Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another Flag Day, Come and Gone

[9:30 Friday night: I was just getting ready to publish the post below when Ben rolled in from a long, nerve-wracking day covering the paramilitary march

Little did I know, an hour later we would both be stuck in a Haitian police station for trying to deliver insulin to an arrested American. I was allowed to go home around 1 AM, but Ben (along with two others that brought medication to the station) was detained for another 24 hours while authorities investigated suspected conspiracy with the paramilitaries. He was finally released late last night.

It was all over the news yesterday and high-level calls were placed on Ben's behalf, for which we have many journalist, activist and human rights friends to thank.  

This article provides a good general summary of what happened. 

It's been a harrowing weekend. We're exhausted and I'll be honest, a little traumatized.]

A girl watches as the displacement camp where she lives is torn down in an eviction.

Today was Fèt Drapo, Flag Day. 209 years ago today Catherine Flon stitched together the first Haitian flag in Archaie. (Hop on over to Kreyolicious for some interesting Haitian flag trivia). 

There are a lot of proud Haitians and proud-to-be-Haiti-lovers out there: "Happy Haitian Flag Day" was actually trending today on Twitter (along with #SignsUrAHoodratMother and We Will Never Let Justin [Bieber] Go).

Today was also the day that the would-be army planned to storm the city with guns a-blazing. Instead, there was a slightly more sedate parade of uniformed and lightly armed paramilitaries, a number of whom were arrested. The UN and police currently have the paramilitary base in Carrefour surrounded and we're waiting to see what happens.

(An aside: my best Flag Day ever was spent boating across Lac de Péligre in search of flamingos in 2010.)


nerkert said...

So good to talk to you just now. I imagine that it will continue to be a little crazy for a few days, with people coming by and while you continue your own processing of the events. We'll be praying for you to have rest and a good perspective (whatever that looks like) on the whole thing. Love, Maman et Papa

Meadth Family said...

Sorry your husband had to spend that time at the Jail. Our friend Jack was with him... What a horrible weekend. To top ours off (as if Jack in jail wasn't bad enough) my father-in-law was held at gun point on a motorcycle ride back from the beach with five other guys. A rock was thrown at his arm and he needed stitches. Once the mob saw blood and heard that he was a pastor they all calmed down and even want to hunt down the guy that threw the rock! This happened on Saturday and last night he got his motorcycle back. I never understand this country that we love.

Alexis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alexis said...

Goodness, what a heavy weekend it was! We have friends that were jumped on a moto last night, too. (Actually coming home from a party they'd thrown us to celebrate Ben's release). A purse & phone were stolen, but the worst of it is how violating of an experience it was. I'm glad your father-in-law got his motorcycle back.


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