ON THE COUP D’ETAT IN HONDURAS
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International Coordinating Committee
International League of Peoples’ Struggle
08 July 2009
Before the dawn of June 28 in Honduras, some 200 heavily armed soldiers of
the Honduran army stormed the residence of elected President Jose Manuel
Zelaya, took him at gunpoint and drove him to an airplane that flew him to
Costa Rica. A few hours later, the National Congress comprised of the
country’s oligarchs quickly installed erstwhile Speaker of the House Don
Roberto Micheletti Bain as “interim president” who read a bogus letter of
resignation allegedly signed by Zelaya himself. Later in the day, the
military arrested members of Zelaya’s cabinet, detained the ambassadors of
Venezuela and Cuba, began hunting down leaders of progressive mass
organizations and imposed a nationwide curfew.
This brazen takeover by the top brass of the Honduran Armed Forces and the
country’s traditional oligarchs has outraged the Honduran people who have
now taken to the streets to reject the putschists. Unions, students, women
and other social sectors have launched a general strike, setting up
barricades and defying the curfew imposed by the Micheletti government. The
army, headed by US-trained General Romeo Vasquez, has responded with
increasing violence which has so far resulted in at least two deaths, over a
hundred injured and hundreds more imprisoned.
The international community has roundly condemned the coup d’état and the
escalating violence of the army in Honduras. The General Assembly of the
United Nations has unanimously denounced the military takeover and demands
the restoration of Zelaya to the Honduran Presidency. But the de facto
Micheletti government, with the support of the Army, the National Congress,
the Supreme Court and local mass media, continues to defy the Honduran
people and international opinion.
The coup d’état in Honduras is a desperate attempt by ultra-rightist forces
within the traditional pro-US Honduran elite to stem the rising tide of
change swelling from below.