Sunday, November 29, 2009

Honduran voting begins

The people of Honduras began voting just a short while ago, though strangely enough the "virtual observer" cameras at the Tribunal Supremo Electoral all show empty rooms.

As of now, there is a grand total of five countries that have expressed willingness to recognize the results. My hunch is that if the day appears relatively peaceful, more government will follow suit, though of course that is very much up in the air.

Abstentions will also play a part, but I also think they would have to be extremely high for it to scare off potential recognizing governments. However, a high rate of abstentionism will put more pressure on the president-elect to deal with the issue of Mel Zelaya's overthrow instead of trying to pretend it didn't happen.


Anonymous,  9:47 AM  

There will be much more than 5. Most want this over and the elections remain the best way to do that. Watch for Mexico.

Slave Revolt,  10:23 AM  

Insane. The political crisis will not be over until real democratic progress has been achieved.

Note to Anon: the military kidnapping an elected president that strived to adress the needs of the historically oppressed is not "democratic": unless you are the type that equates oligarchy with democracy, a truly Orwellian delusion.

There is currently huge amounts of energy directed toward terrorizing the popular sectors in Honduran society.

The struggle is only beginning--no matter what the anti-democratic forces that think 'might makes right' have to say about it.

These are the same folks that supported the decades of rightwing deathsquad terror in the Americas. You can't trust their judgement, because their souls are poisoned.

Anonymous,  1:19 PM  

Insane is denying Zelaya created this mess.

Time to move one. Zelaya lost.

Tambopaxi 7:20 PM  

I agree with Anon 9:47. Zelaya started this and the elections are Honduras' way of moving on. Just about every country in the region will eventually recognize election results and the new Honduran government, with the exception of the ALBA countries.

Slave Revolt,  8:01 PM  

Tamponopaxi, you have consistently ignored and down-played the coup and the repression.

Of course you would like everyone to forget about the terrorized, the beaten, and the dead--the media oppression and the pressure on indigenous and humanrights organizations.

You are essentially pro-facist and anti-democratic. And this is why nobody trusts your judgement or instincts. You are aligned with oppression--but as long as you are getting paid....

Randy Paul 8:18 PM  


On several occasions I've asked you to address the credible allegations of human rights abuses committed by the Micheletti government as reported by Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International and you have assiduously ignored them.

Why should we value your opinion on this? It's just the flip side of Leftside trashing Yoani Sanchez.

Justin Delacour 9:31 PM  

Just about every country in the region will eventually recognize election results and the new Honduran government, with the exception of the ALBA countries.

Uh, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, El Salvador and Guatemala don't belong to ALBA.

Anonymous,  9:01 AM  

If you think that Lobo's government will be denied international recognition for very long by aforesaid countries you are delusional. Only from stubborn pride and a lack of economic or humanitarian interest in Honduras will some remain on the sidelines. Lobo is a new president with a bigger democratic mandate than Zelaya in 2005. If he shows himself to be a statesman, releasing Zelaya from his internal exile, releasing Brazil and others from their singular position, and lastly he releases the Honduras body politic from the crisis itself, new relations will open up within a year. Amnesty, a free press and the end of the repressive apparatus will go a long way to restoring foreign aid programs and diplomatic relations. The neighbors may need a face saving formula as their current position is untenable unless maintained by seeming OAS unanimity (or financial support). That illusion of unanimity has been shattered. One thing this crisis has demonstrated is that despite the seeming common position, there has always been disagreement just below the surface. Many countries were uncomfortable having their diplomatic positions determined by the conflict over Mel Zelaya. Mexico, Canada, Peru, Colombia will soon follow Panama, US and Costa Rica. The EU and OAS common positions will come undone sooner rather than later.

Tambopaxi 9:56 AM  

Guys, Let's get something straight: I don't think I've ever commented, ever, on human rights abuses, one way or the other, in Honduras. There ar allegations of human rights abuses by the Micheletti government, and I think that the allegations should be investigated. The Guaymuras Accord set up a the Truth Commission to investigate these and other charges, and I say, go ahead, do so, and let the chips fall where they may; if there was wrong doing, charge someone.

What each and every one of you willfully ignore (with the exception of Anon 9:47) is that human rights and anti-democratic struggles are not the point - at least they're not the Hondurans' point, they're YOUR (gringo) point.

The Hondurans' point is that Honduras as a country and a people is content to put Zelaya behind them because they had him pegged for what he is, a buffoon and a wannabe Chavez. Despite sporadic violence initiated by the Zelaya backers, the interim government and the people continued on, and as I predicted here some time ago, they turned out to vote, not just for their candidate of choice, but for the continuance of moderate and stable democracy in Honduras. In essence, they didn't freak out like you have; they realized that Zelaya was bad news, and they tossed him out.

The anger, bile, and venom of some of the comments here (and in other blogs) on what's happened (or not, depending on your point of view) is striking - and as far as I can tell, it's because Honduras and its people haven't done what you want them to do...

"Insane"? "Poisoned souls?" "Human rights abuses"? "Repression, violence, and fear"? Please; I look at these words and I think, petty, spiteful, petulant and vindictive, and ultimately, sad - and again, all because Honduras didn't do what you wanted. Thinking about it, your attitudes are just another case of gringo imperialism regarding people down here, where (their) reality collided with (your) fantasies, and reality won. A case of magical realism indeed...

I mean, really, people, what do any of you know about Honduras? Have any of you lived there? Have any of you even BEEN there? Probably not, because it's usually the ones who know the least about the country, who become righteous, instant, opinionated, patronizing "experts" when something happens that's not to your liking; it's amazing what RSS feeds do to people (I'm thinking of the raj/rns blog in particular as I write this)..

To be clear about something, Randy, Greg, Boz, I enjoy reading your blogs and I've learned things about the region (LA) from your blogs, and on occasion, as you know, I've disagreed with you, as is the case in point here. When I do disagree with you, it's not because I'm a "paleocon" (as Randy once qualified me) who lives in an ideological straight-jacket, but because I've lived down here in LA for 33 years in eight different countries (including 61/2 in Honduras), and after a while, you get to think like the folks down here. That's why I'm telling you that Hondurans don't care, in the main, about Zelaya, and why eventually, as I've said, most countries in LA will recognize the elections and the Lobo government..

I'll stop here and won't bother explaining mas about this. I would ask though, that you all not categorize me as paleocon or a deluded backer of fascist oligarchs, etc., simply because I disagree with you. It's not wise (as in, you have no idea who I am or what I've done down here), and at the risk of sounding old-fashioned, it's just not courteous.

Randy Paul 12:27 PM  

Where did I call you a paleocon?

As for dealing with human rights abuses, that's hardly a gringo position. May I reminder you that among other treaties, Honduras has ratified the Convention Against Torture, the Covenant for Civil and Political Rights, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Disctrimination Against Women, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Civil Rights, the Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the Convention on the Rights of the Child (you may remember the young man shot to death for shouting "Golpistas" at the police), as well as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

I find your tone, frankly, patronizing. Gringo imperialism? Sounds like what I'd expect from an acolyte of Castro, only from the starboard side.

Slave Revolt,  7:13 PM  

Tamponpaxi, I have lived in Honduras, and I have many friends in the country (some of whom are now in hiding because of the repression and terror).

Your calculus as to who makes up the "Honduran people" is very biased by your class position and ideology. The repression is well documented, and you are an outright apologist for this barbarity.

Zelaya is the legitimate president of Honduras, and your rhetoric shows that you are simply a pro-facist extremist. I am certain that you would have supported the dictatorships and the deathsquads that defined Latin America decades ago.

You are essentially anti-democratic to the core. None of the US-educated rhetoric that you deploy departs from your anti-humanist worldview.

Tampon, you are an ass-kisser to the biggest thugs on the block--a whore in every sense of the word.

It gives me great pleasure to read your whining as the little people assert themselves by electing and supporting governments that put a check on imperialism and oligarchy.

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