╌>

Haiti on the brink

  

Category:  Op/Ed

By:  vic-eldred  •  one month ago  •  44 comments

Haiti on the brink
"Such acts of theft and sabotage only further worsen the financial and technical situation of the company," it added, noting that four power substations and the Varreux Power Plant in Port-au-Prince were "destroyed and made completely dysfunctional," cutting off electricity to dozens of areas including the "USA Embassy Entrance" and a local hospital.

Link to quote: Haiti, US Embassy entrance area plunge into darkness as vandals attack power plant and substations (msn.com)

The US Embassy, now fortified by a special Marine group, was plunged into darkness following attacks by vandals on a power plant and four power substations in Port-au-Prince. The violence and chaos is now widespread throughout the country of Haiti. Gangs control about 80% of the country. The Biden administration has gone from telling Americans in the area that they had warning & plenty of time to leave to planning to evacuate up to 1,000 Americans. The other concern for America is the Biden administration's unlimited empathy for non-Americans. Are we going to be taking or sneaking in thousands of Haitian refugees?

"Scores of heavily armed men were spotted in the neighborhoods of Laboule and Thomasin, which are part of the Pétion-Ville district of metropolitan Port-au-Prince. Homes were ransacked and at least one person, a bodyguard, was shot. The guard was traveling to work on the back of motorcycle when he was shot, said his boss Anthony Bennett.

After an ambulance could not get through a blocked road, Bennett said he had to go personally in his car to pick up the bodyguard, “otherwise he would have died.”

Residents in Pétion-Ville told a Miami Herald correspondent that there were at least 24 dead bodies on the streets, victims of gunshots. The videographer counted at least nine corpses with bullet holes along PanAmerican Avenue in Pétion-Ville, not far from a gas station. The attacks started around midnight on Saturday and continued through Monday morning."

Armed gangs attack Haiti’s wealthiest enclaves, leaving bodies on the streets (msn.com)

The State Department is now evaluating the risks of evacuating Americans.


In other news:

Donald Trump has so far been unable to secure a preposterous $454 million bond. The deadline is next week, and Letitia James is itching to take control of and sell off the Trump family holdings.

Donald Trump is appealing the Fani Willis decision.


A leading climate group pledged to donate $120 million to the Biden campaign. That brings Biden’s total contributions from outside groups to $1 billion.

 The Supreme Court seems likely to rule that a certain New York State official violated the First Amendment when she encouraged companies to stop doing business with the NRA.

The ever-pandering Joe Biden directed federal agencies to research menopause, arthritis and other health conditions that disproportionately effect "women."

A former colleague of Mayor Eric Adams accused him of "sexually assaulting" her decades ago in a new lawsuit.

On a call with Benjamin Netanyahu, Joe Biden expressed concern about a potential Israeli invasion of Rafah, the last stronghold of Hamas, a southern Gaza city where Palestinian civilians have fled. Netanyahu agreed to send Israeli officials to Washington to discuss alternatives.

Israeli forces killed one of Hamas’s highest-ranking leaders in an airstrike in central Gaza, according to a U.S. official.

 


Tags

jrDiscussion - desc
[]
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1  author  Vic Eldred    one month ago

Good morning

GI9tNuZagAAWHU5?format=jpg&name=small
Roast Pork sandwich with sharp provolone for breakfast?

What led to the crisis in Haiti?  Was politics involved?

Will a big portion of the Haitian population be fleeing to Florida?

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1  Kavika   replied to  Vic Eldred @1    one month ago
What led to the crisis in Haiti?  Was politics involved? Will a big portion of the Haitian population be fleeing to Florida?

Funny you should ask that question. The history of Haiti is one of slavery, independence, not being recognized by the Western world, having to pay France billions of dollars to be recognized, and of course the USMC occupied Haiti for 19 years to ''protect'' US business and in that period 15,000 Haitians were killed. And following that the US and other powers installed and supported one corrupt administration after another, does the name ''Papa Doc'' ring a bell? 

What would have been a model for much of the world turned into what we see today because the ''powers'' that be wanted it that way. 

General Smedley Butler's book ''War is a Racket'' explains much of what we did in Haiti, and Central and South America.

FYI, we have a large Haitian population currently, and yes, we'll probably get more. Little Haiti has great restaurants.

You reap what you sow.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
1.1.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  Kavika @1.1    one month ago

You mean Haiti can't seem to govern itself?

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
1.1.2  Sean Treacy  replied to  Vic Eldred @1.1.1    one month ago

It’s France’s fault the country is now run by cannibals. 

 
 
 
Snuffy
Professor Participates
1.1.3  Snuffy  replied to  Kavika @1.1    one month ago

The USMC occupation of Haiti was from 1914 to 1920 and Haiti paid off France in 1947. Seems that something from 77 years ago shouldn't be included in this question. A more relevant question might be how many billions (approx $13 billion from 2011 to 2021) have gone to Haiti from the international community and any idea how much was lost to graft? 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.4  Kavika   replied to  Vic Eldred @1.1.1    one month ago

I explained it, you have to disgest it.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.5  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.2    one month ago
It’s France’s fault the country is now run by cannibals. 

Marcon has gotten closer to being bloodthirsty with his latest comments re NATO troops in Ukraine, thanks for pointing that out. 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.6  Kavika   replied to  Snuffy @1.1.3    one month ago
The USMC occupation of Haiti was from 1914 to 1920 and Haiti paid off France in 1947. Seems that something from 77 years ago shouldn't be included in this question. 

You better check your dates, Snuffy. The USMC occupied Haiti from 1915 to 1934 and yet Haiti paid off France for being slaves, LOL imagine that the billions paid to France by Haiti for being slaves was reinvested in the country, when it took 80% the the Haitian budget...

A more relevant question might be how many billions (approx $13 billion from 2011 to 2021) have gone to Haiti from the international community and any idea how much was lost to graft? 

Of course, after that as I pointed out the Western powers including the US supported every thug as president and paid billions in graft...I pointed all that out in first comment, did you miss it or simply ignore it? Papa Doc should ring a bell for you.

BTW, here is a link that will expand your knowledge of Haiti and the US and other world powers crushing of the country. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
1.1.7  Sean Treacy  replied to  Kavika @1.1.6    one month ago
, LOL imagine that the billions paid to France by Haiti for being slaves was reinvested in the country

Haiti paid 564 million in US current dollars.

How Much Haiti’s Freedom Cost: Takeaways From a Times Series - The New York Times (nytimes.com)

It's received many multiples of that in international aid. 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.8  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.7    one month ago

In 1825, France demanded, as the price of recognition,   reparations of 150m francs   (the equivalent, according to different estimates, of between $4bn and $21bn today) to compensate for loss of property, including human chattel. Along with the demand, it sent 14 warships.

France was compelling enslaved people and their descendants to pay their former masters for having freed themselves from servitude. Though the figure was eventually reduced to 90m francs, it remained well beyond Haiti’s capacity to pay, forcing it to take out loans from French banks at exorbitant rates,   adding to the burden . By 1914,   80% of the government budget   went to repaying the debt.  

It's received many multiples of that in international aid. 

And as I pointed out in my previous comment we kept thugs in power that kept that money for themselves, Papa Doc being one of the worst and then his son.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Professor Participates
1.1.9  Snuffy  replied to  Kavika @1.1.6    one month ago

You're correct on the dates, the USMC was there until 1934. Doesn't make the rest of my post wrong. Still think 77 years is a long time to continue to blame those two issues.

Yes, the US as well as other countries spent a lot of money on Haiti and it much of it disappeared in graft. Yes, thugs were supported by the US. For how many years has the US involved itself in nation building? How much time has to go by before the country itself has to take any blame for how they have turned out?  You imply it was all the fault of Western nations and ignore Haiti itself. Since 2010 the US has made available over $ 5.1 billion to Haiti. How much of that simply disappeared into the pockets of Haitians thanks to greed? 

FACT SHEET: U.S. Assistance to Haiti | The White House

This unfortunately is all part of the human condition itself in that greed and power over others is a universal issue. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
1.1.10  Sean Treacy  replied to  Kavika @1.1.8    one month ago
ance demanded, as the price of recognition,    reparations of 150m francs    (the equivalent, according to different estimates, of between $4bn and $21bn today) to compensate for loss of property,

They actually paid 564 million (in current US dollars) per the New York Times analysis .

 Papa Doc being one of the worst and then his son.\

They've been out of power for 40 years.  Haiti has received many multiples of the 564 million they paid in international aid since. 

Haitians are actual human beings with agency. They aren't mindless victims incapable of acting on their own behalf.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.11  Kavika   replied to  Snuffy @1.1.9    one month ago
You're correct on the dates, the USMC was there until 1934. Doesn't make the rest of my post wrong. Still think 77 years is a long time to continue to blame those two issues.

Those were not the only two issues that I posted on it.

You imply it was all the fault of Western nations and ignore Haiti itself. Since 2010 the US has made available over $   5.1  billion to Haiti. How much of that simply disappeared into the pockets of Haitians thanks to greed? 

I did not imply it was all the fault of Western nations and ignore Haiti itself. That is another load of BS. snuffy, I pointed out facts, don't like the facts that's on you and if you had read the link there was a lot blaming Haiti.

Keep swinging you're bound to hit something soon.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.12  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Kavika @1.1.11    one month ago

I would add geography as an additional reason.  Haiti is very mountainous and semiarid which makes agriculture and transportation difficult.  It is largely deforested so storms cause soil erosion. It suffered a major earthquake 14 years ago. 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.13  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.10    one month ago
They actually paid 564 million (in current US dollars) per the New York Times analysis .

And the Guardian states considerbly more not including the $500,000 the Marines took in gold. Also NPR and PBS with studies came up with billions of dollars. I guess that the irony escaped you, Hatai paying for freeing themselves from French slavery...

Also with the revolution by Haiti a number of other central American countries were on their way to freedom and US was also a beneficiary since Haiti won battle after battle over both the French and English keeping them out of our hair.

Haitians are actual human beings with agency. They aren't mindless victims incapable of acting on their own behalf.

Yes, of course they are, did I say different? nope sure didn't and they are proving it all over again, sadly in a destructive way. 

They've been out of power for 40 years.  Haiti has received many multiples of the 564 million they paid in international aid since. 

Ah, Papa Doc another in a long line of corrupt/murderous leaders of Haiti. His reign of terror was on a massive scale and when his son Baby Doc took over with the same corruption the US supported him.

Some interesting information in the link, take advantage of it.

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
1.1.14  Sean Treacy  replied to  Kavika @1.1.13    one month ago
And the Guardian states considerbly more

No, it doesn't.  Your Guardian link lists what France demanded, not what Haiti actually paid.

YYes, of course they are, did I say different?

Funny. When discussing the "history of Haiti"  You only discuss what others "did" to Haiti and never what the Haitians have done themselves. 

pa Doc another in a long line of corrupt/murderous leaders of Haiti.

Yes, of course he is, did I say different?

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.15  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.14    one month ago
No, it doesn't.  Your Guardian link lists what France demanded, not what Haiti actually paid.

Oh my, I also added in PBS and NPR. 

Funny. When discussing the "history of Haiti"  You only discuss what others "did" to Haiti and never what the Haitians have done themselves. 

I cover only some of what other countries, including the US did to Haiti and I also pointed the long and corrupt/murderous Haiti regimes Papa Doc and Baby Doc being some of the worse. Even posted a link covering that. So it's there whether you choose to acknowledge it or not it means little to me. 

Yes, of course he is, did I say different?

No, you simply ignored my commentary on the Haitians that helped destroy the country. Yet at the same time you said I didn't put any blame on Haiti, seems as though you stepped on your tongue once again.

Here is more interesting history for you. 

“The largest unit of soldiers of African descent who fought in the American Revolution was the brave “Les Chasseurs Volontaires de Saint Domingue” from Haiti. This regiment consisted of  free men who volunteered for a campaign to capture Savannah from the British in 1779 .

The battle is much-remembered in Haitian history; the Chasseurs-Volontaires de Saint-Domingue, consisting of some 545  gens de couleur —free men of color from Saint-Domingue—fought with the Americans.

The  Chasseurs-Volontaires  military group represented a large part of the 168 killed and 411 wounded soldiers in the French ranks following the battle. On October 8, 2007, a memorial statue was unveiled in Savannah dedicated to the Chasseurs-Volontaires de Saint-Domingue during the Battle of Savannah.

Here is the great part of that. My wife and I were in Savannah a couple of years ago when they were celebrating this battle and the Haitians who fought in it. A couple next to us struck up a conversation asking us if we knew anything about it and I answered in the affirmative a huge smile crossed his face and he introduced himself and wife as a direct descendent of one of the original Chasseurs-Volontaires. I found that fascinating and we made a date to meet for dinner later that evening. It was simply a wonderful time and worth all the time spent. 

At dinner we learned that he spoke both Haitian Creole and French beside English which was perfect since I speak Michif which is French/Cree/Ojibwe and my wife speaks French. We talked into the wee hours, a black Haitian, his wife French Creole me a Redman, and my wife who is white, all looking back hundreds of years to a common moment in time. Only in America, only in America it's what makes us great, no matter what whiners say. 

0696dea00b23381c270b3f4abc7ec94d.jpg

The  Haitian Monument  commemorates the contributions of the Chasseurs-Volontaires de Saint-Domingue, a French regiment of free men of African descent, during the American Revolution. The work depicts five uniformed and armed soldiers, rifles pointed at the ready. One of the soldiers sits, wounded, his face contorted in a grimace as he rests his rifle across his lap and brings his right hand to his chest.

The     young drummer boy, who stands just to the left of the armed group, is  Henri Christophe , an important  leader in the Haitian Revolution and the only monarch of the Kingdom of Haiti . Christophe, who joined the Chasseurs-Volontaires as a teen is believed, although firm proof does not exist, to have participated in the Siege of Savannah. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
1.1.16  Sean Treacy  replied to  Kavika @1.1.15    one month ago
y, I also added in PBS and NPR. 

So you didn't understand your link. That's okay!  

 ignored my commentary on the Haitians that helped destroy the country.

Except you blamed that on America too. Or don't you remember what you wrote? 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.17  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.16    one month ago
So you didn't understand your link. That's okay!  

No problem if you're not capable of discussion that's on you.

Except you blamed that on America too. Or don't you remember what you wrote? 

Of course I remember, I'm not like you. The US did a lot of damage to Haiti as did the various Haitian leaders which I pointed out and the US supported Baby Doc that is a fact you'll just have to keep deflecting and looking a bit foolish doing so. 

Cheers.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1.18  JohnRussell  replied to  Kavika @1.1.15    one month ago
Haiti is one of the   poorest nations   in the world, and rich countries have their fingerprints all over the nation's stunted development. The United States worked to isolate a newly independent Haiti during the early 19th century and   violently occupied   the island nation for 19 years in the early 20th century. While the U.S. officially left Haiti in 1934, it continued to control Haiti's public finances   until 1947 , siphoning away   around 40%   of Haiti's national income to service debt repayments to the U.S. and France.

Much of this debt to France was the legacy of what the University of Virginia scholar Marlene Daut calls "the greatest heist in history": surrounded by French gunboats, a newly independent Haiti was forced to pay its slaveholders reparations. You read that correctly. It was the former   slaves   of Haiti, not the French   slaveholders , who were forced to pay reparations. Haitians compensated their oppressors and their oppressors' descendants for the privilege of being free. It took Haiti more than a century to pay the reparation debts off.

'The Greatest Heist In History': How Haiti Was Forced To Pay Reparations For Freedom - NPR | Everand
 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1.19  JohnRussell  replied to  JohnRussell @1.1.18    one month ago

Since U.S. Marines first occupied Haiti in 1915, Washington has put its thumb on the balance of power, supporting the brutal Duvalier dictatorships dating to the 1950s and more recently propping up center-right presidents with little popular support.

The latest round of violent upheaval in Haiti is inextricably linked to Jovenel Moise, who won the presidency in 2016 in flawed elections and then proceeded to strip away institutions, rule by decree and — even after constitutional experts said his term had expired — remain in power until he was assassinated in July.

Along the way, he enjoyed the support of both the Trump and Biden administrations.

Gangs that were connected to Moise have continued to operate with impunity, often using government vehicles; robbery, rape and kidnapping for ransom have reached epidemic levels.

Preachers have been snatched during sermons, teachers abducted from classes and buses hijacked on highways. When a magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck southern Haiti in August, killing more than 2,000 people, the rescue and recovery effort was severely constrained by the insecurity on the roads.

As Haiti Reels From Crises, US Policy Decisions Are Called Into Question - Los Angeles Times | Everand

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.20  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  JohnRussell @1.1.19    one month ago

Yes, they were trying to keep the USSR out of the Caribbean.  

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
1.1.21  Kavika   replied to  Sean Treacy @1.1.16    one month ago

Here are a few of the photos that I took that day. 

512

512

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
2  JohnRussell    one month ago
Donald Trump is appealing the Fani Willis decision.

Man up dickhead. Stop trying to get off on technicalities and face a jury.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  JohnRussell @2    one month ago

When the prosecutors are dirty we call them out.

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
2.1.1  Ronin2  replied to  Vic Eldred @2.1    one month ago

Prosecutors, judges, juries, pretty much the whole city of New York at this point needs to be called out.

But it is nice to see a Democrat getting bit by a law that was enacted solely to get Trump. Isn't that right Mayor Adams? Though I doubt a New York jury will nearly as biased against him as they were Trump; and the woman will actually have to present real evidence to back up her claims to win in court.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.1.2  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  Ronin2 @2.1.1    one month ago
But it is nice to see a Democrat getting bit by a law that was enacted solely to get Trump.

I guess he never should have criticized Biden's open border policy. The latest is a lawsuit from a woman who alleges he attacked her decades ago. It has a nice leftist smell to it.


Though I doubt a New York jury will nearly as biased against him as they were Trump; 

I'll bet there isn't a registered Republican on either jury.


and the woman will actually have to present real evidence to back up her claims to win in court.

Oh, that's easy. Just get a friend to say she told her the day it happened...decades ago.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Participates
2.1.3  Greg Jones  replied to  Vic Eldred @2.1.2    one month ago

Meanwhile, in a related story, Justice Kavanaugh's accuser is trying to sell a book...

Invisible man: The media try to rehabilitate Christine Blasey Ford while ignoring the full story (msn.com)

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
Professor Principal
2.1.4  Sean Treacy  replied to  Greg Jones @2.1.3    one month ago

Rehabilitate?

Democrats and their media worshipped her and treated her claims like the devout treat the  word of God, to be unquestioningly believed. How can they possibly do more for her?   I guess the cash in is the final reward (although I seem to remember her cashing in with paid appearances almost immediately after her silly story went away.) 

 
 
 
Thomas
Senior Guide
2.1.5  Thomas  replied to  Vic Eldred @2.1    one month ago

More like bleating to the heavens...

Bah-ah-ah-ah

Bah-ah-ah-ah

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
2.2  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  JohnRussell @2    one month ago

Exactly, stop acting like a wealthy defendant!.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
2.2.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @2.2    one month ago
and the woman will actually have to present real evidence to back up her claims to win in court.

Damned right!  Just admit you said "FIND" which means "PRODUCE."

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3  author  Vic Eldred    one month ago

The Dominican Republic just built a 12-foot border wall to protect themselves from Haiti .

Dominicans built a wall to keep Haitians out. Now it’s adding to border tensions (yahoo.com)

The left-wing media thinks it is leading to border tensions.

 
 
 
George
Junior Expert
3.1  George  replied to  Vic Eldred @3    one month ago
The Dominican Republic just built a 12-foot border wall to protect themselves from Haiti

That can't be right, walls don't work. (s)

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.1.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  George @3.1    one month ago

Why wouldn't we want such an addition to our nation? / S

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
3.2  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Vic Eldred @3    one month ago

They aren't welcoming asylum seekers?

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
3.2.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.2    one month ago

Nope, there is not a progressive among them.

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Expert
3.2.2  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.2    one month ago

They didn't allow Haitians to cross the border after the earthquake either.  Some government officials know how to secure their borders.  The Traitor Joe administration should take notice.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
4  author  Vic Eldred    one month ago

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — The U.N. Security Council has approved  a resolution that authorizes deployment of a multinational force  to Haiti led by Kenya to help combat violent gangs that have grown incredibly powerful and overwhelmed police.

Haiti first requested such an intervention in October 2022, but neither the U.S. nor the U.N. were willing to lead one, and U.S. efforts to persuade Canada to do so were unsuccessful.

Then  Kenya stepped up in July  with an offer to lead a multinational force. The U.S. forwarded  a resolution  to the U.N. Security Council to authorize the force, and the council approved it Monday afternoon with 13 votes and two abstentions from China and the Russian Federation.

What to know about a UN vote to send a Kenya-led force to Haiti to curb gang violence | AP News

Why Kenya?

I assume Kenya has no restrictions on their "troops."  It will be shoot to kill, I'm sure. That should do it.

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Expert
4.1  Jeremy Retired in NC  replied to  Vic Eldred @4    one month ago
I assume Kenya has no restrictions on their "troops."  It will be shoot to kill, I'm sure. That should do it.

Then we'll start hearing calls for a cease fire because the gangs are getting their asses handed to them.  

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
4.1.1  author  Vic Eldred  replied to  Jeremy Retired in NC @4.1    one month ago

I'm sure, though the peaceful Haitians that came to this country legally, won't be part of Biden's radical base.

 
 
 
Vic Eldred
Professor Principal
5  author  Vic Eldred    one month ago


In one of the First Amendment cases being considered by the SCOTUS,
Justice, Ketanji Brown Jackson, said that the First Amendment is hamstringing the government in its attempt to monitor speech.

Justice Jackson ripped for worrying about the First Amendment 'hamstringing' government: 'Literally the point' (msn.com)


GI-LTVnWcAAVdz6?format=jpg&name=small

That's right you dumb bastard. The First Amendment is meant to do exactly that.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Participates
5.1  Greg Jones  replied to  Vic Eldred @5    one month ago

We had to know this was going to come from her, sooner or later. You can tell her deepest desire is to have a very liberal Court that eschews the Constitution and Bill of Rights

 
 
 
Jeremy Retired in NC
Professor Expert
6  Jeremy Retired in NC    one month ago
Are we going to be taking or sneaking in thousands of Haitian refugees?

My money is that they already have under the façade that they are "refugees".

 
 

Who is online

JBB


77 visitors