❝ The Indians, Columbus reported, ‶are so naive and so free with their possessions that no one who has not witnessed them would believe it. When you ask for something they have, they never say no. To the contrary, they offer to share with anyone….″ He concluded his report by asking for a little help from their Majesties, and in return he would bring them from his next voyage ‶as much gold as they need … and as many slaves as they ask.″He was full of religious talk: ‶Thus the eternal God, our Lord, gives victory to those who follow His way over apparent impossibilities.″ Because of Columbus’s exaggerated report and promises, his second expedition was given
seventeen ships and more than twelve hundred men. The aim was clear: slaves and gold.
They went from island to island in the Caribbean, taking Indians as captives. But as word spread of the Europeans’ intent they found more and more empty villages. On Haiti, they found that the sailors left behind at Fort Navidad had been killed in a battle with the
Indians, after they had roamed the island in gangs looking for gold, taking women and children as slaves for sex and labor.❞
▬ Howard Zinn
A People’s History of the United States, 1492-Present, Chapter I