Honduras–Not So Fast!!

The basis for this post is the Washington Times article published Sunday, June 28, and the BBC article published today.

The obvious facts are that the President of Honduras, Manuel Zelaya, was ousted from office and flown to Costa Rica by the army.  President Zelaya was removed from office hours before a disputed consitutional referendum was to be voted on that would have allowed him to remain in office despite the constitution’s term limit.

The Washington Post reports:

“Mr. Zelaya was arrested shortly before polls were to open in a referendum on whether to change the constitution. The Supreme Court ruled the referendum illegal, and everyone from Congress to members of his own party opposed it. Critics said Zelaya wanted to remove limits to his re-election.”

The BBC reports:

“The swearing in of Roberto Micheletti – constitutionally second in line for the presidency – was greeted with applause in Congress.  In a speech, he said that he had not assumed power “under the ignominy of a coup d’etat”.  The army had complied with the constitution, he said, and he had reached the presidency “as the result of an absolutely legal transition process”.”

The thing to watch here is who supports what.  When Hugo Chavez is complaining that the rules of democracy are not being followed, I tend to be a little suspicious.  It looks to me as if the army prevented the same sort of president-for-life move in Honduras that Hugo Chavez pulled in Venezuela.

Unlike the caution and timidity shown in supporting the protests in Iran, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have come out very quickly in favor of the former president.  I do not see them as aligning themselves with the forces of democracy in either Honduras or Iran.