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US Occupation Of Haiti

100 Years Anniversary of US Occupation of Haiti

The U.S occupation of Haiti began on 28 July 1915 by the U.S. Marines, to protect its citizens from civil unrest and that lasted until 1934. It is also often recalled as an attempt to finance US efforts in the first European World War through the complete control of Haiti's revenue, generated from the export of sugar, coffee, banana, sisal and rubber. Thus, 28 July 2015 marks the one hundredth anniversary of the US occupation in Haiti.

While the present UN military force (MINUSTAH) is reaching its 11th year, many political observers are watchful to find similarity between the earlier occupation and the present occupation by the MINUSTAH. In October 2010, the UN soldiers from Nepal had introduced cholera epidemic in the country that took over 8000 lives. Moreover, the present foreign domination has become the root causes of several violations at all possible levels, whether it is economic, human, civil, cultural or key decisions involving country's progress. With their extreme negative consequences, a collective reflection is very important because it has enough potential to inspire patriotism.

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Haitian Commander Benedict Batraville Daunting U.S. Opponent

Benedict Batraville Opposes U.S. Marine Invasion

Benedict Batraville was a resistance fighter for anti-American imperialist groups. America began occupying Haiti in 1915 under Woodrow Wilson. In order to weaken the resistance forces, Congress approved of replacing rebel leader, slaughtered Charlemagne Peralte, with his advisor, Batraville. He had a superior intellect and held information about Peralte's military strategy.

Benedict Batraville, known as Ti Benwa, agreed with the plan to allow imperialist forces to expand their occupation of the island. But he lay in wait to catch the troops at a disadvantage and push back with the insurgency.

The insurgents were successful and the Marines lost territory in Haiti. They understood in order to reclaim lost ground, they needed to find Batraville and finish him off. But he was not easy to apprehend. A master military strategist, who had advised Peralte, Batraville out-thought and out-flanked the Marines.

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Charlemagne Peralte Inspired a New Revolution in Haiti

Haitian Nationalist Charlemagne Peralte

Charlemagne Masséna Peralte was one of the greatest heroes of Haiti. Born in 1886, Peralte was a popular Haitian Nationalist leader who strictly opposed the invasion of Haiti in 1915 by United States. He led the guerrilla fighters called Cacos and presented a tremendous challenge to the invading US forces. Because of this retaliation, US had to severely upgrade its presence in Haiti.

Charlemagne Masséna Peralte was born in a city called Hinche. He was born to a family which had previously migrated from an area which currently falls within the borders of Dominican Republic. Peralte is respected both in Haiti and Dominican Republic. On his birth certificate, his name is registered as François Borgia Charlemagne Peralte.

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Haiti, the only country occupied by US that doesn't play Baseball

Why Do Haitians made baseball but never played it?

Baseball is the most popular game in United States and it has been picked up in many countries where US has managed to put its military weight for some reason or the other. History says that United States has used its military force in several of its neighboring southern countries that include the names like Dominican Republic, Cuba, Panama and Nicaragua. Why exactly America used it military forces in these countries is sometimes controversial but the truth is that they did.

Haiti is the only country occupied by US that does not play baseball.

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Brief Political Career of Rosalvo Bobo

Rosalvo Bobo, born in Cap-Haitien

Rosalvo Bobo became a Haitian revolutionary and government official as America and Europe entered World War I. Although educated as a physician and attorney, his strong political views and dominant personality led him to seek power in Haitian politics.

In 1914, Haiti had been a free republic for a decade, having won its independence from France. But it had not been successful as a stable government, having witnessed a turnover of three presidents in less than two years.

Near the end of 1914, Rosalvo Bobo led a military invasion on a prison holding detainees, which failed, forcing him to find sanctuary at the German embassy. After five days secreted, Bobo reappeared, announcing he was leading a rebellion to unseat President Oreste Zamor from office. He was successful and Davilmar Theodore came into power. Theodore named Bobo Secretary of State of the Interior and Commander of the Haitian police. However, both Rosalvo Bobo and Theodore's time in power was cut short.

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Brief Political Career of Rosalvo Bobo

Rosalvo Bobo, born in Cap-Haitien

Rosalvo Bobo became a Haitian revolutionary and government official as America and Europe entered World War I. Although educated as a physician and attorney, his strong political views and dominant personality led him to seek power in Haitian politics.

In 1914, Haiti had been a free republic for a decade, having won its independence from France. But it had not been successful as a stable government, having witnessed a turnover of three presidents in less than two years.

Near the end of 1914, Rosalvo Bobo led a military invasion on a prison holding detainees, which failed, forcing him to find sanctuary at the German embassy. After five days secreted, Bobo reappeared, announcing he was leading a rebellion to unseat President Oreste Zamor from office. He was successful and Davilmar Theodore came into power. Theodore named Bobo Secretary of State of the Interior and Commander of the Haitian police. However, both Bobo and Theodore's time in power was cut short.

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Populist President Dumarsais Estime

Dumarsais Estime, President of Haiti from 1946 to 1950

Dumarsais Estime, Haiti's 33rd president, held office for four years. His presidency is notable because he was the first black leader elected after the U.S. occupation ended in 1934.

Although Estimé married a mulatto elite, his determined educated blacks were to make up the majority of his administration's political appointees. Reversing mulatto elite influence, he championed an education initiative, building schools in poverty-ridden villages and offering advanced teacher-training. This effort created a 45% rise in elementary school attendance.

Dumarsais Estime's agenda included road-construction projects, literacy programs, and improving community services. He also amended the Constitution to provide workers the right to form unions and raised the minimum wage.

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Germany's Betrayal of Haiti

A small colony of Germans colonized St. Domingue, as Haiti was known then, in Bombardopolis. The government of Haiti (GOH) received them warmly, and made them citizens when Haiti won independence from the French. By the 1850s, Germans became permanent residents.

But Germans' motives for settling there spelled trouble for GOH later on. They began meddling in the country's internal affairs, with several failed coup d'etats. As an example of their greed for power, they coerced GOH into paying exorbitant indemnities for a minor incident involving a Haitian-German at the Port-au-Prince dock. Haiti paid quickly to halt threats of violence to Port-au-Prince.

A decade after the turn-of-the-century, in 1910, the German colony of only 200 exercised economic muscle in excess of their numbers on the island. They continued to make inroads, running Haiti's export market to their profit. In finance, they bought the debt-ridden National Bank of Haiti, wed Haitian women to acquire property, and traded in Haitian currency, making huge profits by changing regulatory rules to benefit themselves.

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Stenio Vincent Uneasy Alliance with the Dominican Republic

Stenio Vincent was the 30th President of Haiti, from 1930-1941. Born of mixed-race parentage, he earned his law-school degree by his 18th birthday. He rose to prominence in the leadership role in the Chamber of Deputies before running for the presidency. As part of his political platform, he voiced extreme disapproval of the U.S. occupation of Haiti. Vincent won the National Assembly majority vote and assumed office in October 1930.

By 1934, after U.S. military forces pulled out, Stenio Vincent began oppressing opposition leaders, spying on and incarcerating them. Now a loyal supporter of U.S. democracy, he became signatory on a trade agreement with them. In 1935, he won the popular vote, keeping him in office until 1941.

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Vilbrun Guillaume Sam, President of Haiti

Vilbrun Guillaume Sam was born on 4th March 1859. He was a cousin of Tiresias Simon Sam. Being the commander of Haiti's North Division gave him a lot of power that he led a rebellion against Francois C. Antoine Simon and Cincinnatus Leconte took over the presidency. He also headed the rebellion that overthrew Oreste Zamor. Sam became the president after president Joseph Davilmar Theodore resigned in February 1915.

Since Haiti had been faced with five unruly years, Sam was forced by Dr Rosalvo Bobo to campaign with rebels against his own government. Dr Rosalvo Bobo was against the financial assistance from U.S government.
Sam refused to act upon the command and instead treated his political opponent badly. He even ordered that 167 political prisoners be killed including the former president Zamor. This annoyed Haitians forcing them to rebel against him. When Sam realized the reactions of Haitians, he decided to hide from them.

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