Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Medicine

How the UN Might Have Inadvertently Started a Cholera Epidemic In Haiti 158

Posted by samzenpus
from the pandora's-box dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Celso Perez and Muneer Ahmad write in The Atlantic that despite evidence to the contrary, for nearly three years, the United Nations has categorically denied that it introduced cholera into Haiti after the country suffered a devastating earthquake in 2010. Since then, cholera has killed more than 8,000 people and infected more than 600,000, creating an ongoing epidemic. According to extensive documentation by scientists and journalists, peacekeeping troops belonging to the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) inadvertently but negligently brought cholera into the country several months after the January 2010 earthquake. That October, troops from Nepal carrying the disease were stationed at a military base near the town of Méyè. Because of inadequate water and sanitation facilities at the base, cholera-infected sewage contaminated the Artibonite River, the largest river in Haiti and one the country's main water sources. As locals consumed the contaminated water, cholera spread across the country. Absent from Haiti for over a century, cholera is now projected to plague the country for at least another decade. 'By refusing to acknowledge responsibility, the United Nations jeopardizes its standing and moral authority in Haiti and in other countries where its personnel are deployed,' writes the Washington Post Editorial Board adding that without 'speaking frankly about its own responsibility for introducing cholera to Haiti, the organization does a disservice to Haiti and Haitians, who deserve better.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

How the UN Might Have Inadvertently Started a Cholera Epidemic In Haiti

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:24AM (#44606273)

    They're poor as hell and need aid of their own and they have rebels.

    • by dywolf (2673597) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:39AM (#44606375)

      Because their troops are some of the most badass in the world.
      You know their troops are the ones we know as the Gurkha's right? ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gurkha [wikipedia.org] )
      UN asked for troops, Nepal volunteered some of theirs, UN said "ok". (theyve volunteered for almost every major UN operation)
      Gurkhas, being the tough SOB's they are, weren't gonna let a little stomach bug get in their way.

    • by TapeCutter (624760) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:52AM (#44606441) Journal
      They are peacekeeping troops, they are outsiders for a reason. Fighting "rebels" in their own country is not peacekeeping. As for why the Nepalese would send them, there are plenty of political and practical reasons, pride in "doing their bit", skills transfer, etc. Sadly this appears to be a case of good intentions leading directly to hell. I strongly agree that the UN should have the balls to acknowledge facts, mind you, I'm not sure what the facts are.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:01AM (#44606491)

        Sending "Peacekeeping Troops" is an enormous profit center for a small country. The country providing troops receives a huge stipend per troop. It far outstrips the cost of providing that troop.

        From the UN: "Peacekeeping soldiers are paid by their own Governments according to their own national rank and salary scale. Countries volunteering uniformed personnel to peacekeeping operations are reimbursed by the UN at a standard rate, approved by the General Assembly, of a little over US$1,028 per soldier per month."

        It is fairly certain that the total cost per troop to a country like Nepal is not anywhere close to $1028/month. Maybe $1028/year?

        • by RockDoctor (15477)
          Since the Gurkhas are well aware that they can get work as mercenary soldiers for the UK army at a lot higher rate than $1028/month, including settlement rights in the UK at the completion of the employment, they'd be fools to take that sort of deal.

          I'll let you call a Gurkha a fool to his face ; I'm not going to. The situation is almost certainly not as you describe it.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I strongly agree that the UN should have the balls to acknowledge facts, mind you, I'm not sure what the facts are.

        The facts are as follows:
        - Haiti (not the UN) asked for help. The UN helped.
        - Some of the people who showed up were sick, which is pretty normal when you're pulling people in from all over the planet.
        - Local sanitation was non-existent. Haiti has always had sanitation problems, the Earthquake made them worse. But in this case, the base wasn't directly affected by the quake, the sanitation problems were pre-existing.
        - Following the quake, there are literally tens of thousands of people living in horrific con

        • by Kid Zero (4866)

          The UN should have seen it coming. They should have responded when groups started pointing out that Cholera showed up after the UN troops did. I fully blame the UN for making a bad situation even worse.

        • Not giving UN troops a health screening knowing that they are going to a place with appalling sanitation is pure negligence.
          I would have excepted it to be routine that they get regular health checks.

        • This is no better than when the Europeans first visited Hawaii and decimated the population with their "old world" diseases. It is part of the reason the US was later able to "colonize" Hawaii, they found a sickly unfit race rather than the robust noble race that existed prior to the initial contact.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        The bitch of it is that this can be solved by giving every hatian a bottle of bleach. That's all it takes. All. Just put a little bit of bleach in the water and let it sit for 2-3 minutes.

    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:56AM (#44606465) Journal
      This [academia.edu](ignore the facebook bullshit, not needed to just read it online) offers some interesting theoretical tidbits.

      The UN [un.org] explains the financial side.

      "Peacekeeping soldiers are paid by their own Governments according to their own national rank and salary scale. Countries volunteering uniformed personnel to peacekeeping operations are reimbursed by the UN at a standard rate, approved by the General Assembly, of a little over US$1,028 per soldier per month."(Some countries pay an additional stipend to soldiers on peacekeeping operations, large enough to be significant in areas with low salaries)

      I'd imagine that it's partly that Nepal is one of the countries poor enough that they can deploy peacekeepers for profit(the UN standard rate, per soldier, is paid in USD and identical across contributing nations, so it goes a hell of a lot further in some countries than in others, depending on local pay scales and willingness to accept casualties) and partly Nepal's history of fielding soldiers as part of (English speaking, which is convenient for international peacekeeping missions) British colonial activities.
    • by crmanriq (63162) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:23AM (#44606603)

      Why?

      The UN pays $1023/month per troop.

      A Nepalese soldier earns ~$100/month. (http://nepalarmy.mil.np/salary.php)
      (A Nepalese general earns ~$300/month.)

      Provide 1280 peacekeepers. (http://www.ph.ucla.edu/epi/snow/CMI18_E158_E163_2012_Nepalese_origin_supporting_information.pdf)
      Cost approximately $128,000/month.
      Receive compensation from UN of $1.3M. Profit > $1M/month.

      • That's very close to the truth. One minor detail: UN Fees. The United nation charges all member states a fee. Sending troops to various places for peace keeping missions is one way of paying that debt. I think that comes off the top before they pay the country for the troops. Still profitable though.

        • Still profitable? You talk as if paying your debts off isn't profit.
          • Its an abstract benefit that generated the debt, so its tough to see the benefit for many people. I mean you are talking about poor countries. Being a member of the UN arguably gives it some benefit in world affairs, but I doubt the average Nepalese citizen sees that on a daily basis. To many of them it would seem to be as useful as Alien abduction insurance.

      • by AdamHaun (43173)

        Provide 1280 peacekeepers.
        Cost approximately $128,000/month.
        Receive compensation from UN of $1.3M. Profit > $1M/month.

        Take-home pay is not the only expense. Flying people back and forth to the other side of the world and keeping them supplied is not free, especially in a place with minimal infrastructure. Whatever profit Nepal is making, I doubt it's over $1M/month.

        • Flying people back and forth to the other side of the world and keeping them supplied is not free

          Nepal is not paying for the flights, nor is it paying for supplies. Those are paid for by the UN. Rich countries bend over to make it attractive for poor countries to send peacekeepers, because they don't want the expense or political blowback from committing their own troops. This is a win-win. Rich countries save money and men, while poor countries earn money that they desperately need.

    • Why Nepal is sending troops elsewhere? They're poor as hell and need aid of their own and they have rebels.

      For the same reason they always have. Because they are poor as hell and they would rather kill and die in order to send home an honest paycheck than beg the rich for potentially toxic [amazon.com] aid.

      • Does your "potentially toxic aid" center around things like industrial chemical waste that actually caused harm, or into "scandals" like using perfectly harmless humanure as fertilizer?

        I knew a fellow who was about 5 miles off the liberal side of the scale that wouldn't drink Coca-Cola because they gave Indians "bags of human shit" as fertilizer, claiming they passed off their toxic sewage as a charity aid... the truth is, without a sewage infrastructure, it's easy to build a single site's toilet infrastr

        • By "toxic aid" I mean stuff sent to people in need that does them more harm than good. It's usually caused by emotionally charged quick-fix efforts. Look, for example, at the way clothing handouts to African communities have wiped out entire segments of local economies, putting weavers, dyers, printmakers, and clothing emporiums out of business and actually increasing the poverty in these communities - now everybody's got an American T-shirt, but fewer people have a job.

          The best kind of aid is exemplified

  • Bwahahahahahahaha. The UN lost it's moral authority decades ago, when it became nothing more than a organ to bash Israel and the US.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:39AM (#44606371)

      Bwahahahahahahaha. The UN lost it's moral authority decades ago, when it became nothing more than a organ to bash Israel and the US.

      Both deserve to be bashed.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:09AM (#44606527)

      No. It lists its authority when they did nothing worthwhile during the Rwanda genocide and the Bosnia genocide. TWO genocides and they did nothing.

      The UN deserves to be laughed at and not be taken seriously.

      The Palestine/Israel situation is another reason. But not due to bashing Israel, but for not being able to do anything at all to solve the conflict.

      • by i kan reed (749298) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:40AM (#44606725) Homepage Journal

        Yeah, I totally recall how the UN wasn't involved in bosnia at all. Or maybe that's the opposite of what is true [wikipedia.org]

        • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @09:01AM (#44606917)

          Bullshit. They did nothing. They released resolution afterwards declaring them genocides and tried to prosecute to aggressors. But that's it.

          Yes, they declared to extend their mission to serbian Bosnia. In reality and effectively they just watched and did nothing worthwhile for weeks and months.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srebrenica_Massacre
          "In April 1993, the United Nations declared the besieged enclave of Srebrenica in the Drina Valley of north-eastern Bosnia a "safe area" under UN protection. However, in July 1995, the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR), represented on the ground by a 400-strong contingent of Dutch peacekeepers, Dutchbat, did not prevent the town's capture by the VRS and the subsequent massacre."

          "Then in 2005, in a message to the tenth anniversary commemoration of the genocide, the Secretary-General of the United Nations noted that, while blame lay first and foremost with those who planned and carried out the massacre and those who assisted and harboured them, great nations had failed to respond adequately, the UN itself had made serious errors of judgement and the tragedy of Srebrenica would haunt the UN's history forever"

          In a nutshell : you are talking bullshit, you don't deserve the mod points and the UN did nothing. End of.

      • by buchner.johannes (1139593) on Monday August 19, 2013 @09:23AM (#44607131) Homepage Journal

        No. It lists its authority when they did nothing worthwhile during the Rwanda genocide and the Bosnia genocide. TWO genocides and they did nothing.

        The UN deserves to be laughed at and not be taken seriously.

        The Palestine/Israel situation is another reason. But not due to bashing Israel, but for not being able to do anything at all to solve the conflict.

        The UN is just the international community of countries. If they can not agree on a action to take, that's the fault of all the states and their communication. Don't act like the UN is some external entity. It's just the states!

        So I read what you and GP say as

        The international community of countries became nothing more than a organ to bash Israel and the US.

        The international community of countries deserves to be laughed at and not be taken seriously.

        I don't think that makes any sense.

        Yes, it is fair to criticize when intervening action is not taken, and we can also criticize that unanimous agreement is necessary. Latest example: Syria.

        When criticizing China and Russia however, you have to make sure not to be hypocritical. The US is picking the best options for itself on many other issues: Isreals arbitrary settling policies, ignoring international treaties, not subjecting itself to international courts, no extradition, starting illegal wars (Iraq, Afghanistan).

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          "starting illegal wars (Iraq, Afghanistan)."

          Iraq is fair, Afghanistan is not, because the latter was almost unanimously approved by the UN and was supported by a plethora of other countries because of that.

        • by nbauman (624611)

          In this country, there are many libertarians (particularly on the right) who believe that, on principle, the government should never do anything without unanimous consent.

          In other words, we shouldn't have to pay taxes just because a majority decides to do it; we should only pay taxes if there is unanimous agreement.

          That's one of the justifications for proposition 13 in California, which required (not a unanimous but) a 2/3 majority of the legislature to pass a tax bill. The stated purpose of that, and the r

      • by quantaman (517394)

        No. It lists its authority when they did nothing worthwhile during the Rwanda genocide and the Bosnia genocide. TWO genocides and they did nothing.

        The UN deserves to be laughed at and not be taken seriously.

        The excuse is it wasn't really their job at the time.

        The primary role of the UN to avoid war. They do this by being a place for international diplomacy and by arbitrating international discussions around trade and borders.

        A country committing genocide within its own borders isn't really part of the original job description. It's only now that active international conflicts are virtually extinct that we have the opportunity to start contemplating the UN taking the role of an international police and stabiliz

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Oh, get over it. The world does not revolve around the US or Israel, and neither does the UN, but there's certainly some grounds for bashing here. Every country needs a good bashing every once in a while, like when they do something stupidly illegal. If the US or Israel or any other country always abided by internationally agreed-upon laws, then there wouldn't be any grounds for bashing by the UN.

      Picking a couple of examples, where is it written in international law that it's okay to establish settlement

    • it became nothing more than a organ to bash Israel and the US.

      How does this get a +4? The US uses UN resolutions to justify and defend its attacks on other countries.

    • We're from the government, and we're here to help
  • Boil your water (Score:5, Informative)

    by Smidge204 (605297) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:30AM (#44606307) Journal

    Cholera is one of those things that can easily be kept at bay with education and best practices.

    1) Boil your water before drinking or using in any food that will not otherwise be cooked thoroughly.

    2) Develop better latrine habits

    These two things can go a long, long way towards beating the epidemic.
    =Smidge=

    • Re:Boil your water (Score:5, Informative)

      by oodaloop (1229816) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:43AM (#44606391)
      That might be helpful advice for a first world nation, but this is Haiti.
    • Re:Boil your water (Score:5, Informative)

      by T.E.D. (34228) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:32AM (#44606665)

      The problem here is that in most of Haiti there's no power. The obvious answer may be to just burn wood, which is why the entire country has already been denuded of trees [wikipedia.org]. You can actually see their border with the Dominican Republic from space because one side has trees, and the other doesn't.

    • 1) Boil your water before drinking or using in any food that will not otherwise be cooked thoroughly

      Believe it or not, boiling your water is a really expensive habit, especially in a poor country. It's easier to purify it with chlorine (and even Hatians should be able to afford that since a few drops will purify a gallon). The biggest difficulty, I've found, comes from bathing. How do you bath without getting some of the water on your lips? Quite a conundrum.

  • by TWiTfan (2887093) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:34AM (#44606339)

    Even if they did accidentally bring cholera in, it's the terrible state of sanitation in Haiti that has turned it into an epidemic. Haiti would have likely seen cholera even if the UN hadn't come in. Someone would have just brought it in later. And I dare say they help the outsiders have provided has far outweighed any harm they've done.

    • by Sockatume (732728) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:54AM (#44606451)

      It's not a zero-sum game: the cost involved in preventing it happening is so low that it's a no-brainer to send in the aid without bringing in a monstrously contagious disease, so the UN should be considering this idea even as a matter of principle.

      Of course that'd mean looking past the idea that one is being blamed for something one is not responsible for. Lots of people lose their pragmatism in that situation.

    • by Nyder (754090) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:55AM (#44606459) Journal

      Even if they did accidentally bring cholera in, it's the terrible state of sanitation in Haiti that has turned it into an epidemic. Haiti would have likely seen cholera even if the UN hadn't come in. Someone would have just brought it in later. And I dare say they help the outsiders have provided has far outweighed any harm they've done.

      And yet for a century Haiti hasn't had a cholera problem...

      You know, you are going to die someday, so maybe you should hurry the process and do it now. You know, since its going to happen one day anyways...

    • by cerealito (814622)
      +1
  • by Gothmolly (148874) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:36AM (#44606351)

    Know what to do with poop. If you don't know this, you can't help other people do it. When you learn what to do with poop, then you can help other people with their poop.

  • First, there's no evidence that UN has started the cholera epidemic. No bacterial strain genotyping has been performed. Second, in such cases a cholera epidemic is more-or-less a certainty - it makes no sense to search for the index case, especially because choleric bacteria occur naturally.
  • Of Note. (Score:5, Informative)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:44AM (#44606395) Journal
    The UN claims immunity under the "Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations" [undp.org.vn], which is largely what it sounds like.

    However, Article VIII "Settlement of Disputes" states that:

    Section 29. The United Nations shall make provisions for appropriate modes of settlement of :

    (a) disputes arising out of contracts or other disputes of a private law character to which the United Nations is a party;

    (b) disputes involving any official of the United Nations who by reason of his official position enjoys immunity, if immunity has not been waived by the Secretary-General.

    Section 30. All differences arising out of the interpretation or application of the present convention shall be referred to the International Court of Justice, unless in any case it is agreed by the parties to have recourse to another mode of settlement. If a difference arises between the United Nations on the one hand and a Member on the other hand, a request shall be made for an advisory opinion on any legal question involved in accordance with Article 96 of the Charter and Article 65 of the Statue of the Court. The opinion given by the Court shall be accepted as decisive by the parties.

    So, the Convention under which they claim immunity requires them to "make provisions for appropriate modes of settlement"(something which apparently hasn't happened since 1946, no doubt Coming Real Soon Now) and makes the UN an entity subject to ICJ jurisdiction in the event of a dispute between a UN member state and the UN itself.

    It certainly is the case that the random Nepalese troops who actually introduced the Cholera enjoy diplomat-grade immunity under this convention (and, even if they didn't, their actual crime is probably some sort of relatively minor sanitary code violation); but the assertion that the UN, as an organization, enjoys immunity is suspect at best.
  • by TheGoodNamesWereGone (1844118) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:47AM (#44606405)
    The article said the Nepalese were billeted at a Haitian miltary base with poor sanitation. "...Because of inadequate water and sanitation facilities at the base, cholera-infected sewage contaminated the Artibonite River..." implying the Haitians had been dumping sewage into the river themselves at least since the disaster. This was an accident. I'm no big huge fan of the UN, but they were there to *help* fer goshsakes, and for Haiti to attack them is wrong.
    • Re:UN's Fault? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Sockatume (732728) on Monday August 19, 2013 @07:55AM (#44606457)

      I think the UN has a responsibility to ensure that if any of its troops have cholera, they're not at a base with poor sanitation, as an organisational lesson if not a matter of responsibility and blame.

    • Re:UN's Fault? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:11AM (#44606543) Journal
      I'm pretty sure that the first rule of helping is "Don't introduce a hitherto absent, highly contagious, disease to a country infrastructurally incapable of coping with it, killing more than 7,000 and sickening just short of 600,000."

      Well, maybe not the first rule; but one of the important ones. Virtually every country (even two-bit ones where these controls are largely nominal because the border functionaries are deeply inadequate to the task) has rules in place to avoid the introduction of novel crop pests and at least some diseases, so it isn't as though the concept is a novel one.

      Failing to perform a "Do our staff harbor any diseases that would spread like wildfire in a country with ghastly sanitation and minimal resources" check before heading into a country with ghastly sanitation and minimal resources is somewhere between incompetence and reckless indifference.
  • We just killed tens of thousands of people. woopsy!

  • by dcooper_db9 (1044858) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:00AM (#44606487)

    It's a mistake to point the finger at the United Nations. As the original editorial noted, Haiti does not have a system to deliver clean water. Any time you have 90 percent of a population drinking from the sewer it's only a matter of time before you have an outbreak. Past efforts to build a modern clean-water delivery system have been thwarted by civil war, endemic corruption and general ineptitude

    Haiti doesn't need another failed aid project. What Haiti needs is a bureaucracy to construct and manage their own infrastructure. Haiti also needs to build a judicial infrastructure that's capable of rooting out corruption.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:11AM (#44606549)

    I remember reading an article perhaps 9 months after the cholera outbreak, I think in the New England Journal of Medicine about how the epidemiologists had identified the source of the cholera infection to the Nepalese troops. It's fairly absurd that the UN has continued to deny that this happened for well over 2 years.

    http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1012928

    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday August 19, 2013 @08:39AM (#44606723) Journal
      In fairness to the UN, it should be noted that (the face of overwhelming 'evidence' from those fancy 'biologists' that they could no longer deny) the UN has changed its position from "Cholera? Wasn't us, probably just Haiti being filthy." to "Yeah, it was us; but we enjoy impunity, haha."

      It's always nice to see somebody owning up to their mistakes.
    • by nbauman (624611)

      I remember reading an article perhaps 9 months after the cholera outbreak, I think in the New England Journal of Medicine about how the epidemiologists had identified the source of the cholera infection to the Nepalese troops. It's fairly absurd that the UN has continued to deny that this happened for well over 2 years.

      http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1012928

      Yes, I read that in the NEJM too. They've also had some good articles on the politics of Haitian health care.

      There were some good articles by Paul Farmer, who probably did more to help the Haitian health care system than any other American.

      This is the result of U.S. efforts to undermine Aristide by undermining his health care system.

      Farmer said that the way to help a third-world country's health care system is to teach them the skills, give them the money, and let them do it themselves, so they can be indep

  • Spreading deadly diseases from country to country -- allowing them to evolve increasing virulence through horizontal transmission -- is a small price to pay for open borders.
  • by hesaigo999ca (786966) on Monday August 19, 2013 @12:45PM (#44609277) Homepage Journal

    The problem here is that Haiti is very poor, and think that having a drinking water facility without the proper filtration should be an excuse to blame someone else for bringing in germs, viruses or bacteria. The thing to remember is if your infrastructure is badly built from the beginning without having any contingency plans setup, you will get burned, and it will only be your own fault.

    If i go on a trip and have only enough fuel to make it to a specific place, and then stop to pick up a hitchhiker, adding more weight to my car, leaving me to run out of fuel before the next gas station, should i blame the hitchhiker? No one forced you to pick him up. If you were smart enough to have a gerry can in the back with just a bit more fuel to get you to that gas station, which most people do before long treks, you avoid this situation.

    Having one source of drinking water with no special reserves setup and no proper filtration in place to catch all the contaminants, leads you to have this situation.
    Dont blame someone for helping when you should have helped yourself before they got there. Just refuse the help next time if you are concerned they will bring disease with them. No one forced you to take their help.

    As for the UN, there should be more testing in place for who they send in, this could easily have been avoided as well from the other side of the coin. We had firefighters and cops from here go and help over there, but i can guarantee you no one tested them properly for any sort of communicable diseases.

  • What enrages me is there is still no clean water or sanitation in Haiti, three years after the disaster. No centralized planning and control, like that a government can provide, and the fact that water treatment plants and sewage systems are not 'sexy" means thousands are dying. It is like a major city in the 1800's, before modern municipal services were built. Haiti is a poster child for expecting self organization, the NGO industrial complex, and the private sector sort things out. A disaster upon a disas

    • by nbauman (624611)

      As Paul Farmer said, Aristide was developing a health care system with centralized planning and control, and he was handling priorities like clean water and sanitation, with his Harvard-trained public health experts.

      Unfortunately the U.S. government, under Democratic and Republican administrations, didn't like the way Haiti's democratically-elected government was treating their terrorist friends in the Haitian elite, so we overthrew Aristide and replaced him with our favorite.

      American-installed dictators do

      • by plopez (54068)

        Let's look at some evidence. Cambodian Constitutional Monarchy over thrown, Pol Pot comes to power. Gov't of Argentina overthrown, they attack Britain. The government of Iran is overthrown, BP had their hands in this one as well, and the Shah was put in to place, which led to a revolution and the Islamic fundamentalist state now developing nukes. The US ignored an election in Vietnam, with tragic results. Pakistan. El salvador. Honduras. Those are just off of the top of my head...

        • by nbauman (624611)

          Well, you know what Henry Kissinger said.

          "I don't see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves."

1 Sagan = Billions & Billions

Working...