Honduras can't pay its bills, neglects services is the title of the Huffington Post's version of Alberto Arce's latest article. NBC is more blunt, with its Honduras 'no longer functioning' after plunging over fiscal cliff. But Honduras hasn't been functioning for a while (in the sense meant here). Perhaps better put, state capitalism, especially when imposed through coups and foreign military occupation, does not function.
So, while the U.S. is using "security" as an excuse to further militarize Central America and train police and military forces in assassination techniques and promoting technology as another solution, Tegucigalpa's street surveillance cameras were shut off for lack of payment last week. And idiotic (or actually quite astute, if your aim is to further obfuscate the roots of structural and political violence and coopt revolutionary spirit) plans like Techcamp get untold sums of cash. And that high-tech assistance in the context of the USG's ongoing abysmal failure of a drug war is killing Hondurans. Jamaicans, too.
Here's part two of Kaelyn Forde's report on the Ahuas DEA massacre, from last year:
Some Democrats in the U.S. Congress, led in this round by the Congressional Black Caucus, continue to write letters asking for investigations into DEA murders like these ones, and better oversight.
Meanwhile, things have gotten worse yet again in the Aguán, where the LA Times last month did a pretty frank profile of Facussé. Greg McCain recently published a comprehensive article in CounterPunch covering Chavelo Morales' case, just one example of many.
This week the Honduran Congress passed a new mining law lifting Zelaya's moratorium on new concessions for open-pit mining for good; created an impeachment process (to give them an excuse to do a cleaner job next time they want to carry out a coup, following the Paraguay model-which itself followed the Honduras model); and re-passed model cities, and—now that they kicked out the opposing judges in a "technical coup" in December—the Supreme Court should pose no threat to this new model of colonialism on steroids. At least Anonymous is on the task, promising to fry the government's servers in retaliation.
What else, you ask? Well, resistance leaders keep getting killed with impunity; Gay LIBRE candidate Erick Martínez got beaten up and detained by police for documenting police harassment at a gay bar in Tegucigalpa; women protesting violence against women on Honduran Women's Day were violently attacked by police and military.
Zelaya, for his part, insulted pretty much all public teachers and Ilse Velásquez's and Manuel Flores' memories (among others) two weeks ago on a morning program of TV Globo, when he asked "¿Qué han logrado los maestros con estar en las calles?" His answer: not much at all. (Don't worry, teach: Transformemos Honduras just had coast-to-coast bikestravaganza so, you know, Honduran education is probably fixed by now). LIBRE members are still rallying around the electoral dream, despite the clearly fraudulent elections last November for which there will not be a recount because of the same "technical coup" that protects model cities and was orchestrated by "winning" National Party candidate and primary model city proponent Juan Orlando Hernández. According to the results of a new poll by ERIC (the Jesuit research outfit, generally rigorous and honest with its findings, and as such disliked by propagandists on any side) the numbers are less than promising for LIBRE, and for everything else no better than dismal.
I met a nice local cop today at a social event involving a lot of toddlers. He told me about the interesting couple weeks he spent in Honduras (San Pedro area, mostly) at the behest of the State Department in 2010, giving trainings in community policing. He also did the same in El Salvador and Panama on the same trip. He was mostly impressed by the Honduran police force's lack of basic supplies—gasoline, etc. But he also noticed a total lack of internal mechanisms for accountability, and framed things in terms of corruption, using a version of that argument that "if you don't clean things up, it's easy for criminals to infiltrate the police"—as if criminality were not intrinsic to [Honduran] policing, and as if criminality were a permanent state of being or character trait (the NRA argument) and not something that is defined through one's actions. Although in Honduras, of course (as well as here in the U.S., in various contexts), it is legally a state of being...He had also gone to the COBRA training facility and appeared as a guest on Frente a Frente with Renato Álvarez, where he was invited to talk about corruption and the work he was doing, cop-to-cop trainings. How did he respond to questions about human rights abuses by the Honduran police? I asked. Oh, that was the one thing that the State Department made clear—he said—I wasn't allowed to say anything about human rights.