Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Haiti, China, Florida; our Caribbean abdication.

It's a sad comment on the United States and the rest of the Americas, when the Chinese are the voice of reason in our hemisphere.
I guess it's a good thing to have those Communists over here; their perspective is less tied in to the "local" politics involved.,1280,-5043842,00.html

Is there anyone who believes that having the Chinese involved in this hemisphere wouldn't lead to politics, No. The most important question is, does their involvement enhance or detract from the interests of the Haitians?

Whatever the Chinese motivation, if it prolongs the presence of the UN "soldiers" in Haiti -- as someone concerned with the people of Haiti, I have to be happy about that. Will they have any real impact on the country's political atmosphere? No. Will they provide a human face that connects the rest of the world with the people of Haiti? Yes.

If you notice I highlighted soldiers, I've met UN soldiers, and those guys are like soldiers anywhere in the world. They're just like American soldiers except they come from someplace else, places like Ireland, places like Australia, places like Japan. They go there and do their job, like every soldier. They get shot at, threatened, insulted and spit upon. And they take orders like every soldier.

The good thing about having soldiers around, if they see something bad happening, there's a great likelihood that they'll take action, that's the great thing about soldiers. But being a UN soldier has its special kind of maddening hypocrisy, a hypocrisy that the soldier has no say in, they just follow orders and do their best to survive, just like the soldiers in Iraq. And as human beings, they often feel that irresistible pull to do what's right, that's the good thing about human beings.,0,4010857.story?coll=sns-ap-world-headlines

Anyone who travels in the Caribbean will notice pockets of ethnic Chinese. From Jamaica to the Dominican Republic and the smaller islands, the Chinese have always had a stake in the New World. They maintain their ethnic identity and they intermix with other ethnicities, genetically and socially. Do they have any less of a stake in the Caribbean than anyone else on this planet? No. No less of a stake than the rest of us on this hemisphere, like the Canadians. Perhaps that aspect of the United Nations is the one we in the states should be thinking about.

Why is it that the leader of my country can't step forward and say were going to change things in Haiti, we're going to clean up our house (the Americas), and be good neighbors to those countries closest to our borders, because we have a real vested interest in their well-being. Especially when you consider that unrest in Haiti is unrest uncomfortably close to an oceanic border. Perhaps if the Haitians had nuclear weapons we'd be more concerned. If you wanna be a player in the big game you have to have at least one chip, I suppose.

Some years ago a number of conservatives made completely unfounded accusations that Haiti was a likely launching point for terrorists to enter the United States, with the implication that this was actually occurring. While there was no validity to those assertions, if we continue the way were going, such a scenario could likely be the case. Doubtless there are those who would benefit politically from this possibility. And I'm not talking about the Chinese, much closer to home in our own government.

While some might contend that there is no racial aspect in the US's dealings with Haiti, as a person who's lived in South Florida most of my life, I can tell you that when it comes to the color and culture of the people of Haiti, it has most definitely been an all-encompassing factor in our political and social interaction with that country and its populace.

South Florida is a state which has always been controlled from Tallahassee, a capital which still bears the foul southern stench of the racist mindset.

In my view without that control being exerted by the legislators in Tallahassee, South Florida (where the real economic strength of our state lies) would have much closer relations with our Caribbean neighbors and be more deeply engaged economically and otherwise today.

Instead of the economic wealth, growth and well-being of the Caribbean coming under the purview of the United States through Florida, the greatest influences and economic control have come from other countries, all geographically removed from the region.

Since the 1950s when people started migrating to the southern part of the Florida in large numbers, Tallahassee has viewed South Florida as its Cinderella stepchild and personal cash cow, confiscating its wealth in the form of taxes and rationing it back to southern counties in markedly inequitable portions. They've always viewed us with a rather distasteful acceptance of our vast mix of ethnicities and diverse cultural representations. We've never lived up to their expectations of what Americans should be -- Southern white people who stick with their own.

Personally I'd like to see the state of Florida split, South Florida from Okeechobee down becoming its own state. Then maybe we could throw off the archaic rule which Tallahassee has inflicted upon us and this part of the globe.


Blogger halcyon67 said...

I don't think our influence in Haiti will be overshadowed by the Chinese. Traditionally, we have ruled that region, and we still have heavy influence despite all of the problems. On the other hand, there is a possibility that China could surpass us because of the rate of their economic growth.

July 03, 2005 11:21 AM  
Anonymous The Heretik said...

Gpod job. Well said in making the connections local and international. You should send this over to CN Todd at the Haiti blogswarm at Freiheit und Wissen. Thanks.

July 21, 2005 5:00 AM  
Blogger sattva said...

thanks for the pics the other day.
thought you may be interested in this link on China and Africa.

July 22, 2005 5:08 AM  

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