Aug 1, 2006
Update: The Haiti Debt Relief Bill is picking up steam: the cosponsors all but doubled in a week to 53. That�s the highest number of co-sponsors for any Haiti action in Congress for years. That is good, but not good enough, so we need to keep asking. Congress is in recess for a month, your Representative is in your district, looking for your vote next November. If your Rep is not on the co-sponsor list at the end of this message, call the local office, go to local appearances, and insist that your Representative co-sponsor the Haiti Debt Relief Bill, H.Res. 888 (last week�s action alert, with advice on how to do this, is below).
Political Prisoners: CARICOM and Amnesty International both issued strong statements in favor of the release of all political prisoners this week, demonstrating a broad-based frustration with the speed of Haitian justice.
This week�s action: �If you are not a U.S. voter or your Rep. is already a� H.Res. 888 co-sponsor, this week is easy: read the message that Yvon Neptune sends to all his supporters today, below. The French is Mr. Neptune�s; the English translation is IJDH�s, and unofficial. We are lawyers, not poets, so we apologize in advance for not doing the original justice.
Cher (e) compatriote/cher (e) ami (e)
Excusez-moi de m��tre retranch�
Dans un silence
Inexplicable en apparence
Apr�s que s�est produit
Le 27 juillet dernier
Quelque chose qui a caus�
Un flot de salive
Et peut-�tre d�encre aussi�.
Permettez-moi de vous demander
De ne pas assortir
De trop d�interpr�tations
Ce mutisme pourtant compr�hensible
Ne vous empressez pas non plus
A y voir l�expression
D�une lacune inqualifiable
Le fait de parler
Ou d��crire si vous pr�f�rez
Environ six jours apr�s
Que j�ai �t� ramen�
A un statut
Plus proche de la ��normale��
Cela en effet confirme
Que des fois il vaut mieux
Se fier � ses oreilles�
Ou � son sixi�me sens
Entre-temps j�ose vous proposer
De rester � mes c�t�s
Et aussi aux c�t�s des autres
Qui sont encore en prison
Afin qu�ensemble nous puissions
Aider les fous furieux
A enfin se calmer
Et la machine de mensonges et d�injustice
A se muer au plus vite et sans tr�ve
En fontaine de V�rit�
La seule vraie balance de la Justice
Excuse me for having taken refuge
In a silence
After which arrived
This past July 27
Something which caused
A flood of saliva
And perhaps of ink as well�.
Permit me to ask you
To not match with
Too many interpretations
This muteness that is yet understandable.
And please do not rush
To see therein the expression
Of something unspeakably missing.
The act of speaking
Or of writing, if you prefer
About six days after
I was brought back
To a status
Closer to �normal�-
That in effect confirms
That sometimes it is better
To trust in one�s own ears�
Or in one�s sixth sense.
In the meantime I dare propose to you
To remain by my side
And also by the sides of the others
Who are still in prison.
So that together we can help the raving madmen
To finally calm down
And the machine of lies and injustice
To transform quickly and unceasingly
Into a fountain of Truth-
The only real scales of Justice.
August 1, 2006
(Unofficial Translation by IJDH)
July 25th Call-In Day for Haiti:
Urge Your Representative to Cancel Haiti�s Debt!
Tomorrow�July 25th�we�urge you to�call your members of Congress to support the House resolution that would immediately cancel Haiti�s debt. July 25�is our�national call-in day to have supporters contact their Members around the country urging them to co-sponsor H.Res. 888. The 25th is the date of an international donors conference in Haiti to support the newly elected government of Rene Preval.
The Haiti debt cancellation resolution (H.Res. 888) urges the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and other international financial institutions to completely cancel Haiti�s debt without delays!
Haiti is the most impoverished country in the Western hemisphere. Haiti�s massive debt burden of $1.4 billion is both unpayable and unjust. Much of Haiti�s debt was contracted under 30 years of Duvalier regimes, notorious for human rights abuses. Though the country was added in April to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank�s debt relief program, under the program�s harmful economic policy conditions, Haiti will not see irrevocable debt cancellation for three or more years. Haiti cannot wait years or suffer through more such policies to see its debt cancelled.
Contact Your Representative on July 25th!
You can help Haiti achieve immediate debt cancellation without delays or strings attached by calling your representative on July 25th and asking them to co-sponsor the Haiti debt cancellation resolution in the House (H.Res. 888). To co-sponsor the resolution, the Member�s staff should call Kathleen Sengstock in Representative Maxine Waters� office at (202) 225-2201. If your Representative has already co-sponsored the resolution, please call to thank them. To find contact information for your representative, visit http://www.house.gov/writerep. To find out whether your Representative has co-sponsored this resolution, see http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d109:h.res.00888:. See www.jubileeusa.org for a phone script to call your Member.
H.Res 888 Cosponsors as of August 1:
Rep Bachus, Spencer [AL-6]
Rep Berman, Howard L. [CA-28]
Rep Bishop, Sanford D., Jr. [GA-2]
Rep Blumenauer, Earl [OR-3]
Rep Brown, Corrine [FL-3]
Rep Brown, Sherrod [OH-13] –
Rep Christensen, Donna M. [VI] –
Rep Clay, Wm. Lacy [MO-1] –
Rep Conyers, John, Jr. [MI-14] –
Rep Crowley, Joseph [NY-7]
Rep Cummings, Elijah E. [MD-7]
Rep Davis, Artur [AL-7]
Rep Delahunt, William D. [MA-10] –
Rep Doyle, Michael F. [PA-14] –
Rep Engel, Eliot L. [NY-17
Rep Fattah, Chaka [PA-2]
Rep Foley, Mark [FL-16] –
Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4]
Rep Gonzalez, Charles A. [TX-20]
Rep Green, Al [TX-9] –
Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7] –
Rep Hastings, Alcee L. [FL-23] –
Rep Hinchey, Maurice D. [NY-22] –
Rep Holt, Rush D. [NJ-12]
Rep Jackson, Jesse L., Jr. [IL-2] –
Rep Jackson-Lee, Sheila [TX-18] –
Rep Jefferson, William J. [LA-2] –
Rep Kilpatrick, Carolyn C. [MI-13] –
Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. [OH-10] –
Rep Lantos, Tom [CA-12]
Rep Leach, James A. [IA-2]
Rep Lee, Barbara [CA-9]
Rep Lynch, Stephen F. [MA-9] –
Rep Maloney, Carolyn B. [NY-14] –
Rep McGovern, James P. [MA-3] –
Rep Meeks, Gregory W. [NY-6] –
Rep Millender-McDonald, Juanita [CA-37
Rep Moore, Gwen [WI-4]
Rep Moran, James P. [VA-8] – Rep Norton, Eleanor Holmes [DC] –
Rep Oberstar, James L. [MN-8] –
Rep Owens, Major R. [NY-11] –
Rep Payne, Donald M. [NJ-10] –
Rep Rangel, Charles B. [NY-15] –
Rep Rush, Bobby L. [IL-1] – 6/29/2006
Rep Schakowsky, Janice D. [IL-9] –
Rep Serrano, Jose E. [NY-16] –
Rep Stark, Fortney Pete [CA-13] –
Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-10] –
Rep Van Hollen, Chris [MD-8] –
Rep Wasserman Schultz, Debbie [FL-20]
Rep Wexler, Robert [FL-19]
Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. [CA-6] –
For more information about the Half-Hour for Haiti Program, the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti, or human rights in Haiti, see www.ijdh.org. To receive Half-Hour for Haiti Action Alerts once per �week, send an email to HalfHour4Haiti@ijdh.org.