A member of Conan O’Brien’s production crew was mugged in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, while the talk show host was filming a politicized segment attempting to prove the island nation is “beautiful and safe.”
Conan O’Brien made the trip to Haiti in response to allegations that President Trump had called Haiti a “shithole,” prompting a slew of liberal celebrities, including O’Brien, to attempt to prove otherwise.
While the “artfully selected” images beamed onto American television screens may have gone some way to convincing Conan’s viewers that Haiti is safe, the “nightmare” experience suffered by his production crew in the Haitian capital suggests the troubled nation may not be as safe as Conan wants us to believe.
Describing a “night on the town” in Port-au-Prince during the trip, one member of Conan’s production crew wrote, “I was walking from one bar to other looking for the gang because I lost them for a few minutes. Pitch black. Footsteps behind me. Two guys link arms with me on either side… weird, I think, but I’m an open-minded guy, and before I can ask my new friends where we are skpping to, a third guy fondles my dongles [empties his pockets]. Then all three run down a side alley. Gone. Final thoughts: that was the most impressive way I ever got my shit ganked.”
For what it’s worth, Conan didn’t tell his viewers about the experience of his production staffer, but he did tell his followers that Haiti “is truly a beautiful country” while staying safe and sound at a luxury resort that features 24-hour security in the form of armed guards, far away from the lives of real Haitians dealing with daily life.
— Conan O'Brien (@ConanOBrien) January 21, 2018
During his trip, O’Brien stayed at the luxury Wahoo Bay Beach Resort, where an idyllic photograph of the talkshow host was taken, prompting users on Twitter to show O’Brien pictures of the rest of the country.
Also Haiti. pic.twitter.com/V7x3DZmczq
— Jared (@heyitsjerd) January 21, 2018
Ikr?? So purty pic.twitter.com/ZY6NDxC6GF
— Jin @ Archimedes Diet (AX Hype!!!) (@IllegalOpinion) January 21, 2018
— Dissident Patriot ن (@disspat) January 22, 2018
Hei fweinds, Haiti rily is so beautiful. pic.twitter.com/1i8e4zRic7
— Jared (@J66281014) January 21, 2018
Now go to non-tourist parts of Haiti without a private security team…
— Paul Sacca (@Paul_Sacca) January 22, 2018
In another post, O’Brien gave a man a MAGA parody hat that read “Haiti Is Great Already,” despite the fact that in 2015, Haiti was listed as the twentieth poorest country in the world.
According to Business Insider, the average annual income in the country in 2013 was $1,358.10, while the official US Department of State travel website warns citizens to “reconsider” travelling to the country due to the fact that, outside of the secure and protected luxury resorts, “Violent crime, such as armed robbery, is common.”
This isn’t the first time Conan O’Brien has attempted to make poor nations look wonderful. He previously traveled to communist Cuba and painted a rosy picture of the island despite the suffering of millions of Cubans under the Castro regime.
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