Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

As Haitians Rise Up, Prime Minister Henry Requests Foreign Intervention

With thousands of Haitians in the streets for weeks calling for Prime Minister Ariel Henry’s resignation, the U.S.-backed regime is requesting foreign intervention. The international working class must show solidarity with Haiti and all nations rising up against austerity and imperialism.

Sam Carliner

October 10, 2022
Facebook Twitter Share
Demonstrators fill the streets during a protest to demand the resignation of Prime Minister Ariel Henry, in the Petion-Ville area of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on Monday October 3.
Image: Richard Pierrin/AFP

Massive protests in Haiti are challenging the regime of U.S.-backed Prime Minister Ariel Henry. For the last several weeks, the Hatian people have packed the streets of the country’s major cities to demand the resignation of Henry, who holds no democratic mandate. To protect his regime, he is now calling for intervention from foreign troops.

Haiti has been in a regular state of uprising for almost three years, sparked by former President Jovenel Moïse’s attempt to extend his term past its limit. At the height of the uprising, in July 2021, Moïse was assassinated. The circumstances of the incident, including the identity and motives of the perpetrators, are still unclear. Following the assassination, Henry took power and, like his predecessor, he has no interest in addressing corruption in the country and resolving the dire economic crisis that the Haitian people are facing. Henry’s interests are in maintaining the relationship between Haitian capital and the imperialist powers that plunder the country. This is the very relationship that keeps the Haitian people in intense poverty.

The global cost-of-living crisis is especially severe in Haiti. Inflation in the country reached 29 percent in August and gasoline is virtually unavailable. Hospitals are closing just as clean water shortages are prompting a cholera outbreak. Police have responded to the people’s outrage with violence. Gangs are also exploiting the crises, with one gang even blockading the country’s main port. The role of the gangs is Henry’s main justification for requesting foreign intervention; however, prominent activists on the ground have pointed out that these gangs are tied to the government.

Hatian capital will use whatever forces it has at its disposal, be they police or extralegal gangs, to repress social movements in the country. Historical precedent and the current calls for intervention show that should the domestic forces of state repression fail, imperialist forces will step in to ensure their interests are not threatened.

Ever since Haiti became the home of the world’s only successful slave revolution, imperialist powers have sought to make an example out of the Haitian people. Haiti has faced near constant attacks on its sovereignty since it first won self-determination. The United States intervened directly in Haiti in 1915 after the president was assassinated. Then, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson sent the Marines in. The U.S. military would occupy the country until 1934.

In the 21st Century alone, the United States and France orchestrated a military coup of the country’s first ever democratically elected president. Following this, the United Nations established the MINUSTAH program ostensibly to bring stability back to Haiti. In reality it was a military occupation which ran from 2007 to 2014 and subjected the Haitian people to obscene crimes including hundreds of cases of sexual abuse against children. It should be noted that many of the so-called Pink Tide governments in Latin America, idolized by the reformist Left, were at the forefront of this occupation, with former Brazilian president Lula Da Silva providing more troops than any other country.

Haitians have shown time and again that they are prepared to fight for their sovereignty and economic demands. However, the imperialist powers have also shown their ability to at least temporarily suppress the country’s uprisings. For the movement to succeed, the working class in the imperialist countries must act in solidarity with the people of Haiti. The U.S. working class in particular can support the uprising in Haiti by organizing within the heart of imperialism to support the demands of the Haitian people. Our own fights against inflation and attacks on democratic rights must always include a full rejection of the attacks on our class siblings in subjugated countries like Haiti.

Facebook Twitter Share

Sam Carliner

Sam Carliner is a socialist with a background in journalism. He mainly writes for Left Voice about US imperialism. He also tweets about imperialism as @saminthecan.

Latin America

SOUTHCOM Chief Aims to Increase Imperialist Plunder of Latin America’s Resources

U.S. Southern Command Chief Laura Richardson has expressed interest in lithium and other natural resources in South America. It shows the country’s commitment to corporate profits at the expense of workers, Indigenous people, and the environment.

Luigi Morris

January 26, 2023

The Peruvian Uprising: Massive Protests Demand the Fall of the Coup Regime and a Constituent Assembly

Peru has erupted in a massive uprising demanding that President Dina Boluarte resign, that the current Congress be shut down, and that a new constitution be established. The protests are the culmination of years of political oppression of the country’s indigenous communities, drastic poverty rates and precarity for Peru’s workers and poor, and a political regime that continues the legacy of Alberto Fujimori’s dictatorship.

Supporters of Brazilian former President Jair Bolsonaro invade the National Congress in Brasilia on Jan. 8, 2023.

Socialists in Brazil Call for a National Strike against the Attacks of the Far Right and Anti-Worker Policies

On January 8, thousands of supporters of former president Jair Bolsonaro stormed the three branches of Brazil’s government to demand the military institute a coup against president Lula da Silva. While the government makes deals with the Right and uses these events to consolidate support, workers and the oppressed must use their own methods to confront the Right.

The Roots and Results of the Parliamentary Coup and the People’s Uprising in Peru

A member of the Socialist Workers Current, our sister group in Peru, explains the historical context of the crisis in Peru and the way forward for the working class and oppressed.

José Rojas

December 29, 2022


Detroit socialist activist Tristan Taylor at a protest during 2020.

First We Mourn, Then We Organize: A Letter to Weary Black Organizers Who Have Had Enough

Tyre Nichols, and all victims of police brutality, must be mourned. But we can't stop fighting or give in to despair — we have to build an independent political party that clashes with the capitalists physically, politically, and ideologically.

Tristan Taylor

January 29, 2023

In Standoff Over Cop City, Police Are the Real Terrorists

For over two years, the protests and occupations against a police training center in Atlanta, Georgia flew under the radar of the mainstream press. Now, after the police murder of land defender Manuel Teran and the arrest of 19 protesters on charges of domestic terrorism, the standoff has gained national attention. But in the battle to defend the Weelaunee Forest and the people of Atlanta from the development of the massive “Cop City” training center, it is the Atlanta Police Department and the state that have been acting like terrorists.

James Dennis Hoff

January 27, 2023

Say His Name! Justice for Tyre Nichols

As the video footage of the police murder of Tyre Nichols is released today, it will be important for everyone who is against police violence to stand in solidarity and defend and join in the mobilizations demanding justice for his murder.

Tristan Taylor

January 27, 2023
All That's Left, the podcast from Left Voice.

#AllThatsLeftPod: Two Years of U.S. Imperialism under Biden

In this episode of the podcast, we discuss the terrain of U.S. imperialism under the first two years of the Biden presidency, and the importance of an internationalist, anti-imperialist Left.

Left Voice

January 24, 2023