Caribbean Project: Review: An Island Divided

Black in Latin America: Haiti and the Dominican Republic


Skip Gates continues his investigation of Black in Latin America:

My takeaways:

(1) Hispanolia is an interesting place.

It was ground zero of the European invasion of the New World. After the Spanish conquered Mexico and Peru though, Hispanolia and the Spanish Caribbean lost its former importance and became a backwater of the Spanish Empire.

(2) The Dominican Republic is a failed sugar colony and slave society. It was unable to compete with the Brazilian sugar industry when the crowns of Spain and Portugal were united under the Iberian Union. It was more profitable to grow sugar in Brazil, so a lot of the Spanish settlers left, and many of those that remained turned to cattle ranching.

(3) Hispanolia was a cattle ranching slave society. Whereas the sugar industry created a stark racial hierarchy between blacks and Whites in Jamaica and Barbados, there was little difference between black and White ranchers in the Dominican Republic, so they interbred like they did in Mexico.

(4) In the late seventeenth century, French buccaneers conquered the western third of Spanish Hispanolia, which eventually became the French colony of Saint-Domingue. In 1655, the English conquered Jamaica from Spain. The remaining two-thirds of eastern Hispanolina remained Santo-Domingo and evolved into the Dominican Republic.

(5) The French created a thriving sugar industry in Saint-Dominigue and imported hundreds of thousands of blacks. By the late eighteenth century, Saint-Domingue was the richest colony in the world, whereas Spanish Santo Domingo remained a stagnant backwater devoted to ranching.

(6) During the Haitian Revolution, Touissant L’ouverture occupied Santo Domingo. It was occupied again by the Haitians under President Boyer in 1822. From 1838 until 1844, the Dominicans fought the Dominican War of Independence from Haiti, putting an end to the twenty year Haitian occupation.

(7) To this day, Dominican nationalism is based on an aversion to Haiti, to Africa, to blackness, and its embrace of its European heritage. Dominicans are proud mulattoes who identify with Spain and look down on their Haitian neighbors as inferior.

(8) In 1937, 15,000 Haitians were killed by Trujillo’s troops in the northwest Dominican Republic.

(9) Gates’ visit to Haiti … talk about painting the lipstick on the pig!

(10) The ruined port of Cap-Haïtien (formerly the splendid French city of Le Cap) is full of garbage in the water.

(11) Haiti was invaded by … trade embargoes, blockades, denial of recognition, bullshit. Haiti continued to export coffee to Europe under Christophe and his successors.

(12) Jefferson called Toussaint and his followers “cannibals of the terrible republic.”

(13) Debt slavery? The U.S. also fought a revolution that required borrowing enormous sums from European creditors. The Confederate economy was utterly destroyed. Japan and Germany were physically destroyed by the Second World War.

(14) For 19 years, America occupied Haiti and built virtually all of what remains of the infrastructure that is still there today.

(15) The U.S. didn’t create political and social chaos in Haiti – the U.S. invasion was a response to preexisting chaos and anarchy, specifically, the the collapse of a flurry of shortlived governments.

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  1. I am very fascinated by this series – but it’s difficult to watch, with that little troll Zip Gates. When I see him/it – I have an extremely difficult time trying to surpress the urge to find him and kick him. It’s a very visceral thing…

  2. Halfway done.

    This is a great episode. I remember reading about the massacre of the Haitians in the Dominican Republic while at Auburn. I took a course on U.S. foreign policy toward Latin America. We read about Trujilo.

  3. The Dominican national identity is based on rejection of Haiti and Africa. They hate being reminded of the millions of blacks on the other third of the island. So much for black solidarity.

    The Dominicans are admirable in the sense that at least they acknowledge that blackness is something negative, a taint, something that inherently brings about decline. It is refreshing to see this admitted.

  4. Dominicans are simply the mulattoes that survived the original Haitian genocide. After the Haitians killed all the white people, they attempted to kill all the mulattoes. The high yellow niggers (mulattoes) became Dominicans, while the reds (pure negroes) remained Haitians.

    Mulattoes mostly identify with their white half, since who would choose to be a nigger. Gates is also a mulatto, which is why he disavows black speech and “acts white.” Obama is an exception to the rule regarding mulattoes and is virulently anti-white only because of his anti-white Yankee mother.

    They both share a seething hatred of pure whites. Dominican gangs are some of the most savage. They are very good with their machetes.

    Deo Vindice

  5. It’s important to note also that abortion is completely illegal in the DR. That means in all cases – rape, incest, situations where the health of the mother is in danger, everything.

  6. BTW, I have read that Trujillo attempted a ‘whitening’ policy in the DR. Also I believe he had a good relations with the axis countries and was a bit of a rightist himself. He looked quadroonish and I guess he was no fan of Haitians.

  7. June 19, 2012 at 6:58 am
    Apuleius says:

    “Mulattoes mostly identify with their white half, since who would choose to be a nigger. Gates is also a mulatto, which is why he disavows black speech and “acts white.” Obama is an exception to the rule regarding mulattoes and is virulently anti-white only because of his anti-white Yankee mother”.

    I must assume you are refering to Dominican mullattoes since American mulattoes identify with their black half almost exclusively. (Nicole Ritchie comes to mind as the exception).

  8. I wouldn’t buy too much into this Dominican thing. As a native New Yorker, I am quite familiar with Dominicans and they are considered the niggers of the Hispanic world. Doms are one rung above blacks. Period.

    To get an idea of what many of them are like, do a search of the Deltona (Florida)massacre from August 2004. Here’s a peek (Troy Victorino is a Dominican):,0,6673455.story

    The enemy of my enemy is not my brother. Thank God!

  9. Regarding Trujillo… hey, how do you say “parsley” in Spanish again?

    Better not say it wrong, though.

  10. Tony,

    Thanks for the link. I just accepted a consulting job in the DR and will be returning in a few months to start work. This country is amazing. A day’s wages for a live-in maid in NY is equivalent to a maid’s MONTHLY wages in DR.

    The DR represents the southern tip of what I consider the cultural corridor of the New World (Montreal-Santo Domingo). The near enemies in the new world are the Cuban government and the Haitian people. White Haitians and Cuban Exiles deserve our support.

  11. @Tamer
    If you can link to any White Dominican and/or White Haitian websites, I’d appreciate that. I didn’t know there were any Whites actually living in Haiti, for example. Do they live together in one area, in their own community, or are the Whites in Haiti separate from one another? I will also do some google searches about Whites Haiti and the Dominican Republic. But if you know of any informative websites concerning this, I’d appreciate it.

  12. There are German, very white communities (they call themselves “colonies”) in the highlands of the DR.

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