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  • Colombia and Honduras: Learning to Play By Chavez Rules

    August 28 is a significant date for the Western Hemisphere. Colombia and Honduras will stand again in the limelight. They are there primarily thanks to Venezuela’s authoritarian-populist Hugo Chavez, a man who increasingly crafts the rules for setting Latin America’s political and security agenda.

    In Bariloche, Argentina, leaders representing the 12 members of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) will debate a U.S.-Colombian decision to utilize airfields in Colombia for anti-drug operations. Chavez wants UNASUR to condemn the U.S. and Colombia’s President Uribe for an agreement that will allow U.S. access to air fields in Colombia. He wants to put Colombia and the U.S. in the dock and turn a reasonable modification of U.S. counter-drug efforts into a full blown South American security crisis.

    Adhering to a new “Bolivarian” security doctrine, Chavez strives to exclude the U.S. from South and Central America just as the Monroe Doctrine once kept extra-hemispheric powers away from the Americas. Still a staunch supporter of Iran and Russia’s expanded role in the region, Chavez aims to turn public opinion against the U.S. While he may not get all he wants in Argentina, the UNASUR emergency summit, its air of high drama, as well as making U.S.-Colombia relations a wedge issue means the region is inclined to play by Chavez rules.

    In Honduras, two months have passed since the June 28 removal of Chavez-ally Manuel Zelaya from the presidency by the Supreme Court and the military. The events leading up to Zelaya’s firing for violating the Honduran constitution plainly bear Chavez’s fingerprints. The acute fear that Zelaya was about to turn Honduras into a mini-Venezuela created the crisis in the first place. Chavez’s financial and political support emboldened Zelaya to overreach himself in an attempt to perpetuate his stay in office.

    Two months later the Chavez and company still want the arsonist returned to put out the blaze. Having hastily joined the multilateral consensus that condemned the defensive actions of Honduras’ Supreme Court and legislature as a “coup”, the Obama Administration still insists Zelaya must be returned to office. While a democratic outcome in Honduras hinges on the legitimacy and fairness of the November electoral process, Washington joins with Chavez in pressing for Zelaya’s return.

    Like his mentor, Fidel Castro, Chavez is adept at tweaking the exposed guilt nerve that is part of the wiring of the progressive, Latin American policy mindset. He wants to make us look apologetic, vacillating and fearful of collective censure. Wherever U.S. interests collide with those favored by Chavez, the chief rule of game remains one of the oldest in international politics: “What is mine is mine, what is yours is negotiable.”

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    11 Responses to Colombia and Honduras: Learning to Play By Chavez Rules

    1. MotherRedDog says:

      Stay strong Honduras, you'll never regret it. Cuba and Venezula won't last forever. It's human nature to want to be free from government.

    2. JOE, SALT LAKE CITY says:

      Thanks for telling it like it really is, rather than how it is being portrayed in the liberal press. I have family there (via marriage) and was there shortly after zelaya's removal so I know what is really happening and you definately have it right.

    3. Eduardo Bedoya says:

      There are countries in Latin america currently ruled by despots, former montoneros, stalkers and even assassins, and others governed by weaklings who prefer to look the other way at what really is happening in Honduras, fearful that their defending Micheletti's claim to a sucession will lead Chavez to either ruffle things in their respective countries, or diminsich or even cut off their inflow of venezuelan cheap oil.

      The worse offender is Mexico's Calderon, who is afraid of getting on the side of Micheletti because his was also a rigged election, his main rival not even considering him as the President of Mexico. This man was made of anything but what it takes to fulfill an outstanding pregnancy. In spanish we say " esta hecho de orines". But wherever Obama thinks his current stand vis-a-vis Honduras will lead him, in terms of his appeasing the members of ALBA, he will in the end getting zero credit, either for himself or the international community and, in the worst case scenario, will in all likelihood end up in the books as the worst conductor of Foreign Affairs in US history.

    4. Jasmin Molina, Hondu says:

      Dear Sirs,

      This is one of the few news media who actually understands what really happened in Honduras. We, hondurans, do not understand why the world insists so much on Honduras having a dictator. We have been a democracy for the past 28 years and wish to remain that way. The only positive thing that came out of having "Mel" as president for the past 3 years, has been that he has united us as a country. He has opened our eyes and made us realized that the only way to change our society is to get involved. Our previous approach of letting politicians do as they wish, has not served us well. Our present predicament is testament to that. We have hopes that this coming elections will have the highest turnout in our history. Please pray for us in our fight against the world to defend our democracy, as imperfect as it might be.

    5. Gerardo Paredes, Hon says:

      Very good case, but why is the US doing this to us, a good friend and ally, and helping Chavez

    6. bluelily says:

      Honduras' government should not be interfered with by the US. There are NO human rights being violated, so where is the call for our interference? It is unfortunate that propaganda prevails that a "coup" took place. There are rules within Constitutions and those need to be adhered to. The OAS, as far as I'm concerned, is just like the UN. Nothing more than a way to transfer corrupt funds back and forth. I have also sent letters to my representatives concerning this issue. Chavez does not need any encouragement from this country. Period.

    7. WestWright, USA says:

      SO this is another failure emanating from the Progressive/Communist in both North & South America. We are all Hondurans now. Thanks Heritage for your clear thinking reporting!

    8. Erlend, New Orleans says:

      At this point I'm disgusted by the whole situation. I have a Honduran girlfriend and am close to her family there and the worst thing the U.S. can do right now is cut aid or impose sanctions as it will disproportionately affect the middle and lower classes (many of who support Mel in the first place).

      I'm normally side liberal in U.S. politics but think in this case the U.S. is a bit misguided in supporting Mel. He was corrupt, as most Honduran presidents have been in the past, and from an American mindset at least blatantly disregarding the checks and balances of other branches of the government is a pretty big deal. On the other hand I don't think too much of Micheletti either and think Mel's ouster was inspired by an elite afraid as much of some of his reforms such as raising the minimum wage as of the "Bolivarian" threat. In short there is something a bit fishy about all the sides and this is not a black and white situation.

      In any case all I want is peace and stability in Honduras so my girlfriend and friends can continue with their businesses and jobs in peace. I hope that the rest of the world will recognize the upcoming elections. It might be too much to hope but it would be nice if some of the other parties such as PINU made big gains, displacing the traditionally corrupt Liberals and Nationals (though it looks like "Pepe" Lobo may well be the next president).

    9. yony says:

      IF GOD IS WITH US WHO AGAIN US

      HONDURAS GOD LOVES YA

    10. samuel david norales says:

      we understand Is not USA who is against honduras , Is barack obama who has whowed a diferent imagen to his campaing and now we know who is him ….

    11. Pingback: A New Chapter Dawns for Honduras | Conservative Principles Now

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