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News :: Human Rights : International
Honduras Resiste: A Speech on the Global Day of Action
12 Aug 2009
Modified: 06:25:12 PM
Good afternoon compañeras y compañeros, passersby, workers, bosses, fellow-citizens, humans, aliens. We unite today to celebrate the resistance to the military coup in Honduras, to lament for the fallen, disappeared, & wounded in the struggle, & to shout NO to the impunity of the men who have, for the moment, overturned the will of the Honduran people. Now we witness, in this twist of irony that is a drop of the lifeblood of history, that the actions of the golpistas not only fortify the popular will they aim to repress, they have set off an awakening in Honduras that no fleet, airforce infantry or death-squad will be capable of reversing.
On June 28th Manuel Zelaya Rosales, the rightful president of Honduras, was awoken at gunpoint at 5:30 in the dawn. It was the day he was to conduct a non-bindng poll that would survey whether the hondurenhos wished for there to be a constituent assembly. Instead he was flown out of Honduras, in brazen violation of the Honduran constitution and all norms of international law, and exiled from his country which remains under military rule. Though the coup was carried out in the name of justice—and what coup is not?—it is that very ideal that the golpistas are subverting. Irregardless of universal condemnation by the international community, the golpistas insist they are acting within the law. They insist

Every arbitrary detention is for liberty.
Every truncheon to the body of a protestor is for the common good.
Every tear-gas canister is for order.
Every death-threat is for stability.
Every torture is for security.
Every radio station shut down is for awareness.
Every civil liberty suspended is for freedom.
Every TV signal interrupted is for free expression.
Every violation of the constitution is to maintain constitutional order.
Every lie is for truth.
Every violation of a woman by a soldier is for justice.
Every knife wound in the body of a unionist is for the fatherland.
Every bullet in the head of a young freedom-fighter is for peace.
Alas, that every killing is carried out in the name of life.

So, let us ask, why do the Honduran military brass, business elites, the courts, and the high offices of the political parties endorse these actions? And why do the unions, the campesino organizations, the ethnicities, the popular bases, the advocates of human rights, the rising masses of Hondureños, in addition to every country in the world condemn this coup d’etat? What was the real crime of Manuel Zelaya, the ACTIONS that would activate the spirit of dictatorship in the hearts of Honduras’ old rulers?

Zelaya was a traitor to his class, and his crimes were numerous:

1) Raising the minimum wage.
2) Providing free meals & entry into the public schools.
3) Ending the concession of new mines to foreign companies.
4) Attempting to nationalize Honduras’ energy infrastructure.
5) Having initiated the process for Cuba’s re-entry into the Organization of American States.
6) Planning to close down the sole US military base in Central America.
7) And finally, encouraging the process of creating a constitution that would include the participation of the indian, the unionist, the afro-Honduran, the woman, the campesino, the maquila worker, and all those sectors of society marginalized throughout the history of the country.

Zelaya had also aligned with Venezuela who sent cheap oil, and Cuba, who sent doctors, and Bolivia, who presented the new world with its first experience in indigenous power, and Ecuador, whose new constitution imbued rights to the pachamama, the mother earth. Here was the sin that may cost him his head. In befreinding the countries of the south, Zelaya was moving towards independence from the United States, who in addition to monopolizing the trade of the nation, in addition to having realized military coups throughout the history of Honduras, in addition to having trained the death squads of the 1980s, in addition to having used the military base for counter-revolutionary activity in Central America, and in addition to having trained the generals that would go on to overthrow Zelaya, the United States would go on to support the golpe de estado. We continue to train Honduran officers in the School of the Americas, & we continue to have diplomatic, economic, & military ties with the golpistas. President Obama speaks of our hypocrisy in condemning US intervention in some countries while calling for it in others. But what Obama can’t see, or refuses to see, or pretends not to see, or is prevented from seeing, is that what we are calling for is NON-intervention. To sever ties with the golpistas. To freeze their bank accounts. Revoke their visas. Boycot their products. Anything short of these actions, the continuation of business as usual, amounts to the ACTIVE support of the coup regime, and it is THIS we are opposing.

We see now this isn’t just a clash between Zelaya & the Honduran state, as the golpistas pretend. It is a clash between the empire, to the north, & to the south, the countries breaking one by one the institutions that have pillaged Latinoamerica ever since Columbus set foot on the beaches of Hispañola. And it’s being done in every new constitution. And it’s being carried out in every expropriation. And it’s being realized in the closure of US bases. And it’s being achieved in every protest, every action, every act of resistance to the businessman’s military coup in the land of Lempira, and in the streets of Boston.


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