Democratic senators Fulton Amstrong and Peter Kuiten carried out preliminary evaluations of the government of president Porfirio Lobo Sosa, regarding advances in terms of human rights and citizen participation, to decide whether or not to provide economic assistance to the country.
Now, the first thing that pops out is that neither is a US Senator nor, probably, an elected official. “Fulton Amstrong” is almost certainly Fulton Armstrong, who can be compared to the older man in the photo from Tiempo:
Now, Fulton Armstrong is a very interesting man. Jeralyn Merritt assembled an excellent biography of him from material on the web. He is:
* A [former] senior CIA analyst
* [former] CIA National Intelligence Officer for Latin America with strong ties to Taiwan
* former legislative assistant and press secretary to House Banking Committee Chairman Jim Leach
* a Washingtonian who actually did one good thing: he refused to clear John Bolton’s testimony to Congress about Cuba’s non-existent biological weapons program
could be Quitton, Quiton, Quintin, Quinton or other variations. Still not a Senator. is actually Peter Quilter, who is a senior staffer on the House Foreign Relations Committee (thanks, Jesse F posting at Quotha), probably a Democrat, and formerly an Argentine national.
So, what is such a senior CIA official doing in Tegucigalpa? According to Tiempo, to “carry out an evaluation of the country conditions, of initiatives that are being undertaken (…) regarding the Truth Commission, the work that is being done with regards to human rights, and to get to know what is the thinking and vision of the new government” Or, as Adrienne says, they are building the conceptual Potemkin village to pretend that Honduras is actually a democracy.
Update: Guess who else is in town? Otto Reich arrived on April 9th, according to Adrienne. Otto Reich is a former Reagan-era propaganda apparatchik, School of Americas Board Member, assistant to terrorist Orlando Bosch, and adviser to the 2002 coup against Chavez, and Assistant Secretary of State.
Purely a coincidence, I’m sure.
And another coincidence. Pretendisent Lobo is, according to a piece by RAJ attempting to settle the Bajo Aguan land dispute, which has drawn eyes from human rights defenders across the world. The Pretendisent has appealed to the OAS, from which Honduras has been ejected, to send a commission to help negotiate. Also, it seems that 100 government tractors received from ALBA (or their keys, depending on who one listens to) have gone missing, along with “85 heavy earthmovers, 15 fumigators, and 15 planting machines,” also from ALBA.
Adrienne also has posted a long analysis by Annie Bird of Rights Action. One interesting allegation that popped out at me:
The US refused to classify the as coup a “military” coup, in spite of all reasonable legal analysis (including the State Departments own lawyers), so that it would not have to suspend aid.
The head of the legal office is Harold Koh. If he went along with this nonsense, shame on him.
Bajo Aguan has been heavily militarized, with 30 troop transports arriving. The people believe that the government plans to massacre people. By tow separate podcasts, Jhonny Rivas and Andres Pavon describe the militarization.