In “Battle for Honduras–and the Region” [Aug. 31/Sept. 7], Greg Grandin free-falls into the booby trap of top-down coverage by giving voice solely to the Michelettis, Clintons, Zelayas and Otto Reichs of this conflict–albeit with an anti-imperialist’s pen. Grandin’s single mention of the Honduran resistance comes as an afterthought and does not capture the vibrant, massive, multidimensional cultural uprising on the day the rightful president was ousted.
I flew to Tegucigalpa with a human rights delegation after the coup, where we witnessed the burgeoning of a movement of hundreds of thousands of hondurenos, which continues to this day. The resistance manifests itself in community journalism, acts of civil disobedience, mass demonstrations and countless gestures of solidarity on top of artistic expressions, so central to Latin American liberation movements. Grandin rightly points out the threat of the coup to the stability of the region. If we oppose it, we must support the resistance: as witnesses, financiers and organizers. We’ve formed the Committee in Solidarity With the Honduran Resistance and have organized activities, pickets, demonstrations and cultural nights–with the intent of raising awareness of the coup and funds for the folks in the streets. The IMF has bucked the international community by extending a $164 million loan to the illegal regime (which dwarfs the $3,000 our committee has raised). Our work will continue until constitutional order is restored. ¡Viva Honduras!
Send donations to the National Front Against the Coup at: Proyecto Hondureno/CESREH, Box 6095, Chelsea, MA 02150.
New York City
I agree with Simon Rios that heroic resistance on the part of unionists, progressive church people, peasants, students and gay, lesbian and women’s rights activists has been more effective in preventing the consolidation of the coup in Honduras than has international pressure. Their actions–which include a call to boycott scheduled November 29 presidential elections–have finally forced Washington to join the rest of Latin America and announce that it will not recognize the result of that vote. The Honduran regime is desperate, threatening to prosecute anyone who abstains from casting a ballot (voting is technically mandatory in Honduras, but in the past it was not enforced). Also disturbing is that the coup government has just revoked the citizenship of Catholic priest Andres Tamayo, whom Nation readers may know as a 2005 Goldman Environmental Prize recipient. Born in El Salvador, Tamayo is a naturalized Honduran who has been in the country since 1983, working with peasants in their fight to defend their land against commercial logging. The coup government justifies the revocation of citizenship on the grounds that the priest has supported the election boycott and has participated in protests demanding the restoration of democracy.