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Friday, January 21, 2011

Papa Doc Returns to Haiti Only to face Dentention and Investigation.

HISTORY IN THE NEWS:



History never dies. It is reborn every minute of every day.

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DEDICATED TO THE ORIGINS OF CONTEMPORARY EVENTS AROUND THE WORLD.

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Foreign aid and foreign investment has, repeatedly, been Haiti's curse- ending as it has in embezzlement by the ruling elite or in overwhelming national debt.

IN THE NEWS: BABY DOC DUVALIER, SUCCESSOR TO PAPA DOC AND LIKE HIS FATHER A DICTATOR OF HAITI 1971-1986, RETURNED SUNDAY FROM EXILE IN FRANCE APPARENTLY TO PROTECT MONEY IN A SWISS BANK ACCOUNT. INSTEAD, HE HAS FACED DETENTION AND INVESTIGATION FOR CORRUPTION, MISUSE OF FUNDS AND CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY AS VICTIMS OF HIS BLOODY REGIME GATHER TO GIVE TESTIMONY FROM ALL OVER HAITI AND THE HAITIAN DIASPORA. FORMER PRESIDENT ARISTIDE HAS ALSO EXPFRESSED INTENTIONS OF RETURNING FROM EXILE IN SOUTH AFRICA BUT AS A CITIZEN AND ACTIVIST. THE PRESENCE OF THE TWO PROMINENT -AND OPPOSING- POLITICIANS COULD CAUSE INCREASED INSABILITY.



WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: 1990 sees Haiti's first ever modern, free and fair vote with the election of Jean Baptiste Aristide to the presidency. The following year a coup by Tonton Macoute leader Roger Fontant is foiled by rioting Aristide supporters while Haiti faces a trade embargo imposed by the United Nations, enfeebling the economy. To make things worse, Aristide is overthrown in a coup by General Raoul Cedras as Haitians take to the sea to escape the violence. In 1994, however, the new government falls apart in the face of a US military occupation. The Americans manage Aristide's return to power. Over the following year, the US gradually cedes supervision to the UN, Aristide's party wins parliamentary elections and his chosen successor, Rene Preval, is elected to the presidency in 1995.
           In the years following 1995, Preval's government becomes deadlocked and in 1999 he begins to rule by decree. The following year, the Organization of American States detects serious irregualrities in parliamentary elections and irregualrities continue to be reported as Aristide wins the presidency for the second term with 92% of the vote in November, 2000. Amid protests, veteran soldiers threaten subversion from across the the Dominicam border. On December 31, 2001, a failed military coup  leaves 12 dead


            In 2004, just as Hiatians begin to celebrate 200 years of independence, an anti-Aristide uprising promps a militia to seize control of the the towns of Gonaives and  Cap Haitien, taking the northern part of the country. Aristide flees with US assistance and an interim government takes power.  
           February 2006 sees the first elections since Aristide was elected in  2004.  Rene Preval takes the vote which is overseen by US peacekeepers. The head of the electoral commission flees for his life. After a deal is reached over spoiled ballots he takes office, having defeated the US-backed candidates. By June a democratically elected government is in place, led by Preval and Prime  Minister Jaques-Edouard Alexis. But in July thousands demand the return of Aristide.

           In August and September of 2008 fate strikes again: nearly 1,000 are killed in a series of storms and hurricanes. For all the horror, Haitians make their feelings known when an election race receives a poor turnout after a popular candidate is banned from running.

           The worst cataclysm hits in January 2010 when an earthquake, its epicentre at Port Au Prince, destorys the city, killing 300,000.
           In mid-January 2011, Haiti and the world are stunned by the return of former dictator Baby Doc Duvalier from exile in France.




IN HISTORY: 

        Haiti formally becomes an independent republic in 1804. But on Decmeber 8, Jacques Dessalines declares Haiti an empire and himself emperor and Haiti will continue to be called an empire until 1859. By 1806, the north of Haiti is ruled separately from  the south and the ruler of the north, Henri Christophe, has Dessalines assassinated on October 17.  On June 2, 1811, Dessalines crowns himself Henri I of  northern Haiti where he launches a building program, creates a court and a nobility, reforms and moblizes agriculture and the economy. Meanwhile, Andre Petion, a mulatto, rules the the south. An export trades expands throughout 1812 and 1813. But in  1814, Santo Domingo falls back under the countrol of Spain. In 1818, however, Christophe commits suicide.
       North and South Haiti are reunified by a mulatto, Paul Boyer, in 1818 but he excludes blacks from power and he rules through a mulatto elite.
       The struggle between the mulatto elite, which often rules the country and the black majority, which occasionally takes power will be a running theme throughout Haiti's history.



       The first eight months of 1957 are sjaken by instability and violence as a succession of leaders takes power, beginning with the voodoo doctor Sylvain. Only in September, 1957 does stability return when presidental elections are won by Francois 'Papa Doc' Duvalier, a medical doctorwhose advocacy of the popular voodoo religion will help him hang on to power.  Shortly after taking the presidency, Duvalier's right to the office expires. He ignores the limit and as a consequence, the United States severs all diplomatic ties. Duvalier succeeds in reducing the influence of the the US as well as any competing institutions inside Haiti including the military, the Roman Catholic Church, business and the trade unions. By 1964, Duvalier has declared himself Preisent for Life and maintains his hold on power with the help of a brutal private militia, Les Tonton Macoute. 

               Papa Doc dies in 1971 and his son, ''Baby Doc' succeeds him following his father's example in declaring himself  'President for Life, needing to change little or nothing of the extremely centralized power structure left by his father. Promising to build an economic 'revolution' on his Papa's political 'revolution,' he fails by putting foreign loans and investments into his pocket and loses the support of the black business community. And then the visit to Haiti in 1983 of Pope John Paul II rouses the Haitian Church to stand in opposition to the regime. Ruling increasingly with violence through the Ton Ton Macoutes, he provokes mounting popular anger. In 1986 he flees popular discontent, taking up exile in southern France.    

RELEVANT DATES:
Independence
1804 - Haiti, formerly Santo Domingue becomes the first "Black Republic" and first independent nation in Latin America.
Dec. 8- -former slave Jean-Jacques Dessalines declares himself emperor. Whites are killed or expelled Haiti will remain an 'Empire' until 1859.
1806 - Oct 17- Dessalines assassinated and Haiti divided into a black-controlled north ruled by Henri Christophe.

Tyrannies of the 19th century.
1847- Faustin Soulouque, an illiterate slave, becomes president of Haiti and names himself Faustin I and proves an oppresive ruler. Breaks with the coloured elite and rules with an all-black army.
-efforts at social and economic progress constantly frustrated.
1896-1902- Tiresias Augustin Simon Sam brings railroad and German investment.
-has over 100 opponents assassinated; tries to throw out US bankers.

Haiti Doomed by Foreign Debts.
-German warships appear off the coast threatening to collect debts by force.

1908- Haiti bankrupt.
1908-1915- eight successive presidents, each with a private army of 'cacos' funded with foreign loans.
1915- mob captures and kills President Sam.
-July 3- US invades Haiti following black-mulatto fighting, which the US feared was endangering its property and investments in the countrySept. 16- by treaty, Haiti becomes a political and economic protectorate of the US for 10 years. Former governing class resents supervision of economy, agriculture and government by US army officers- who often used forced black labour, treating them as if they were southern slaves. All generated income goes to pay off foreign loans, leaving the country poor.

1934- US turns over administration to Haiti

Haiti's Time of  Hope.
1946- Jan 11- Haitians revolt against the mulatto elite. Paul Magloire overthrows President Elie Escot. Dumarsais Estime installed as President.  Pays off foreign debt with Haiti's first income tax..
1950- May 10- Estime overthrown by military junta headed by Col. Paul Magloire who is elected president.
Haiti at this time is finally sound economically and socially. A land of small farmers, no great wealth, no great debt. Maglaoire beings in social and agricultural reform.


Civil Disorder and Downfall.
1956 - Dec 12- under pressure of a general strike, Magloire gives up presidency.
1957- Feb.- Voodoo Physician Sylvian becomes provisional president.
April 2- Sylvian resgins, accused of trying to fix elections.

Papa Doc Duvalier
Sept 22- presidential elections won by Francois Duvalier his popularity secured by supporting Haitian business, the Black nationalist Party and a cllaim of supernatural powers through voodoo.
May 15- Duvalier's legal right to hold office expires but he remains in power.-Duvilier succeeds in reducing the influence of the the US as well as any competing institutions inside Haiti including the military, the Roman Catholic Church, business and the trade union

1964 - Duvalier declares himself president-for-life and establishes a dictatorship with the help of the Tontons Macoute militia.

Baby Doc.
1971 - Duvalier dies and is succeeded by his 19-year-old son, Jean-Claude, or "Baby Doc", who also declares himself president-for-life, needing to change little or nothing of the extremely centralized power structure of his father.
-promising to build an economic 'revolution' on his father's political 'revolution,' he nevertheless pockets its foundation in foreign aid and the program fails.
1986 - Baby Doc flees Haiti in the wake of mounting popular discontent and is replaced by Lieutenant-General Henri Namphy as head of a governing council.


CONTENTS: SCROLL DOWN FOR:
 

DISTANT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS
RECENT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS.
PREVIOUS ENTRIES

REMOTE BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS
 
CROSS-CENTURY SUMMARY

TIMELINE FOR THE HISTORY OF
 

DISTANT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS:  1844-1971


After ruling Santo Domingo (now the Dominican Republic) for twenty years, Haiti loses the eastern half of the island in 1844 when Santo Domingo has a revolution and wins its independence. Anarchy reigns as four different leaders come and go over three years. After the tyranny of Faustain Soulouque which begin in 1847, Fabre Geffard stages a coup, improves the economy as well as relations with the United States and establishes a concordat with the Vatican, supplying Haiti with a Catholic priesthood. After Geffard is overthrown in 1867, chaos reigns until 1879 when Haiti is relieved by another spell of progress in finance and education under Paris-educated Lysius Salomon. Salomon is deposed under suspicion of dictatorship and President Florville Hippolyte continues to improve Haiti's finances

But this 17 year period of progress comes to an abrupt end in 1896 with the presidency of Tiresias Augustin Simon Sam. After murdering politcal oponents, incurring debts with the US government, expelling US bankers and piling up a railroad debt with Germany, Sam is faced with German warships off the coast of Haiti. Ominously, in 1904, US President Teddy Roosevelt lays down the Roosevelt doctrine which allows the US to intervene in Latin America and the Caribbean wherever US security is felt to be threatened. By 1908 Haiti is Bankrupt. Seven years of anarchy follow with private armies being paid with foreign loans. In 1915 a mob murders President Sam and the United States begins to fear for its assets on Haitian soil.


On July 3, 1915, US marines land and occupy Haiti, and in September, a treaty is signed making Haiti a protectorate of the United States for ten years, providing occuying troops and officials the right to supervise the Haitain economy and to pay off debts with the proceeds which quickly impoverish the country, a state of affairs bitterly resented by Haitians. From 1918 through 1920 a revolt and guerilla resitance develops against the American occupation. An American investigative commission brings a highly educated mulatto, Luis Borno to power. His reign is long, lasting until 1929 when a resurgence of resistance to the American presence brings another intervention by Washington. An American commission of 1930 results in Borno stepping down, adminisrative reform and free elections. In 1930, Stenio Vincent begins his long term as president, the US occupation is phased out, and Haiti's foregtin debt is cancelled. The last American troops leave in 1934, though Washington remains in control of Haiti's finances until 1947.

Haiti gets a new constitution in 1935 and Vincent, his term extended to 1941, oversees a period of economic and political stability, though he governs through the Haitian Guard and persecutes the opposition. As a result, in 1936, Haiti's status as a protectrate of the United States is renewed for another 10 years. Meanwhile, next door, Trujillo, the despot of the Dominican Republic, has been persecuting Haitian migrant labour in the sugar cane fields, with as many as 20,000 murdered. After a diplomatic confrontation,. President Vincent accepts an indemnity which, to the disgust of Haitians, puts a low price on the former lives of the dead. He resigns in 1941.

Under the new president, Elie Lescot, Haiti returns to relative properity in 1941, allying itself with the US against Germany and Japan and poviding exports for the US wartime economy. With the war's end in 1945, the export market falls abruptly and Haiti is thrown back into poverty. Once again, poor Haitians rise up against the mulatto elite in 1946. Dumarias Estime, the new president pays off the foreign debt with Haiti's first income tax only to be overthrown by Col. Paul Magloire who takes power in 1950, brings economic and social reform to a country that is already showing signs of progress and stability. But Magloire resigns in the midst of a general strike in December 1956. The first eight months of 1957 are fraught with instability and violence and a succession of leaders beginning with the voodoo doctor Sylvain.


Only in September, 1957 does stability return when presidental elections are won by Francois 'Papa Doc' Duvalier. Shortly after taking the presidency, Duvalier's right to the office expires. He ignores the limit and as a consequence, the United States severs all diplomatic ties. Duvalier succeeds in reducing the influence of the the US as well as any competing institutions inside Haiti including the military, the Roman Catholic Church (in favour of the popular Voodoo relgion), business and the trade unions. By 1964, Duvalier has declared himself Preisent for Life and maintains his hold on power with the help of a brutal private militia, Les Tonton Macoute. 


RECENT BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS: 1971-2010

Papa Doc dies in 1971 and his son, ''Baby Doc' succeeds him following his father's example in declaring himself  'President for Life, needing to change little or nothing of the extremely centralized power structure left by his father. Promising to build an economic 'revolution' on his Papa's political 'revolution,' he fails by putting foreign loans and investments into his pocket and loses the support of the black business community. And then the visit to Haiti in 1983 of Pope John Paul II rouses the Haitian Church to stand in opposition to the regime. Ruling increasingly with violence through the Ton Ton Macoutes, he provokes mounting popular anger. In 1986 he flees popular discontent, taking up exile in southern France. Lieutienant General  Henri Namphy succeeds him at the head of the governing council. An attempt at democracy follows but as soon as Leslie Manigat becomes president he is quickly overthrown by General Prosper Avril  in 1988 who at least attempts a civilian government in 1990 overseen by the military. Again a restive populace forces Avril to declare a state of emergency and he steps down in favour of an interim government formed by the supreme court.


1990 sees Haiti's first ever modern, free and fair vote with the election of Jean Baptiste Aristide to the presidency. The following year a coup by Tonton Macoute leader Roger Fontant is foiled by rioting Aristide supporters while Haiti faces a trade embargo imposed by the United Nations, enfeebling the economy. To make things worse, Aristide is overthrown in a coup by General Raoul Cedras as Haitians take to the sea to escape the violence. In 1994, however, the new government falls apart in the face of a US military occupation. The Americans manage Aristide's return to power. Over the following year, the US gradually cedes supervision to the UN, Aristide's party wins parliamentary elections and his chosen successor, Rene Preval, is elected to the presidency in 1995.

In the years following 1995, Preval's government becomes deadlocked and in 1999 he begins to rule by decree. The following year, the Organization of American States detects serious irregualrities in parliamentary elections and irregualrities continue to be reported as Aristide wins the presidency for the second term with 92% of the vote in November, 2000. Amid protests, veteran soldiers threaten subversion from across the the Dominicam border. On December 31, 2001, a failed military coup  leaves 12 dead.

In 2003, Voodoo is recognized as a relgion equal to othr faiths.

In 2004, just as Hiatians begin to celebrate 200 years of independence, an anti-Aristide uprising promps a militia to seize control of the the towns of Gonaives and  Cap Haitien, taking the northern part of the country. Aristide flees with US assistance and an interim government takes power. No sooner has a US-led UN contingent taken over security than Haiti is hit by Hurricane Jean in May. Severe flooding leaves more than 2,000 dead and missing. In the June UN peace keepers arrive to take over security and help with the aftermath of the flood. International donors pledge more than $1 billion in aid. By September more than 3,000 are recorded to have been killed by Hurrican Jean.

By late 2004, political violence is on the rise as roaming gangs, many of them former supporters of Aristide, fight for turf. In spring, 2005, Remissainth, a popular rebel leader is killed in fighting. As if Haiti hadn't  had enough, Hurricane Dennis kills 45 in July. In January, 2006, Haiti goes on strike to protest a wave kidnappings. Bodies and skulls aare regularly being found in garbage heaps.

February 2006 sees the first elections since Aristide was elected in  2004.  Rene Preval takes the vote which is ov erseen by US peacekeepers. The head of the electoral commission flees for his life. After a deal is reached over spoiled ballots he takes office, having defeated the US-backed candidates. By June a democratically elected government is in place, led by Preval and Prime  Minister Jaques-Edouard Alexis. But in July thousands demand the return of Aristide. In January, 2007, the UN launches an offensive against gangs in Cite Soleil. By january 2008, the country is shaken by food riots, forcing the government to cut the price of rice. Parliament dismisses Prime Minister Alexis. In may, the World Bank and the US come to the rescue with $30 million in food aid. Brazil boosts its UN contingent in response to another wave of kidnappings.

In August and September of 2008 fate strikes again: nearly 1,000 are killed in a series of storms and hurricanes. For all the horror, Haitians make their feelings known when an election race receives a poor turnout after a popular candidate is banned from running. In May, 2009, former US president Bill Clinton becomes the UN Special Envoy to Haiti, but in Haiti itself it's business as usual with a general boycott of the election runoff in June. Good news arrives in July with the World Bank's cancellation of  $1.2, or the greater part of Hait's debt in recognition of improvements in the ecnomy and measures taken against poverty. But in November, political woes continue as the UN ask election officials to justify the banning of 17 electoral candidates.

The worst cataclysm hits in January 2010 when an earthquake, its epicentre at Port Au Prince, destorys the city, killing 300,000. As troops attempt to stop looting, US president Obama launches the biggest American aid project on record for relief and reconstruction  and by March international donors have committed $5.3 billion. By July, however, Haitians are angry at the slow pace of reconstruction and in October, during the run-up to parliamentary elections voters are further riled by the banning of popular candidates. More protests flare up in October as 2,000 die in a cholera outbreak among the sick and dying earthquake victims, some claiming the disease was brought by foreign UN troops. After presidential elections take place in November, an inconclusive result puts off the final vote until a run-off in January, 2011.

In mid-January 2011, Haiti and the world are stunned by the return of former dictator Baby Doc Duvalier from exile in France. Silent, about his itnentions, the merely insists on his right to return to his home country and to participate in politics as he wishes. Immediately he is charged in Haitian courts with the theft of millions of dollars from the country.


REMOTE BACKGROUND TO THE EVENTS 1492-1844


In 1492, Christopher Columbus lands on the island which he names Hispaniola or Little Spain. In 1496, the capiral, Santo Domingo, is founded by Spain, the oldest European settlement in the western hemisphere. By the treaty of Ryswick in 1697, Spain cedes the western end of the island to France which gives it the name Haiti, or "land of mountains," an area of rich soil, ideal for plantation culture; French colonists import slaves to work the sugar and rice fields but after a century, a slave revolt led by mulattoes begins in 1791, quickly taken over by the black majority. In 1794 the slaves revolutionaries, impressed  by the French Revolution, demand equality and foment a full scale revolt led by Toussaint L'Ouverture, Jacques Dessalines and Henri Christophe. By the treaty of Basel in 1795, Spain cedes Santo Domingo or the western half of Hispaniola to France, adding half a million slaves to the Haitian revolt. General Maitland attempts to intervene with a British expeditionary force in  1798, but the attempt is repuled by troops headed by Toussaint L'Ouverture. In  1800, L'Ouverture finally defeats the white and mulatto armies of the slave owners.

In 1801, victorious, L'Ouverture sends a constitution back to Paris where it is ratified, formally abolishes slavery, declaring Haiti an indepemndent Republic of Black Jacobins. But in 1802, a French force of 20,000 led by Napoleon's brother-in-law, Charles LeClerc, invades the island, captures L'Ouverture, but fails to take the interior and finally succumbs to yellow fever- after which, Napoleon gives up Haiti once and for all. In 1804, Haiti formally becomes the first independent republic in Latin America. But on December 8, Jacques Dessalines declares Haiti and empire and himself emperor and  kills or expels all remaining whites.

Haiti formally becomes an independent republic in 1804. But on Decmeber 8, Jacques Dessalines declares Haiti an empire and himself emperor and Hait will be called an empire until 1859. By 1806, the north of Haiti is ruled separately from  the south and the ruler of the north, Henri Christophe, has Dessalines assassinated on October 17.  On June 2, 1811, Dessalines crowns himself Henri I of  northern Haiti where he launches a buildign progream, creates a court and a nobility, reforms and moblizes agriculture and the economy. Meanwhile, Andre Petion, a mulatto, rules the the south. An export trades exapnds throughout 1812 and 1813. But in  1814, Santo Domingo falls back under the countrol of Spain. In 1818, however, Christophe commits suicide.

North and South Haiti are reunified by a mulatto, Paul Boyer, in 1818 but he excludes blacks from power and he rules through a mulatto ellite. As Spain gradually withdraws again  from Santo Domingo he annexes the area and once again Haiti rules the island. In 1838, France recognizes the independence of all of Haiti but on the condition that Haiti pay an indemnity for all property lost during the rebellion of 1798-1804. The indemnity will weigh on Haiti for a century and a half before it is forgiven.


TIMELINE FOR THE HISTORY OF HAITI:
(with thanks to BBC World for several dates)


1492 - Christopher Columbus lands and names the island Hispaniola, or Little Spain,
1496 - Spanish establish first European settlement in western hemisphere at Santo Domingo, now capital of Dominican Republic.
1697 - by treaty of Ryswick Spain cedes western part of Hispaniola to France, and this becomes Haiti, or Land of Mountains and a rich plantation colony.

1791-1804- slave revolt- rhe only successful slave revolution in the New World.
1791- a revolt of lighter-skinned Haitians against white French rulers is overtaken by a black slave revolt.
1794- May 6- aware of the French Revolution, mulattoes and blacks demand equality and independence and revolt under the leadership of former black slave Toussaint L'Ouverture, jacques Dessalines and Henri Christophe
1795- by treaty of Basel, Spain cedes eastern part of Hispaniola to France. Population of Santo Domingo is 400,000 whites, 28,000 freedmen and 500,000 black slaves.
1798- leader of the slave revolt, Toussaint L'Ouverture, expells Maitland's British expeditionary force.
1800- L'Ouverture and ex-slaves overthrow white and coloured armies. 
1801 - Toussaint Louverture, conquers Haiti, sends a consititution to Paris, abolishes slavery and proclaims himself governor-general of an autonomous government of 'Black Jacobins; over all Hispaniola.
1802 - French force of 20,000 led by Napoleon's brother-in-law, Charles Leclerc, captures L'Ouverture but fails to conquer Haitian interior, his troops havign succumbed to yellow fever. Napoleon decides to abandon Haiti.


Independence
1804 - Haiti, formerly Santo Domingue becomes the first "Black Republic" and first independent nation in Latin America.
Dec. 8- -former slave Jean-Jacques Dessalines declares himself emperor. Whites are killed or expelled Haiti will remain an 'Empire' until 1859.
1806 - Oct 17- Dessalines assassinated and Haiti divided into a black-controlled north ruled by Christophe. 1811- June 2- Christophe crowns himself Henri I; a mulatto southern republic is ruled by Alexandre Petion.
-Christophe imposes law and order, moblizes agriculture. Widespread economic reforms. Christophe keeps a royal court, creates a nobility, creates a building program.
1812-1813- expanding export trade.
1814- Santo Domingo comes under the control of Spain.
1818-43 - Pierre Boyer unifies Haiti, but excludes blacks from power.
1818- March 20-Jean Pierre Boyer is president after suicide of Christophe.

1822-1844- as Spain withdraws from Santo Domingo, Boyer moves in, annexing Santo Domingo (Dominican Repiublic).

1838- Feb 12- France recognizes an independent Haiti in return for a large indemnity for property destroyed in the rebellion. The debt is never paid off.
-Boyer rules through a mulatto elite.
1843- March, 13- Boyer is thrown out of office.

Secession of Dominican Reublic.
1844- Feb 27-  revolution in Santo Domingo or Dominican Republic wins independence and breaks away from Haiti.
-1844-47- four different heads of state come and go.
1847- Faustin Soulouque, an illiterate slave, becomes president of Haiti and names himself Faustin I and proves an oppresive ruler. Breaks with the coloured elite and rules with an all-black army.
-efforts at social and economic progress constantly frustrated.

1859- Fustin's tryranny is overthrtown as Fabre Geffard takes power. Haiti is declared a republic.
-some progress in education and agriculture. Improved relations with the U.S. and formed a concordat with the Vatican, providing an organized preisthood.
-Oswald Durand (1840-1896) writes the great love poem 'Choucone.'


1867- Geffard is forced from office. Near anarchy follows; finances in chaos; obligations contracted abroad.
1879-1888-  paris-educated president Lysius Salomon brings effective progress: national bank, currency; export trade; improvments in education. Nevertherless he was aq despot to the opposition.
1889-1896- Florville Hyppolite brongs order to finances.

1896-1902- Tiresias Augustin Simon Sam brings railroad and German investment.
-has over 100 opponents assassinated; tries to throw out US bankers. 
-German warships appear off the coast threatening to collect debts by force.
1904- US President Roosevelt declares the US right to intervene anywhere in Latin America in the alleged interests of US security.
1908- Haiti bankrupt.
1908-1915- eight presidents, each with a crivate army of 'cacos' funded with foreign loans.
1914- June 14- France and Germany demand control of Haitian customs to ensure payment of debts. The US has similar desires.
-year-long period of chronic revolutionary instability sees successive presidents.
1915- mob captures and kills President Sam.
-July 3- US invades Haiti following black-mulatto fighting, which the US feared was endangering its property and investments in the country.
Aug. 12- Americans place Philippe Dartiguenave in power as president.
Sept. 16- by treaty, Haiti becomes a political and economic protectorate of the US for 10 years. Former governing class resents supervision of economy, agriculture and government by US army officers- who often used forced black labour, treating them as if they were southern slaves. All generated income goes to pay off foreign loans, leaving the country poor.
1918- June 19- new constitution allowing foreigners to own land.
July12- Haiti declares war on Germany.
1918-1919- Charlemagne Perlate leads revolt against the Americans; it is suppressed in 1919.
1920- June 30- Haiti joins the League of Nations.
-a guerilla resistance to US will develops in back country.
1922- Luis Borno, a well-educated mulatto takes power after a US commissioner is sent to investigate US abuses.
1922-1930- Luis Borno in power.
1928- Jean Price-Mars, author of Ainsi Parle L'Oncle inaugurates Afro-Haitain cultrural renaissance in the arts.
1929- as Borno's 2nd term ends, civil chaos and resistance to US brings American military intervention.
1930- Feb-Mar- US sends Commission of Investigation led by W. Cameron Forbes recommends administrative reforms; persuades Borno to leave office, brings in fair, free elections.
1930-1942- Stenio Vincent in power as president. Order restored with US help. Education and services improved. Americans attempt to phase out their occupation but assembly votes for immediate evacuation.
Roosevelt assumes office in US; troops withdrawn, American control ends; Haiti's foreign debt cancelled.
-1934- US turns over administration to Haiti.
1934 - Aug. 6- US withdraws troops from Haiti, but maintains fiscal control until 1947.
1935- haiti's finances in good shape.
1935- June 17- new constitution giving president wide executive powers. Vincent's term in office extended to 1941. Icient institutes public works, improves social conditions- however he governs through the Haitian Guard and persecuted the opposition.
1936- Haiti's status as a protectorate of the US is renwed for another 10 years.
1937- Oct- deterioration of relations between Haiti  and the Dominican Republic because of the latter's treatment of Haitian migrant llabour in surgar cane fields. Dictator Trujillo has 20,000 of them murdered. 
1938- Jan 31- agreement reached between Haiti and Domonican Republic with help of US, Mexico and Cuba.Vincent accepts and indemnity from Trujillo of $500,000. Haitians felt they have been bought off at a cheap price.
1941- Vincent resigns. He is succeeded by Elie Lescot.
1941- Dec,- Haiti declares war on Japan and Germany. US invests heavily in Haitian ex;port crops.
1945- as war ends, exports drop drastically, Haiti retursn to poverty.
1946- Jan 11- Haitians revolt against the mulatto elite. Paul Magloire overthrows President Elie Escot. Dumarsais Estime installed as President.  Pays of foreign debt with Haiti's first income tax. Release of Black Revolution by Jean Price-Mars.

1948- Feb 11- Communist Party outlawed.
1950- May 10- Estime overthrown by military junta headed by Col. Paul Magloire who is elected president.
Haiti at this time is sound economically and socially. A land of small farmers, no great wealth, no great debt.

Maglaoire beings in social and agricultural reform.

-power is gradually passing from the mullato minority to the Black majority which comprises 95% of the population.


Civil Disorder
1956 - Dec 12- under pressure of a general strike, Magloire gives up presidency.
1957- Feb.- Voodoo Physician Sylvian becomes provisional president.
April 2- Sylvian resgins, accused of trying to fix elections.
April 26- Executive council forms interim government.
May 26- brief civil conflict- Daniel Fignola becomes porvisional president.
June 14- army chief Antonio Kebreau overthrows Fignola.

Papa Doc Duvalier
Sept 22- presidential elections won by Francois Duvalier.
May 15- Duvalier's legal right to hold office expires.
May 17- US suspends diplomatic ties with Duvalier.
-Duvilier succeeds in reducing the influence of the the US as well as any competing institutions inside Haiti including the military, the Roman Catholic Church, business and the trade unions.

1964 - Duvalier declares himself president-for-life and establishes a dictatorship with the help of the Tontons Macoute militia.
1971 - Duvalier dies and is succeeded by his 19-year-old son, Jean-Claude, or "Baby Doc", who also declares himself president-for-life, needing to change little or nothing of the extremely centralized power structure of his father.

-promising to build an economic 'revolution' on his father's political 'revolution,' he nevertheless fails.
1986 - Baby Doc flees Haiti in the wake of mounting popular discontent and is replaced by Lieutenant-General Henri Namphy as head of a governing council.
1988 - Leslie Manigat becomes president, but is ousted in a coup led by Brigadier-General Prosper Avril, who installs a civilian government under military control.

Democracy, coup and intervention.

1990- Jan- President Avril declares state of seige.
-Avril resigns amid growing protests. Supreme Court froms provisional government.  
1990 - Jean-Bertrand Aristide elected president in Haiti's first free and peaceful polls.
1991 -Jan- coup by Tonton Macoute leader Roger Lafontant is foiled amid riots. UN places rrade embargo on Haiti, severely weakening the economy.
- Sept- Aristide ousted in a coup led by Brigadier-General Raoul Cedras, triggering sanctions by the US and the Organisation of American States.

-Haitians try to flee the violence by ther thousand, taking to the sea by boat.
 1994 - Military regime relinquishes power in the face of an imminent US invasion; US forces oversee a transition to a civilian government; Aristide returns.
1995 -US maintains military control as it gradually hands over military occupation to the UN.
- UN peacekeepers begin to replace US troops; Aristide supporters win parliamentary elections
Rene Preval, from Aristide's Lavalas party, is elected in December to replace Aristide as president

1996- Jan- Preval takes office.
1997-99 - Serious political deadlock; new government named.
1999 - Preval declares that parliament's term has expired and begins ruling by decree following a series of disagreements with deputies.
2000- May- OAS disputes Haiti's handling of local and legislative elections.
Aristide's second term
2000 November - Aristide elected president for a second non-consecutive term with 92% of the vote, amid allegations of irregularities.
2001- Aristide succeeds Preval with support pf Washington, as opponents use OAS criticism of the 2000 election to subvert the government, as former Haitain soldiers stage attacks from the Dominican border.
2001 July - Presidential spokesman accuses former army officers of trying to overthrow the government after armed men attack three locations, killing four police officers.
2001 December - 30 armed men try to seize the National Palace in an apparent coup attempt; 12 people are killed in the raid, which the government blames on former army members.
2002 July - Haiti is approved as a full member of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) trade bloc.
2003 April - Voodoo recognised as a religion, on a par with other faiths.
2004 January-February - Celebrations marking 200 years of independence turn into uprising against President Aristide
Feb- anti-Aristide militia takes over the town of Gonaives. Rebels capute Cape Haitien and pccupy the north.. Aristide flees with uS assistance.  An interim government takes over.
March- UN force takes over security.
2004 May - Hurricane Jean and severe floods in south, and in parts of neighbouring Dominican Republic, leave more than 2,000 dead or disappeared.
2004 June - First UN peacekeepers arrive, to take over security duties from US-led force and to help flood survivors.
2004 July - International donors pledge more than $1bn in aid
2004 September - Nearly 3,000 killed in flooding in the north, in the wake of tropical storm Jeanne.
late 2004 - Rising levels of deadly political and gang violence in the capital; armed gangs loyal to former President Aristide are said to be responsible for many killings.
2005 April - Prominent rebel leader Ravix Remissainthe is killed by police in the capital.
2005 July - Hurricane Dennis kills at least 45 people.


Preval wins elections
2006- Jan- general strike to protest a wave of kidnappings.
2006 February - General elections, the first since former President Aristide was overthrown in 2004. Head of electoral council flees country after threats to his life. Rene Preval is declared the winner of the presidential vote, defeating US-backed candidates in election overseen by US peacekeepers- after a deal is reached over spoiled ballot papers.
2006 June - A democratically-elected government headed by Prime Minister Jacques-Edouard Alexis takes office.
2006- July- thousands of potestors march demanding the return of Aristide to power.
2006 September - Launch of a UN-run scheme to disarm gang members in return for grants, job training.
2006 October - US partially lifts an arms embargo, imposed in 1991.
2007 January - UN troops launch tough new offensive against armed gangs in Cite Soleil, one of the capital's largest and most violent shantytowns.
2008 April - Food riots. Government announces emergency plan to cut price of rice in bid to halt unrest. Parliament dismisses Prime Minister Alexis.
2008- Venezuelan presidenty Hugo Chavez includes Haiti in regional deal promising cheap energy. 
2008 May - US and World Bank announce extra food aid totalling 30m dollars.
In response to plea from President Preval for more police to help combat wave of kidnappings-for-ransom, Brazil agrees to boost its peacekeeping force.
2008- protestors throng streetrs of capital demanding that the government put an end to kidnapping.


Tropical storms
2008 August/September - Nearly 800 people are killed and hundreds are left injured as Haiti is hit by a series of devastating storms and hurricanes.
2008 September - Michele Pierre-Louis succeeds Jacques-Edouard Alexis as prime minister.
2008 November - A school in Port-au-Prince collapses with around 500 pupils and teachers inside. The authorities blame poor construction methods.
2009- April- poor turn out for Senate elections after a popular candidate is banned from running.
2009 May - Former US President Bill Clinton appointed UN special envoy to Haiti.
2009- June- Senate run-off elections mostly boycotted.
2009 July - World Bank and International Monetary Fund cancel $1.2bn of Haiti's debt - 80% of the total - after judging it to have fulfilled economic reform and poverty reduction conditions.
2009 October-November - Jean-Max Bellerive becomes prime minister after the Senate passes censure motion against his predecessor, Michelle Pierre-Louis.
2009- November- UN asks Haitian officials to justify the banning of 17 political groups from participating in elections.

Earthquake.
2010 January - Up to 300,000 people are killed when a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hits the capital Port-au-Prince and its wider region - the worst in Haiti in 200 years.US Preident Obama orders one of the largest aid operations in US history. Local troop attempt to prevent looting.
US takes control of the main airport to ensure orderly arrival of aid flights.
2010 March - International donors pledge $5.3 billion for post-quake reconstruction at a donor conference at UN headquarters.
2010 July - Popular anger grows over slow pace of reconstruction six months after quake.
2010 October - Run-up to presidential, parliamentary polls due on 28 November. Concern over exclusion of popular candidates.
2010 October-November - Cholera outbreak claims over 1,000 lives and triggers violent protests.
2010 November - Presidential and parliamentary elections.
2010 December - Tension after electoral authorities announce inconclusive presidential election to go to a run-off in January.
2011- Jan- return of former dictator Baby Doc Duvalier from exile in France. Silent, about his itnentions, the merely insists on his right to return to his home country and to participate in politics as he wishes. Immediately he is charges in Haitian courts with the theft of millions of dollars from the country.
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