The United States has been quietly escalating its military presence in Honduras, pouring police and military funding into the illegitimate regime of President Porfirio Lobo in the name of fighting drugs, reports Dana Frank in the new issue of The Nation. This, despite the fact that Lobo himself took power in a post-coup election boycotted by almost all opposition figures, and that drug trafficking is now embedded in the state itself—all the way up to the very top of the government, according to high-level sources.
Moreover, according to the Committee of Families of the Detained and Disappeared of Honduras (Cofadeh), more than 10,000 official complaints have been filed about abuses by the police and military since the coup, not one of which has been addressed. And, those who document those abuses are under threat: twenty-two journalists and media workers have been killed since the coup and Cofadeh's leadership has received death threats.
Activists in the Honduras Solidarity Network have hammered away for years to build support at the grassroots level and translate it into power in Washington. In response, the State Department has acknowledged the human rights issues and the security crisis but has yet to firmly denounce the Lobo administration for its repression and corruption. Cofadeh, the HSN and ninety-four members of Congress are now calling loudly for a suspension of all US aid to the Honduran military and police and for the Lobo government to stop all human rights abuses. Add your name to the campaign and then contact and implore your Congressional representatives to support the call. After weighing in yourself, share this information with friends, family and your Twitter and Facebook communities.
In this recent article in the Guardian, Mark Weisbrot argues that America's backing for a regime that is murdering opponents and journalists is a shameful blot on the Obama administration's record.
This report from the Real News Network tells the story of the terrible cost being paid by impoverished Honduran farmers who are boldly trying to wrest land away from agribusiness that supported the 2009 coup.
A weekly guide to meaningful action, this blog connects readers with resources to channel the outrage so many feel after reading about abuses of power and privilege. Far from a comprehensive digest of all worthy groups working on behalf of the social good, Take Action seeks to shine a bright light on one concrete step that Nation readers can take each week. To broaden the conversation, we’ll publish a weekly follow-up post detailing the response and featuring additional campaigns and initiatives that we hope readers will check out. Toward that end, please use the comments field to give us ideas. With your help, we can make real change.