Haiti engages important Canadian interests, which include the fact that there is a large Haitian diaspora of about 100,000 families living in Canada, notably in Quebec. Canada also has a long history of involvement in Haiti, which predates the start of Canadian official development assistance (ODA) to the country in the 1960s. Canada has contributed a total of over $700 million to Haiti in recent decades, nearly $200 million of that committed in just the past two years. Haiti has become the largest recipient of Canadian assistance in the Americas and second-largest overall (after Afghanistan). Canada is also the third largest donor to Haiti (after the United States and the European Union); indeed it is the most generous of all in per capita terms. Furthermore, on 25 July 2006 during the International Donors’ Conference for the Economic and Social Development of Haiti, Canada announced that it will allocate $520 million in assistance for Haiti over the five-year period from July 2006 to September 2011.6 Canada, in short, has a great deal invested in this small island nation of 8.3 million people. Canadian interests are at stake in being able to show from all of these efforts that real and lasting improvements can be achieved in the lives of Haitians. It is in this context that the Committee strongly endorses the government’s multi-year funding commitment to Haiti’s reconstruction and development, beyond the term of the donors’ Interim Cooperation Framework (ICF) with Haiti that has been extended through September 2007,7 and in line with the priorities outlined by Haiti’s new, democratically elected government. Infrastructure aid projects, particularly, should also emphasize Haiti’s ability to sustain them.
So, what happened to Aristide, and how did the coup plotters and illegal government fare in this report? Let's see ...
At present, it is doubtful that the Canadian public has a clear idea of the policy rationales and guidelines for Canada’s interventions in a fragile state like Haiti, and of what is being accomplished by the large sums being expended on Canadians’ behalf.
Well, that's pretty interesting actually. You know, this is one of Canada's signature bits of current foreign policy, second only to Afghanistan. You'd think the media would be interested in crowing to other Canadians about all the awesome work we're doing, .... 'EH? I suspect that besides being swamped with telling us the latest about Lindsey Lohan and Britney Spears, the media also knows that our work in Haiti has been shameful and disgusting and counter to what Canadians imagine their country is all about.
It has been pointed out that the 1994 restoration to power of democratically elected president Aristide was the first and only instance to date “of the Security Council authorizing the use of force to affect the restoration of democracy within a member state.”21 Yet a decade later, with Aristide forced into controversial exile, the country’s situation appeared more chaotic than ever.
Yeah, ... pat ourselves on the back. US-backed murderers kicked Aristide out the first time, and they let him back after forcing him to acede to the US vision for his country, not the platform he was elected on. In the meantime, the criminal government of Haiti massacred his followers. "Forced into controversial exile" is surely the most cowardly, dishonest way of describing the US and Canada aiding and abetting the second coup against Aristide and our coordinated role in spiriting him out of his country. What nauseating garbage.
Although scheduled elections were repeatedly delayed, witnesses generally saw those of February (presidential) and April 2006 (parliamentary) as being reasonably successful. This view was expressed notwithstanding a much lower voter turnout for the latter, as well as questions raised about the country’s ability to proceed with a further stage of elections at the local level. Canada had a great deal invested in Haiti’s electoral process: the Canadian contributions, from technical assistance to provision of security, involved an exemplary collaboration among Elections Canada, CIDA (including Canada Corps), Foreign Affairs, and the RCMP and senior Canadian Forces officers deployed within MINUSTAH. Canada’s Chief Electoral Officer, Jean-Pierre Kingsley, outlined for the Committee the considerable successes achieved by the International Mission for Monitoring Haitian Elections. Mr. Kingsley was accompanied by Mr. Jacques Bernard, Director General of the Interim Electoral Council of Haiti, who also testified on the national efforts that were undertaken working with international partners. The aim should be to build on this to set up a permanent functional and viable Haitian election authority. Mr. Kingsley seemed optimistic that could be done: “In my view, it would take perhaps one more year of partnering with the Haitian electoral authority — should one be established — to say there is no longer a need for any kind of external support, other than perhaps financial through other means and so on.”29 One of the Committee’s main concerns is that the election infrastructure that has been put in place be maintained and consolidated. Furthermore, in order to continue to nurture democratic ideals, the Committee also believes it is necessary to build knowledge of the value and principles of parliamentary representation at the level of citizens, political parties, and members of parliament.
Oh yeah, ... nausea. Yeah the elections we helped oversee. Let's look into that.
The most obvious impropriety of the 2006 election resides in the fact that it should, by law, have taken place long ago. As noted by Brian Concannon, Director of the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, “Article 149 of the Constitution gives provisional governments 90 days to organize elections, and that period expired on June 1, 2004, without any attempt to hold elections.” During 2005, the Interim Government of Haiti installed by the US, Canada and France after the overthrow of President Aristide postponed elections four times, missing the deadline of February 7, 2006 for transferring power “that it had promised to meet for 21 months” (Concannon, 6 Dec. 2005). Five days before this presidential election at last took place, the Council on Hemispheric Affairs (COHA), an independent, non-partisan research organization which has been described on the floor of the United States Senate as “one of the nation’s most respected bodies of scholars and policy makers,” released a scathing report declaring that “Haiti’s February 7th election inevitably will occur in a climate of fear and violence, which can in part be blamed upon the failed UN mission to that country.” ... Many people were unable to participate in the election, either as candidates or activists, because they had been illegally imprisoned following the 2004 coup: “Political prisoners included Haiti’s last constitutional Prime Minister, a former member of the House of Deputies, the former Minister of the Interior, and dozens of local officials and grassroots activists” (Concannon, 17 Feb. 2006). Guy Philippe, on the other hand, the death squad leader who lead the coup against Aristide in 2004, was free to present himself as a presidential candidate: he won 1.69 percent of the vote (Keane). The voter registration process was transparently designed to disenfranchise the poor. While for the elections in 2000 René Préval’s administration set up more than 10,000 voter registration centers across the country, the IGH and its international overseers provided fewer than 500. As Brian Concannon writes, “The offices would have been too few and far between for many voters even if they had been evenly distributed. But placement was heavily weighted in favor of areas likely to support the IGH and its allies. Halfway through the registration period, for example, there were three offices in the upscale suburb of Petionville, and the same number in the large and largely roadless Central Plateau Department. In cities, the poor neighborhoods were the last to get registration centers, and Cité Soleil, the largest poor neighborhood of all, never got one” (Concannon, 17 Feb. 2006).
And etc., etc., ...You can read more here at the Canada Haiti Action Network. The article is by Michael Keefer from Global Research. I intend to go through the rest of this self-serving nonsense. I'll finish that I remember looking for Parliamentary Committee evidence on the Foreign Affairs Committee, but the meeting was in camera. I wonder why.