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Reconciliation and Reparations

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Reconciliation and Reparations
Name: Tiahana Campbell
Teacher’s name: C.Ivey
Schools name: The Cedar Grove Academy
Grade: 12 Humanities
Subject : History unit
Objectives
At the end of this presentation the reader must be able to:
 Explain the concept of reparatory Justice
 Explain the concept of reconciliation
 Assess historical reparations
with specific focus on Haiti to France, Britain to the Caribbean Planters and
Germany to the Jews
 Examine the historical justification for CARICOM demand for reparatory
justice
What is Reparatory Justice
Reparations are something that one does or gives to correct a mistake or wrongdoing.
Reparations are usually made by governments to make amends for wars, serious crimes, and
abuse. You should think of the root word 'repair', because the aim of reparations is to fix things,
so as to eliminate the negative consequences of the wrongdoing, and to make it as if the
wrongdoing had never happened.
What is Reconciliation?
Reconciliation comes from the Greek family of words that has its roots in allasso [ajllavssw].
The meaning common to this word group is "change" or "exchange." Reconciliation involves a
change in the relationship between God and man or man and man. It assumes there has been a
breakdown in the relationship, but now there has been a change from a state of enmity and
fragmentation to one of harmony and fellowship. In Romans 5:6-11, Paul says that before
reconciliation we were powerless, ungodly, sinners, and enemies; we were under God's wrath (v.
9). Because of change or reconciliation we become new creatures. "Therefore, if anyone is in
Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" ( 2 Cor 5:17 ).
Reconciliation has to do with the relationships between God and man or man and man. God
reconciles the world to himself ( 2 Cor 5:18 ). Reconciliation takes place through the cross of
Christ or the death of Christ. Second Corinthians 5:18 says that "God reconciled us to himself
through Christ." God reconciles us to himself through the death of his Son ( Rom 5:1 ). Thus, we
are no longer enemies, ungodly, sinners, or powerless. Instead, the love of God has been poured
out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit whom he has given to us ( Rom 5:5 ). It is a change in
the total state of our lives.
Historical Reparation
Caribbean planters to Britain:
an unprecedented move a coalition of 14 Caribbean
states, including Jamaica is embarking on the first united campaign for reparations from Britain,
France and Holland over its Atlantic slave trade.The united campaign will argue that those
European countries that became supremely enriched by a commercial Endeavour which included
murder, rape, forced removal and forced labor - which lasted for over two hundred years and
involved up to 20 million people. The united Caribbean countries represented by CARICOM, a
regional organization has hired the London law firm Leigh Day, who won £20 million for the
Kenyans tortured by the British during the Mau Mau rebellion of the 1950’s.On behalf of the
CARICOM, the lawyers will ask for an apology, compensation and a pledge that this should
never occur again. The British Government has said that it will firmly resist any claims for
reparations with the terse statement that ‘the past should be left to the past’.
Jews to Germany: On Sept. 20, 1945, three months after the end of World War II, Chaim
Weizmann, on behalf of the Jewish Agency, submitted to the governments of the US, USSR,
UK, and France, a memorandum demanding reparations, restitution, and indemnification due to
the Jewish people from Germany for its involvement in the Holocaust. He appealed to the Allied
Powers to include this claim in their own negotiations for reparations with Germany, in view of
the "mass murder, the human suffering, the annihilation of spiritual, intellectual, and creative
forces, which are without parallel in the history of mankind."
Haiti to France: The people of Haiti gained their independence in 1804 following several
years of a persistent and bloody struggle against the brutal French colonialists. The colonial
powers of the time, notably the United States and France, refused to recognize the legitimate
independence of this small island nation. The United States, perhaps the most notorious of the
slave owning countries, believed that recognizing Haiti's independence would threaten the
stability of its own inhumane system of slave labor.
In 1825 France demanded that Haiti pay the French government 150 million gold francs to
"compensate" French plantation slave-owners for their "financial losses" and in exchange for
France's recognition of Haiti's independence. Years later, the amount was reduced to 90 million
gold francs. The Haitian elite who had gained control of the country following independence,
caved in to the pressure, seeing this ransom as an inevitable and necessary financial obligation if
the country were to be allowed to live in peace and freedom and resume trade with its former
colonizers. It took Haiti close to 100 years to pay off this debt and the debt was paid, not out of
the money made by the elite through the export of raw goods, but rather on the backs of the
Haitian people who continued to work the land. All the public schools in Haiti were closed in
order to make the first payment, the first example of the imposition of a structural adjustment
program.
Today, the people of Haiti have joined with their democratically elected government to demand
that France restitute to the Haitian people this "debt" money - 21.7 billion dollars in today's
currency. On behalf of the people of Haiti, President Jean Bertrand Artistide has made an official
request to France, which has formally recognized slavery to be a crime against humanity; French
legislators have verbally recognized the legitimacy Haiti's request for restitution. Although
several international lawyers are working on the case for restitution, the hope is that France will
act according to its stated principle and pay its debt to the Haitian people without the recourse of
international law. Unfortunately, in an echo of the ugly "1825" past, the French government has
reacted to this just request by placing Haiti on a list of "undesirable" countries not to be visited;
this vindictive and unjustifiable response is being protested by people of conscience, particularly
France and Haiti.
Historical justification for a CARICOM demand for
reparatory justice
“We are not beggars! We are not subservient! We do not want Charity and handouts!
We want Justice! Reparatory Justice! “---Sir Hilary Beckles
Reparations for the slave era is an issue that has increasingly resonated in recent years and
CARICOM, at its highest level of decision making, has placed this issue on the front burner of
its agenda. A Ten Point Action Plan for Reparatory Justice [1] was endorsed by Heads of
Government, in March 2014, and is being used as the basis for discussions on reparations. In
2013, CARICOM Heads of Government established the CARICOM Reparations Commission
(CRC); its mandate to prepare the case for reparatory justice for the Region’s indigenous and
African descendant communities who are victims of Crimes against Humanity (CAH) in the
forms of genocide, slavery, slave trading and racial apartheid.
CARICOM Ten points for Reparatory Justice
The Plan outlines “the path to reconciliation and justice for victims of crimes against humanity and their
descendants”. It calls for:

A full formal apology, as opposed to “statements of regrets” that some nations have issued.

Repatriation, pointing out the legal right of the descendants of more than 10 million Africans,
who were stolen from their homes and forcefully transported to the Caribbean as the enslaved
chattel and property, to return to their homeland.



An Indigenous Peoples Development Programme to rehabilitate survivors.
Cultural Institutions through which the stories of victims and their descendants can be told.
Attention to be paid to the “Public Health Crisis” in the Caribbean. The Caribbean has the
“highest incidence of chronic diseases which stems from the nutritional experience, emotional
brutality and overall stress profiles associated with slavery, genocide and apartheid”.

Eradicating illiteracy, as the Black and Indigenous communities were left in a state of
illiteracy, particularly by the British.

An African Knowledge Programme to teach people of African descent about their roots;

Psychological Rehabilitation for healing and repair of African descendants’ populations.

Technology Transfer for greater access to the world’s science and technology culture

Debt Cancellation to address the “fiscal entrapment” that faces Caribbean governments that
emerged from slavery and colonialism.
Bibliography

Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology. Edited by Walter A. Elwell
Copyright © 1996 by Walter A. Elwell. Published by Baker Books, a division of
Baker Book House Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan USA.
 https://www.caricom.org/caricom-ten-point-plan-for-reparatory-justice/
 https://www.obv.org.uk/news-blogs/caribbean-nations-demand-slave-reparations
 https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/german-holocaust-reparations
 https://www.nathanielturner.com/haitainsdemandreparations.htm