Notes from the State Department protest yesterday

Having received false intelligence that some good friends from Honduras had arrived in DC, I dragged myself out of my up-all-night blogging stupor to bike across town to participant-observe the noon rally at the State Department. The first thing I noticed about the State Department: not bike friendly. Note to self: find DC Critical Mass.

Our independence vs. theirs

From http://www.voanews.com/english/2009-07-02-voa60.cfm :

"Although the OAS deadline for the restoration of the Honduran leader expires Saturday, a senior State Department official said that in practice, the diplomatic process will likely go on somewhat longer.

He cited in particular the difficulty of convening a special OAS meeting on Saturday, given that of the organization's headquarters borders on Washington's central mall which is the focus of the July 4 U.S. Independence Day observance."

Shakeup in the Honduran embassy in DC

Rodolfo Pastor, the new interim Honduran ambassador in DC and son of the renowned historian and Minister of Art and Culture Rodolfo Pastor Fasquelle (himself in hiding from the new dictatorship at last report), is calling it a coup. Ambassador Roberto Flores Bermudez, who on the phone told a group of protesters on Monday that he was against the coup, changed his mind. On Monday, he seemed to be hedging his bets; he only made the statement in a clearly shaking voice after making them wait several hours outside the embassy--I was there, I witnessed several citizens being denied entry to the embassy and heard Flores's statement clearly on speakerphone. Flores also came to shake hands with the anti-coup protesters as the OAS on Tuesday, ignoring the small pro-coup group, before somewhat abruptly and dramatically changing his position. Pastor is a principled man, and I am quite confident that he will not change his mind. However, I am not sure about the stability of his position, since he doesn't represent the Coup government or the money.

One thing you can do

Please pester the State Department: 202-647-4000 or 1-800-877-8339
and the White House: 202-456-1111
asking for
1. A cut off of all US aid (as required by US law) until Zelaya is safely returned to office.
2. Financial sanctions against the coup plotters.

From Democracy Now! today:
US Suspends Military Cooperation with Honduras

Leticia Salomón's excellent anatomy of the coup

This needs to be translated into English. If someone has already done so, please let me know ASAP- this will take me some time, otherwise.

HONDURAS. POLÍTICOS, EMPRESARIOS Y MILITARES: PROTAGONISTAS DE UN GOLPE ANUNCIADO
Leticia Salomón

A. LOS HECHOS

1. LA DETENCIÓN Y EXPATRIACIÓN DEL PRESIDENTE

Executive Decree 011-2009

Executive Decree 011-2009, signed by "President" Micheletti on June 30th, stipulates the following:

  • Suspension of individual liberty
  • Legalizes incommunicado detention for more than 6 days
  • Bans freedom of association and street protests
  • Prohibits free movement within Honduran national territory
  • Anyone can be arrested without a judicial order
  • Police and military can enter in any home at any time without a judicial order

Pictures from yesterday's repression in Tegucigalpa--please distribute

[disclaimer- I did not take these; I am in DC. They were sent to me from a close friend in Teguz. I am waiting to hear whom--if anyone--I should thank for them]




You are calling ME ignorant? YOU?

I had been considering going to Honduras myself to try to parse this all out for myself, and of course, in solidarity. But I also am wary of engaging in disaster tourism or cultivating a savior complex. Luckily, other intrepid reporters have no such qualms--thank goodness for MB (and I don't mean the Muslim Brotherhood, if you're wondering). So I'll continue writing from here. And for "real" reporting, please see the links recommended in my earlier post.

good Honduras resources

CounterPunch, as usual: http://www.counterpunch.org/kozloff06292009.html
...and Nikolas Kozloff (author of the above article)'s blog: http://www.senorchichero.blogspot.com/
and as Kara pointed out, my good friends at Upside Down World: http://upsidedownworld.org/main/
and don't forget continuing great coverage at Democracy Now! http://www.democracynow.org/ --Yesterday's program featured my dear friend, well-known human rights activist Dr. Juan Almendares.

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