of Haitians take good luck baths in Saut d’Eau. There, catholics give thanks to the […]

After the chaos

In September 2008, while assigned in Port-au-Prince, I watched with horror uprooted trees sweeping up like straw. The tropical storm in the capital will make me easily understand the strike of the hurricane which will reach later the northern far away city of Gonaïves. Hurricanes Gustav, Hanna and Fay will kill more than 500 people […]

Testing the Governance

In April 2008, a week of riots against the rising cost of life engulfed Haiti. Besides the legitimate aspirations of a population widely affected by food insecurity, some believe that supporters of former President Aristide have hijacked the movement. The HNP, the Haitian National Police appeared quickly overwhelmed. UN peacekeepers strive to limit outbursts. A […]