Pamela Bridgewater: Our Manifest Destiny?

A tongue in cheek piece ‘connecting the dots’ between the arrival of the US Ambassador to Jamaica and a bizarre sequence of events.

Jamaica Observer: Jamaica's Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks (left) presents US Ambassador Designate to Jamaica, Pamela Bridgewater, with a book of Jamaican poems entitled 'Soul Dance' by Jamaican author Jean Lowrie-Chin, when she paid a courtesy call on Ambassador Marks at the Embassy of Jamaica on Tuesday, August 24

From time to time I like to undertake what i call ‘Dot connection exercises’. For instance I couldn’t help but notice the sequence of events that preceded and followed the sensational charges recently levied against JLP Deputy Leader James Robertson. Can we read a pattern here?

Oct 29, 2010

Arrival of newly appointed US ambassador to Jamaica, Pamela Bridgewater. In her inaugural speech she announces her determination to fight corruption in Jamaica.

November 9

Someone spraypaints PNP graffiti all over the JLP stronghold of Tivoli Gardens.

Clovis, Jamaica Observer, November 10

According to a Gleaner article “Member of Parliament for West Kingston, Prime Minister Bruce Golding, is demanding answers from the police about who spray-painted pro-People’s National Party (PNP) graffiti on several premises in the communities of Denham Town and Tivoli Gardens Tuesday morning.”

In the days that followed speculation was rife as to who could have marked up the fortress of Tivoli in this manner; was it the residents themselves? was it the Police under whose watch the outrage had occurred?

“The one thing that I will dismiss is that the graffiti that was painted here was done by duppies from over the May Pen Cemetery,” Mr. Golding was reported by the Gleaner as saying.

Nov 14

The Sunday Herald publishes allegations that Deputy Leader of the  JLP, Senator James Robertson, took out a contract on the life of Ian Johnson, a loyal activist for the Labour Party. Everyone immediately starts casting aspersions on Johnson’s mental health. Why? A crazy person can’t be targeted for murder? Remember the saying Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you. Just saying… For reasons unknown, Clovis the Observer cartoonist has not yet produced a cartoon depicting this situation.

Nov 16

Montego Bay Mayor Noel Donaldson writes to Prime Minister Golding saying he has recieved death threats  from within the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP). He believes that Horace Chang interests are menacing him for supporting rival Christopher Tufton in the party’s leadership race.

On the same day “Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke who was scheduled to appear in a Manhattan federal court in New York on Tuesday, November 16th had his court appearance postponed. Officials did not give a reason for the postponement.

Nov 18

Olint boss former foreign exchange trader David Smith  was flown from a Turks and Caicos prison to to the US to face 24 charges against him. Pleads not guilty.

On the same day the JFJ (Jamaicans for Justice) calls on govt to correct 100 human rights abuses.

Nov. 19

It is announced that Jamaica has passed the next IMF test though a rocky road is predicted for the future. The last time Jamaica passed an IMF test was in May just before the Tivoli invasion and right after Bruce Golding announced his willingness to hand over Dudus to US federal authorities.

Las May, Sunday Gleaner, November 21, 2010

Also on November 19 there was an unexpected  lightning visit by the President of  Colombia. Newspapers report that:

President of the Republic of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos Calderón, hopes the strategies his country used to fight the drug cartel in his country will be of benefit to Jamaica’s crime problem.

Prime Minister Bruce Golding (left) converses with President of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos Calderón shortly after the laying of a wreath at the statue of South American liberator Simón Bolívar at National Heroes Circle yesterday. - Rudolph Brown/Photographer

What next? And do you, like me, detect the hand of the Americans behind all this? Could this be our Manifest Destiny? Is the US just cleaning up its backyard?

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