Slate Examines When U.S. Officials Knew Of Cholera In Haiti, Political Implications Of U.N., U.S. Responses
Slate: What They Knew, and When They Knew It
“…As seen in newly revealed emails, reported here for the first time, officials at the highest levels of the U.S. government were aware almost immediately that U.N. [peacekeeping] forces likely played a role in the [Haitian cholera] outbreak. Multiple federal agencies, from national security officials to scientists on the front lines, shielded the United Nations from accountability to protect the organization and themselves. … As he left office in December, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was forced to grudgingly apologize for the organization’s role in poisoning Haiti’s watershed and propose a plan to end the epidemic. Member states, however, are refusing to provide the $400 million he promised. The result is an ever-deepening health crisis in which about one Haitian dies from cholera per day, amid incalculable cost to the country’s economy and social fabric. Those actions and inactions fostered mistrust and damaged reputations — including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s — helping pave the way for the first explicitly anti-humanitarian U.S. presidency in a century…” (Katz, 3/30).