Just under a year ago, it will be recalled, a devastating earthquake killed as many as 230,000 Haitians. An estimated 1.5 million remain homeless. Since then, Haiti and the Haitians have suffered tropical storms, a hurricane, food shortages and a cholera epidemic. Haiti’s economy is estimated to have contracted by 8.5% this year. The total cost of the earthquake is put at around $8bn. Gross national income per capita is estimated at $660 and the life expectancy of a Haitian man is just 59 years. To top it all, badly organised and almost certainly corrupt presidential elections triggered deadly riots at the beginning of this month. A special electoral commission has been set up to review the situation and is supposed to be reporting about now. In my last post about Haiti, I asked ‘was there ever an unluckier people than the Haitians?’ I have thought of writing again about the terrible situation several times, especially when the Western media started to publish cynical stories about the aid circus and the self-serving futility of much of the aid work to date (see here, for example: a story about a charity that built a single house springs to mind). In a terrible twist the UN itself has come under attack for allegedly bring cholera to the island through its Asian peacekeeping soldiers, leading Ban Ki-Moon to announce the setting up of an independent panel to investigate the allegations. And all this is happening in a sort of electoral limbo. Two questions arise: what can we do and what have we done? The answer to the second question is that of the $5.3bn promised by big donors for 2010-11, only 12 per cent has been disbursed. My answer to the first question is that we should not allow the desperate situation in Haiti to slip back out of our consciousness and our consciences. Haiti had a ghastly history before the earthquake struck. If there was a silver lining in the terrible events of 12 January 2010 it was that we could no longer pretend we didn’t know.