Honduras David against Global Goliath

As Mark Klugmann exposes in this blog, news today are story-boarded with images, and facts don’t matter. For half a year I have to little avail presented the facts about Honduras here, so let me now for a change present the comic strip version of it instead.

Joseph Stalin.
A young man grows up in a dictatorship.
Mel Zelaya.
He drops out from higher education and takes an interest in other things.
Hitler after the 1930 elections.
After democracy has been restored he is elected leader of the country.
Manuel Zelaya with Raul Castro (left) and Hugo Chávez (right)
He makes friends abroad.
Adolf Hitler starting an Autobahn project.
He gets very popular by starting infrastructure projects thus giving people work, and by putting more money in their pockets.
Adolf Hitler visiting the place where he wrote Mein Kampf.
However, he starts to openly defy the other branches of government.
A Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court orders his arrest for violating their explicit orders.
Police in Miami.
The arrest order is executed by the military, in agreement with the constitution of the country.
Instead of throwing him in jail they set him free abroad, flying him out on a military plane.
Instead of throwing him in jail they set him free abroad, flying him out on a military plane.
Swearing in ceremony.
An interim president is sworn in until the next general elections.
Mel Zelaya with Romeo Vasquez.
The military leadership gets prosecuted for allowing the president to escape justice.

Let’s hold it right there.

Is this a compelling story? Of course not. They prevented a dictatorship from forming, but this story-line is rather boring, and it does not fit into any pre-determined pattern.

For the one who bothers to study up on it, the events could be used as the script of a thriller, since the reality is more exciting than fiction in this case.

But it takes some work, and that’s perhaps the simple reason why media have reported the pre-determined fiction rather than the reality. (What makes it exciting is the reaction, rather than the events in and of themselves.) It sells more copy to tell about a brutal military dictatorship that slaughters poor and brave resistance fighters. Darn the truth. They are so willing to believe such stories, because they fit into their story-line, that they don’t care about fact-checking.

However, there are those who do fact-checking. A blogger in Honduras has tried to follow up as many alleged murders by police and military of resistance members as possible. The result is that with few exceptions, they fall into one of three categories:

1. The alleged victim is still alive.
2. The victim did not sympathize with the resistance, according to surviving family members.
3. The victim was not murdered by police or military, according to eye witnesses.

Out of a claimed murder count of 150 or so, there seem to be well under a dozen that are real. All of these are being investigated by the authorities.

Why does this matter? Because again, media is neglecting the factual question of whether there was a coup or not, and just presenting images (sometimes staged, according to several reports) that fit into the pre-determined story-line.

In this post-1984 world the reality does not seem to matter any more. Is that how we want to live from now on?

Here is the continuation:

The UN.
After hearing only one side of the story, while refusing to listen to the other, the whole world condemns the democratic institutions as coupsters, and demands the reinstatement of the would-be dictator.
Brother Obama and comrade Chavez.
A superpower and a neo-communist dictatorship tries to out-do each other in showing who can put most pressure on David to yield.
Obama and Chavez.
Neither one seems to realize the irony, given the previous rhetoric from both countries about the superpower staying out of the banana fields in its back yard.
Roberto Micheletti.
The interim president stands firm and says that nothing short of an invasion by Goliath can make his country yield.
Honduras national congress.
He is backed by the Congress, the Supreme Court, and by most of the country.
Law library icon.
Official legal reports conclude that he came to power legally, and that no coup d'état took place.
Obama spock.
But none of that matters to the Empire, whose president is only concerned about his weak left flank.
Zelaya in the Brazilian ex embassy.
Unable to understand facts, the left demands that the Empire intervenes and returns the would-be dictator to power.
David and Goliath.
"We know you are right, but we are stronger, and we will never yield," says Goliath, while David is pushing back.
What happens next is anybodys guess.
What happens next is anybody's guess.

Because that is where we are right now. It is down to a question of “huevos,” as they say in Spanish. Who has them, who grabs them, and so on. (Later addendum: An unconfirmed rumor has it that Micheletti said about Obama’s carrot-and-stick offer, “I will not sell my country for a serving of lentil soup.”)

Related: Conspiración contra Honduras; Constitutional Showdown in Argentina (with reference to Honduras). Swedish DN, GP, and SvD about the legal case.

Update 2010-01-16: I have now found out from  GP that the original news agency text from TT read approximately “The supreme court, congress, and private enterprise are supporting Zelaya”, but it was after 2 hours changed to “The supreme court, congress, and private enterprise supported the coup against Zelaya.” How TT could make such a 180 degree error in the first place is a good question.