5 Acts of Retribution by Black People in Response to European Oppression

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haiti-massacre

The Haitian Massacre of 1804
Desalines haitian massacreAfter the enslaved Africans defeated the French in 1804 and established Haiti as the first Black country in the Western hemisphere, a mass killing occurred. The Haitian Massacre was an organized ethnic cleansing that was carried out against the remaining white population of French Creoles by the order of Jean-Jacques Dessalines, the first ruler of the independent nation. Throughout the entire territory of Haiti, from early February 1804 until April 22, 1804, 3,000 to 5,000 people of all ages and gender were put to death.

Squads of soldiers moved from house to house, killing white families. White women and children were killed last; Dessalines did not specifically mention that the women should be killed, and the soldiers were reportedly somewhat hesitant to do so. In the end, however, they were also put to death at a later stage of the massacre than the adult men. The argument for killing the women was that whites would not truly be eradicated if the white women were spared to give birth to new Frenchmen.

Dessalines told his army that he ordered the mass killing because of past atrocities committed by the Europeans, especially by the former white French authorities Donatien-Marie-Joseph Rochambeau and Charles Leclerc.

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