Thursday, September 24, 2009

Craziest Honduran Ex-President of the Day: Manuel Zelaya

By Michael J.W. Stickings

You were expecting someone else? Of course it's Zelaya. (Actually, I can't name another one.) He's hanging out at the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa, and, well, it's not good:

It's been 89 days since Manuel Zelaya was booted from power. He's sleeping on chairs, and he claims his throat is sore from toxic gases and "Israeli mercenaries'' are torturing him with high-frequency radiation.

"We are being threatened with death,'' he said in an interview with The Miami Herald, adding that mercenaries were likely to storm the embassy where he has been holed up since Monday and assassinate him.

For all I know, maybe he's not crazy. Maybe the Israelis really are after him -- though it's always so convenient to blame Israel, isn't it? And maybe he has been poisoned with toxic gas.

But I doubt it.

Here are a couple of hilarious lines from the Herald article:

-- "Witnesses said that for a short time Tuesday morning, soldiers used a device that looked like a large satellite dish to emit a loud shrill noise. Honduran police spokesman Orlin Cerrato said he knew nothing of any radiation devices being used against the former president."

-- "Israeli government sources in Miami said they could not confirm the presence of any 'Israelis mercenaries' in Honduras."

Cannot confirm? Huh. Couldn't they just have said no? Or that Zelaya's out of his gourd?

Maybe it's Zelaya's pitiful state that has driven him this far:

Zelaya, 56, is at the embassy with his family and other supporters, without a change of clothes or toothpaste. The power and water were turned back on, and the U.N. brought in some food. Photos showed Zelaya, his trademark cowboy hat across his face, napping on a few chairs he had pushed together.

Don't the Brazilians have toothpaste?

Poor, crazy guy.

Not that I'm all that sympathetic. But, then, I'm not exactly sympathetic to the other side, either. Honduras is a mess, much like, it would seem, the mind of Manuel Zelaya.

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  • We aren't all crazy. It's just that the media would make you think that. Zelaya, however, is.

    Seriously, though, there is much more to the story.

    By Blogger La Gringa, at 9:16 PM  

  • Oh, shoot! That came out wrong -- I meant much more to the Honduran "coup" story, not much more to the poison gas story.

    By Blogger La Gringa, at 9:17 PM  

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    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:34 AM  

  • Let me ask a very simple question. What proof do you have that Zelaya is wrong? Are you aware of the name Yehuda Leitner? He is an Israeli closely linked to the coup regime. Going back to an earlier time, perhaps you heard of Jose Efrain Rios Montt, Christian fundamentalist Guatemalan dictator in 1982-83 who credited the Israelis for putting him in power to commit what is described as "genocide" and Israel helped him with that. His murderous army, armed by Israel, had been run by Romeo Lucas Garcia (1978-82) and his brother, the chief of staff, said "The Israeli soldier is an example and a model to us". Israelis were involved also with the Contra war, based mostly in Honduras, and also supported the Salvadoran military and death squads as they were assassinating archbishops and murdering villages.

    It seems to me that your idea is that "a Central American... blaming Israel, how crazy?!" With the past I described, with the reality of Mr. Leitner, this paints a slightly different picture. Israel has openly and enthusiastically backed the far right in Latin America, with particular mischief in Central America, and has done so for decades. One of Israel's roles has been to pick up the slack whenever Congress would restrict arming and assisting the far right in Central America... with Obama's administration pretending to oppose the coup regime, it would seem to me a perfect opportunity for Israel to serve as proxy as it has so many times in the past.

    As for the attacks on the Brazilian embassy, they are real. There are images confirming the use of an LRAD, a sonic weapon that was also used against protesters in Pittsburgh. Gases were also used. Now, one would think that this outrageous violation of an embassy would be punished, this act of war against Brazil would be punished, so I could understand why people might be in disbelief... but some people seem to have licence to do whatever they want. The coup regime in Honduras, for instance.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:52 PM  

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