Jeunes Étudiants Chrétiens (JEC) of Port-de-Paix Support for Tèt Ansanm, 6 July 1987

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Download: Jeunes Etudiants Chrétiens (JEC) Port-de-Paix, July 6

DESCRIPTION

Announcement of the JEC’s support of the équipe missionaire and the peasants in Jean Rabel, denouncing the macoute regime.

Face à l’Opinion: Joseph “Ti Jò” Georges and Sony Estéus on Community Radio Stations, 21 July 1999

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Download: Face à l’Opinion: Joseph Georges ak Sony Esteus sou Radyo Kominotè, 21 jiyè 1999 (1)

Face à l’Opinion: Joseph Georges ak Sony Esteus sou Radyo Kominotè, 21 jiyè 1999 (2)

DESCRIPTION

In the early 1990s — after the fall of Duvalier, and just before and during the coup years – some twenty community radio stations arose in Haiti amid a larger emergence of grassroots organizations. Joseph Georges and Sony Estéus of the Sosyete Animasyon ak Komikasyon Sosyal (SAKS) discuss the role of community radio in rural areas as a tool for social inclusion, and for promoting Haitian culture, participatory democracy and development, communication, education, and the voices of the poor. Interview Jean Dominique.

“One of the things that our national cultural politics did was to make the peasant hate himself, to give him a complex, to make him think that he has no value and that he has no culture. And one of the ways to make participation valid is to make the peasant know, understand, and feel that he has value – not only that, but that he has a lot to say.” – Joseph “Ti Jò” Georges

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2 March 2014: Chapo ba to Sony Estéus, who passed away suddenly on March 1.  Sony Estéus was a founding member of SAKS, and became its director in 2000.  He was a dedicated journalist and a staunch defender of the Haitian Creole language; with his passing, Haiti has lost a good man.  Onè, respè!

Father Jean-Marie Vincent on the Jean Rabel Massacre, 28 July 1987

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Download: Pè Jean-Marie Vincent pale sou masak Jean Rabel, 28/7/1987

DESCRIPTION

Father Jean-Marie Vincent — Catholic priest and director of Caritas — speaks about the recent massacre of peasants in Jean Rabel, northwest Haiti. He blames an alliance of local oligarchs (the Lucas family and Jean-Michel Richardson) and macoutes; they in turn blame Father Vincent, claiming that he armed the members of Tèt Ansanm and incited them to violence. He says he is used to being blamed, attacked, threatened, and called a communist; it is to be expected when one organizes with peasants and encourages them to defend their rights. He rejects claims that the members of Tèt Ansanm are responsible for the violence in Jean Rabel, saying instead that the oligarchs and macoutes are creating a climate of fear and making the victims out to be the aggressors. Father Vincent explains that the conflict began when peasants in Gros Sable reclaimed their land after the departure of Jean-Claude Duvalier in 1986. It reached its peak with the massacre in Jean Rabel, which has lasted several days. Relatively few people died on the first day, but in the following days, brigades under the direction of those oligarchs attacked and killed people as they attempted to return home and within the hospital. These powerful landowners have impunity. When asked about the Catholic Church’s position (as there are local church authorities who are in opposition to Tèt Ansanm and part of the attacking forces), Father Vincent replies that his order and Caritas have an official mandate to work with and organize the peasants, but that he does not want to risk saying more than that and will wait for higher church authorities to explain their position. Local landowners and oligarchs are profiting from post-dictatorship political instability, leveraging their economic and social capital to crush peasant movements. Father Vincent does not believe that this will be the end of Tèt Ansanm; grassroots peasants groups are the only hope for the masses, so despite suffering and death, they will not disappear. Interview Michèle Montas.

Jean Rabel Massacre: Tèt Ansanm’s Call to Action and Solidarity, 21 July 1987

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Download: Jan Rabel: Kout Lambi Tèt Ansanm, 21 jiyè 1987

DESCRIPTION

A formal declaration and call to action and solidarity (kout lambi, literally a sounding of the conch shell) by a woman who represents the peasant organization Tèt Ansanm in Jean Rabel. Invoking the memory of Dessalines and Charlemagne Péralte, they call on other peasant organizations and the Haitian masses throughout the country to resist and oppose the macoutes and wealthy landowners who oppress and exploit them and who use their money and influence to divide and conquer. The speaker states that they should not be resigned and accepting; resignation is not a Christian value. On the contrary, God has given them the ability to resist.