Disputing the myth of the Parsley Massacre
In his editorial today, Wednesday 10 September 2014, the executive editor of Diario Libre Adriano Miguel Tejada describes the so-called Parsley Massacre as “a myth”. When blasting Dominicans for their treatment of Haitian immigrants many publications and media refer to the El Corte (the cutting), the government-sponsored genocide of October 1937 during the Trujillo regime. According to historical accounts, then Dominican president Rafael Trujillo ordered the execution of the Haitian population living along the Dominican border with Haiti. The number of 35,000 dead Haitians frequently appears in the media when this massacre is mentioned to rally support for the Haitian immigrants.
Tejada comments that no mass graves have been found. He says that it was in Trujillo’s interest to inflate the number of victims to instill fear among Haitians so that they respect the border. He adds that the Haitian elite accepted the high numbers because they could collect more in compensation for the supposed dead.
He makes the comments now that in Europe witnesses have pointed to where civil war victims have been buried and the graves have been opened. This has yet to happen in the Dominican Republic. “Where are the bodies of the thousands of deaths during the Cut?” He asks.
Meanwhile, according to the Wikipedia entry on the event, the estimated number of deaths varies considerably, from as low as 547 to as high as 25,000. But it makes the same point as Tejada: “The lack of the discovery of a single mass grave since 1937 does not tend to support the higher estimates.”
“On the Dominican side, there are no known formally documented first-hand witness accounts by military personnel carrying out the executions nor from civilians. Historian and former Dominican ambassador to the United States, Bernardo Vega, has cited that not many weeks after the end of the alleged massacre, Haitians were once again lining up for work at Dominican sugar cane plantations, something he considers as strange as ‘lambs willingly walking into the slaughterhouse’.”
Source: DR1. DiarioLibre
Category: DR News |