I want to clear things up, because I am getting a lot of outside traffic. First, for those who don't know me, I'm not a political expert. I am just a regular citizen, who is watching this and trying to give you both views on the situation. So, to clear some things up:
1) I do not think that using the military to fly Zelaya out of the country was the way to go. Congress should've started impeachment hearings long before this. But I do not think that they, or any one of us, really thought that Zelaya would go through with the vote after the Supreme Court issued the order. And so I think they saw it as too late to do anything but take him bodily out. Again, it was a really bad solution, particularly seeing how the international community is responding, but I have to try to understand their rationality or I will go insane.
2) Zelaya was left in Costa Rica to do as he would. That is very bizarre. I don't get the rationality behind that, to be honest. A simple arrest would've worked, but again, if he had been left here it could've unleashed a chain of truly violent protests. So again, I can see the rationale. Doing it in the middle of the night at gunpoint though? Very bad.
3) My problem with the international condemnation of the coup is not that I agree with the way it was done. My problem is that it is painting Zelaya to be blameless and is spurring his irrational ideas of returning at the head of an army helped along by Hugo Chavez. Do you see what I mean by that? By interviewing ONLY Zelaya and his supporters, by hearing only his people at the UN and the OAS, they are making it seem like the population WANTS him back.
4) This. We do not. Not me, or anyone I know. Last night, his supporters were calling for worker's unions to go on a massive strike. To block roads. To do whatever was necessary. What happened today? A few people at the Communications Offices. A big crowd in front of the Presidential Palace. Big, but not nearly as big as we have seen before, protesting against Zelaya. Then they started burning tires, throwing stones, breaking windows and setting billboards on fire. My cousin works very near to the place where this happened, and he saw the protesters breaking windows in nearby Chili's and Burger King restaurants. And Zelaya's supporters call this "peaceful"? Wrong. They dispersed, but god, it's these people who get shown on TV and it's making us look like savages. And it is making it look like the crowds wanting Zelaya back are HUGE.
5) Now, about this protest. I have to be honest about this, too. You know how I know it was happening? Because CNN Spanish was showing it. No local news channels were showing images. CNN SPanish finally had a reporter on the ground, and she was very emphatic saying that the crowds were NOT in the thousands, and that the police had NOT provoked them. And then the CNN signal cut off. That was bad. If the new government wants to look fair, they really cannot keep cutting off the flow of information. That is pretty bad. But Tegucigalpa is a tiny city, so the news spread fast. the crowds DID disperse pretty quickly.
6) After that, it was fairly quiet. We still have a 9pm-6am curfew. But through this all we're hearing CNN interviewing Zelaya and Hugo Chavez saying how he'll do anything to get Zelaya back into power. Do you know how terrifying that is to hear? When people here are trying to get back to their normal lives, when Congress is doing everything legally (after the coup and the "resignation" of course)? It's not RIGHT, dammit, that Zelaya keeps saying he'll come back at the head of an army or whatever, and we're sitting here just...waiting for this to go down peacefully. Information is so very confusing, is my point. But I'm speaking from my heart, and I am being as rational as I can.
7) And now we have Mexico and Guatemala taking out their ambassadors. That is making us look so bad.
8) The people who Micheletti is naming as his ministers are, honestly, truly, people who are NOT likely to participate in an illegal taking of power. In this country, it is very easy to distinguish the liars from the honest, and Micheletti is drawing some of the very few honest people to his side. That is encouraging.
9) So, what do I think should happen?
The international courts, the press, the UN, the OAS NEEDS to investigate it thoroughly. Read our constitution. They can say better than I whether Micheletti's actions are legal, and what Zelaya's actions were. I confess I am not an expert, but again, if the supreme court and the congress declared the vote illegal--these being people who know the constitution in and out--then weren't Zelaya's actions completely illegal and he was unfit to rule? We need to take a careful, long look at the legal situation here. We can't just have people saying "ZELAYA SHOULD COME BACK IMMEDIATELY". That would be a disaster. Can you see that? Things can't just go back the way they were on Thursday or Friday.
All I'm asking for is for people to think things out. My hope is that the OAS and the UN have enough clear-headed people to see things through and to not condone any rash actions. Particularly not to listen to Hugo Chavez. Though, as I'm being told, the president of the OAS is a leftist extremist who loves Hugo Chavez. Great. Just great. I just want this to end peacefully. And while that might be a very dim, stupid hope, it's still there.
So, a couple more things:
- Zelaya's supporters are STILL calling out for massive strikes and road blocking. What will that accomplish except more confrontations and possible death? Nothing at all.
- I hope the international press sees the whole picture. They are starting to, if watching CNN Spanish now is any indication. We need dialogue, not one-sided rants and ravings. And Zelaya really needs to answer questions. Tell us, once and for all, what you wanted to change about the Constitution. Do you guys know that he NEVER said that? He never once said what he wanted to change about the Constitution. Everyone assumed it was a return to power. He denied it, vaguely, but he never said what he wanted to change about it. Can you see why people were suspicious?
-a few local reporters have been beaten and harassed by Zelaya's supporters. Are these a peaceful bunch or what? He was spending millions on his campaign, millions on promotion. The people's millions. Did you know his government had yet to submit its budget to Congress? No one knew what they were spending money on, or how. Certainly not in helping the country.
-There are some other huge problems happening in the country. There are floods, communities STILL suffering from the effects of the earthquake. Maybe NOW, with this transition people can get the attention and help they need.
People here are rational. They are calm. No one wants a fight. Only a handful of people want radical actions.
We need things to stay calm. We need people to go back to work. We need to get the government to focus on the people and not a farcical vote as it had been doing these last months.
And we need to keep elections in place in November.
We need the international community to see the entire picture. That's what I'm trying to do.
So...welcome, new readers. This is kind of weird. I usually just rant and rave and post stupid pictures. But I'm glad I'm giving people a new perspective.
Local news is reporting than in San Pedro Sula a mob attacked reporters and beat up a couple of them quite badly. THESE are Zelaya's supporters. Peaceful, indeed.