The article below isn’t just about Honduras, but, also, Haiti, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, and Ukraine. The term “banana republic” isn’t a mild description of a warm weather country where you’d like to visit, the derivation is more malignant than that; it’s a description of repressive brutal violent regimes who were supported and put in place by the US government. Only two of these countries could be literally considered banana republics, but the violent template laid many years ago in enforcing US government and multinational interests has been followed in every one of these countries in recent years.
Follow me down the rabbit hole into what really happened in Honduras, and also these other countries by clicking the link at the end
Hillary Clinton’s Six Foreign-Policy Catastrophes
Many commentators have mentioned (such as here and here and here and here) that Hillary Clinton left behind no major achievement as U.S. Secretary of State; but, actually, she did. Unfortunately, all of her major achievements were bad, and some were catastrophic. Six countries were especially involved: Honduras, Haiti, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, andUkraine. The harm she did to each country was not in the interest of the American people, and it was disastrous for the residents there.
Hillary Clinton at every campaign debate says “I have a better track-record,” and that she’s “a progressive who gets things done.” Here’s what she has actually done, when she was Secretary of State; here’s her track-record when she actually had executive responsibility for U.S. foreign-affairs. This will display her real values, not just her claimed values:
SUMMARY OF THE CASE TO BE PRESENTED
The central-American nation of Honduras is ruled today by an extremist far-right government, a fascist junta-imposed government, because of what Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama did in 2009. The lives of all but the top 0.001% of the population there are hell because of this.
On 28 June 2009, the Honduran military grabbed their nation’s popular democratically elected progressive President, Manuel Zelaya, and flew him into exile.
The AP headlined from Tegucigalpa the next day, “World Leaders Pressure Honduras to Reverse Coup,”and reported: “Leaders from Hugo Chavez to Barack Obama called for reinstatement of Manuel Zelaya, who was arrested in his pajamas Sunday morning by soldiers who stormed his residence and flew him into exile.”
Secretary Clinton, in the press conference the day after the coup, “Remarks at the Top of the Daily Press Briefing”, refused to commit the United States to restoration of the democratically elected President of Honduras. She refused even to commit the U.S. to using the enormous leverage it had over the Honduran Government to bring that about. Here was the relevant Q&A:
Mary Beth Sheridan. QUESTION: Madam Secretary, sorry, if I could just return for a second to Honduras, just to clarify Arshad’s point – so, I mean, the U.S. provides aid both under the Foreign Assistance Act and the Millennium challenge. So even though there are triggers in those; that countries have to behave – not have coups, you’re not going to cut off that aid?
SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, Mary Beth, we’re assessing what the final outcome of these actions will be. This has been a fast-moving set of circumstances over the last several days, and we’re looking at that question now. Much of our assistance is conditioned on the integrity of the democratic system. But if we were able to get to a status quo that returned to the rule of law and constitutional order within a relatively short period of time, I think that would be a good outcome. So we’re looking at all of this. We’re considering the implications of it. But our priority is to try to work with our partners in restoring the constitutional order in Honduras.
QUESTION: And does that mean returning Zelaya himself? You would insist on that in order to –
SECRETARY CLINTON: We are working with our partners.
She refused to answer the question, even though Zelaya had been an ally of the U.S., a progressive democrat. (Though Republicans decried Zelaya for pushing land-reform, the fact is that Honduras is virtually owned by two dozen families, and drastically needs to drag itself out of its feudal system. Doing that isn’t anti-American; it’s pro-American. It’s what Zelaya was trying to do, peacefully and democratically.
Our nation’s Founders fought a Revolution to overthrow feudalism – British – in our own country. Hillary was thus being anti-American, not just anti-democratic, here.) This is stunning. The U.S had even been outright bombed by fascists, on the “day that will live in infamy,” December 7, 1941; and, then, we spilled lots of blood to beat those fascists in WWII. What was that war all about, if not about opposing fascism and fascists, and standing up for democracy and democrats? A peaceful democratic U.S. ally had now been overthrown by a fascist coup in Honduras, and yet Hillary Clinton’s response was – noncommittal?
The coup government made no bones about its being anti-democratic. On July 4th of 2009, Al Giordano at Narcosphere Narconews bannered “Honduras Coup Chooses Path of Rogue Narco-State,” and he reported that,
“Last night, around 10 p.m. Tegucigalpa time, CNN Español interrupted its sports news programming for a live press conference announcement (‘no questions, please’) by coup ‘president’ Micheletti. There, he announced that his coup ‘government’ of Honduras is withdrawing from the Democratic Charter of the Organization of American States. … The Honduras coup’s behavior virtually assures that come Monday, the US government will define it as a ‘military coup,’ triggering a cut-off of US aid, joining the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, PetroCaribe, the UN and the rest of the world in withdrawing economic support for the coup regime.”
But that didn’t happen. The U.S. just remained silent. Why was our Secretary of State silent, even now?
It certainly couldn’t have been so on account of her agent on the ground in Honduras, the U.S. Ambassador to that country: he was anything but noncommittal. He was fully American, not at all neutral or pro-fascist.
Here was his cable from the U.S. Embassy, reviewing the situation, for Washington, after almost a month’s silence from the Administration:
From: Ambassador Hugo Llorens, U.S. Embassy, Tegucigalpa, Honduras, 24 July 2009.
To: Secretary of State, White House, and National Security Council.
“SUBJECT: TFHO1: OPEN AND SHUT: THE CASE OF THE HONDURAN COUP”
This lengthy message from the Ambassador closed:
The actions of June 28 can only be considered a coup d’etat by the legislative branch, with the support of the judicial branch and the military, against the executive branch. It bears mentioning that, whereas the resolution adopted June 28 refers only to Zelaya, its effect was to remove the entire executive branch. Both of these actions clearly exceeded Congress’s authority. … No matter what the merits of the case against Zelaya, his forced removal by the military was clearly illegal, and [puppett-leader Roberto] Micheletti’s ascendance as ‘interim president’ was totally illegitimate.
There’s much more at the link. This is going to be hard reading for some people, because of their party loyalty, but the fact remains that these are neocon like policies, and to overlook them because they’re approved by Democratic politicians is … I hate to say hypocritical, but I can’t think of a milder word
Just read, and make up your own mind