On October 28, Robert Micheletti’s interim government and ex-president Manuel Zelaya reportedly agreed to a formula that should restore “pariah” Honduras to the ranks of normal states. It should also permit Hondurans to elect their next president on November 29 without the international community breathing down their necks.
Since the Hondurans removed Zelaya from office for violating the constitution, the Obama administration has mismanaged the situation. It sided with the Chávez-influenced Organization of American States; it called Zelaya’s legal removal a military “coup;” and it threatened not to recognize the winner of an election process begun well before June 28.
The Obama team did an excellent job of undermining the Honduran economy by cutting off economic assistance, throttling tourism with travel warnings, yanking visas away from Hondurans, and creating a climate of massive uncertainty that spooked U.S. investors and businesses. The U.S. embassy in Honduras did yeomen’s work watching out for the interests of the Zelaya clan, leaving many to wonder which side it was pulling for.
In short, against a small, friendly, anti-Chávez ally, the administration mustered the sort of muscle it would never dare use against Iran, Russia, or Venezuela.
Friday, October 30, 2009
A Wrong and Despicable Thing
Obama's first foreign policy "success" - Honduras: