Thursday, July 7, 2011

Everyone Is To Blame

That's the conclusion, in a nutshell of the official Honduran Truth and Reconciliation (not) Commission. While we have not seen the actual document, there's ample press coverage of its conclusions over what happened:
- It was a coup d'etat.
- Micheletti's government was illegal, de facto.
- The alleged Zelaya resignation letter was a forgery.
- The National Congress has no way to remove a sitting president by itself.
- The National Congress does not have the authority to appoint a successor to a president.
- The OAS is to blame for being willing to send observers to the Cuarta Urna consultation.
- The OAS is to blame because it was unable to reverse the coup.
- Zelaya is to blame for insisting on going ahead with the consultation on June 28.
- The Military, caught in a constitutional bind, provided a solution (Zelaya's expatriation) when political solutions failed!
- The International community is to blame for not taking stronger efforts to prevent the coup.
- The Honduran security forces (or perhaps private security forces) are responsible for at least 12 assassinations of the 20 the commission recognizes as having occurred.

Notice someone missing?

Those who actually plotted and carried out the coup are not assigned any blame! How is this possible? We don't know. Perhaps its a result of the biases of the press coverage since most of the sources are Honduran, pro-coup press. Perhaps that bit is contained in the 10 percent of the report that is embargoed for 10 years. We just don't know, but its a remarkable omission, don't you think?


Ardegas said...

Of course the "coup plotters" are to be blamed, that goes without saying. I guess you were expecting explicit recommendations to send Micheletti and his entourage to jail. Well, no. There is something called political amnesty.

What I notice is they are unaware of the backdating of charges against Zelaya. That for me it's the most important omission, because it changes everything. It would make look Zelaya's arrest as a vulgar kidnapping.

Alfredo said...

The document can be found here...

RAJ said...

@Alfredo: many thanks. Watch for more commentary once we have reviewed this in detail.

@Ardegas: (1) the legal counsel for the official Truth Commission did say that the charges looked to have been backdated. Until we read the detailed report, we will reserve comment about if/why this was not central to the commission's findings. But even if it is not centrally commented on, the fact that their legal consultants raised the issue is significant. Regardless of whether there were charges filed in advance, Zelaya was not arrested-- he was kidnapped, and illegally expatriated. That is part of the historical record.

(2) There is something called political amnesty: yes, the Honduran Congress hastily passed a law blocking any legal resolution of claims against the authors of the coup. That doesn't mean the culpability of those individuals should be off the table in a report from a supposed "truth" commission. But this is actually a red herring you raise; we have not in fact said anything about what we expected of this process, and you engage in projecting your fantasies on us about what we think should happen to Micheletti.

Our comment was not, in fact, about what should happen in a just world to someone as corrupt and venal as Roberto Michelleti. History takes care of these judgments.

Our point is that there are a number of people who have been widely discussed as intellectual and political forces urging Micheletyi and others on. We are not surprised that these power brokers managed to evade comment. They remain in power economically and politically.