In Haiti just after the earthquake in January 2010 (Flickr/ RIBI Library)

The US wants to send 1,000 Kenyan police into Haiti in its latest criminal act. Imperialist intervention has never helped people in Haiti. The “official” reason the US, Haitian and Kenyan ruling classes provide is that Haiti needs help tackling gang violence to stabilise the state.

Government officials from Haiti and Kenya met in the US to set a deadline for the deployment of Kenyan police forces. But this private meeting comes after the Kenyan high court blocked the deployment as unconstitutional three weeks ago. The court said the Kenyan government lacks the legal authority to send police outside of Kenya.

But ruling classes in the US, Haiti and Kenya are pushing ahead anyway. And they won the support of the United Nations security council last year. Ekuru Aukot, Kenyan opposition leader, brought the court case forward. He blasted the Kenyan government for using the deployment to prop up its international image and gain favour with Western countries such as the US.

And the Kenyan police have a history of violence and murders. Otsieno Namwaya, east Africa director for Humans Rights Watch, said, “Kenya should not be seen to be exporting its abusive police to other parts of the world.” Corruption The Haitian government is also rife with corruption.

Amid infighting from the Haitian ruling class, different elements developed their own armed supporters to fight over the state. But sometimes these escape rulers’ control, with police officers often being found in gangs. These gangs are now being blamed for the turmoil in Haiti.

In reality, it is the Haitian and US state that have encouraged paramilitaries that previously defended their interests. This wouldn’t be the first time ordinary people in Haiti have suffered from imperialist “deployments” and relentless US pressure. Throughout the 20th century, the US crushed Haiti with dictatorships that destroyed resistance. In the 21st century it’s no different.

In 2010 the US used a devastating earthquake as an excuse to deploy 17,000 soldiers. This caused a cholera outbreak killing 10,000 people. And a UN force deployed from 2004 to 2017 committed terrible atrocities. Soldiers carried out sexual violence under the guise of providing medicine, clothes and food. Imperialism and the national ruling class are to blame for misery in Haiti where half the population lives below the poverty line.

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