The group of Haitians demonstrating on the sidewalk at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia were furious with Bill and Hillary Clinton. A passionate Haitian-American named Joseph Mathieu frankly accused the couple of “destroying Haiti for the decades. They pretend to be our friends when in reality they are our number one enemies…the Clintons were running Haiti, stealing our money, our resources and we are out here, outraged for the crimes of the Clintons!”
Then Mathieu labeled the international power couple racists: “The Clintons don’t like black people,” he thundered. “All they do is more welfare, more jails, more food stamps–-we don’t need that, we need more opportunity, more education!”
They have good reason to wave their “Hillary! Where Is the MONEY?” signs. Following the horrific 2010 earthquake that devastated the island nation, killing over 200,000 and leaving over 1.5 million people homeless, some 9 billion dollars in pledges and aid flowed in from sympathetic individuals, nations, and charities for the rebuilding. The Clintons together became the royal arbiters in charge of just how and where this vast treasury would be spent. Dubbed “The King and Queen of Haiti” in a Politico piece, like medieval rulers of yore, their majesties doled out favors to their loyal courtiers and nobles. In the case of Haiti, the nobles were the Clintons’ millionaire pals and relatives, and the favors amounted to billions in grants and contracts bestowed on them.
Those billions intended to rebuild the ruined nation instead disappeared into fantasy houses and roads that were never built, jobs that were never created, a national revival that never happened, and often private bank accounts never traceable. And a company with Tony Rodham, Hillary’s brother, on the board, somehow scored a lucrative 25-year gold mining deal.
Haiti is important because its colossal need and its suffering people gave Bill and Hillary a shining test case to demonstrate how much they love the less fortunate, to be the do-gooders they always claim to be. After all, for decades Hillary has insisted that her life’s work has been improving the lives of the poor and oppressed all over the globe. Haiti also holds a very special place in the Clintons’ hearts; it’s where they chose to spend their honeymoon in 1975 and marks the re-igniting of his political star.
It was a bittersweet time as Bill had just lost his congressional election in Arkansas. Dejected, he was thinking about abandoning his ambitions until the honeymooners attended a voodoo temple ritual honoring Ogou the god of iron, war and politics. Then an all-night talk with the voodoo priest helped them “reach the conclusion that the pursuit of God is the pursuit of excellence” according to the priest. Right then, Bill decided to run for Arkansas attorney general and his meteoric career was launched. Later, when First Lady Hillary told the world she liked to wander the halls of the White House, conversing with the spirit of Eleanor Roosevelt…but that’s another story.
In any case, after the earthquake Bill was convinced that Haiti “is still one of the most remarkable, unique places I have ever been and they can…build a better future if we do our part.” But they didn’t, although their absolute power to direct the reconstruction in addition to the colossal funding they wielded gave them every humanly possible way to turn Haiti’s tragedy into triumph.
In 2009, the U.N. had named Bill special envoy to Haiti largely because of his personal affection for the small, troubled nation. After the earthquake, he along with the Haitian prime minister Jean-Max Bellerive, became co-chairs of the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission (IHRC). As the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) put it, “IHRC was to “coordinate donors, conduct strategic planning, approve reconstruction projects and provide accountability.” Hillary Clinton as secretary of state was also responsible for disbursing funds -- the 1.14 billion in taxpayer money allocated by Congress to Haitian relief (USAID.) Some of those decisions she apparently delegated to chief of staff Cheryl Mills – yes, that Cheryl Mills.
But according to GAO documents reported in Peter Schweizer’s book Clinton Cash, the IHRC ignored the action plan and funding priorities that had been set up by the Haitian government and donor countries. Also, much of the taxpayer money intended for practical rebuilding was squandered. Here’s where Clinton’s buddies come in; they’re specialists at squandering – and in the process raking in big money for themselves.
One of the top priorities when you’ve got over 1.5 million homeless people should be housing. Among the most deplorable Bill-orchestrated failures is his promise even before the earthquake that his friend Claudio Osorio, CEO of a company called InnoVida, planned to build “10,000 houses in Haiti at $5,000 apiece for impoverished Haitians,” according to an NPR report. Never happened. Clinton made this pledge in a speech at Claudio’s lavish 2007 fundraiser for Hillary’s first presidential run, held in Osorio’s Miami Beach mansion. Besides raising cash for Clintons, Osorio donated between $10,000 and $25,000 to the Clinton Foundation in 2009, with his company making a similar contribution. (Actual numbers are hard to come by due to squirrely Foundation records.)
When the earthquake hit, Osorio was back seeking a $10 million loan from the U.S. government (that’s our money) to build 500 homes. Testimony from government and InnoVida officials shows his cuddly relationship with Bill and Hillary got him special treatment and fast-tracked the loan. The homes were never built, mostly because Osorio, who lived big, drove a Maserati, and had multiple vacation homes, was convicted in 2012 of fraud. Prosecutors proved he used the funds meant for relief victims for his personal benefit and to repay his investors in what was essentially a Ponzi scheme. Claudio Osorio drew a 12-year prison sentence and the next year the court-appointed receiver had to sue the Foundation to get the money he donated back.
In another housing debacle, this time led by Hillary and her state department minions, a congressional audit found mismanagement of a plan meant to house up to 90,000 Haitians but which USAID now says will only benefit 3,200 to 15,900 at nearly double the original cost of $59 million. Of course, this again is our taxpayer money, so no problem.
In a Wall Street Journal report broadcast on Fox News, investigative reporter Mary O’Grady said the Inter-American Development Bank (the U.S. is IDB’s major funder) revealed a total of 3 billion dollars was dispensed to be “managed by the Interim Haitian Recovery Commission with almost nothing to show for it.” Of course the IHRC is Bill Clinton—the same Bill Clinton who Hillary promises to put in charge of the U.S. economy because he’s so good at it.
The Clinton-backed “power and port” project is the most colossal calamity yet, according to the Judicial Watch report on the federal audit. It’s cost $170 million so far, much of it paid to consultants – unbelievably, the plan is still in the planning stages and years behind schedule. Another $117 to $189 million will be required to complete it, says the government report, and that money will probably need to come from us. The taxpayers.
We can learn much from the Clinton’s Haiti fiasco , only a sliver of which I have covered here. When they say they will bring jobs and prosperity because they care so much about us -- that’s exactly what they told the Haitians. When Hillary brags about her managerial skills, her experience as a leader, and her competence at improving peoples’ lives, think of how those leadership and decision-making skills improved the lives of Haitians, most of whom are still living in makeshift plastic tents, jobless.
If the Clintons couldn’t make their promises come true in a tiny country with a few million population and $9 billion to spend, how could they even come close in a huge America of over 300 million?
Here is Haitian-American demonstrator Joseph Mathieu‘s warning, “What have the Clintons done with the foundation? Just enriched themselves, stealing! We cannot allow liar Hillary to be president – there is no justice anymore because American justice is crooked!”
Joy Overbeck is a Colorado journalist and author who writes for Townhall.com, The Daily Caller, The Washington Times, American Thinker, BarbWire and elsewhere. More columns: https://www.facebook.com/