Danny Glover Lashes Out at Obama, South African Government for Plot to Keep Marxist Aristide Out of Haiti

Last week, far-left actor Danny Glover appeared on tax-supported radical Pacifica Radio to stump for returning Marxist ex-leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide to Haiti. In his political role as the chairman of the leftist TransAfrica Forum, Glover not only attacked the Obama-led U.S. government for obstructing this natural return of the "savior." He attacked the black government of South Africa for being in some sort of conspiracy with America to keep Aristide out: 

AMY GOODMAN: President Aristide in South Africa, right after the earthquake. Danny Glover, what did he tell you now? Why isn’t he returning to Haiti?

DANNY GLOVER: Well, he’s mystified by that. You know, there’s been several calls for him to return. His party still -- the Lavalas is still the largest party, that’s not participating, that’s not active in the electoral process. And yet, he’s dismayed by that, the fact that both  -- it seems as if the South African government and the United States are complicit in his not returning to the hemisphere. Now, that’s certainly --

GOODMAN: What is he saying the South African government?

GLOVER: Well, he said the South African government -- he didn’t say this. But I’m saying, it seems to be a tacit complicity between -- to not to have him return in any capacity to the hemisphere. That’s been the case all along. So he’s essentially waiting by, waiting for some word of the possibility of him returning.

GOODMAN: Is he feeling like the South African government wouldn’t let him go back?

GLOVER: Well, I think the South Africa government has been very helpful. He certainly passed on a message through us to President Zuma to thank him for his support and thank him for the work that he has done and also thank him for the relief effort that South Africa. But he seems -- it seems to be there’s a stalemate right now as to why he can’t return in some capacity.

Wouldn’t it be -- wouldn’t it be, I think, appropriate for him to be there at this particular moment, as the Haitians go through this suffering, but also to be -- in some capacity, work with the reconstruction of Haiti, as well? You know, we know that at some point there has to be some unifying force. The government has been devastated by this. The government also only receives a small portion of the aid money that goes there. Less than a cent, that it goes there.

GOODMAN: Of every dollar?

GLOVER: Of every dollar.

GOODMAN: Less than a cent.

GLOVER: Less than a cent of every dollar. So there has to be some sort of way, and he desires some sort of way to play a role in the future of Haiti. Now, I think there is a place for him. That’s not for me to say, of course, or not for those who are here who want to advocate that, but I’m sure the Haitian people would welcome his return.

GOODMAN: I actually asked a number of people. I mean, using the model of President Obama standing with George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, a sort of unified front, that this isn’t a partisan issue, helping Haiti, the idea of a unified front in Haiti, President René Préval, President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, in this time of need.

GLOVER: Absolutely. And, of course, I mean, we see George Bush and Bill Clinton, former presidents, who have been the key orchestrators of the undermining of Haitian sovereignty and democracy, standing -- standing right there to supposedly play some sort of role.

Glover took the same line on Pacifica on January 19, attacking Bush and Clinton (while praising Jimmy Carter) and even blaming the United Nations for being inadequately supportive of Haiti. The topic or protest that day was limited emigration to America for ill Haitians:

Well, I'm not surprised. I'm certainly dismayed. I've been a Goodwill Ambassador for the UNICEF and the UNICEF family for more than twelve years. And I think it's disgusting, in the way in which the United Nations has approached this. I think they've allowed this country to dictate the playing field and what's happening in Haiti -- this country, the United States.

And I think that the selection of both Clinton and both of Bush is disappointing. Both of them had some hand in the current democratization of Haiti, had some hand in the kind of neoliberal policies that have governed the development of Haiti over the last two decades. Some hand, they've both had in that. So I'm dismayed at this. And why not have called in President Carter, someone who is familiar with the ideals around humanitarian help?

How radical is Glover's TransAfrica Forum?  Their next Book Club meeting in March will discuss "War, Racism and Economic Injustice: The Global Ravages of Capitalism," by Fidel Castro and edited by Alexandra Keeble. The audience will chew on Castro's critique of America just after 9/11:

Fidel condemns the hypocrisy of Washington's "war against terrorism," arguing that the first victims of the escalating cycle of terror are those people living in the poor and underdeveloped world.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis