Monday, January 18, 2010

Security issues.

Or, "We haven’t had any security issues at all". (Via). Excuse me? I thought that violence was growing. I had been led to believe that "looting and gang-related activity" had taken over. Said gangs were, I was assured, "storming quake-ravaged storefronts and even ransacking coffins and piles of dead bodies in search of usable belongings". (That fascination with corpses again). As it transpires, even in the text of these reports themselves, the major act of violence was by the Haitian national police opening fire on crowds of starving earthquake survivors, murdering one of their number, and leaving others tied up on the streets to be beaten to death by 'vigilantes' later. The striking fact, patiently reported by observers on the ground, is that Haiti is not gripped by anarchy, 'mob rule', mass slaughter, or anything of the kind. There was probably no more violent crime in Haiti this weekend than there would be in any normal weekend, and probably less than in some American cities. Instead, while aid is obstructed, Haitians have cooperated to undertake rescue efforts and administer aid without the assistance of relief workers: