The crisis in Honduras moves into its third week. Talks scheduled today for Costa Rica between the government of Roberto Micheletti and representatives of deposed president Manuel Zelaya appear to have broken down.
The sticking point remains the demand for the return of Zelaya to presidential office. While mediating President Oscar Arias, the U.S., Venezuela’s populist authoritarian president Hugo Chavez, and even Raul Castro demand it, the Micheletti government remains adamant in defense of the constitutionality of its actions, while the Supreme Court balks at amnesty for Zelaya’s crimes.
New evidence reported in the Washington Times states Zelaya’s closest aide made multi-million dollar cash withdrawals from the central bank shortly before June 28. The money was reportedly to be used to support the unauthorized referendum vote that was the cause of Zelaya’s removal from office.
Zelaya vows to return to Honduras in the next few days, increasing the chances of bloodshed and political instability. Zelaya’s return will breed the politics of polarization, Marxian class struggle, and the radical brew of leftist/revolutionary doctrine and practice that accompanies the advance of Hugo Chavez and his militants in Latin America.
For a recent glimpse of what rule by Chavez means, one can read New York Times reporter Simon Romero’s hard-hitting look at Chavez’s home state of Barinas in Venezuela, now a personal fiefdom of the Chavez family, or at the latest Government Accountability Office Report on drug trafficking in Venezuela.
It remains a sad irony that the Obama Administration’s toughest diplomatic efforts to implement sanctions and exert direct pressure in the name of “democracy” in its first six months in office are being directed not against Iran, North Korea, Burma, Cuba, or Zimbabwe, but toward Honduras, a poor, friendly, vulnerable nation in Central America.