Wednesday, December 01, 2010

More of the Same in Latin America


A friend writes:

Came across this and it reminded me of your posts. You could title the next one, State Department agrees with Notes from a Burning House...
It gives me little pleasure to have my suspicions partly confirmed by Wikileaks. Nonetheless, it has been interesting to read this cable analyzing the Honduras coup of 2009 in light of my own previous posts about this crisis, and the apparent U.S. support of the travesty. In the cable, our embassy in Honduras submits a pointed analysis. The coup was unconstitutional. The interim presidency of Roberto Micheletti had no constitutional basis. The correct process for hearing the complaints against President Zelaya, assessing guilt and deciding whether these would be impeachable offenses, would be in the judiciary, not the legislature. The abduction and exile of the president by the military echoes previous coups d'etat. The analysis is unambiguous. We now know what our top officials knew, and approximately when they knew it.

Under our laws, this required an immediate shutoff of nearly all aid to Honduras. Instead, one month after receipt of this cable, our Secretary of State was claiming that these events were hazy and difficult to understand. She had also invented a legal distinction that we had never made before, a distinction between a "military coup" and some other more general kind of "coup." The State Department stalled on any action because they said it was not clear whether this constituted a "military coup" (even though the president was rounded up by armed and uniformed soldiers, under the supervision of a general, and flown out of the country on a military plane).

Our President and our State Department failed to condemn the coup, calling instead for "negotiations" instead of the return of the democratically elected government, whose supporters were in the streets being arrested and killed; we failed to follow our own laws and implement full sanctions against the coup regime; and then we supported illegitimate elections conducted in an atmosphere of repression and terror. Our country says nothing about the continued political crisis and terror in Honduras. Our Secretary of State has been busy, instead, lobbying other countries in the hemisphere to recognize the successor and readmit Honduras to the Organization of American States.

The U.S. has a well-understood history of "regime change" in Latin America, and this document shows that, at the very least, the Obama government passively supported an illegal coup against a democratically elected (and popular) President whose major crime, we can guess, was leaning left.

As Joe Biden said during the 2008 U.S. presidential campaign: "That's not change. That's more of the same."

1 comment:

Nathan said...

More of this same is just yuck!