Welcome to HMZ!
Un amalgame culturel
It has always been our dream to promote the Haitian culture.
Our goal is to dissipate the dark cloud that has been obstructing the public's view of the beauty that is our country.
Pwovèb Kreyòl la
• " Aké pasians, na ouè trip fwoumi. " •
La rubrique santé
La maladie d'Alzheimer
La maladie d’Alzheimer est une maladie dégénérative qui engendre un déclin progressif des facultés cognitives et de la mémoire. Peu à peu, une destruction des cellules nerveuses se produit dans les régions du cerveau liées à la mémoire et au langage.Details
WASHINGTON : — (CNN) Biden vowed to hold MBS accountable. Now he's being accused of letting him get away with murder
US President Joe Biden vowed to hold the Saudi Crown Prince accountable. Instead he's accused of letting him get away with murder.
WASHINGTON : — (Newsweek) AOC Says Only 'Two Options' to Pass $15 Minimum Wage: Override Parliamentarian or End Filibuster
Progressive Democrats have strongly criticized the parliamentarian's decision, with some calling for the decision to be overridden or for the parliamentarian to be fired.
JERUSALEM : — (REUTERS) Israel says initial assessment is Iran behind explosion on Israeli-owned ship
Israeli defence minister Benny Gantz said on Saturday his "initial assessment" was that Iran was responsible for an explosion on an Israeli-owned ship in the Gulf of Oman.
Haiti : — (Le Nouvelliste) Démonstration de force pacifique contre Jovenel Moïse, la dictature et les kidnappings ce dimanche 28 février 2021
Une véritable marée humaine a déferlé sur la route principale de Delmas
About Our RadioOur mission is to promote all things Haitian and to enlighten the Caribbean-American community.
The Haitian culture is a blend of music, art, literature, poetry, history; We are committed to carrying on our heritage for generations to come, in order to help Haiti regain its rightful place in the concert of nations.
Our program is conceived with our listeners in mind. In whole, it is a mélange of everything: Kompa, Salsa, Merengue, Hip-hop, Reggaeton and Bachata, to name a few.
Our format gives you the freedom to listen to your favorites at any given time. Come to complete relaxation! Listen to your heart and follow your mood.
Whatever your tone, you are in the right zone.HISTORICAL EVENTS
1492-12-05 - Columbus discovers Hispaniola (El Espanola/Haiti)
1772-06-06 - Haitian explorer Jean Baptiste-Pointe Dusable settles Chicago
1790-10-23 - Slaves revolt in Haiti (later suppressed)
1791-08-22 - Haitian Slave Revolution begins under voodoo priest Boukman
1793-08-29 - Slaves in French colony of St Domingue (Haiti) freed
1793-09-20 - British troops under Major-general Williamson lands on (French) Haiti
1794-05-06 - Haiti, under Toussaint L'Ouverture revolts against France Explorer of the New World Christopher Columbusbr>
1801-07-07 - Toussaint L'Ouverture declares Haitian independence
1802-06-15 - Toussaint L'Ouverture leaves Haiti, prisoner on French ship Héros
1802-08-07 - Napoleon orders re-instatement of slavery on St Domingue (Haiti)
1803-11-18 - Battle of Vertieres, in which Haitians defeat French
1803-11-29 - Dessalines, Christophe declarent St Domingue (Haiti) independent
1804-01-01 - Haiti gains independence from France (National Day)
1804-03-29 - Thousands of Whites massacred in Haiti
1806-10-17 - Former leader of the Haitian Revolution, Emperor Jacques I of Haiti was assassinated after an oppressive rule.
Coriolan Ardouin (né le 11 décembre 1812 et mort le 12 juillet 1835) est un poète haïtien, représentatif d'un courant littéraire que l'on a appelé « pseudo-classique ».read more
Pensée du jour
" Quand les chiens s'entredéchirent, le loup fait ses affaires."
Oeuvres d'artAlbert Desmanglesartisanatpeinture à l'huileAlbert Desmangles
Source: Mayo Clinic Staff
Fish oil is a dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids — substances your body needs for many functions, from muscle activity to cell growth. Omega-3 fatty acids are derived from food. They can't be manufactured in the body. Fish oil contains two omega-3s called docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Dietary sources of DHA and EPA are fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel and trout, and shellfish, such as mussels, oysters and crabs. Some nuts, seeds and vegetable oils contain another omega-3 called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).read more
Did you know?
Your heart beats 101,000 times a day. During your lifetime it will beat about 3 billion times and pump about 400 million litres (800 million pints) of blood.
NASA’s Perseverance rover has touched down on Mars
The NASA Perseverance rover has landed. “Touchdown confirmed! Perseverance is safely on the surface of Mars, ready to begin seeking the signs of past life,” NASA engineer Swati Mohan said during a Feb. 18 livestream of the landing.
The Perseverance team released some of the first images from the landing during a news briefing on February 19, including pictures of the Martian surface, the rover dangling below its landing gear and an action shot from another spacecraft orbiting Mars. This is the beginning of Perseverance’s mission to explore an ancient river delta called Jezero crater, searching for signs of ancient life and collecting rocks for a future mission to return to Earth (SN: 7/28/20).
The team released the first color image from Perseverance during the Feb. 19 briefing. “As soon as we got that color image, our chats just lit up with the scientists saying, look over here! Look over here!” said deputy project scientist Katie Stack Morgan. “We’re really doing science now on the surface of Mars.”
The rover caps off a month of Mars arrivals from space agencies around the world (SN: 7/30/20). Perseverance joins Hope, the first interplanetary mission from the United Arab Emirates, which successfully entered Mars orbit on February 9; and Tianwen-1, China’s first Mars mission, which arrived on February 10 and will deploy a rover to the Martian surface in May.
NASA broadcast Perseverance’s landing on YouTube starting at 2:15 p.m. EST, with the moment of touchdown at approximately 3:55 p.m. on February 18. The rover used the landing system pioneered by its predecessor, Curiosity, which has been exploring Mars since 2012 (SN: 8/6/12). But in a first for Mars touchdowns, this rover recorded its own landing with dedicated cameras and a microphone.
As the craft carrying Perseverance zoomed through the thin Martian atmosphere, three cameras looked up at the parachute slowing it down from supersonic speeds. When a rocket-powered “sky crane” platform lowered the rover to the ground, a fourth camera on the platform recorded the rover’s descent. Another camera on the rover looked back up at the platform, and a sixth camera looked at the ground.
“The goal is to see the video and the action of getting from high up in the atmosphere down to the surface,” says engineer David Gruel of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, who was the engineering lead for that six-camera system, called EDL-Cam. He hopes every engineer on the team has an image of the rover hanging below the descent stage as their computer desktop background six months from now. One of the images released February 19 could make that possible. The image shows the rover hanging from the sky crane platform.
“When we first saw this image, it was exhilarating,” said strategic mission manager Pauline Hwang during the Feb. 19 press briefing. “The team went wild.” Because it will take more than 11 minutes for signals to travel between Earth and Mars, the cameras didn’t stream the landing movie in real time. And after Perseverance landed, engineers were focused on making sure the rover is healthy and able to collect science data, so the landing videos weren’t among the first data sent back. Gruel expects to be able to share what the rover saw four days after landing, on February 22. Perseverance also carries microphones to record first-ever audio of a Mars landing. Unlike the landing cameras, the microphones will continue to work after touchdown, hopefully helping the engineering team keep track of the rover’s health. Motors sound different when they get clogged with dust, for instance, Gruel says. The team will hear the sound of the rover’s wheels crunching across the Martian surface, and maybe the sound of the wind blowing. “Are we going to hear a dust devil? What might a dust devil sound like? Could we hear rocks rolling down a hill?” Gruel asks. “You never know what we might stumble onto.” Sound will add a way to share Mars with people who have trouble seeing, Gruel notes. “It might appeal to a whole other element of the population who might not have been able to experience past missions the same way,” he says. ”
Lisa Grossman; Science News
Haiti's Agonies and Exaltations
The history of Haiti will break your heart. Knowing it, the weak will despair, but the caring will strive to break the chains of tragedy.
When Columbus landed on the island in December 1492, he found a native Arawak, or Taino, population of three million people or more, well fed, with cultivated fields, lots of children, living in peace. It had by far the largest population of any island in the Caribbean. Twenty-two years later, there were fewer than 27,000 who had not fallen victim to the sword, the ravages of forced labor, and diseases heretofore unknown to them.
The Spaniards called the island La Ysla Española, which in use became Hispaniola. The native people called the island Haiti, a word that three hundred years after the Europeans arrived would strike fear throughout the empires of the hemisphere built on slave labor and societies that accepted its practice, but bring hope to slaves as they heard of it.
Only a few who came with the Conquistadors dared, or cared, to speak out against the genocide. The historic exception was the priest and later Bishop of Chiapas, Bartolome de Las Casas. For his only briefly successful efforts to persuade Charles V and the Pope to protect the peoples of "India" from slavery and abuse, Las Casas became "the most hated man in the Americas" among the violent, rich rulers of New Spain. In a census Las Casas conducted in 1542, only 200 Taino were found. The soil of Haiti was already red with human blood.
Slowly the population of Hispaniola was replenished, the slaughtered Indians replaced primarily by the importation of Africans in chains who rarely knew, but never forgot, those who perished first at the hands of their masters. Few Spaniards settled in far western Hispaniola. By the mid-17th century, French buccaneers gained footholds on its coast. In 1697, France was recognized as sovereign over the western third of the island in a minor concession from Spain by the treaty of Ryswick, which ended the war of the Grand Alliance and resettled the map of western Europe. France called its new colony St. Domingue.
By the 1750s, St. Domingue was France's richest colony, rich from the sweat of slave labor's brow.
Hispaniola declined in importance as Spanish colonies in Mexico, Peru and the Caribbean spread through South, Central and North America. On the eve of the revolution in France, St. Domingue had a population of about 32,000 from France, 24,000 freedmen of mixed blood, and nearly 500,000 African slaves. The native population was extinct. The Creole language found birth in the slave quarters and secret places slaves could meet as their need to support each other and to resist grew. African languages permeated the French with African melody and African drums. English, Spanish and occasional Indian words were gathered into it by chance and attraction. Creole became the heart of Haitian culture, shared with others who were torn out of Africa and carried to European colonies in the Caribbean.
In trials of Haitian-Americans charged with planning to overthrow Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier in the mid-1980s, the most skilled French-English translators and professors of French in the universities of New Orleans could not translate Creole into English for the Court. It is a beautiful, separate language born from the suffering of African slaves of French masters and their determination to maintain their own identity. In Paris, the philosophers of the Enlightenment condemned slavery. Diderot wrote that slavery contradicts nature. Montesquieu observed that when we admit that Africans are human, we confess what poor Christians we are. Abbe Reynal proclaimed that any religion that condones slavery deserves to be prohibited. Rousseau confessed that the existence of slavery made him ashamed to be a man. Helvetius observed that every barrel of sugar reaching Europe is stained with blood. Voltaire's adventurous hero, Candide, meets a slave whose hand was ground off in a sugar mill and leg was cut off for attempting to escape and proclaims, "At this price you eat sugar in Europe."
Few periods in history have given rise to more intense thought and concern about freedom and the rights of humanity, but St. Domingue was a long way away and the wealth of France and its slave masters were not impressed.
Unaware, or contemptuous, of the enlightened views of France's philosophers, "His Majesty" in 1771 considered requests for the emancipation of mulatto slaves in Haiti and other French colonies and authorized his Minister of Colonies to explain his views:
...such a favor would tend to destroy the differences that nature has placed between whites and blacks, and that political prejudice has been careful to maintain as a distance which people of color and their descendants will never be able to bridge; finally, that it is in the interest of good order not to weaken the state of humiliation congenital to the species, in whatever degree it may perpetuate itself; a prejudice all the more useful for being in the very heart of the slaves and contributing in a major way to the due peace of the colonies... Within two decades the people of France and Haiti would provide Louis XVI a clearer understanding of what was in their heart.
In Léogâne in 1772, a Haitian woman named Zabeth, her story recorded, lived a not uncommon life and death. Rebellious, like many, from childhood, she was chained for years when not working, chased and attacked by dogs when she escaped, her cheek branded with a fleur de lis. Zabeth was locked up in a sugar mill for punishment. She stuck her fingers in the grinder, then later bit off the bandages which stopped the flow of blood. She was then tied, her open wounds against the grinder, where particles of iron dust poisoned her blood before she died. Her owner lived unconcerned across the sea in Nantes.
For five years, the French Revolution, consumed with the struggle for human rights ignored the slaves of Haiti even over the protests of Marat and Robespierre and the words of the Declaration of the Rights of Man. On August 14, 1791, the slaves of St. Domingue rebelled. News of the insurrection sent electrifying waves of fear throughout the hemisphere. The slave states and slave owners in all parts of the U.S. and elsewhere in the Americas were forced to face what they had long dreaded, that the cruelty of their deeds would turn on them in violent slave rebellions. Their fear produced hatred and greater cruelty toward the slaves that led to the barbarity of lynchings in the late 19th and early decades of the 20th centuries and the excessive force employed with zeal by police in race riots into the 1960s in the U.S. The struggle of the Haitian slaves for freedom dragged on for more than a decade, the French army caring less and less about the destructiveness of their arms and about the lives of the Haitian people.
President George Washington and Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson, both slave owners, supported France in its efforts to suppress the slaves of St. Domingue. Their successors have consistently acted against the rights and well-being of Haitians ever since.
In 1794, after fighting both Spain and Great Britain to control St. Domingue, harassed by the slave insurrection led by Pierre-Dominique Toussaint Louverture, and in need of troops easily recruited from freedman before the rebellion, France declared the abolition of slavery in its colonies. Frightened by the freedom of slaves in Haiti, the next year the King of Spain ceded the rest of the island, Spain's first colony in America, to France. The island was once again, temporarily, united. By 1801, Toussaint Louverture, a slave himself before the insurrection, proclaimed a constitution for Haiti, which named him governor-general for life. Napoleon was not consulted.
Later that year, Bonaparte sent General Charles Leclerc with a veteran force of 20,000 trained soldiers, including Haitian military officers, among them Alexandre Pétion, to crush the "First of the Blacks." In 1802, Napoleon ordered the reinstatement of slavery. Toussaint was captured by ruse and sent to France where he died a prisoner on April 7, 1803. Fearful that Napoleon would succeed in restoring slavery, African and mulatto generals in the French Army joined the bitter revolt against France. U.S. merchants sold arms and supplies to the former slave forces, while the U.S. government supported France. The French army of Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated by Haitian former slaves. It surrendered in November 1803 and agreed to a complete withdrawal.
Haiti lay in ruins, nearly half its population lost. The African slaves of Haiti had defeated the army of Napoleon Bonaparte. The 12-year war for liberation had destroyed most of the irrigation systems and machinery that, with slave labor, had created France's richest colony and were the foundation of the island's economy.
On January 1, 1804, independence was declared for the entire island in the aboriginal name preferred by the former slaves: Haiti. In September 1804, Dessalines was proclaimed Emperor Jacques I. Nearly all whites who survived the long violence fled the island before, or with, the departing French army.
Profound fear spread among white peoples throughout the Americas wherever Africans were held in slavery. In the U.S. slave states, news from Haiti of the slave rebellion, the emancipation, the imprisonment and death of Toussaint Louverture in France, the failure of Napoleon's effort to reestablish slavery after sending 20,000 professional soldiers for the task, and their final defeat sent shock waves infinitely greater than those of 9-11-2001 two centuries later. Years before Nat Turner and even the earlier slave rebellions in the United States, the fear of slave rebellion became a brooding omnipresence.
As word spread among slave populations, exaltation embraced its people who could now believe their day of freedom too would come. The conflict between fear and newborn faith sharpened the edge of hostility that separated slave and master, creating greater tension and more violence. Dessalines' nationalization and democratic distribution of land led to his assassination in 1806 by jealous elements of a new ruling class, both black and mulatto, emerging from the ranks of the Haitian generals. The alliance between the formerly freed – the freedmen or affranchis – and the newly freed – the former slaves – was dissolved with Dessalines' murder. A new ruling class of big landowners and a merchant bourgeoisie supplanted their colonialist predecessors. There ensued civil war primarily between the mulatto Pétion, who was elected president in Port-au-Prince over the south, and Christophe, a full-blooded African, who was proclaimed King Henry I in the north. Christophe committed suicide in 1820 after a major revolt against his rule. Jean Pierre Boyer, who had succeeded Pétion in the South in 1818, then became president of a united Haiti.
Haiti was reviled and feared by all the rich nations of the world precisely for its successful slave revolt which represented a threat not only in nations where slavery was legal, but in all countries, because of their large under-classes living in economic servitude. The strategy of the nations primarily affected, including the U.S., was to further impoverish Haiti, to make it an example. Racism in the hemisphere added a painful edge to the treatment of Haiti, which has remained the poorest country, with the darkest skin, the most isolated nation in the Americas. Even its language, spoken by so few beyond its borders, made Haiti the least accessible of countries and peoples.
In one grand commitment, Haiti, through President Pétion, contributed more to the liberation of the Americans from European colonial powers than any other nation. Twice Haiti, poor as it was, provided Simon Bolívar with men, arms and supplies that enabled the Great Liberator to free half the nations of South America from the Spanish yoke. On New Year's Day 1816, Pétion, his country still in ruins, blockaded by France and isolated from all rich nations, met with Bolívar, who had sold even his watch in Jamaica, seeking funds. He promised seven ships, 250 of his best soldiers, muskets, powder, provisions, funds, and even a printing press. Haiti asked only one act in repayment: Free the slaves. Bolívar surely intended to fulfill his promise and achieved some proclamations of emancipation, but at the time of his death in 1831, not even his own Venezuela had achieved de facto freedom for all of its slaves.
Thus Haiti had achieved the first successful slave rebellion of an entire colony, the defeat of veterans of Europe's most effective fighting force at the time – Napoleon's legions – and made perhaps the decisive contribution to the liberation from European colonial governments of six nations, all larger and with more people than Haiti. Each act was a sin for which there would be no forgiveness. Spain retained effective control over the eastern part of the island after its concession to France in 1795. The Dominicans revolted against Spain in 1822, joining nearly all the Spanish colonies in the Americas. President Boyer blocked Europe's counter-revolutionary designs against Haiti by laying claim to the Spanish lands where he abolished slavery, but Haitian control was never consolidated. The Dominicans declared independence in 1844 which, after a decade of continuing struggle, was finally achieved. In 1825, France was the first nation to recognize Haiti, from which it had profited so richly, but at a huge expense to Haiti through a more sophisticated form of exploitation.
Haiti agreed to pay France 150,000,000 gold francs in "indemnity." The U.S. permitted limited trade with Haiti, but did not recognize it until 1862, the second year of the U.S. Civil War. Haiti, true to its struggle against slavery, permitted Union warships to refuel and repair in its harbors during the Civil War. In 1891, the U.S. sought to obtain Môle Saint-Nicolas on the northwest tip of Haiti as a coaling station by force, but failed. A decade later, the U.S. obtained Guantanamo Bay from Cuba after the Spanish-American war. Môle Saint-Nicolas and Guantanamo are strategically located on the Windward Passage between Haiti and Cuba, the best route from the Atlantic to the Panama Canal. First France, then the U.S., coveted the notion of a base at Môle Saint-Nicolas. Between 1843 and 1911, sixteen persons held the highest government office in Haiti, an average of four years, three months each, but eleven were removed by force and its threat from a still revolutionary people.
During the period from August 1911 to July 1915, in which many Haitians believed their country was being taken over by U.S. capital, one president was blown up in the Presidential Palace, another died of poison, three were forced out by revolution, and on July 27, 1915, President Vilbrun Guillaume Sam was taken by force from the French legation where he had sought sanctuary and killed.
The next day U.S. Marines landed in Haiti and began an occupation that lasted nineteen years. The U.S. invoked the Monroe Doctrine and humanitarianism to justify a criminal occupation. Haiti was forced to sign a ten-year treaty, later extended, which made Haiti a U.S. political and financial protectorate. Shortly before World War I, U.S. bankers, in the most debilitating form of intervention, obtained shares in the Haitian Bank which controlled the government's fiscal policies and participated in a huge loan to the Haitian government, again placing the people in servitude to a foreign master. U.S. capitalists were quickly given concessions to build a railroad and develop plantations. As the Panama Canal neared completion, U.S. interests in Haiti grew.
Franklin D. Roosevelt, than assistant secretary of the Navy, drafted a constitution for Haiti, something Toussaint Louverture had been capable of one hundred and fourteen years earlier. In 1920, while campaigning for the vice-presidency, Roosevelt boasted of his authorship accomplished on the deck of a U.S. Navy destroyer off the coast of Cap Haïtien. Such is the certainty of the U.S. in its natural superiority and right in matters of governance. In 1918, US Marines supervised a "farcical" plebiscite for the new constitution. Among other new rights, it permitted aliens for the first time to own land in Haiti.
Haiti paid dearly. U.S. intervention in education emphasized vocational training at the expense of the French intellectual tradition. The racist implications were clear to the people. The national debt was funded with expensive U.S. loans. The occupying force imposed harsh police practices to protect property and maintain order, but with little concern for injuries it inflicted, or protection for the public. In the spirit of democracy, Haitians were virtually excluded from the government of their own people. Over the years, opposition to the occupation grew, and slowly Americans joined Haitians in protest against it. In 1930, after student and peasant uprisings, President Hoover sent missions to study ending the occupation and improving the education system. The first election of a national assembly since the occupation was permitted that year. In turn, it elected Stenio Joseph Vincent president. Vincent opposed the occupation, and Haitians quickly took control of public works, public health, and agricultural services.
In August 1934, Franklin Roosevelt, now president of the U.S., to confirm his celebrated Good Neighbor Policy, ended the occupation and withdrew the Marines. When the occupation was over, Haiti was as poor as ever and deep in debt. The U.S. continued its direct control of fiscal affairs in Haiti until 1941, and indirect control until 1947, to protect its loans and business interests. Among accomplishments the U.S. proclaimed for its long governance was a unified, organized, trained and militarized police force. Called the Garde d'Haïti, it guarded Haitians less than it guarded over them.
In 1937, Haiti was weakened by nearly two decades of foreign occupation and subjugation and a huge part of its unemployed work force was in the Dominican Republic laboring under cruel conditions at subsistence wages. The Dominican dictator, President Rafael Trujillo, directed the purge of Haitian farm workers and laborers in an overtly racist campaign of government violence to keep his country "white." As many as 40,000 Haitians were killed. The Organization of American States interceded and forced the Dominican Republic to acknowledge 18,000 deaths for which it paid $522,000 in restitution with no other consequence than an angry neighbor. A Haitian life was worth $29 to the OAS, with most lives unrecognized.
Art flourished in Haiti in the late 1930s. By the mid-1940s, there was a "Renaissance in Haiti." Artists painted furiously on any surface that offered the opportunity. Haitian artists gained international reputations and fame: Philomé Obin, André Pierre, Castera Bazile, Wilson Bigaud, Rigaud Benoit, Hector Hippolyte, and others. Their work commanded prices unimaginable to the poor of Haiti. With the painting, the richness of Haitian culture burst out in music, poetry, literature and cuisine. But more tragedy lay ahead. Vincent served until 1939 when, under U.S. pressure, he retired in favor of Elie Lescot. When he sought to run for a second term, Lescot was forced from office by student strikes and ultimately mob violence in 1946. A military triumvirate directed a new election of the National Assembly in 1946. The Assembly elected Dumarsais Estimé president. Near the end of his term in 1950, the same military triumvirate seized power, forcing Estimé to leave Haiti. Col. Paul E. Magloire, a member of the triumvirate, was then chosen to direct public elections as president. Magloire was in turn forced to resign and leave the country as his term expired in December 1956.
After a period of turmoil, strikes and mob violence, during which several men, then an Executive Council and an Army commander served briefly as provisional leadership, François Duvalier, a physician, was elected president, with Army approval, on September 22, 1957. The brutality, capriciousness, and arbitrary exercise of power and violence by Duvalier provides a classic study of dictatorship in poor countries.
In 1960, he forced the Catholic Archbishop François Poirier into exile to prevent interference and opposition by the Church of Haiti's official religion. Duvalier organized and licensed the notorious Tonton macoutes from among his core supporters to terrorize the people to accept his rule. The terror of Duvalier's long reign is described nowhere better for non-Haitians than in Graham Greene's classic, The Comedians, published in 1966. Greene knew Haiti before Duvalier. He loved the people. He thought they were beautiful. When he returned in 1963, he found the Tonton Macoutes, searches, road blocks, a place where "terror rides and death comes at night." Rebels were in the hills. He stayed long enough to develop material for a book. Before he could return for a last impression, he was warned he should not. He had written a harsh profile of Duvalier in the English press.
Instead he flew to the Dominican Republic, traveled to the border to observe and walked "along the edge of the country we loved and exchanged hopes for a happier future." The Comedians ends on the border, but it contains a testament to the misery and the beauty of the Haitian people and the power of the committed among them. In 1964, Duvalier imposed a new constitution on Haiti which made him president-for-life. To please the U.S., show he knew how to handle problems, and unintentionally confirm the accuracy of the sobriquet Comedians, the death penalty was decreed in 1969 for the "propagation of communist or anarchist doctrines through lectures, speeches, or conversations" and for accomplices in such propagation and persons who merely received or listened to such doctrines.
In 1971, "Papa Doc" Duvalier caused the constitution to be amended to empower him to name his successor and lower the age requirement for the presidency to age 18. He named his son, Jean-Claude, then 19, and died, having extended his dynasty by another 15 years.
Baby Doc's regime was as brutal as his father's, if somewhat more subtle. When President Carter criticized Haiti's human rights record in 1977, a few token prisoners were released. But arrests and disappearances continued. A young Haitian-American, the son of a former officer in Papa Doc's air force who had fled into exile, was arrested for public criticism of the Duvalier dynasty and held in cells under the Presidential Palace where the president could witness the discomfort of people he did not like. A barrage of entreaties for his release were ignored until the eve of the first visit in 1983 of a pope to Haiti. The prisoner was released, taken to the airport with his lawyer, provided first-class seats on an Air France flight to Miami without explanation, or apology.
By 1980, there was a mass exodus from Haiti by sea. The U.S. Coast Guard policy was to interdict boatloads of Haitians fleeing at great risk toward freedom. When it caught boats close to Haiti, it forced them back to what could be death for some. Others caught in the Windward Passage were taken to prison at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo, where they were held as early patrons of a cruel experience which was later refined for Muslims, usually never named or charged, but treated with a cruelty that would make Baby Doc blush.
Other Haitians reached Florida's waters. The bodies of some washed up in the surf on Ft. Lauderdale beaches. Local residents were outraged, or horrified, depending on their character. Other Haitians caught on land or sea were taken to the Krome Avenue Detention Center in Miami. The treatment they endured there caused many Haitians to yearn for the free, if impoverished life, of Cité Soleil or Haiti's northwest, from which they had fled.
As opposition to Baby Doc grew and his hold on power weakened, vibrations of rebellion in Brooklyn, Queens, Miami, and other Haitian communities in the U.S., resonant with those throughout Haiti, rose and fell with conditions in the beloved country. The Duvalier signature means of intimidation – bodies of its most recent victims left casually in the streets and byways to remind the people the next morning of the price of disobedience – became daily fare.
The U.S., to defuse outcry and support for revolution, sent recruiters – agents provocateurs – house-to-house and through the streets, to find and recruit young men identified by U.S. intelligence as hostile to the Duvalier regime. Many were escorted to an airfield on Long Island to see a plane without markings loaded with guns to be used, they were told, in the overthrow of the Duvalier regime. A planeload of eager recruits was flown to New Orleans. They were promised training to participate in an invasion of Haiti.
Among these was the youngest son of fourteen children in the Perpignon family, who escaped separately with their mother from Haiti after their father, a prominent lawyer, was murdered by Duvalier in his first days as President. Duvalier had his body dragged through the streets of Port-au-Prince behind a mule for a week.
The men were set up in rooms in a motel and questioned in front of a concealed camera. They were asked why they wanted to overthrow the government of Haiti and encouraged to boast about what they would do when they captured Duvalier.
More than 40 Haitians and Haitian-Americans were then arrested in New Orleans, far from their homes, and charged with violations of the Neutrality Act of 1797, an act U.S. agents and paid assets violate every day. Most were released within a few days when lawyers retained by their families showed up to meet with them. Despite the criminality of the entrapment, and the fact that all freely admitted they were not in condition to capture a Boy Scout camp, some remained in jail for several months. This was late 1985: The last year for Duvalier.
Within the U.S., editors in the flourishing Haitian exile media, risked assassination as befell the courageous anti-Duvalierist Firmin Joseph, a founder of Haïti Progrès, in front of his home in Brooklyn in 1983. Thirteen years later, Emmanuel "Toto" Constant, who headed a U.S.- supported death-squad called FRAPH before and after the U.S. invasion in 1994, found asylum in New York. For other leaders of the 1991-94 coup d'état in Haiti, Washington arranged golden exiles in countries like Panama, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic.
Finally, after nearly 30 years under the heel of the Duvaliers, condoned, if not protected, by the U.S. government, the end had come. On February 7, 1986, Jean-Claude Duvalier and his family, with most of their possessions, flew on a U.S. Air Force C-130 cargo plane to France, where he has lived safe and comforted by the spoils from the toils of countless Haitians he abused so badly.
The question must be asked: how could the heirs of slaves who defeated Napoleon and who founded freedom in the hemisphere be subjugated to such petit tyranny? This book will help find the answer and the means of ending its furtherance.
A liberation theology priest, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, trusted because the people had witnessed him share their danger and privation, ran for President in the first real post-Duvalier elections in 1990 over the muted but fierce opposition of the U.S. The U.S. choice, Marc Bazin, who had served at the World Bank in Washington, was provided millions of dollars in direct support and assistance and highly touted in the subservient U.S. media. Aristide with no resources, soft-spoken, but honest, won by a huge margin, with some 67% of the vote. Bazin, who came in second, bought 14% of the vote.
Aristide, despite support from the overwhelming majority of the people of Haiti was driven from office within nine months by the U.S. organized, armed and trained military and police. At least twice he had escaped attempts on his life. Finally on September 30, 1991, with only a handful of Haitian security officers trained by the Presidential Protection Service of France, bearing just side arms and rifles, President Aristide was trapped inside the Presidential Palace. Outside thousands of loyal supporters, a huge Haitian throng, unarmed but offering their bodies as protection, faced an army with overwhelming firepower. The dreaded Colonel Michel François in his red jeep led his police force in assaulting the Palace and the crowd. President Aristide faced the end.
Hundreds of Tonton Macoutes long alleged to have been disbanded, could be seen in their blue jeans and red bandannas milling about the center of the city, a warning to the wary. President Aristide was saved by the intrepid ambassador of France, Rafael Dufour, who with perfect timing drove to the Presidential Palace, placed President Aristide in his limousine, drove to the diplomatic departures area at the international airport, and escorted the president to a plane ready to depart for Venezuela.
Duvalier was flown to life on the French Riviera by the U.S. Air Force. The U.S., fully aware of Aristide's peril, did nothing to protect him.
Within a year, Marc Bazin was Haiti's de facto prime minister. And that is about how long he lasted. Popular protest forced his resignation. The U.S. could install him in office, but for all its power, it could not keep him there.
The richness of Haitian culture and character has survived all these centuries of suffering. The "Renaissance in Haiti" in the 1940s was forced into exile for its open expression, but it was never silenced. Haitian authors and poets like Felix Morisseau-Leroy, Paul Laraque, Edwidge Danticat, Patrick Sylvain, Danielle Georges, artists and intellectuals, musicians and singers carried the torch of Haitian culture and truth abroad. They knew you say democracy and it's the annexation of Texas the hold-up of the Panama Canal the occupation of Haiti the colonization of Puerto Rico the bombing of Guatemala from "Reign of a Human Race," by Paul Laraque. (The full poem is included in this book.) In September 1994, to "stop brutal atrocities" and "restore President Aristide to office," the U.S., having secured United Nations approval, landed a 20,000 troop, high-tech military force in Haiti, accepted, if at the last moment, by the military government of Haiti. It was an army of the same size as that led by General Leclerc who came to destroy the "First of the Blacks." It was called "Operation Restore Democracy." It met no armed resistance, suffered no casualties, but managed to kill several dozen Haitians.
In 1915, an excuse for U.S. intervention had been the slaughter of some 200 political prisoners at the National Penitentiary in Port-au-Prince.
This time, the U.S. priority was "force protection," the security of its own men. It made no plans or efforts to protect political prisoners, or other Haitians. Once again, Haiti suffered under a U.S. occupation. A lone U.S. Army captain, Lawrence Rockwood, assigned to counter-intelligence and aware of the danger faced by political prisoners held by the FADH, the Armed Forces of Haiti, made a valiant effort to persuade the military command to take quick and easy action to protect prisoners at the National Penitentiary, to no avail. The FADH, generally supported by the U.S., represented the spirit of militarism that had contributed so much to death and human suffering over five centuries in Haiti. The prisoners were not seen as friends of the United States.
Rockwood went alone, over the wall of the military compound at the airport, found his way to the National Penitentiary, succeeded in gaining entry, and secured the facility. He observed a hundred or more prisoners, several score in conditions as bad as those in any prison of Duvalier, and by his mere presence protected the others. For his effort, though a fourth generation officer in the U.S. Army, he was court-marshaled, threatened with seven years imprisonment, and finally separated from the service as a danger to the morale of the military. He is the perfect military officer for a free and democratic nation and for international peacekeeping. For these reasons, he was no longer acceptable to the U.S. Army.
The U.S. had waited out three years of Aristide's presidency. With most of his term stolen, President Aristide returned to Haiti and served the final year. Although most Haitians called for Aristide to serve out the three years he spent in exile, Washington forbade it. He stepped down. But he did not run from the people of Haiti, and after five years he was elected to his second term at the beginning of the second millennium. With the steady opposition of the U.S., and we know not what acts of subversion by it, the provocateurs of the old establishment seeking to return to the past, and the ever present poverty, progress has not been easy. But a new day for Haiti is essential if the world is to address its greatest challenge: to end the exploitation of the growing masses of poor everywhere in the face of greater concentration of wealth and power in the few who have in their control armies with the capacity of omnicide and media that can veil the truth and mislead the poor to self-destruction.
The challenge for all who seek peace and freedom and economic justice, a decent standard of life for all, and believe the cycle of tragedy and misery for Haiti and all the poor nations and peoples of earth must be broken is to unite in a vision of peace and compassion and persevere until they prevail.
There is no other way to fulfill the promised legacy of Toussaint Louverture as written by William Wordsworth, deeply troubled by Toussaint's imprisonment two hundred years ago. It is the legacy we must promise all Haitians.
TO: TOUSSAINT LOUVERTURE
Toussaint, the most unhappy man of men!
Whether the whistling rustic tend his plough
Within thy hearing, or thy head be now
Pillowed in some deep dungeon's earless den- O miserable Chieftain!
where and when Wilt thou find patience!
Yet die not; do thou Wear rather in thy bonds a cheerful brow:
Though fallen thyself, never to rise again, Live, and take comfort.
Thou hast left behind Powers that will work for thee; air, earth, and skies.
There's not a breathing of the common wind That will forget thee; thou hast great allies;
Thy friends are exaltations, agonies, And love, and man's unconquerable mind.
JEAN-JACQUES DESSALINES (1804-1806)
Empereur d'Haïti (1804-1806), né vers 1758, en Afrique (actuelle Guinée), mort le 17 octobre 1806 à Pont-Rouge, près de Port-au-Prince.Encyclopædia Universalis [en ligne], consulté le 16 octobre 2016.
Originaire d'Afrique de l'Ouest, Jean-Jacques Dessalines est déporté dans la colonie française de Saint-Domingue (Haïti). Il travaille comme esclave dans les champs pour un maître noir jusqu'en 1791, avant de rejoindre la rébellion noire qui éclate dans la colonie à la faveur des mouvements d'émancipation provoqués par la Révolution française. Au cours des dix années suivantes, il se distingue en tant que lieutenant du leader noir Toussaint Louverture, promu gouverneur général par la France révolutionnaire.
Quand Toussaint est déposé en 1802 par une expédition française envoyée par Napoléon pour reconquérir la colonie, Jean-Jacques Dessalines se soumet au nouveau régime. Bonaparte déclare son intention de rétablir l'esclavage (aboli par la Convention depuis 1794), provoquant une révolte de Jean-Jacques Dessalines et d'autres leaders noirs et mulâtres. Avec l'aide des Britanniques, ils chassent les Français de Saint-Domingue, et le 1er janvier 1804, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, alors gouverneur général, proclame l'indépendance de toute l'île d'Hispaniola sous son nom arawak, Haïti. En septembre, il adopte le titre d'empereur et prend le nom de Jacques Ier.
Jean-Jacques Dessalines continue la politique de Toussaint Louverture, notamment le recours au travail forcé dans les plantations, afin d'éviter un retour à une économie exclusivement de subsistance, mais en manifestant une hostilité bien plus ouverte à l'égard des Blancs. Il confisque leurs terres, leur interdit tout droit de propriété et, peut-être parce qu'il les considère comme des ennemis potentiels en cas de nouvelle invasion française, lance une campagne d'extermination.
Ces massacres et ces lois sur la propriété (qui resteront en vigueur pendant plus d'un siècle) empêchent les Blancs de prendre à nouveau le dessus sur les Noirs, qui composent plus de 80 p. 100 de la population. Jean-Jacques Dessalines exerce aussi une discrimination à l'encontre de l'élite mulâtre. Il est assassiné alors qu'il tentait de réprimer une révolte menée par le mulâtre Alexandre Pétion. Après sa mort, ce dernier et le leader noir Henri Christophe se partagent Haïti, le premier gouvernant le sud de l'île, le second le nord.
The White House is on the defensive following Friday's release of a US intelligence report finding Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) culpable of the murder and dismemberment of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.
Biden has sanctioned 76 Saudis involved in harassing activists and journalists, and plans to recalibrate the US relationship with the kingdom. He's ending US complicity in the war in Yemen and put a massive Saudi arms sale on hold. He's also willing to talk to Saudi Arabia's regional rival Iran. And releasing the report itself reverses the Trump administration's absolution of MBS.
Biden has shamed Riyadh and it's unthinkable we'll see MBS in his Oval Office. But he now faces criticism that he backed down from a vow to make Saudi Arabia a "pariah" over human rights abuses. New York Times columnist Nick Kristoff said that by not personally sanctioning the crown prince, Biden had "choked" and let "a murderer walk." Biden's predicament emphasizes the danger of big talk on the campaign trail and reflects the murky ground US governments tread when they introduce morals into the grubby, transactional business of foreign policy. But his approach also recognizes the power of a crown prince regarded as reckless and ruthless in Washington — but who could soon be king of a longtime US ally.
Saudi Arabia is a vital anti-terror partner and remains key to stabilizing oil markets that could scuttle US economic prosperity. Ditching it would make America's top enemy in the Middle East, Iran, more powerful. Should Biden seize the crown prince's US assets or ban him from entering the country? Some want Washington to signal that the succession of MBS would make close US-Saudi relations untenable. But when was the last time the US successfully tried to dictate the shape of regimes in the Middle East?
Khashoggi's brutal murder exposes the uncomfortable truth that the US relationship with a Saudi royal family that has used oppression and funded extreme forms of Islam to stay in power has always been something of a corrupt bargain -- one that reveals tensions between America's founding values and the country it actually is.
"We believe there is more effective ways to make sure this doesn't happen again and to also be able to leave room to work with the Saudis on areas where there is mutual agreement -- where there is national interests for the United States. That is what diplomacy looks like," White House press secretary Jen Psaki told CNN's Dana Bash, when asked why the administration isn't punishing the crown prince.
Progressive Democrats have strongly criticized the parliamentarian's decision, with some calling for the decision to be overridden or for the parliamentarian to be fired. Ocasio-Cortez said during a Sunday evening interview with MSNBC that voters are counting on Democrats to pass the wage increase, arguing that bold action is necessary to push it through.
"I do believe we should override the parliamentarian. I think that this is a matter of course and that constituents and people across this country put Democrats in power to, among many other things, establish a $15 minimum wage. We have a responsibility to do that," she said.
Ocasio-Cortez said that Democrats should not view the parliamentarian's decision as an obstacle. "Our two options are realistically this: override the parliamentarian or eliminate the filibuster. Those are the only two paths that we have in order to create substantive change in the United States, and that is what people across the country want," the congresswoman said.
The White House has already signaled that it does not want to disregard the parliamentarian's decision. "President Biden is disappointed in this outcome, as he proposed having the $15 minimum wage as part of the American Rescue Plan," White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement last Thursday. "He respects the parliamentarian's decision and the Senate's process. He will work with leaders in Congress to determine the best path forward, because no one in this country should work full time and live in poverty."
Biden has previously expressed opposition to ending the filibuster, as have some moderate Democrats. Newsweek reached out to the White House for further comment but did not immediately receive a response. A group progressive Democrats—led by Congressional Progressive Caucus Deputy Whip Ro Khanna—issued a statement on Monday morning urging the Biden administration to override the parliamentarian's decision. Ocasio-Cortez signed on to the effort, which was backed by 23 members of the Progressive Caucus.
"This ruling is a bridge too far," Khanna said in a statement. "[Progressives have] been asked, politely but firmly, to compromise on nearly all of our principles and goals. Not this time. If we don't overrule the Senate parliamentarian, we are condoning poverty wages for millions of Americans. That's why I'm leading my colleagues in urging the Biden Administration to lean on the clear precedent and overrule this misguided decision. Give America a raise."
In a Sunday tweet, Representative Pramila Jayapal, chair of the Progressive Caucus, vowed that "the fight for a $15 minimum wage isn't over." The congresswoman wrote: "People can't live on $7.25/hour—and we can't leave them hanging. I won't stop fighting to give 27 million workers a raise and finally lift people out of poverty."
The ship, a vehicle-carrier named MV Helios Ray, suffered an explosion between Thursday and Friday morning. A U.S. defence official in Washington said the blast left holes above the waterline in both sides of the hull. The cause was not immediately clear and no casualties were reported. "Iran is looking to hit Israeli infrastructure and Israeli citizens," Gantz told the public broadcaster Kan. "The location of the ship in relative close proximity to Iran raises the notion, the assessment, that it is the Iranians."
"Right now, at an initial assessment level, given the proximity and the context - that is my assessment," Gantz said, adding a deeper investigation still had to be carried out. There was no immediate comment from Iranian officials. The ship is owned by a Tel Aviv company called Ray Shipping through a company registered in the Isle of Man, according to a U.N. shipping database.
Israeli Channel 13 News said defence officials believed the Iranian navy had launched a precision strike to avoid casualties, firing two missiles at a part of the ship that if damaged would not have sunk the vessel. It added an Israeli delegation was en route to Dubai, where the ship was docked, to investigate. Reuters was not immediately able to confirm the report.
Kan named the owner as Rami Ungar and quoted him on Friday as saying: "The damage is two holes, diameter approximately 1.5 metres, but it is not yet clear to us if this was caused by missile fire or mines that were attached to the ship." Iran said in November it would make a "calculated" response to the killing of its top nuclear scientist, which it blamed on Israel.
Tensions have risen in the Gulf region since the United States reimposed sanctions on Iran in 2018 after then-president Donald Trump withdrew Washington from a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and major powers. Washington has blamed Iran for a number of attacks on shipping in strategic Gulf waters, notably on four vessels, including two Saudi oil tankers, in May 2019. Iran has denied carrying out those attacks.
A l’appel des églises protestantes, rejointes par d’autres secteurs organisés, plusieurs milliers de manifestants ont défilé dans les rues de Port-au-Prince ce dimanche 28 février. Cette manifestation a été l’initiative de plusieurs associations de pasteurs du secteur protestant. Ils ont voulu exiger le départ de Jovenel Moïse et dénoncer les velléités dictatoriales de ce dernier. L’initiative a été supportée par les organisations politiques de l’opposition et de la société civile. Comme c’est le cas pour les différentes manifestations, les participants se sont rassemblés au Champ de Mars et au carrefour de l’aéroport, renommé depuis deux ans « Carrefour de la résistance ».
Aux environs de midi, les deux groupes se sont rencontrés et une véritable marée humaine a déferlé sur la route principale de Delmas. Certains fidèles protestants ont été remarquables avec leurs tenues vestimentaires (ils revenaient de l’église), d’autres portaient des t-shirt. Il n’y avait pas que des protestants sur le parcours de la marche de ce dimanche. Des fidèles d’autres confessions religieuses, notamment des catholiques, des vodouisants, mais aussi des non croyants, y étaient également. Tous réclamaient le départ de Jovenel Moïse qu’ils accusent de vouloir instituer une dictature dans le pays. Des personnalités politiques, notamment Moïse Jean Charles, Youri Latortue, Jean Renel Sénatus, Réginald Boulos étaient présent. L’écrivain Syto Cavé a également pris part à la marche.
Selon le maestro de chorale, Peterson, les chrétiens ne doivent pas rester muets alors que la situation du pays se dégrade. « Le pays va de mal en pis. Nous devons élever nos voix pour dire non. Nous devons dire non à l’insécurité, non au kidnapping, non à la mauvaise gouvernance. Généralement on dit que les protestants ne s’impliquent pas, ne se prononcent pas sur ce qui se passe dans le pays. Aujourd’hui nous voulons qu’on entende nos cris. C’est ce qui explique ma présence à cette marche », a-t-il dit.
Sa collègue Burgie Bellevue croit pour sa part qu’il est temps d’exiger un nouveau modèle de gouvernance. « Je suis frustrée. Je reçois quotidiennement de mauvaises nouvelles. C’en est trop. J’en ai marre d’être murée dans mon silence. Je marche aujourd’hui pour dire que je suis fatiguée du kidnapping, de l’insécurité. Nous voulons la paix. Nous voulons un meilleur système de santé. Il faut que les jeunes puissent aller à l’université. Comme protestante, je viens apporter ma contribution, je viens joindre ma voix à celles des autres qui réclament le changement. Il faut un changement total », réclame-t-elle.
Josena, une trentenaire rencontrée à Bourdon, t-shirt blanc, bicolore en main, demande à Jovenel Moïse de « donner une chance au pays ». « Nous sommes dans la misère, dans le chômage. Nos enfants ne peuvent pas aller à l’école à cause de la peur engendrée par l’insécurité. Nous demandons au président de nous donner une chance. Il ne peut pas gouverner. Qu’il laisse le palais et permette à quelqu’un d’autre de prendre les manettes », demande-t-elle.
Fede Mizaine, un motocycliste, a félicité l’initiative des pasteurs qui ont appelé leurs fidèles à manifester ce dimanche. « Je ne suis pas protestant. Mais j’ai voulu payer de ma présence. L’église est la force morale de la société. Sa voix doit être écoutée. Ce n’est pas que l’opposition qui estime que le mandat de Jovenel Moïse arrive à terme. C’est la société dans toutes ses composantes. Jovenel Moïse doit écouter la voix de la raison. Nous avons vécu la dictature. Nous n’allons pas accepter un retour à la dictature dans le pays », s’est-il emporté.
Helen Meagher La Lime dans le viseur des manifestants
Son nom a été sur toutes les lèvres et même dans certaines pancartes. Pour avoir affirmé que la manifestation du 14 février dernier n’avait réuni qu’un peu plus de 3000 participants, Helen Meagher La Lime a provoqué la colère des manifestants. Ce dimanche, ils ont invité la diplomate à révisé ses notes en arithmétique. « Aujourd’hui, La Lime doit être en train de dire qu’il y avait 3001 manifestants dans les rues. Elle ne sait pas compter», a ironisé un participant. Alors que la marche arrivait à l’entrée du quartier où loge le bureau du BINUH à Juvénat, un animateur a invité la foule à agiter les drapeaux et pancartes pour que la représentante du secrétaire général de l’ONU puisse faire « un meilleur décompte ».
La manifestation de ce dimanche a été totalement pacifique. Il n’y a pas vraiment eu de confrontation ni d’accrochage entre policiers et manifestants. Des manifestantes ont même offert des fleurs à des policiers au niveau de Delmas 40 B. Seulement quelques rares barricades de pneus enflammés ont été remarquées dans certaines rues. Toutefois, un drame est survenu à la fin de la marche. En effet, l’un des chars musicaux qui assuraient l’animation a dérapé, faisant plusieurs blessés notamment l’ancien candidat aux sénatoriales sous la bannière de Pitit Desalin, Muraille Jean Myrto.
Avec le temps, la personne atteinte a de plus en plus de difficulté à mémoriser les événements, à reconnaître les objets et les visages, à se rappeler la signification des mots et à exercer son jugement. En général, les symptômes apparaissent après 65 ans et la prévalence de la maladie augmente fortement avec l’âge. Cependant, contrairement aux idées reçues, la maladie d’Alzheimer n’est pas une conséquence normale du vieillissement.
La maladie d’Alzheimer est la forme de démence la plus fréquente chez les personnes âgées; elle représente environ 65 % des cas de démence. Le terme démence englobe, de façon bien générale, les problèmes de santé marqués par une diminution irréversible des facultés mentales. La maladie d’Alzheimer se distingue des autres démences par le fait qu’elle évolue graduellement et touche surtout la mémoire à court terme, dans ses débuts. Cependant, le diagnostic n’est pas toujours évident et il peut être difficile pour les médecins de différencier la maladie d’Alzheimer d’une démence « à corps de Lewy », par exemple.
Y a-t-il une différence entre le vieillissement normal et la maladie d’Alzheimer? Selon Judes Poirier, chercheur à l’Institut universitaire en santé mentale Douglas, l’Alzheimer peut être vue comme une forme très accélérée de vieillissement55. En théorie, si nous vivions jusqu’à 150 ou 160 ans, il est quasiment certain que nous aurions tous l’Alzheimer. D’après le chercheur, pour que l’Alzheimer survienne dans la soixantaine, il faut être prédisposé à la maladie par l’hérédité, les habitudes de vie, etc.
La maladie d’Alzheimer touche environ 1 % des personnes âgées de 65 ans à 69 ans, 20 % des personnes ayant de 85 ans à 89 ans et 40 % des personnes ayant de 90 ans à 95 ans1. Au Canada, environ 500 000 personnes ont la maladie d'Alzheimer ou une maladie apparentée.
On estime que 1 homme sur 8 et 1 femme sur 4 en souffriront au cours de leur existence. Dans la mesure où les femmes vivent plus longtemps, elles sont plus susceptibles d’en être atteintes un jour.
En raison du prolongement de l’espérance de vie, cette maladie est de plus en plus fréquente. On estime que, d’ici 20 ans, le nombre de personnes atteintes doublera au Canada.
L’atteinte du cerveau
La maladie d’Alzheimer se caractérise par l’apparition de lésions bien particulières, qui envahissent progressivement le cerveau et détruisent ses cellules, les neurones. Les neurones de l’hippocampe, la région qui contrôle la mémoire, sont les premiers touchés. On ne sait pas encore ce qui provoque l’apparition de ces lésions.
Le Dr Alois Alzheimer, un neurologue allemand, a donné son nom à la maladie, en 1906. Il est le premier à avoir décrit ces lésions cérébrales, lors de l’autopsie d’une femme morte de démence. Il avait observé dans le cerveau de celle-ci des plaques anormales et des enchevêtrements de cellules nerveuses désormais considérés comme les signes physiologiques principaux de la maladie d’Alzheimer.
Voici les 2 types de dommages qui apparaissent dans le cerveau des personnes atteintes :
La production excessive et l’accumulation de protéines bêta-amyloïdes dans certaines régions du cerveau. Ces protéines forment des plaques, appelées plaques amyloïdes ou plaques séniles, qui sont associées à la mort des neurones.
La « déformation » de certaines protéines structurales (appelées protéines Tau). La façon dont les neurones sont enchevêtrés est alors modifiée. Cette forme de lésion s’appelle la dégénérescence neurofibrillaire.
Gustave-Léonard-Coriolan Ardouin était le fils d'Alexis Ardouin (1770-1824) et de Suzanne Léger (1773-1828). Il était né le 11 décembre 1812 à Petit-Trou-de-Nippes, un petit port de la côte nord de la presqu'île du sud, et décédé le 12 juillet 1835 à Port-au-Prince. Il avait deux frères, Beaubrun et Céligny, qui furent historiens et hommes politiques.
La vie même d'Ardouin est une tragédie grecque : le jour de sa naissance un papillon noir se posa sur son berceau et son grand frère âgé de 2 ans agonisa dans une chambre voisine. Lui-même, né avec une santé fragile, était sujet à des troubles nerveux.
Les décès successifs de son père, de sa mère et de sa sœur aînée au cours de son adolescence perturbèrent ses études. À l'âge de 15 ans, il était totalement orphelin. Par la suite, il se tourna vers Emma, une amie de sa sœur qui lui procura les délices de l'amour. Elle est fauchée par les griffes de la mort.
Il fit la rencontre d'Emedia Sterling, brune aux lèvres violettes, aux grands yeux noirs, à la taille élancée, à la voix tendre et caressante et à la chevelure et abondante ; elle tombe malade elle aussi. Malgré cela Coriolan Ardouin se maria avec elle. Leur enfant mourut au berceau et sa femme Amedia le suivit cinq mois plus tard. Très tôt, le jeune Coriolan fut un être secret et solitaire, plus porté à lire sous un arbre qu'à jouer avec les négrillons du voisinage.
Coriolan Ardouin, contaminé par la tuberculose, incurable à cette époque, mourut le 12 juillet 1835, à l'âge de 23 ans. Sa poésie est marquée par l'influence de Casimir Delavigne et de Lamartine.
Un être aussi sensible ne pouvait que vénérer la passion amoureuse dans ce qu'elle a de plus noble. Le Douloureux n'a laissé qu'une seule œuvre, publiée de manière posthume en 1837, Reliques d'un poète haïtien. Dans l'intervalle, entre la disparition de sa bien-aimée et la sienne annoncée, c'est dans la nature qu'il trouva un ultime refuge :
« La mer que nul vent ne soulève
Mourir tranquille et sans voix ».
C'est par les soins d'Émile Nau que fut publié à titre posthume l'unique recueil de poèmes de Coriolan Ardouin en 1837, sous le titre « Reliques d'un poète haïtien »
Fish oil supplements come in liquid, capsule and pill form.
People take fish oil to reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes, to treat high triglycerides and high blood pressure, and to improve symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
Research on the use of fish oil for specific conditions shows:
Heart disease. Research shows that eating dietary sources of fish oil — such as tuna or salmon — twice a week is associated with a reduced risk of developing heart disease. Taking fish oil supplements for at least six months has been shown to reduce the risk of heart-related events (such as heart attack) and death in people who are at high risk of heart disease. Research also suggests that the risk of congestive heart failure is lower in older adults who have higher levels of EPA fatty acids.
High blood pressure. Multiple studies report modest reductions in blood pressure in people who take fish oil supplements. There's some evidence that this effect is greater for people with moderate to severe hypertension than those with mild hypertension.
High triglycerides and cholesterol. There's strong evidence that omega-3 fatty acids can significantly reduce blood triglyceride levels. There also appears to be a slight improvement in high-density lipoprotein (HDL, or "good") cholesterol, although an increase in levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol also was observed.
Rheumatoid arthritis. Studies suggest fish oil supplements might help reduce pain, improve morning stiffness and relieve joint tenderness in people with rheumatoid arthritis. While relief is often modest, it might be enough to reduce the need for anti-inflammatory medications.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for good health. Try to get them from your diet by eating fish — broiled or baked, not fried. Fish oil supplements might be helpful if you have cardiovascular disease or an autoimmune disorder. Fish oil also appears to contain almost no mercury, which can be a cause for concern in certain types of fish. While generally safe, too much fish oil can increase your risk of bleeding and might suppress your immune response. Take fish oil supplements under a doctor's supervision.