Just a couple of quick updates today. Thousands of people are still in the streets of Tegucigalpa, protesting the coup government and calling for the unconditional return of President Zelaya. A variety of different non violent actions are being taken by protesters, including shutting down major roadways, striking and maintaining a popular resistance front to keep people unified against the coup government. There are reports of over 600 detentions by the armed forces of Zelaya supporters.
On Thursday - tomorrow - President Oscar Arias of Costa Rica will host the first "negotiation" meeting between President Manuel Zelaya and several of the individuals who ousted him in the military coup on Sunday, June 28. Zelaya denounced earlier today that the coup leaders are sabotaging the negotiation efforts. The coup leader, Roberto Micheletti, has stated that he won't - under any circumstances - allow President Zelaya to return to power as president of Honduras. This kind of complicates things. The whole point here is to assure Zelaya's return to the presidency, so Micheletti's hardline stance makes that difficult.
The question still remains as to why negotiations - imposed by the United States - are even taking place. By giving the coup government equal participation in a "dialogue" to find a solution, their illegal actions are being legitimized. This creates a dangerous and unacceptable precedent for other undemocratic groups seeking to remove their elected leaders from power and then "negotiate" a resolution, gaining ground politically and weakening the democratic system. The opposition to President Chávez in Venezuela is already trying to play this up by calling on the Organization of American States (OAS) to intervene in their favor, since they claim human rights and constitutional guarantees are being violated by the government. Despite this not being true, the opposition in Venezuela is using Honduras as an example to attract attention.
For example, a leader of the April 2002 coup against President Chávez, Antonio Ledezma, now the mayor of greater Caracas (don't ask), went on a hunger strike at the OAS offices in Venezuela just days after the coup in Honduras. His purpose was to demand the OAS intervene in Venezuela as it has done in Honduras. Today he ended his strike after a ridiculous 6-day show. He did get a phone call, allegedly, from OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza, stating he would look into the mayor's complaints.
And the president of Globovision, the most rancid, anti-Chávez television station in Venezuela, also heavily involved in the April 2002 and ongoing media war (Globovision is a thousand times worse than Fox News Network, if you can fathom that), was received yesterday afternoon by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the State Department offices, just after she gave her press conference on her meeting with President Zelaya of Honduras. Alberto Federico Ravell, president of Globovision, together with Leopoldo Castillo, the moderator of the station's most biased, hateful program (like a million times worse than the O'Reilly Factor), were given a 20 minute interview with Clinton and a photo op, which they are drooling over and repeating nonstop. This meeting is clear evidence of the State Department's (Obama Administration's) support for hate-TV Globovision and the Venezuela opposition. Globovision has become the new political party of the opposition.
Obama's first 6 months as president are not looking well in Latin America. From down here, we are seeing the same old folks engaging in the same old intervention and domination tactics. Luckily, Latin America is not the same old backyard of the United States. The people's movements here have risen up and are alert and holding ground against the imposition of US imperialism and aggression.
Stay tuned for the outcome of tomorrow's meetings in Costa Rica. Oh, and I do have some more goodies coming soon regarding the U.S. role in the Honduran coup...the old gang is back!