Stephen Palmie and Francisco A. Scarano’s The Caribbean: A History of the Region and Its Peoples is a sweeping 600+ page overview of the history of the Caribbean from 1492 to 2010.
The state of the art book is far too comprehensive to sum up in a short little review. It will suffice to say that this is the go to resource for any general reader trying to get a grip on why the Caribbean is the way it is today. In spite of the typical leftwing bias, I highly recommend it and any reader who grabs a copy will learn a lot from this book.
OD’s first book, Shattering The Golden Circle: The Failure of Free Society in Dixie, Haiti, and the Caribbean, will be published sometime early next year. In the meantime, this book has helped me focus and answer some of my own research questions while opening up some more fruitful veins of inquiry:
(1) What is “the Caribbean”? Which countries/islands are included and which are excluded?
The Caribbean region consists of three archipelagos: the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos islands, the Greater Antilles (Cuba, Jamaica*, Puerto Rico, Haiti and the Dominican Republic), and the Lesser Antilles (Leeward Islands and Windward Islands), as well as Belize in Central America and the Guianas in northern South America (Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana).
The Leeward Islands include the U.S. Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, St. Martin/Sint Maarten, St. Bartholomew, Saba, St. Eustatius, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua and Barbuda, Montserrat, Guadeloupe, Aruba, Curaçao, and Bonaire.
The Windward Islands include Martinique, Dominica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, along with Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago which are commonly classified with them.
A few months ago, I couldn’t have named all these islands much less placed them on a map, and I knew little about their history, culture, or relationship to the United States.
*The Cayman Islands have traditionally been a dependency of Jamaica.
(2) Is there a connection between the culture of the Caribbean and the American South?
Few Southerners are aware of our strong historical ties to the Caribbean. South Carolina was founded as a cultural extension of the British West Indies and the other Lower South states were molded in its image.
Virginia and the Upper South colonies were not founded as slave societies, but they too adopted the South Carolina model in the late seventeenth/early eighteenth century, at least in their coastal lowlands.
From the British Caribbean we borrowed negro slavery, racialism, conservatism, white supremacy, the plantation system, the slave code, anti-miscegenation laws, speech patterns, architecture, and some of our cuisine.
The American Revolution artificially severed the Southern colonies from the British Caribbean colonies and geopolitically oriented “the South” toward “the Northeast” and inland and west toward the continent and away from our previous orientation east toward the Atlantic.
In 1776, there were 26 – not 13 – British American colonies, and defense of the more valuable colonies in the British West Indies from France significantly affected the military course of the American Revolution.
In 1861, Caribbean expansion was the poison pill that killed the Crittendon Compromise and ensured the destruction of the Union. Tensions between the North and South over the failed attempts to annex Cuba was a major grievance that motivated secession in the Old Southwest (Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana).
Southerners were also motivated to secede from the Union by having spent half a century observing the post-apocalyptic fruits of abolition – the failure of free society – in Haiti and the British and French West Indies.
(3) What is the “Golden Circle”? Why would anyone think of the Caribbean as being part of a “Golden Circle”? Isn’t the Caribbean part of the “Third World”?
First, the “Golden Circle” is a phrase that was used in the antebellum South to refer to a peculiar vision of Manifest Destiny as a federation or an empire of slave states based on the U.S. South that would stretch across Central America and the Caribbean.
The Knights of the Golden Circle was an antebellum secret society that advocated the creation of a new Southern empire in the Caribbean. Its flag consisted of a crescent and fifteen stars – the crescent symbolized the rising Southern nation around the Gulf of Mexico and the fifteen stars the various parts of the Southern empire.
The Southern empire would have been an agricultural powerhouse based on plantation slavery and classical republicanism that would have controlled the world markets for cotton, tobacco, sugar, rice, and coffee.
Second, Americans tend to be grossly ignorant of world history, and one example of this is that the Caribbean used to be the richest region in the Americas and the geographic center of European imperialism during the late seventeenth, eighteenth, and early nineteenth centuries.
The plantation complex that stretched from southern North America through the Caribbean to northern South America was at the center of the world economy and produced the agricultural commodities that drove the industrialization of Europe.
The “South Atlantic System,” which refers to the same entity, was a lucrative transnational economic organism based on the Caribbean. The American South and Cuba were its northern periphery. The “Golden Circle” was a world economic engine that would have been valuable to control and develop to its full potential during its heyday.
Third, the Caribbean has been a part of the “Third World” only since the disastrous experiment in abolition destroyed the prosperity of the region during the early nineteenth century by forcing slave societies to conform to the liberal social model.
(4) How did the “Golden Circle” develop? When was it destroyed?
The rise of the “Golden Circle” can be precisely dated to the transformation of Barbados into the model slave society from 1640 to 1643 and the from there to the publication of the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen in 1789.
This is followed by a crisis period during the French Revolution that resulted in the destruction of its geographic epicenter – Saint-Domingue, the richest colony in the world – and a recovery period after 1804 that saw the final expansion of the Golden Circle north into Cuba and Puerto Rico and the Cotton Kingdom in the American South and south into the new British colonies of Trinidad and Tobago and British Guiana.
The fall can be dated from 1807 when Britain and America abolished the slave trade to the final abolition of slavery in Cuba and Puerto Rico in 1886. Significant events within this time frame include British abolition in 1834 to 1838, French abolition in 1848, Dutch abolition in 1863, and American abolition in 1865.
(5) Who destroyed the Golden Circle? Why was it destroyed?
It was indisputably destroyed by metropolitan Whites in Britain, France, Spain, the Netherlands, and the northern United States, not by slave uprisings. Even Haiti would have been reconquered were it not for the Napoleonic Wars.
Britain was the animating force behind its destruction and it came in three successive waves: the end of the slave trade (1807), abolition (1834 to 1838), and free trade (1846) – the Golden Circle had survived the foolishness of the French Revolution.
The fundamental cause was a moral, religious, and ideological sea change in values in Britain that stemmed from the twin evils of evangelical Christianity and Enlightenment ideology that weakened its national character and laid the foundation for the hopelessly degenerate Britain of our own times.
(6) Is there any truth to a Jewish role in the rise of slavery?
Interestingly enough, the anti-slavery movement was the one utopian reform movement where Jews were noticeably overshadowed by Gentiles.
In an earlier phase of their history, Jews were not notable for being anti-White. In fact, Jews seem to have played a major role in pioneering the slave trade and creating race-based plantation slavery.
My preliminary research indicates that Sephardic Jews in Brazil were heavily involved in the slave trade and kickstarting the plantation complex which they spread to the British and French West Indies after they were kicked out of northern Brazil.
From the Caribbean the plantation complex spread to southern North America where Jews were noticeably present in large numbers in colonial Charleston, New Orleans, and Savannah.
(7) What was the result of abolition and imposing “free society” on the slave societies of the American South, Haiti, and Caribbean?
We can say without qualification that the results of abolition and the triumph of freedom and equality, or “free society” as it was called by its Southern critics like George Fitzhugh, was total and unmitigated economic devastation.
The South sunk into an abyss of poverty which lasted for nearly a hundred years. The sugar industry temporarily collapsed in the Caribbean. Some places like Haiti and Jamaica never recovered their former relative prosperity.
Freedom failed. There was a collapse on the level of the western Roman Empire entering the Dark Ages. What you had was an intensely cultivated area that had been at the forefront of modern agriculture suddenly taking on an intensely archaic appearance.
Nowhere more so than Haiti.
(8) Why is Haiti so much worse off than its black neighbors in the Caribbean?
Haiti is the most extreme case of the regional social and economic collapse which I call “Shattering the Golden Circle.”
– First, 2/3 of the slaves in Saint-Domingue in 1791 had been born in Africa, so the blacks there were particularly barbaric, shook off the European yoke, retained much of their culture and wallowed in their own barbarism which was stamped out to a far greater degree elsewhere.
– Second, Haiti is the only country that succeeded in violently throwing off European rule – freedom and equality triumphed there in 1804 whereas Jamaica didn’t become independent until 1962.
Guadeloupe is the anti-Haiti – the Richepance expedition succeeded whereas the Leclerc expedition failed. Slavery, white supremacy, and colonialism were restored there in 1803. That’s why Guadeloupe, which is now the French equivalent of Hawaii, has one of the highest standard of livings in the region while Haiti is the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, even though the blacks on both islands are the same people.
– Third, the blacks in Haiti exterminated the French population and banned Europeans from owning property in Haiti, which kind of deterred foreign investment. This didn’t change until Haiti adopted a new constitution during the American occupation in 1918.
This is highly significant. In Haiti, we can see what would have happened in Dixie if Reconstruction had not been overthrown in South Carolina and if the blacks had gotten the “40 acres and a mule.”
That’s why Haiti is so much worse off than its neighbors: as an independent country that was relatively ignored by Europeans until the early twentieth century, the blacks in Haiti seized political power and got their hands on the land, which was not the case in, say, America or Jamaica.
In Haiti, they exercised their freedom and equality which they associated with the rejection of the plantation system and the market economy in favor of subsistence peasant agriculture, and the result was the division of the land into small unproductive plots and the crushing rural poverty and backwardness of modern deforested and overpopulated Haiti.
(9) Some of the black countries in the Caribbean region – Bermuda, the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, the British Virgin Islands – have high per capita incomes. If freedom has failed, how do we explain these success stories?
There is a very simple answer: offshore financial centers.
In the late twentieth century, several of these black countries developed a new role in the world economy as centers of tax evasion and money laundering and catering to the South American narcotraffickers.
Europeans and Americans pour their money into banks in places like the Cayman Islands because there is no income tax there. Corporations also incorporate there for tax reasons.
This is how a place like Bermuda which has no agriculture, manufacturing, or natural resources like oil or natural gas can have the appearance of a first world standard of living. Most of these corporations exist there only on paper and employ few natives.
Bermuda and other blacks islands have many of the same problems of the other countries like Black Undertow violent crime.
(10) Why did White settlement in the Caribbean fail?
Slavery, sugar, and disease.
It is clear that tropical diseases like malaria and yellow fever decimated the White population in the British and French West Indies. Hundreds of thousands of British and French settlers went to the Caribbean but left behind few descendants because of disease.
Further researching this matter has convinced me though that disease was an effect of slavery and sugar monoculture. Malaria and yellow fever came to the Caribbean with African slaves. The deforestation of the sugar islands created the ideal habitat for the mosquitos that transmitted these diseases.
Cuba had a strong White majority until the end of the eighteenth century. Then again, Cuba only became a deforested slave society in the early nineteenth century, which shows that White colonization of the Caribbean could have succeeded were it not for sugar and slavery.
(11) What happened to the Whites of the Caribbean?
Poor White communities exist throughout the Caribbean. The Red Legs of Barbados are probably the mist famous group. There are other White communities in places like Jamaica and Guadeloupe.
It will suffice to say that freedom and equality has progressively decimated the White population ever since the Haitian Revolution in 1791. This subject will be thoroughly covered in a chapter in my book.
(12) Are there any counterpoints to the fate of Whites in the Caribbean?
St. Martin/Sint Maarten and St. Bartholomew are examples of the what the whole Caribbean region could be like – not to mention Hawaii, America’s own tropical sugar island – if the black population there disappeared tomorrow.
(13) What about the tourist industry?
The Caribbean used to have a reputation as a death trap before it became a “tropical paradise.”
After the Spanish-American War, the Americans invested a lot of money in bringing disease under control by eliminating the fetid mosquito breeding grounds in Cuba and Puerto Rico. Disease ceased to be a problem after the European powers learned how malaria and yellow fever were transmitted.
The elimination of disease along with long distance air travel, air conditioning, cruise ships and the like made the American and European driven tourism industry possible. As with the offshore financial centers on the Caymans or the oil industry in Trinidad and Tobago, foreign capital has created pockets of prosperity in the Caribbean like Montego Bay in Jamaica.
(14) Isn’t imperialism responsible for the poverty and backwardness of the Caribbean?
First, Haiti is by far the poorest country in the region, and that is due to its success in throwing off European imperialism and exterminating the French population, whereas Guadeloupe is one of the richest islands in the Caribbean because it is part of France.
Second, Puerto Rico is far richer than Haiti or Jamaica because it is an American colony and like Guadeloupe is showered by federal welfare state spending.
Third, half of Puerto Rico now lives in the United States and 41 percent of Suriname moved to the Netherlands before independence. Hundreds of thousands of Haitians have moved to the U.S., Cuba, Canada, and the Dominican Republic.
Jamaica has exported a huge percentage of its own people to the United States, Britain, and Canada. The blacks in the Caribbean desperately want to live under white supremacy and white privilege because they lack the racial capacity to generate wealth and maintain civilization in their own countries.
The poorest countries in the Caribbean are independent nations. The richest ones are all overseas territories of the U.S., Britain, France, and the Netherlands. And it is due to the richer black islands being in a position to reap the benefits of white privilege.
(15) Does Haiti need a Marshall Plan?
There are more NGOs operating in Haiti than any country in the world – ever since the fall of “Baby Doc” Duvalier, the NGOs have effectively run Haiti, especially over the last ten years. Let’s not forget that modern Haiti is the fruit of the first NGO in world history, the Société des amis des Noirs, or the so-called “Friends of the Blacks.”
The international community has poured an unprecedented amount of foreign aid into Haiti. I don’t have the exact figure at hand which will be in the book, but Haiti has received the equivalent of multiple Marshall Plans, even though Sean Penn recently slammed the whole fucking world at the Cannes Film Festival for Haiti fatigue.
(16) What’s your solution to the poverty and backwardness of the Caribbean?
The poverty and backwardness of the modern Caribbean was caused by the “Shattering of the Golden Circle” – led by Britain, nineteenth century liberals imposed “free society” on race-based, slave-based plantation societies with predictable catastrophic results.
I think the Caribbean could be fixed if private filibusters were allowed to operate unmolested in the region like the ones who seized Jamaica in 1655. The Caribbean needs a Norman Conquest that would reestablish white supremacy and civilization in these islands and return the black population to Africa.
(17) Does Haiti have a halo?
Haiti’s halo would be the brown ring around the toilet of the Third World. It is a failed society that was born in a Satanic anti-White voodoo ceremony. 208 years of free society should have discredited that model by now.
(18) Whal is the state of the Black Undertow in the Caribbean?
The Black Caribbean is one of the most violent regions in the world – in fact, it is significantly more violent than the United States, and the blight, the poverty, the eroded tax base, the low property values and all the other known manifestations of the Visible Black Hand of Economics have far surpassed Detroit there.
Haiti is a Fourth World country. Jamaica is a warlord democracy they caters to “garrison constituencies.” Last year, the Black Undertow violent crime in Trinidad became so bad that a national state of emergency was declared and troops were put on the street to restore order.
The Caribbean, which is the most Africanized region in the New World and home to 15 separate experiments in black freedom and equality ranging from Cuban communism to Puerto Rican capitalism, is now peripheral to the world economy.
Much of its prosperity is driven by Americans and Europeans: tourism, international business, oil and gas, all of which are sectors which are certain to be negatively affected as the global depression accelerates. Storm clouds are on the horizon.
Note: Here are some videos of my proposed filibuster solution: