Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Is Haiti's deadly cholera outbreak an imported disease? by Ezili Dantò

Is Haiti's deadly cholera outbreak an imported disease? by Ezili Dantò "Cholera is caused by drinking dirty toxic water, or eating food cooked in contaminated water. The surprise is that Haitians not directly affected by the earthquake, living outside of the capital in areas where there has always been a shortage of clean drinking water are suddenly getting sick. Where are the additional toxins coming from? The assumption the International NGOs, aid agencies and UN are making is that the Artibonite River is contaminated, making the people living in the regions where the river crosses sick with cholera. But how did this river, situated North from the earthquake devastation in Port au Prince and other areas South become the source of the cholera disease? How did it move up North to the Artibonite River from the Southern parts of Haiti? "There is no evidence," suggests Dr. Gabriel Timothee, a Haitian public health official, that the Artibonite River is the source of the disease and "examinations are under way to try to determine the source of the disease." (See, Alterpress - Haïti-Choléra : Situation d’urgence humanitaire 9 mois après la catastrophe du 12 janvier.) ...The suffering for Haitians deepen. The questions mount. Why are people in the Artibonite and Central areas suddenly suffering in great numbers from drinking brackish water that's been that way for centuries, and not killed them? What's the new element contaminating the Artibonite River that hasn't been in Haiti for a century? Could the unregulated gold, copper, iridium and other toxic mining operations up North of the Artibonite River, by Western companies benefiting from the 2004 Bush Regime change and UN occupation, be the new element polluting Haiti’s water table? (See, Haiti's Riches:Interview with Ezili Dantò on Mining in Haiti) Speaking of brackish water, if it's proven that the Artibonite River is infected and that this most likely comes from an infected Haitian person from the earthquake refugee camps, who travelled North, then any scientific analysis of this cholera situation must also take into account that the displaced people in the camps of Port au Prince have been complaining since two months after the earthquake that the Red Cross water they've been given to drink, for instance, gives them stomach aches. No one knows for sure yet how cholera got to Haiti. But it's in Haiti now and either foul drinking water or food that's been soaked or cooked in contaminated water is killing a new crop of Haitians, giving them cholera while donations that could have provided permanent clean drinking water are collecting interests for the thousands of charity organizations making a business out of poverty and the earthquake in Haiti. AP, BBC, the New York Times and other mainstream news parrot each other, not emphasizing that cholera has never before been found in Haiti. The racist assumption is Haitians are always diseased and the invasion of international charity workers and UN soldiers are all healthy from countries with no cholera diseases, so these news agencies mostly write that cholera has not been found in Haiti for "centuries." But at least one news report does firmly explains that this is the first time that cholera has been found in Haiti and this cholera epidemic most likely was imported to Haiti by a healthy carrier after the earthquake." Cholera is not an air-borne or communicable disease. It’s not terminal and can be easily treated. It's an intestinal infection caused by eating or drinking contaminated food or water. But the Dominican Republic sealed its border with "cholera-plagued" Haiti (http://aol.it/aWfBdF), presumably so not to be contaminated by the "contagious, disease-ridden Haitians." Of course it matters not that the evidence is not yet in as to what’s the source of the disease or whether a non-Haitian, such as the UN soldiers or the aid workers, transmitted the disease from their countries into Haiti and are infecting and transmitting to vulnerable and over-stressed Haitians. Haiti is blamed just as it was erroneously blamed and ostracized for originating the HIV virus. (For complete article, go to: Is Haiti's deadly cholera outbreak an imported disease? by Ezili Dantò http://bit.ly/c2GNZI.) ****************************************************** Forwarded by Ezili's Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network

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