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Tuesday, February 02, 2010


Some things you might not have known about Honduras

Courtesy of Greg Grandin in The Nation:
And in Honduras, human rights organizations say palm planters have recruited forty members of Colombia's AUC as private security following the June overthrow of President Manuel Zelaya. That coup was at least partly driven by Zelaya's alliance with liberation-theologian priests and other environmental activists protesting mining and biofuel-induced deforestation. Just a month before his overthrow, Zelaya--in response to an investigation that charged Goldcorp, another Vancouver-based company, with contaminating Honduras's Siria Valley--introduced a law that would have required community approval before new mining concessions were granted; it also banned open-pit mines and the use of cyanide and mercury. That legislation died with his ouster. Zelaya also tried to break the dependent relationship whereby the region exports oil to US refineries only to buy back gasoline and diesel at monopolistic prices; he joined Petrocaribe--the alliance that provides cheap Venezuelan oil to member countries--and signed a competitive contract with Conoco Phillips. This move earned him the ire of Exxon and Chevron, which dominate Central America's fuel market. Since the controversial November 29 presidential elections, Honduras has largely fallen off the media's radar, even as the pace of repression has accelerated. Since the State Department's recognition of that vote, about ten opposition leaders have been executed--roughly half of the number killed in the previous five months.
In Iran, the execution of two men who were accused of being part of an armed group seeking to topple the state received extensive news coverage and the condemnation of the U.S. government. The execution of ten opposition leaders in Honduras? Not a word from the government or the corporate media.

More on repression in Honduras.

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