This article is based on an opinion piece in today’s Wall Street Journal by Mary Anastasia O’Grady. I am not linking to the article because the full article is not available without a subscription.
In November 2009, Honduras voted for a new President. In June 2009, President Manuel Zelaya was removed from office by the military because he was planning to ignore the term limits provision in the constitution in order to seek another term. Roberto Micheletti was installed as temporary President and the election was scheduled. Friends of President Zelaya such as the Castro brothers and Hugo Chavez protested that the arrest of President Zelaya was a military coup. The left demanded a ‘truth commission’ in an attempt to bolster their claims.
The truth commission was formed under the Organization of American States (OAS) and its report was released earlier this month. The report did not provide the results President Zelaya and his allies were looking for.
The report reminds us that in June 2009, President Zelaya had stated that he planned to hold a referendum to overturn the term limits required in the constitution.
The article at the Wall Street Journal reports:
“Honduran institutions, the report says, “were not effective in resolving the crisis…not for lack of actions and resolutions taken but because the authorities’ decisions were ignored and were not acted upon by [the president] who personally took the actions required to execute the referendum.” The human-rights commission, the prosecutor, the attorney general, the electoral tribunal and the Supreme Court all took measures to try to stop Mr. Zelaya.”
The report attempts to balance the blame–calling Mr. Micheletti’s government illegal. The report also ignores the dangers of leaving Mr. Zelaya in Honduras rather than deporting him–his followers had already demonstrated their willingness to use violence to achieve their aims.
Unfortunately, the American State Department and some other nations were on the wrong side of these events as they were happening. However, democracy and the rule of law triumphed in the country of Honduras. And now the events have been studied and the lawfulness of what was done has been proven.