An blog by a member of the Catholic peace movement, Pax Christi, to explore the nexus between contemplation and resistance. "The Christian must discover in contemplation, and in the giving of his life, those symbolic actions which will ignite the people's faith to resist injustice with their whole lives, lives coming together as a united force of truth and thus releasing the liberating power of the God within them." - James Douglass, Contemplation and Resistance.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The U.S. Game in Honduras

Clinton's words should send chills down the spine of lovers of peace, "I’m very pleased to announce that we’ve had a breakthrough in negotiations in Honduras. I want to congratulate the people of Honduras as well as President Zelaya and Mr. Micheletti for reaching an historic agreement." Zelaya and Micheletti have signed an agreement following the intervention in Tegucigalpa of a high-level delegation from the US State Department.

As might have been anticipated by readers of this blog, the terms of the agreement will consolidate the central aims of the coup, while betraying the political and social demands of those who have resisted the coup, suffering violent state repression for these past four months.

The background of this agreement are the persistent efforts to support the coup leaders by the U.S. State Department. "There is ample evidence that the Obama administration was deeply involved in plans by Zelaya’s opponents within the Honduran ruling elite—sections of business, the military, the political establishment and the Church—to destabilize or topple his government. The New York Times on Tuesday cited an unnamed US official as saying that US Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Thomas Shannon and US Ambassador to Honduras Hugo Llorens spoke to 'military officials and opposition leaders' in the days before the coup. He said, 'There was talk of how they might remove the president from office, how he could be arrested, on whose authority they could do that.'
...
It appears that the Obama administration was seeking to effect a de facto coup, but without a direct use of the military and under the cover of constitutional legality. That would, it hoped, reverse Washington’s declining influence in Latin America and pave the way for an offensive against Chávez and his left nationalist allies in Nicaragua, Bolivia, Ecuador and other countries aligned with Venezuela in the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas." - "HONDURAS: What Deal? The Fat Lady has Many Sisters", Oct. 30, 2009

The purpose of Obama's coup in Honduras is to reverse the erosion of U.S. corporate hegemony in Latin America due to rising people's power movements that have profoundly altered the political landscape.

Here are some salient points made by Pastors for Peace:

"● Any agreement that restores President Zelaya to office without giving him control over the military — the same military that carried out the coup! — is a victory for the coup forces, or an outright trap.

● While the two parties have signed an agreement, the demands of the Honduran people — for a constitutional assembly and the restoration of democracy and constitutional law — have not been addressed.

● The agreement does not create space for free and fair elections. In fact it directly aligns the coup military with the Supreme Electoral Commission appointed by Micheletti. (This same Supreme Electoral Commission was just invited to Washington, DC last week by right-wing Cuban-American Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), where they testified to Congress that “nothing has changed” in Honduras since the coup.)

● The agreement has not ended the repression and human rights violations; and it remains to be seen whether repression will intensify in the days to come."

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