Honduras and Guatemala, two days in June

The murders of indigenous in Honduras, and of Berta Cáceres in particular bring to mind that date, 28 June 2009, first year of the US presidency of Barack Obama and his Secretary of State. On that date, the democratically elected President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya, was overthrown in a military coup with the full knowledge and acquiescence of the US. TeleSUR has a post on that event, Honduran Democracy Still in Crisis 7 Years After Coup, with an introduction that invites further reading,

Seven years after the U.S.-backed coup in Honduras, the Central American country’s democracy is still in crisis, epitomized perhaps most clearly by the recent murder of internationally-renowned environmental leader Berta Caceres. Assassinated after years of resisting unwanted corporate projects on Indigenous land and an onslaught of neoliberal policies and government repression in the wake of the coup, Caceres has brought global attention to the the fatal criminalization of political dissenters—with both U.S. funding and near total impunity—and grave human rights crisis in post-coup Honduras.

The current president JO Hernandez and his party had been implicated in a social security scandal.

And that other infamous date, 27 June 1954,  1954 CIA Coup in Guatemala Effects Still Being Felt Today, one main observation,

The “Guatemalan Spring”, as many refer to the 1944-1954 period, is the exception to the country’s history of state-sponsored exploitation, racism, repression, corruption and impunity. Putting an end to Guatemala’s only time period of real democracy was not, however, a mistake made by the U.S. It was a clear decision to put back in power the same undemocratic elites as before 1944. The CIA coup restored the country’s normal order that favors the economic and military interest of the dominant sectors of Guatemala and the U.S. It is an order kept in place through corruption, impunity and repression.

The recent president Otto Molina and his vice-president Roxana Baldetti (and others) have been indicted on corruption charges that include that (in)famous la Linea. (How long the judiciary could perform its duties unhampered is another question.)

The coup of 11 April 2002 in Venezuela would be short-lived, under two days. The attempted coups in Bolivia and Ecuador would fail, but succeed in Paraguay in 2012. In 2016, in Brazil, it is yet to be a fait accompli. Destabilisation of such countries seems a continual affair.

Such events should be borne in mind in considering the very recent statement from the US Secretary of State to the effect that, with regard to Brexit vote in Britain, as policy the US respects the voting decisions of a country’s voters – ignoring the US president’s st jurecent warning to the country to not vote Brexit. One thing, it is heartening to see that such self-serving utterances are increasingly being treated with the disregard, at least, that they deserve.

Yes, thanks to alternative media, increasingly popular and influential, ‘the narrative’ now has a short shelf life, as respect for ‘legacy’ corporate media continues to wane.


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