The time has come to chose sides, once and for all. If, and I cannot stress enough that IF, today's election in Honduras are reasonably clean with a reasonably clean cut result there is no reason whatsoever not to recognize the new president elect and the government he will preside starting late January.
Why take that position? Many reasons conduce sensible people, including this blog, to decide that no matter what errors were committed from the ouster of Zelaya, it is time to turn the page and that any further hand wringing is only going to hurt the people of Honduras. President Oscar Arias of Costa Rica is perfectly right, and he has all the necessary credentials. Not to mention that already Panama, Peru and the United States have indicated that some conclusion must be reached about Honduras and that a vote is certainly the necessary first step. We can guess that Canada and Colombia will soon support such a stand and very likely after a few more prudent weeks Mexico and a new Chile government will end this phase of the Honduras charade, accompanied probably by Trinidad and Barbados.
The main reasons are:
- The elections were planned BEFORE the ouster of Zelaya, and planned enough already that the two major parties had held their primaries and chosen their candidates. Today, any serious poll, any street evidence from Honduras indicate that the people still want to decided among the two main candidates selected before the said ouster. What "moral" grounds can one oppose here? Demand that these people renounce their legitimate political ambitions? And for whom?
- Zelaya actions have proven that he is quite unfit to be a president as his own agenda trumps any other agenda that includes the welfare of the Honduran people. Instead of behaving like a responsible deposed president and promote a movement to run in the election and prove his righteousness, he has done anything within his grasp to sabotage the electoral process. Even his followers seem to be preparing the post Zelaya world, such as his "foreign minister", Patricia Rodas words in a Caracas recent rendezvous of the loony left Internationale who looks a lot she is trying to become the future "resistance" leader.
- Some actors have proven their unworthiness in this whole affair, using the Honduras crisis to promote their own hemispheric political interests. The biggest one is of course Chavez of whom there is no need to comment further except to note that unbelievably the Spanish government is offended by the political campaigns there using Chavez as a scarecrow. No, the one in mind here is most of all Brazil who keeps destroying fast its credibility, almost near zero now that Lula has received in great pump the Irani murderer. By supporting the Honduras elections, one takes a stand for democracy against those who abuse it in the name of democracy, namely the ALBA, Brazil and their client states who preach democracy from the mouth out.
I ask you the following question: do you prefer to adopt a political system like the Venezuelan one where water, electricity, and soon food will be scarce or a more open and democratic system where at least the government makes genuine efforts to provide these goods instead of spending its time trying to find an external guilty party to hide their very own guilt, as Chavez does everyday to hide his incompetence and corruption, moral and financial corruption for that matter?
No more hypocrisy anymore, there is no time for self righteous doubt. It is not a matter of supporting the Honduras vote and forget about the whole thing. The new government will have quite a daunting task at cleaning up the current mess, including sanction to all those that deserve it, and not only Zelaya or the Zelaya camp. But surely you must agree that a newly elected government has a better chance to resolve these issues than the current worn out actors.
To conclude this, if today's vote is reasonably clean, the real result is not who will win but how many people will have voted. The trend in recent elections there was for abstention to grow, but if today more than 60% of the people vote then the Zelaya cause is toast. And even if OAS observers are not present, or the even more discredited Carter Center is absent, there will be enough observers of serious background to let us know what is going on there. Heck, we will see that at the CNN images tomorrow, with or without observers.