A month ago, the Law Library of Congress reviewed the removal of Manuel Zelaya from his post as President of Honduras, an act that the Obama administration called a “coup” and demanded reversed for its illegality. To the embarrassment of the White House and State Department, the Congressional body determined that Honduras acted lawfully in removing Zelaya for his crimes against their constitution, although they determined that his exile broke Honduran law. Now John Kerry wants the Law Library to retract its findings, apparently trying to rewrite history to hide the facts of the case:
The chairmen of the House and Senate foreign relations committees are asking the Law Library of Congress to retract a report on the military-backed coup in Honduras that they charge is flawed and “has contributed to the political crisis that still wracks” the country.
The request, by Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. and Rep. Howard Berman, D-Calif., has sparked cries of censorship from Republicans who say the Democrats don’t like what the August report said: that the government of Honduras had the authority to remove President Manuel Zelaya from office.
Zelaya has been holed up at the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa for several weeks, and high-ranking U.S. officials arrived Wednesday to try to broker a resolution.
Critics of the Obama administration — which condemned Zelaya’s removal in June — have pointed to the report as evidence that the White House was wrong when it sided with most Latin American countries in calling for Zelaya to be returned.
The report did nothing to contribute to the political crisis in Honduras. Most Hondurans are probably unaware of the report, and would hardly consider it a priority in their lives, what with the rest of the political questions in the air at the moment. The only political “crisis” that the report stoked was the one in the US, when people wondered why we were suddenly taking the same side as Hugo Chavez, Daniel Ortega, and the Castro brothers against one of the more stalwart US allies in the region.
What has contributed most to the political crisis in Honduras? The wrongheaded stance of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. They have suspended visas and aid to Honduras, weakening one of the few strong alliances we have in Central America, just to interfere with what is truly an internal matter in Tegulcigapa. The US has rejected the one real solution to the problem, a national election that had already been scheduled before Zelaya’s removal and one in which Zelaya’s own party wants to participate.
If Kerry and Berman want a resolution to the Honduran crisis, then they should be demanding changes from Obama and his team, not silence from the Law Library of Congress.