June 30, 1996
Due to an inexplicable and unwise settlement, Emmanuel Constant, Haiti's most infamous thug, has been freed from a U.S. prison. Constant was the founder and director of FRAPH, the largest paramilitary group in Haiti. He is accused in the Caribbean nation of having supervised the murder, torture and rape of thousands there. Constant was arrested in the United States after the State Department declared him a threat to U.S. interests.
August 21, 1994 |
It was in 1992, before Christmas, that I escaped. I had to because I was in charge of a youth committee organized under the Aristide government. What we did was go out and clean the streets. When Aristide was exiled, the new government came looking for anybody or any group that was supporting him. The group I was in charge of stayed together even after Aristide left, so they came after us. I escaped, but a lot of the members of that youth group were arrested.
April 11, 1994 |
It has become part of the early morning ritual, like going to get water or opening a stall for business. The people who exist in this fetid slum head out at daybreak to count the bodies. For weeks and months, mutilated bodies have turned up regularly, almost daily, at 15 Soleil, the address of the half-square-mile garbage dump located inside the slum, sometimes two and three at a time, all with multiple bullet wounds.
December 28, 1993 |
A fire roared through a slum that is a stronghold of support for exiled President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, destroying about 200 dwellings Monday. A private radio station reported 10 people dead. Stunned residents of the Cite Soleil slum said the blaze was set by members of the Front for the Advancement and Progress of Haiti, which supports the military that ousted Aristide in a 1991 coup. But the group denied responsibility.
February 10, 1992 |
It can't march, its uniforms don't match, its band doesn't play in tune, its leaders are at each other's throats and its commander is so splay-footed he appears to walk in three directions at once. But if the Haitian army doesn't seem very military, it can steal, terrorize--and above all it can kill.
May 13, 1991 |
In the markets of Little Haiti last week, goat leg parts were selling for 99 cents a pound, hot peppers shipped in from Port-au-Prince were 14 for a dollar, and intrigue as thick as the springtime humidity was free. In an exile community of about 60,000, where the rhythm of life still takes its cues from the turmoil that so often rocks the impoverished island homeland, this should be a time of tranquility.