Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Honduras Coup, Act V, Day 1

Posted by Charles II on October 20, 2009

What you can do: E-mail Frank LaRue of the UN to protest press intimidation.

Mr. Frank La Rue
Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Fax: +41 22 917 9006
As of today, we enter Act V. Today there is no meeting between the Zelaya and the coup negotiators. The talks are deadlocked. The State Department will be forced to issue a statement within a few days. The coup can’t move openly because the UN human rights negotiators are in town, but they are assassinating people at a ferocious rate. The resistance will be extremely active because this the military can’t be too obvious about repression. I only wish that I could guarantee that this is the last act.

Channel 36: For the first time in many weeks, I am seeing people protesting without being enfiladed by troops. It’s a huge demo, but in a rural area. One of the grandmothers chants Olancho! A lady calls in to say that there was terrible repression in San Pedro Sula. Micheletti’s negotiators have been sitting alone at the Clarion Hotel all day. Coupista Wilma Morales speaks. She claims that things are different than have been reported in the press. Arturo Corrales went to the Brazilian embassy and they talked.

Nell has a post with this interesting point, among others [added: see here for source]:

A hundred members of the social-democratic party PINU, including several of their candidates, have denounced their presidential candidate’s support of the coup and will withdraw unless Zelaya is restored. Three weeks ago, 68 Liberal Party candidates announced their withdrawal en masse…

Dario Euraque’s story:

After a military coup in Honduras this past June, Trinity College Professor of History and International Studies Dr. Dario A. Euraque was illegally ousted from his position as Director of the Honduran Institute of Anthropology and History (IHAH)….

On July 13, 2009, the newly instated Minster of Culture Myrna Castro insisted that Euraque allow the Honduran army to keep its reserve forces in the former presidential palace, which also serves as home to the national archives. Euraque refused, claiming that Castro had no legal say over the matter.

“I challenged that,” said Euraque, “I told the reservists they couldn’t do what they wanted to do. I knew that sooner or later I would be dismissed.”

On August 20, 2009, Castro issued a dismissal letter to Euraque, but was told she had acted illegally since only the IHAH Board of Directors had that power. She then conspired to hold a secret meeting of the board on Sept. 1, and two days later Euraque was officially dismissed.

The government is slashing the budget 60%. Except for the military.

Tiempo: A decree limiting press freedom [PCM-M-016-2009] was finally repealed. But another decree exists that allows Conatel to repeal licenses at whim. Reporters without Borders says that Honduras ranks 128 out of 173 in press freedom. This is sort of like the Wolves Guild saying that Something Must De Done, because lambs are running short.

More evidence from Josh Rogan at the new neo-con Foreign Policy that the State Department is preparing to sell out all its principles:

Jim DeMint is ready to release his holds against two top administration Latin America appointees, the South Carolina senator told The Cable, and he predicts the State Department will soon recognize the upcoming Honduran elections as legitimate….DeMint is singularly holding up Shannon’s nomination to become ambassador to Brazil as well as the nomination of Arturo Valenzuela to take Shannon’s post. Shannon just returned from Honduras, where he met with de facto regime leader Roberto Micheletti as part of an Organization of American States delegation.

Sara Miller Llana of Christian Science Monitor:

Leticia Salomon, a sociologist at the National Autonomous University of Honduras, doubts the efficacy of church efforts at reconciliation,­ since residents perceive that both the evangelical and Catholic churches both supported Zelaya’s ouster, and said the media are just as mistrusted. A truth commission could help unify the country, she said. “Or this fight will continues for the rest of our lives,” Prof. Salomon said. “We need to recuperate the basic democratic principles of tolerance and plurality.”

State Department Bobblehead Theater performs, “Increasingly Tenuous Grasp on Reality,” Starring Ian Kelly

QUESTION: Anything on – anything new on Honduras?

MR. KELLY: Anything new on Honduras. Well, just to update you that the negotiations continue, that – between the two teams with the help of OAS officials. They’ve reached agreement on most aspects of the Guaymuras version of the San Jose Accords. There’s just one – there’s one article that remains a point of contention, and that’s Article 6, which deals with the restoration of individuals to positions that they had before June 28 – right? Yeah, that’s – most importantly, President Zelaya.

And we just urge the two sides to stick to it, and we urge the de facto regime in particular to help open a pathway for international support of the election by concluding the agreement. We believe that an agreement is – could lead to elections that are internationally recognized, and is ultimately the way out of this crisis, but —

QUESTION: Is there any meeting planned – several people from the Honduran electoral tribunal are going to be in town this week. Are they meeting with anybody at the State Department?

MR. KELLY: Oh, I’m not aware that they are.

Adrienne has tracked down some of the music videos of the resistance. I recommend watching and listening to them. They are what you hear again and again on Radio Globo and the images give a sense of place and people. The image above is from Honduras Resiste!

Allan MacDonald on Obama v. Wendy Avila, as translated by Miss Machetera.


6 Responses to “Honduras Coup, Act V, Day 1”

  1. Nell said

    Channel 36: For the first time in many weeks, I am seeing people protesting without being enfiladed by troops. It’s a huge demo, but in a rural area. One of the grandmothers chants Olancho!

    The demo was in Olancho? There’s been quite a bit of mobilization in outlying areas since the Sept. 6 national convention; I should go back and try to map it by days.

    We’re in for the long haul to the constituyente. The elections are pointless exercises; the country will be in crisis until there’s real change. So feel free to take some breaks…

    • Charles II said

      I am not sure where the demo was. I catch bits and pieces of Radio Globo and Channel 36, since I’m usually doing something else while listening.

      I agree with you that this is going to be an extended crisis. I’m hopeful that the UN mission will diminish the military’s interest in violence. I wish we could get a permanent mission.

  2. It will be interesting to see if the UN winds up siding with the bad guys the way it did in Haiti.

    • Charles II said

      I don’t think the UN Human Rights Commissioner has any responsibility for Haiti. Haiti is Minustah. UNHCR is Navi Pillay, recently appointed. The recent report from UNHCR says,

      Arbitrary arrests, unlawful police custody, ill-treatment and excessive use of force continue to be reported. Lack of technical expertise, poor communication, negligence and apparent corruption of judicial authorities are reportedly the source of numerous unlawful arrests, prolonged pre-trial detention and a low number of court decisions. Public distrust of the justice system has led many Haitians to avoid the formal court system and rely on informal methods, such as vigilantism,which further undermines the security situation.

      That’s not the incandescent prose I would use if I were writing it, but none of it is false. “apparent corruption”? Haw.

  3. Nell said

    Charles, I didn’t provide a link for the PINU news; it was at Vos el Soberano, which I have trouble loading on my dialup connection. [For videos, music, and “rich” sites, I use my partner’s machine with its cable connection. Eeeeventually, the plan is to get a router and move on up to the broadband world myself, but I don’t seem to want to do that badly enough to take the first steps to making it happen.]

    • Charles II said

      Thanks, Nell. I will add the link, which was easy to find.

      If you don’t like cable, consider DSL or satellite. High speed is, alas, necessary for many basic functions, though it compromises security, costs more, and delivers much more advertising as the price for speed.

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