The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

The Dictatorship of the Gangs

Mar 17, 2024

In Haiti, the government, the army and police are so corrupt and rotten, they collapsed completely, leaving a total power vacuum.

So, the U.S. government and other governments in the region intervened. They juggled politicians, substituting one set of corrupt politicians to take over from the current ones. The U.S. forked over hundreds of millions of dollars to the African government of Kenya to send 1,000 cops to Haiti to protect the new government. And the U.S. is also sending a contingent of Marines to protect the U.S. embassy in Haiti. Not mentioned are the CIA, U.S. mercenaries and hitmen who are certainly there, as well.

Behind this crisis in Haiti are powerful criminal gangs. Several gang leaders had united together to overthrow the government. They invaded state prisons and broke out thousands of prisoners, including several gang leaders. They set fire to many big police stations. And they occupied the main international airport, stopping all flights.

In other words, these criminal gangs went rogue.

In the past, Haitian dictators, politicians and the very rich used gangs as their own private army to impose a reign of terror over the population. Gangs broke strikes, attacked demonstrators, and murdered opponents. The gang members kept everything they could steal and extort from ordinary workers, small shopkeepers and peddlers.

As long as the gangs only attacked, murdered and raped ordinary workers, and small shopkeepers and peddlers, the U.S. government looked the other way. For U.S. and other foreign companies in Haiti operating sweat shops, export‑import companies and tourist hotels, this reign of terror allowed them to pay the Haitian workers the lowest wages possible.

But now the gangs have brought the Haitian government and economy to its knees. So, the U.S. and other governments may agree to integrate some gangs into the power structure: a dictatorship of the gangs.

The Haitian population has seen a lot of this before. Military dictatorships and politicians come and go. But what always stayed the same was that those in charge stole as much as they could, at the expense of the population.

Today, the gang attacks have made living conditions worse than ever. Everything is closed. There is no work. People can’t even sell things in open markets or on the street. Store shelves are empty. There is little or no food or water. People are being murdered, with their bodies left on the streets. Gangs plunder hospitals, forcing them to close. Masses of people desperately try to get out of the country, only to find that borders in other countries are closed and they are treated like criminals.

This descent into a living hell is not the exception. Already, in many other countries, from Ecuador and the countries of Central America to Libya and the Congo, people face barbaric conditions.

Conditions in bigger countries are not far behind—especially given all the crises, wars and destruction that are spreading everywhere.

Capitalist society, a society run in the interests of the billionaires and the super wealthy, is falling apart—including in this, the richest country in the world.

Capitalism, the rule of the billionaires, is a dead end, a true catastrophe.

Only the working class, the class that produces everything and makes society run, represents the future. That is true in Haiti, the home of the biggest and most successful slave revolt in the world.

That is also true for workers in this country, where we face worsening poverty, falling wages and benefits, and increasing attacks aimed at dividing workers against each other in every way possible.

There is no escape from the ravages of capitalism.

Workers need real leaders, real fighters, who understand the need to organize, fight, and take down capitalism. Workers everywhere need an independent party that will help bring workers together, as a class force.