Honduras: two paths diverge
Via Hibueras, Zelaya early this morning called on the popular movement to assemble at 10:30am to demonstrate for his restitution, saying that it could come within hours. Laura Carlsen provides the best account of what's been agreed to in negotiations up to this point.
But it's too late for any agreement to legitimize the elections. The regime, and the U.S., blew off that deadline. They're fine with symbolic restoration, a point of view expressed by the snake-in-the-grass OAS envoy John Biehl, who said he’s confident the country will resolve its political crisis before election day. "Some goals are scored in the final minute." (Cute. Honduras qualified for the World Cup yesterday and everyone, including Zelaya, is celebrating.)
Israel Salinas made clear this morning that only immediate and full restoration today could bind the resistance to the elections. It's not going to happen.
As Zelaya said in the Al Jazeera video (you have watched it, haven't you?), there's a two-stage process. One stage is reversing the coup -- restoring formal democracy. The other is the longer, larger struggle to democratize the country. The two efforts were fused up until now, but the popular movement can't let its hands be tied by negotiations in which it's not taking part.
The ALBA countries are meeting today to consider new sanctions against the coup regime. No hint of anything similar from the U.S. government; apparently even formal democracy's too much trouble to defend. Ben Fox of AP brings home the effect of the ho-hum U.S. approach on the Honduran people, detailing the intense economic pain caused by the drawn-out crisis.
Oh, and a special brass balls award to others in the brain-dead media, who are still, three and a half months on, propagating the zombie lie:
A wealthy rancher who moved to the left after taking office, Zelaya angered conservatives by building close ties to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and toying with a reform of the constitution to change term limits for presidents. [Reuters, no byline]
Gosh, it must be true; they keep saying it.