When the obvious is the enemy of the true

“In cases of this kind, the obvious is the enemy of the true,” Gabriel Stolzenberg wrote in a reply in the Science War debate. The quote is very appropriate for the events in Honduras the last year.

When then-president Manuel Zelaya was thrown out by the military on June 28 2009, it was an “obvious” “military coup d’état.” It was so “obvious,” that for the majority of observers it has been absurd to even consider the possibility that it was something else. In fact, anybody who even entertained the idea that one should analyze the legal facts would typically be labeled a “golpista” (coupster), and all debate would stop before it started.

This mentality even reached the highest hall of the world, when the General Assembly of the United Nations condemned the events as a coup d’état without even listening to the democratic institutions of Honduras.

In my book Atlantis from a Geographer’s Perspective – Mapping the Fairy Land I spent some ink on the issue of how to analyze observations and use logic, and how not to fall for terms whose meanings we don’t understand (which was a key point of criticism by Alan Sokal in a Science War argument to which Stolzenberg responded with that dictum). I also pointed out that the greatest threat in science is that we fall prey to our assumptions, and that life is not different from science. To say that the obvious is the enemy of the true is another way of putting it. Also I saw it as an obvious military coup d’état, but following my own advice, when I heard claims that it was a legal maneuver, I went to the bottom of it, sought out legal documents from Honduras, and concluded that indeed it was not a coup. In fact, it was an anti-coup; they stopped a coup d’état.

The real truth about the events of Honduras is that there are dark forces at play, hidden agendas that have not been brought sufficiently to light because so many don’t look beyond the “obvious.”

Amazingly, even the new president of Honduras, “Pepe” Lobo, seems to have had a blind eye until now. Last week he said about the land conflict in lower Aguán, “I think that behind all of this there is a political interest in some sector to generate a problem for this government … to damage it using the theme of human rights.” The interim president, Micheletti, was acutely aware of how the enemies of the Constitution tried to stage conflicts and force a reaction from the state, so that the (legitimate and necessary) response could be portrayed as human rights violations, but Pepe Lobo apparently has not understood what went on in his own country while he was running for president. He seems to have been quite naive, at least until now.

The first task of the president is to defend the nation, but to do that he or she has to understand the nature of the threat. Honduras’s threat now is of a revolution. Those involved in the land occupations are trying to divide the people and force the government to use force, so that some segment of the population will be misled to believe that it is an illegitimate government, and join in a revolution against it. The land conflict in lower Aguán is the center stage for that fight. The goal is expressly stated as overthrowing the form of government; it is not a conclusion or inference on my part, it is what the self-labeled “resistencia” openly says.

Until now I have wondered what in the world Pepe has been up to, but with this news it seems clear. He has not understood the nature of the conflict.

Fortunately, he has realized now what an ugly game is being played against him, and that he needs third party observers who can get the truth out, so that the “obvious” cannot continue to suppress the “true.” Better late than never.

Of course, Pepe needs to vamp up every aspect of the justice system. He promised more prisons, but the country also needs better resources in the courts, prosecution, investigation, and police. Crucially, the police must have popular support, so any hint of corruption must be dealt with. In a country where everyone knows that you can bribe a policeman to avoid a traffic citation, that is a huge mountain to climb.

In my opinion, president Lobo needs to raise his ambition level by many notches, and fast.

The Narco-Marxists Continue Spreading Propaganda

With 9 months having passed  since the attempted coup d’état by Honduras’s president Manuel Zelaya, the narco-marxists are continuing to spread ever more far-fetched propaganda on the “internets”. They whitewash the patently illegal attempted coup d’état, and they portray it as an attempt by the people to rewrite the constitution.

This is the reality in brief: Zelaya was violating direct orders from the (democratically legitimate) Supreme Court, and the popularly elected and democratically legitimate Congress replaced him after the Supreme Court had issued an arrest order for him. There is no such thing as a “golpista Congress” or a “golpista Supreme Court”, nor a “golpista election”, since all those things were democratically and constitutionally created before Zelaya was arrested.

And also since there was no successful “golpe de Estado”, only a failed attempt by Manuel Zelaya. If you call that a golpe by the Supreme Court and the Congress, as some narco-marxists do, then you are in effect calling the people of Honduras golpistas. To which many have responded, “con mucha honra” (i.e., they are proud of what their democratic institutions did, regardless of what label is being put on it).

The narco-marxist strategy now is to continue trying to overthrow the form of government in Honduras. This is of course sedition, and people are being arrested for sedition. Which goes to show that there is no reason for the state to use extra-judicial methods against them; they are violating laws that are on the books, and they can be dealt with legally. This is another argument why the murders are more likely to be drug-related than political. The narcos have a lot to win on murdering people, the government nothing.

I wonder what twisted mind named the website with pro-Chavez propaganda that I linked to above “Narco News”. They sure don’t seem to be against the narcos, and the only other reason to name it so seems to be that they are with the narcos. It definitely matches their message, as they argue the side that seemingly helps the drug cartels. What is it they say about chickens?

With friends like these, who needs enemies?

A video taken from USAmerican helicopters in modern warfare in Baghdad 2007 was made available on YouTube a couple of days ago. For some reason they have classified it as somehow dangerous – even though it is just a kind of military home video. Not at all any fake violence, just the reality. If you ever wondered what really is going on in these wars, here’s your chance to find out.

Medical evacuators moments before being shot from a gunship. USAmerican soldiers on an Apache helicopter are aiming a 30 mm gun at a minivan who came in to evacuate a wounded journalist from Reuters. They asked permission to fire and got it. They falsely claimed that they were removing bodies and weapons, while in reality they were evacuating a wounded person. Does not this qualify as Crime Against Humanity?
Medical evacuators moments before being shot from a gunship. USAmerican soldiers on an Apache helicopter are aiming a 30 mm gun at a mini-van that came in to evacuate a wounded journalist from Reuters. The gunship asked permission to fire and got it. They falsely claimed that the people on the ground were removing bodies and weapons, while in reality they were evacuating a wounded person. Does this qualify as a Crime Against Humanity?

Click the photo to watch the video (you need to log in or create an account; they apparently don’t want anonymous persons to see this). Be advised that the first part has no talk or music, it sounds like noise. But keep watching until the video comes, if you dare. It is very disturbing to see how they enjoy killing. Although not surprising. War has always done that to people, just read the Iliad. There is a reason why we cannot accept war as a political tool, and why those who violated International Law must be prosecuted, especially the commander in chief.

Link to the Collateral Murder website.

Update 2010-04-06: The UK paper Morning Star writes today that the brother of the slain Reuters photographer Namir Noor-Eldeen, claims that he was out documenting the violations of the USAmericans against the Iraqi people. This raises the possibility that they were set up, targeted on purpose. Especially considering how it has been documented by WikiLeaks that the US military is an enemy of freedom of information.

Update 2010-07-07: The US military has now announced charges against Private First Class Bradley E. Manning for leaking this video. No charges have to my knowledge been announced against those who killed the people on the ground for sports.

Journalist flees Honduras after threats

The Committee to Protect Journalists reports that Honduran journalist José Alemán fled the country on Sunday after threatening attacks on March 28. A phone call with insults came 20 s after he read news about a gunfight between the police and local criminals. The caller told him “keep reporting the news you son of a b…”, with the unspoken implication “and you will pay for it”. His home was also broken into and shots fired in his bedroom, but Alemán was not there; he had fled to a police station after a car tried to run him off the road as he was biking. He stayed in the police station for the rest of the day and then left the country.

The information came from staff at the newspaper Diario Tiempo, who insisted on being anonymous for their own safety. Alemán worked for Radio America and also wrote for the Tiempo and La Tribuna newspapers, according to Tiempo, but the article in La Tribuna is allegedly taken from “http://www.radiomundial.com.ve/” (a domain that did not work at the time of writing this) and the newspaper acts as though it did not know José Alemán. Perhaps they are afraid of also being attacked. If so, the intimidation is very effective.

Reporters Without Borders now write that Honduras is the world’s most dangerous country for journalists. It passed Mexico on that spot. It already was the country with the highest murder rate per capita.

The Honduran president is caught between a rock and a hard place. Some want to isolate the country due to the high level of criminality unless the president takes action against it. At the same time, forceful action against the criminality has been interpreted as proof for the notion that it was a military coup last year.

In my opinion this latest case in March is in line with my hypothesis (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) that the perpetrators of most of this extreme violence are the drug cartels. Unfortunately they are accomplishing their objective: The Honduran press has largely stopped reporting on it. It is now up to international bloggers and social media to spread the news. The press cannot be relied upon due to the intimidation.

And please, don’t isolate Honduras, Spain and others. You are just giving the drug lords what they want if you do.