Category Archives: Latin America

Anything regional outside Honduras

First Honduras, now Ecuador?

Update 2010-10-01: The president was brought out from the Police Hospital by the military last night, after a firefight with the police that we could see on live TV here in Miami. There was never a declaration of a coup, and the whole things seems to have been nothing but a protest that went out of hand when someone fired a tear gas grenade in the face of the president. In that respect this event was of a completely different nature than last year’s events in Honduras.

In Honduras, the protests started with peaceful mass demonstrations, in which unarmed civilians dressed in white demanded that the president respect the constitution and the rule of law. At the same time, a judicial process was being carried out against the president in the courts. The first loss of life was many days after the president had been deposed, and then as a result of a deliberate stratagem to create a martyr, staged by the deposed president and his supporters.

In Ecuador the kettle immediately boiled over as a result of seemingly spontaneous protests by the police, and, weapons being fired, it caused the loss of lives on both sides the first day. Yet the situation is similar in many respects in the two countries. Both were members of ALBA, and both presidents were taking bribes from a foreign country, Venezuela (the so-called ALBA “loans”), thus potentially committing treason but at the very least a severe case of corruption.

Another similarity is that both presidents were pursuing policies that threatened the very existence of the popularly elected Congress, the ultimate voice of the people between elections: Zelaya by holding a referendum that would have opened the door for him to abolish the constitution, and Correa by threatening to abolish the Congress and rule by dictates. Anybody concerned with the rule of law and democratic institutions thus had reason to distrust the president in both countries.

Honduras painstakingly pursued a legal process to stop their president, peaceful protests coupled with a judicial process. It is the civilized way to do things.

Coup d’etats can never be justified, and that goes for autogolpes, too. If Correa insists in his plans he will be guilty of an autogolpe, but that in and of itself does not justify the police starting to riot in the streets. The deposing of a self-coupster has to be initiated in the proper democratic institutions, as was the case in Honduras. The rule of law cannot be defended by violating the rule of law.

Original text 2010-09-30: Yesterday I blogged about how Honduras could have started a new centrist trend in Latin America when the democratic institutions, led by the popularly elected Congress – got rid of an increasingly despotic president.

Today the fury of the masses was directed at Ecuador’s president Rafael Correa, who also is showing increasingly despotic traits. The president was taken to a hospital, allegedly injured by tear gas as police was protesting.

The word is that there is a strong sentiment among ordinary people that he has to go, but as I write this nobody has declared that he has been replaced. Perhaps it will, this time, stay at a strong warning sign for Correa, and not develop into a coup. Or maybe not.

At any rate, here is a reminder to him that no president is above the law:

Ceremonial Pajamas of the Republic of Honduras
The Ceremonial Pajamas of the Republic of Honduras is offered as a loan to Ecuador (or Nicaragua, or even Cuba), but they need to return it promptly after use in case it is needed again, I am told.

A friend was flying out today but the flight was cancelled when it was about to take off, as the military blocked the runway. Stay tuned.

Swedish Media: DN.

Chávez, ETA, cocaine, terrorism, and Medusa

Half a year after Zelaya was deposed as president in Honduras June 28, 2009, most Europeans had long since forgotten about it. Thinking it does not concern them.

They are wrong.

Honduras is one battlefield in a war. Perhaps one day we will be able to say that Honduras was the El Alamein, or the Stalingrad, of Hugo Chávez. However, most people are not even aware of what this is all about.

Basically, it is a conflagration of ideology and narcotics. Cocaine in this case.

Cocaine has several useful properties: It is extremely addictive; it makes the drug addict willing to take much larger risks than normally; it also makes him or her more willing to violate ethical, moral, and legal norms, including to commit murder; and due to being illegal, it can fetch a very high price.

Thus, cocaine is the commercial (although illegal) commodity of a business, while at the same time being a mind-altering drug that contributes to enable the people involved in the business to violate laws and moral norms.

However, most people cannot be made to act contrary to their deep-held moral beliefs regardless of drugs. That is where ideology comes in.

The ideology is the pretext, the excuse, that is required. It is the discourse that turns white to black and black to white, so that decent people can commit horrific acts without being destroyed by their conscience.

This is a network with links to governments, to guerillas/terrorists (depending on which side you are on), and to drug cartels. As written by Marianella Salazar, there are links between the FARC narco-guerilla in Colombia; the Chávez government in Venezuela; the ETA terrorist organization in Spain; and to Honduras.

Honduras is a critical point on the smuggle routes to North America. Since there is no road connecting South and North America, the drugs have to be transported either by boat or plane at least to Central America. A large number of such planes land in Honduras, and as has been reported in social media, reporting these flights to the proper authorities seems to have no effect – and may even be detrimental to ones longevity. Rumors from Honduras say that Zelaya was and remains involved. Half of all cocaine reaching the U.S. has passed Honduras according to recent estimates.

Another export from Venezuela goes to Europe. A recent study in Stockholm, Sweden, conducted by analyzing the sewage water, estimated that one in 1,000 were using cocaine. In London and Rome the percentage is higher.

The Europeans who use cocaine are also enabling the murders, the cynical use of people, the destruction of societies, and the perpetuation of poverty in Latin America.

It is not an organization but a network, which also branches out to Iran and islamist extremists and terrorists. It is a network that wants no attention to it. Journalists that get too close are murdered; Mexico has in 2010 taken the position as the most dangerous country in the world for journalists, with Honduras as second.

Just like Medusa this network has many tentacles, and if any journalist looks too closely at it, little will remain of him but a gravestone. To defeat this Medusa, potential consumers – i.e., future drug addicts – have to be educated, before they try the drug the first time, about the horrible monstrosity that is hiding behind the chemical. But then again, that means that journalists must look at the monster…

Betalda av FARC för att demonstrera för Zelaya

Uppdatering 21:15 ET – La Prensa rapporterar att det står helt klart att pengarna kom från FARC, gerillan i Colombia. Uppgifterna som avslöjar dessa pengars ursprung, och de svenska pansarskottens ursprung, kommer från en dator som erövrades från gerillan. Pengarna har använts för att transportera folk till gränsen mot Nicaragua, där Honduras har upprätthållt ett utegångsförbud sen fredag middag för att förebygga oroligheter.

Samtidigt rapporteras att allt fler grupper i Nicaragua vill att Zelaya skall ge sig därifrån eftersom det stoppar handeln längs en av de viktigaste transportvägarna i Centralamerika, speciellt viktig för Nicaragua eftersom det landet saknar hamn på Atlantsidan och är beroende av Puerto Cortéz i Honduras.

Ursprunglig text 16:00 ET – El Heraldo skriver idag om en anteckningsbok med uppgifter om utbetalningar till ledare för olika organisationer i Honduras, för att delta i demonstrationer för återinsättandet av Manuel Zelaya som president. Boken påträffades i en bil tillhörande sonen till Honduras FN-ambassadör. Den senare har fått visumet indraget för misstänkt terroristaktivitet. Ungefär hundrafemtio tusen dollar skall ha förts in i landet för ändamålet. De var avsedda för organisationer som organiserar arbetare i industri och jordbruk.

Summor som har betalats ut till ledare för olika organisationer, i US dollar, daterat den 24 juli 2009.