President Obama announced today, a cut $16.5 million in military aid to Honduras and threatened to slash economic aid also.
Yesterday Secretary of State Clinton said she was looking “to restore democracy and constitutional order in the Honduras crisis.”
Strong Words right? Well it is all part of the Obama Administration’s effort to get Honduras to reject its constitution and put former president Zelaya back in office.
The Honduran Constitution may be amended in any way except three. No amendment can ever change (1) the country’s borders, (2) the rules that limit a president to a single four-year term and (3) the requirement that presidential administrations must “succeed one another” in a “republican form of government.”
Article 239 of the Constitution specifically states that any president who so much as proposes the permissibility of reelection “shall cease forthwith” in his duties, and Article 4 provides that any “infraction” of the succession rules constitutes treason. The rules are so tight because these are terribly serious issues for Honduras, which lived under decades of military rule.
Earlier this year, with only a few months left in his term, Zelaya ordered a referendum on whether a constitutional convention should meet to write a brand spanking new constitution.The motive for the convention was to amend those three un-amendable parts of the existing constitution, this was nothing but a backdoor effort to change the rules governing presidential succession.
The Honduras constitution says that all referendums must be approved by a two-thirds vote of the Honduran Congress before they may be put to the voters. Instead of approving Zelaya’s proposal, Congress voted that it was illegal.
Honduras’ attorney general filed suit and secured a court order halting the referendum. Zelaya then announced that the voting would go forward just any, but it would be called an opinion survey (I assume because Climate change was already taken).The courts again said this illegal. Zelaya then directed the head of the armed forces, Gen. Romeo Vasquez, to proceed with the “survey” and fired the General when he decided instead to follow the rule of law. The Supreme Court ruled the firing illegal and ordered Vasquez reinstated.
Zelaya had the ballots printed in Venezuela, but these were impounded by customs when they were brought back to Honduras. On June 25 — three days before he was ousted — Zelaya personally gathered a group of “supporters” and led it to seize the ballots, restating his intent to conduct the “survey” on June 28. That was the breaking point for the attorney general, who immediately sought a warrant from the Supreme Court for Zelaya’s arrest on charges of treason, abuse of authority and other crimes. In response, the court ordered Zelaya’s arrest by the country’s army, which under Article 272 must enforce compliance with the Constitution, particularly with respect to presidential succession. The military executed the court’s order on the morning of the proposed survey.
Based on the Actions of the Obama Administration, they believe that the Honduras Constitution doesn’t matter. Maybe that’s why Honduras is who Obama bullied today.