Entradas etiquetadas como Hillary Clinton

La campaña presidencial en EEUU y su conexión con Honduras

Los estrategas políticos de la señora Hillary Clinton están utilizando al senador por Virginia, Tim Kaine, para tratar de lavar la imagen golpista de su candidata.

Presentan a Kaine como uno de los nuestros, un ex misionero jesuita que aprendió español en nueve meses en El Progreso, Yoro, y quien declara que este país le cambió la vida desde los 22 años.

La intención es humanizar la campaña racista de Trump, que ataca a cualquier minoría que se mueve en su territorio.

La intención también es humanizar la presencia siniestra de Hillary en el escenario hondureño.

La Clinton, sin dudas, jugó sucio hace siete años contra la sociedad hondureña. Decía que condenaba el golpe, mientras hundía a Zelaya desde el Departamento de Estado.

Los centenares de correos electrónicos liberados por Weekeliks retratan a una mujer del Tea Party, una política obediente de los poderes ocultos de Washington que impulsaron el golpe de Estado.

Puede verse con claridad a una demócrata sin talante democrático, a una feminista neoliberal sin comprensión de las madres migrantes que reclaman su derecho a permanecer con sus hijos en Estados Unidos.

Hillary, como Trump, representan la unidad de intereses con las transnacionales estadounidenses que apuntalan la dictadura continuista del modelo minero, represador, militarista y vendepatria de Honduras.

Ellos dos apoyan la determinación del Partido Nacional de imponerse sin Carías en el continuismo neoliberal salvaje. Apoyan la policía y al ejército contra la población. Y no les importa realmente la violencia ni la inseguridad, les importan los intereses de la Texaco, la Estándar, American Pacific, las textileras y los carteles de las mafias organizadas.

En honor a la verdad, a ninguna de esas candidaturas les importa la dignidad de 40 millones de inmigrantes latinoamericanos que hablan español en sus casas y que se ven obligados a expresarse en inglés en las calles y empleos, para no ser excluidos.

Como dice Julian Assange, el fundador de WikiLeaks, no hay diferencia entre ellos, es como si uno preguntara qué prefiere: chancro o gonorrea. Y la respuesta es obvia: ninguna de las dos.

Es por esta razón que nos parece digna la publicación del padre Ismael Moreno, sacerdote jesuita de El Progreso, Yoro, en su página de facebook.

Dice el padre Melo que “diversos datos, informes y análisis me llevan a lanzar la sospecha de que a Honduras la usan para todo. En esta ocasión nuestro país parece estar siendo utilizado como parte de la campaña proselitista que conducirá a la elección de un nuevo gobierno en Estados Unidos”.

El padre Melo cita de modo directo un artículo muy mal hecho y con clara tendencia proselitista publicado recientemente en el New York Time, por una señora vinculada a la estrategia de campaña gringa a favor del continuismo en Honduras, y quien trata de humanizar la violencia que financia el gobierno estadounidense.

El artículo dice que Honduras ya no es el país violento, inseguro y empobrecido que era hace tres años, gracias a la ayuda de Estados Unidos y a su alianza con el gobierno de Juan Orlando Hernández.

Melo pregunta a sus lectores si creen que esa afirmación es así en la realidad, y enseguida afirma que “nunca Honduras había sido nombrado tantas veces por los gringos como en esta ocasión, como si fuese trofeo de una guerra que ellos mismos provocaron, han mantenido y seguirán sosteniendo mientras siga el aval a la mafia que actualmente utiliza nuestro Estado como estricto negocio”.

Y lo peor de esta campaña sucia es que utilizan a un misionero jesuita que llegó a Honduras en 1980 para aprender español y que ahora es el candidato a vicepresidente en la fórmula Clinton.

Pero no, señores, ustedes pueden mantener la dictadura democrática de nacionalistas y liberales mientras estabilizan el golpismo de 2009, pero aquí bien sabemos quiénes son. Y en el momento de la tribulación, el pueblo sabe dónde están.

Origen: http://defensoresenlinea.com/la-campana-presidencial-en-eeuu-y-su-conexion-con-honduras/

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Negroponte’s Crimes

Hillary Clinton is bragging about support from a Republican diplomat linked to mass atrocities in Central America.

Origen: Negroponte’s Crimes

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“Eat, Pray, Starve”: Greg Grandin on Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton & the U.S. Role in Honduras

On Wednesday night, Hillary Clinton’s running mate, Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, delivered a prime-time speech in which he spoke about the nine months he spent with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras in 1980. To talk more about the significance of Tim Kaine’s time in Honduras, we speak with Greg Grandin, professor of Latin American history at New York University. His most recent article for The Nation is headlined “Eat, Pray, Starve: What Tim Kaine Didn’t Learn During His Time in Honduras.”


TRANSCRIPT

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: We are “Breaking with Convention: War, Peace and the Presidency.” We’re in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, covering the Democratic National Convention, inside and out, from the streets to the convention floor. On Wednesday night, Hillary Clinton’s running mate, Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, delivered a prime-time speech in which he spoke about the nine months he spent with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras in 1980.

SEN. TIM KAINE: And let me tell you what really struck me there. I got a—I got a firsthand look at a different system, a dictatorship, a dictatorship, where a few people at the top had all the power, and everybody else got left out.

AMY GOODMAN: To talk more about the significance of Senator Kaine’s time in Honduras, we’re joined by Greg Grandin, professor of Latin American history at New York University. His most recent article for The Nation is headlined “Eat, Pray, Starve: What Tim Kaine Didn’t Learn During His Time in Honduras.”

Professor Grandin, welcome to Democracy Now! Talk about what you understand Tim Kaine did when he took a year off of Harvard Law School to go to Honduras and work with the Jesuits, through to the policies today.

GREG GRANDIN: Yeah, well, he spent about nine months in Honduras, in El Progreso. It’s a Jesuit mission. And he volunteered. He did pretty politically neutral work, by his own accounting. He taught carpentry and he taught welding. The Progreso mission is in the old region of the old United Fruit—the storied United Fruit Company, a lot of old company towns, banana plantation workers, former banana plantation workers. The industry in that area was already kind of in decline at that moment.

And this was a very formative period in Tim Kaine’s life, according to Tim Kaine. He calls it transformational. He said that it changed his life. It made him think more about poverty. It made him think more about social justice. And he’s used his time in Honduras—he wasn’t in—he wasn’t in political office until the late 1990s—municipal politics in Richmond, then mayor of Richmond, then he went on to be governor of Virginia and then senator. In pretty much every campaign, he’s referenced his time in Honduras.

Now, what’s interesting about that is nine months in 1980 Honduras is the equivalent of being in Weimar Germany in 1933. There was a lot going on, particularly if you were working with the Jesuits. The Jesuits were on the front lines of a lot of the changes that were taking place in Central America. There was, you know, those insurrectionary wars, those revolutionary wars. The Sandinistas won in nearby Nicaragua in 1979. Guatemala, El Salvador, there was large insurgencies. They were as much Christian as they were socialist. The rise of liberation theology, the left-wing turn within the Catholic Church that was largely driven in Latin America, had radicalized beyond just a concern for the poor, beyond just a concern for structural issues, to actually side with revolutionaries to join the revolution.

Not all Jesuits were revolutionaries. The order was, in some ways, torn by debates. It was a cauldron. There were massacres. Political repression started in Honduras. Ronald Reagan, when he won in 1980, appointed John Negroponte, who worked very closely with death squads. In Honduras, people started to disappear. There were massacres of peasants. There was the beginning of the genocide in Guatemala. So, these were very consequential years. There’s no way that he could have spent nine months in the center of this cauldron without coming away from—with the debates. And the debates within the Jesuit community, within that Jesuit mission, in particular, was: Should we side with the revolution, or should we—should we slow it down, should we be more conservative? And there were Jesuits on both sides of that debate within that mission.

And what’s interesting is that, when Kaine comes back to the United States, there’s no doubt that this had an impact on his life. There’s no doubt, when you listen to him speak about Honduras, he’s sincere. He is concerned about the country. And I think this speaks to a split in the neoliberal mind. He reduces his time in Honduras to a series of platitudes. It would be as if somebody spent nine months in Weimar Germany in 1933 and come back with the lesson that money can’t buy happiness. I mean, that’s literally what he said in one—paraphrasing something that he said in an interview on how Honduras impacted him. He was also asked how it made him think about the United States. And he said, “Well, Honduras was a dictatorship at the time, and it made me appreciate our system of government.” So, there’s a way in which the structural analysis—

AMY GOODMAN: What was the U.S. role at the time in Honduras in the coups, in the military?

GREG GRANDIN: Well, one, that dictatorship—that dictatorship that Kaine referenced was installed by the United States. It was a couple—it was many years old. It dated back to a coup that John F. Kennedy presided over after the Cuban revolution. The JFK and LBJ administrations set off a series of coups in order to contain the Cuban revolution, and Honduras was one country. So, that dictatorship can be traced back—that dictatorship that Kaine lived under could be traced back to U.S. patronage. But also, at the time, in order to stem the Contra—as a response to the Sandinista revolution, the Contra war was getting underway. Honduras was the front lines in that. Honduras, when Tim Kaine—exactly when Tim Kaine was there, was the third-largest recipient of military aid in all of Latin America. Honduras, a country with, you know, at the time, maybe 2, 3 million people. So, the U.S. was—

AMY GOODMAN: You know, we only have two minutes.

GREG GRANDIN: Yeah.

AMY GOODMAN: And I wanted to bring the policy from then to here.

GREG GRANDIN: To now, yeah.

AMY GOODMAN: In March, gunmen assassinated Berta Cáceres, the well-known Honduran indigenous dissident—

GREG GRANDIN: Yeah.

..

http://www.democracynow.org/2016/7/29/eat_pray_starve_greg_grandin_on

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Eat, Pray, Starve: What Tim Kaine Didn’t Learn During His Time in Honduras

The vice-presidential nominee supports policies that hurt the country that was the “turning point” in his life.

Origen: Eat, Pray, Starve: What Tim Kaine Didn’t Learn During His Time in Honduras

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Protestors Call Out Hillary Clinton & Demand Justice for Berta Cáceres at DNC

It’s been four months since Honduran indigenous environmentalist Berta Cáceres was killed in her home, and protestors continue to demand justice – this time, calling out Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy in the Central American country outside of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.

wenty organizations chanted “Berta vive vive, la lucha sigue sigue” on Monday as part of the It Takes Roots to Weather the Storm People’s Caravan demonstration, which started last week at Cleveland’s RNC and traveled to the DNC.

The multiracial group of activists, including Cáceres’ daughter Laura, aims to continue the mission of the late activist, who had criticized the presumptive Democratic nominee for allegedly helping in the 2009 Honduran military coup that is still shaking the country.

“We know both the Republican and Democratic candidates are actually not for our people or needs of our communities,” Kitzia Esteva, an activist with the Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, which organized the caravan, told Colorlines. “We’re also denouncing [Clinton’s] intervention in all of this. We’re calling on her to stop creating these policies that are both breaking indigenous communities’ ability to [maintain their] land and also [forcing] migration of many of us here in the U.S.”

The group is demanding justice for Cáceres, particularly an independent international investigation into her murder, calling on Clinton to take responsibility for her role in the coup and making visible the environmental justice and indigenous land rights struggle.

They also support the Berta Cáceres Human Rights in Honduras Act, which would stop U.S. aid to Honduras’ military police.

While the caravan’s last stop is in Philadelphia, the group aims to continue its work.

Origen: Protestors Call Out Hillary Clinton & Demand Justice for Berta Cáceres at DNC

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Tim Kaine vivió por un año en El Progreso, Honduras

Tim Kaine, el que pudiera ser el nuevo Vicepresidente de USA vivió por un año en Honduras y estuvo de regreso el año pasado.

SAN PEDRO SULA.- La virtual candidata a la presidencia de los Estados Unidos por parte del partido demócrata anunció hoy que Tim Kaine sería su propuesta de Vicepresidente de esa nación. Resulta que Kaine ha visitado nuestro país varias veces e incluso vivió aquí por un año.

La última vez que Tim Kaine vino a tierras catrachas, de hecho, fue recientemente: en el año pasado. Sin embargo, la primera vez que lo hizo se remonta a inicios de los ochentas cuando tenía apenas 22 años y vino a nuestro país para ejercer como maestro de escuela con otros misioneros jesuitas por casi un año.

“Pienso cada día en mi tiempo en Honduras”, declaró Tim Kaine en una entrevista hecha el año pasado para el diario español El País. “Cada día pienso en las lecciones de mis amigos de allí, fue una de las dos o tres decisiones más importantes de mi vida”, agregó en ese entonces Kaine.

Teleprogreso tuvo la oportunidad de entrevistarlo ese mismo año también, en su última visita a nuestro país.

En esa ocasión visitó el Instituto Técnico Loyola, el cual está a cargo de la Fundación Fe y Alegría.

Nota Relacionada: Clinton presenta oficialmente a su Vicepresidente

“Esta visita a Progreso es el momento más especial por mi historia aquí. Un programa como el Instituto Técnico Loyola es importante para desarrollar a los jóvenes. La escuela solo tenía 25 estudiantes durante mi tiempo aquí y ahora hay casi 300 estudiantes aprendiendo gastronomía, soldadura, mecánico y otras profesiones”, dijo Kaine en esa ocasión.

Tim Kaine: Es emocionante regresar a Honduras

Tim Kaine, Clinton
Tim Kaine viene a ser un antídoto a lo que representa Donald Trump.

“Es muy emocionante para mí regresar a Honduras después de muchos años. La gente de El progreso y la amistad de la gente de aquí era una fuente de inspiración para mí” dijo Kaine en un español bastante decente.

Además de visitar ese instituto, Tim Kaine también visitó las instalaciones de Teatro La Fragua en El Progreso donde se encontró con viejos amigos. Un miembro de la compañía de teatro afirmó que Kaine era un buen amigo y que, como curiosidad, él había ayudado a diseñar algunas gradas del complejo teatral.

Respecto a la situación de nuestro país, el ahora candidato a Vicepresidente de los Estados Unidos explicó que una inversión millonaria en Honduras, Guatemala y El Salvador estaba en discusión.

“Es importante para nosotros visitar, hablar con la gente, escuchar sus ideas y sugerencias porque necesitamos hacer el mayor bien con esta inversión”, dijo entonces al respecto.

“Es importante entender la situación aquí”, dijo Tim Kaine en su visita a Honduras en el 2015.

Origen: Tim Kaine vivió por un año en El Progreso, Honduras

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Tim Kaine: “En Honduras aprendí los valores de mi pueblo”

SAN PEDRO SULA.- Tras ser presentado por Hillary Clinton como su compañero de fórmula, Tim Kaine dio un discurso que se llevó el clamor del público presente, especialmente del latino.

“Decidí tomarme un año sábatico de la universidad para ofrecerme como voluntario con los misioneros jesuitas en Honduras”, inició Kaine en inglés.

Seguidamente y para sorpresa de los presentes, preguntó en español: ¿Hay hondureños aquí?

La muchedumbre respondió al unísono con gritos, vitoreos y aplausos.

“Cuando llegué a Honduras resultó ser que mis recientemente adquiridos conocimientos de la ley constitucional era bastante inútiles”, relató Tim Kaine, quien estudió leyes en la prestigiosa universidad de Harvard.

“Pero la experiencia de haber trabajado en la tienda de herrero de mi padre sí me ayudó”, continuó el posible Vicepresidente de los Estados Unidos.

“Así que le enseñé a adolescentes hondureños las cosas básicas de la carpintería y la soldadura y a cambio ellos me enseñaron a hablar español”, agregó Tim Kaine.

“SE LOS DIGO, MI TIEMPO EN HONDURAS CAMBIÓ MI VIDA EN TANTAS MANERAS… ” – TIM KAINE

Importantes palabras del compañero de la candidata presidencial Hillary Clinton acerca de nuestro país, palabras que han resonado alrededor del mundo.

Tim Kaine remató, de nuevo en español, con la siguiente declaración:

“En Honduras aprendí los valores de mi pueblo: fe, familia y trabajo. Los mismos valores de la comunidad latina aquí en nuestro país”.

Y, de nuevo, se llevó el clamor de la gente.

Origen: Tim Kaine: “En Honduras aprendí los valores de mi pueblo”

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Hillary, Honduras and my late friend Berta

By on May 29, 2016 1:00 am

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Just one year ago, I had a joyous reunion in San Francisco with a high school classmate from my native Honduras. Social justice campaigner Berta Caceres came to the Bay Area to receive the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize for her leadership among indigenous people opposed to mining and the construction of hydroelectric dams that would destroy their communities.

Unfortunately, in a time when Honduras has grown ever more violent and repressive since its 2009 military coup, Berta’s continued activism and global recognition put a bullseye on her back. On March 3, she was killed by gunmen in her hometown of La Esperanza, not far from where I grew up before emigrating to the United States two decades ago.

This tragedy added Berta’s name to the long list of recent Honduran political martyrs — students, teachers, journalists, lawyers, LGBT community members, labor and peasant organizers and even top civilian investigators of drug trafficking and corruption. More than 100 environmental campaigners have been killed in the last five years. This carnage, along with escalating gang violence, has led many Hondurans to flee the country, often arriving in the U.S. as unaccompanied minors or mothers with small children.

The world learned recently that four people have been arrested and charged with Berta’s assassination. The suspects include a retired military officer, an army major and two men with close ties to Desarrollos Energeticos S.A., the controversial dam builder. As The New York Times reported, Berta’s family and friends “questioned whether the investigation would ultimately lead to those who planned and ordered the killing.”

Flush with tens of millions of our tax dollars for “security assistance,” the Honduran army and national police have acted with impunity since U.S.-trained generals overthrew Manuel Zelaya, the elected president of Honduras, seven years ago. As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton toed the White House line that this wasn’t really a “military coup” worthy of near unanimous condemnation by the Organization of American States. The U.S. was more concerned about maintaining its own military presence in Honduras than objecting to local human rights abuses that have increased ever since.

Today, Clinton cites her foreign policy experience and describes her run for the presidency as a “campaign for human rights.” Yet, unlike her rival for the Democratic nomination, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Clinton believes that youthful refugees from violence in Honduras “should be sent back” rather than welcomed and assisted on this side of the border. Today, many still face deportation while languishing in U.S. detention facilities under poor conditions and without proper legal representation — which, even Clinton agrees, they should have.

http://www.sfexaminer.com/hillary-honduras-late-friend-berta/

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U.S.-Latin American relations are at an all-time low

Origen: U.S.-Latin American relations are at an all-time low

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Hillary Clinton and Honduras: The Left’s Benghazi?

On June 28, 2009, Hillary Clinton faced her first major international crisis as Secretary of State when about a hundred members of the Honduran military entered the Honduran presidential palace, arrested President Manuel Zelaya in his pajamas  and put him on a one-way flight to Costa Rica. The incident was widely considered around the world to be an illegal coup of the kind Latin America hadn’t seen since the 1980s.

Origen: Hillary Clinton and Honduras: The Left’s Benghazi?

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“She’s Baldly Lying”: Dana Frank Responds to Hillary Clinton’s Defense of Her Role in Honduras Coup

As Hillary Clinton seeks to defend her role in the 2009 Honduras coup, we speak with Dana Frank, an expert on human rights and U.S. policy in Honduras. “This is breathtaking that she’d say these things. I think we’re all kind of reeling that she would both defend the coup and defend her own role in supporting its stabilization in the aftermath,” Frank says. “I want to make sure that the listeners understand how chilling it is that a leading presidential candidate in the United States would say this was not a coup. … She’s baldly lying when she says we never called it a coup.”

http://www.democracynow.org/2016/4/13/shes_baldly_lying_dana_frank_responds


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Hillary en medio de la polémica por crisis política de Honduras  

La candidata presidencial por el partido Demócrata, Hillary Clinton, dijo en una entrevista al diario New York Daily News, que los acontecimientos políticos ocurridos en Honduras en 2009, estuvieron dentro del marco la ley y que “el golpe de estado no fue ilegal”.

Origen: Hillary en medio de la polémica por crisis política de Honduras  

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How Hillary Clinton Militarized US Policy in Honduras

She used a State Department office closely involved with counterinsurgency efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq to aid the coup regime in Honduras.

 

n 2012, as Honduras descended into social and political chaos in the wake of a US-sanctioned military coup, the civilian aid arm of Hillary Clinton’s State Department spent over $26 million on a propaganda program aimed at encouraging anti-violence “alliances” between Honduran community groups and local police and security forces.

The program, called “Honduras Convive,” was designed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to reduce violent crimes in a country that had simultaneously become the murder capital of the world and a staging ground for one of the largest deployments of US Special Operations forces outside of the Middle East.

It was part of a larger US program to support the conservative government of Pepe Lobo, who came to power in 2009 after the Honduran military ousted the elected president, José Manuel Zelaya, in a coup that was widely condemned in Central America. In reality, critics say, the program was an attempt by the State Department to scrub the image of a country where security forces have a record of domestic repression that continues to the present day.

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence.” —Adrienne Pine, American University

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence,” says Adrienne Pine, an assistant professor of anthropology at American University who spent the 2013-14 school year teaching at the National Autonomous University of Honduras. “It’s related to the complete absence of participatory democracy in Honduras, in which the United States is deeply complicit.”

“With the coup, Clinton had a real opportunity to do the right thing and shift US policy to respect democratic processes,” added Alex Main, an expert on US policy in Central America at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, after being told of the program. “But she completely messed it up, and we’re seeing the consequences of it now.”

Honduras Convive (“Honduras Coexists”) was the brainchild of the Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI), a controversial unit of USAID that operates overseas much like the CIA did during the Cold War.

Sanctioned by Congress in 1994, OTI intervenes under the direction of the State Department, the Pentagon, and other security agencies in places like Afghanistan, Haiti, and Colombia to boost support for local governments backed by the United States. Sometimes, as it has in Cuba and Venezuela, its programs are directed at stirring opposition to leftist regimes. Clinton gave the office a major boost after she became Secretary of State; its programs are overseen by an under secretary of state as well as the top administrator of USAID.
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She used a State Department office closely involved with counterinsurgency efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq to aid the coup regime in Honduras.

n 2012, as Honduras descended into social and political chaos in the wake of a US-sanctioned military coup, the civilian aid arm of Hillary Clinton’s State Department spent over $26 million on a propaganda program aimed at encouraging anti-violence “alliances” between Honduran community groups and local police and security forces.

The program, called “Honduras Convive,” was designed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to reduce violent crimes in a country that had simultaneously become the murder capital of the world and a staging ground for one of the largest deployments of US Special Operations forces outside of the Middle East.

It was part of a larger US program to support the conservative government of Pepe Lobo, who came to power in 2009 after the Honduran military ousted the elected president, José Manuel Zelaya, in a coup that was widely condemned in Central America. In reality, critics say, the program was an attempt by the State Department to scrub the image of a country where security forces have a record of domestic repression that continues to the present day.

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence.” —Adrienne Pine, American University

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence,” says Adrienne Pine, an assistant professor of anthropology at American University who spent the 2013-14 school year teaching at the National Autonomous University of Honduras. “It’s related to the complete absence of participatory democracy in Honduras, in which the United States is deeply complicit.”

“With the coup, Clinton had a real opportunity to do the right thing and shift US policy to respect democratic processes,” added Alex Main, an expert on US policy in Central America at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, after being told of the program. “But she completely messed it up, and we’re seeing the consequences of it now.”

Honduras Convive (“Honduras Coexists”) was the brainchild of the Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI), a controversial unit of USAID that operates overseas much like the CIA did during the Cold War.

Sanctioned by Congress in 1994, OTI intervenes under the direction of the State Department, the Pentagon, and other security agencies in places like Afghanistan, Haiti, and Colombia to boost support for local governments backed by the United States. Sometimes, as it has in Cuba and Venezuela, its programs are directed at stirring opposition to leftist regimes. Clinton gave the office a major boost after she became Secretary of State; its programs are overseen by an under secretary of state as well as the top administrator of USAID.
Most Popular
1

She used a State Department office closely involved with counterinsurgency efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq to aid the coup regime in Honduras.

n 2012, as Honduras descended into social and political chaos in the wake of a US-sanctioned military coup, the civilian aid arm of Hillary Clinton’s State Department spent over $26 million on a propaganda program aimed at encouraging anti-violence “alliances” between Honduran community groups and local police and security forces.

The program, called “Honduras Convive,” was designed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to reduce violent crimes in a country that had simultaneously become the murder capital of the world and a staging ground for one of the largest deployments of US Special Operations forces outside of the Middle East.

It was part of a larger US program to support the conservative government of Pepe Lobo, who came to power in 2009 after the Honduran military ousted the elected president, José Manuel Zelaya, in a coup that was widely condemned in Central America. In reality, critics say, the program was an attempt by the State Department to scrub the image of a country where security forces have a record of domestic repression that continues to the present day.

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence.” —Adrienne Pine, American University

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence,” says Adrienne Pine, an assistant professor of anthropology at American University who spent the 2013-14 school year teaching at the National Autonomous University of Honduras. “It’s related to the complete absence of participatory democracy in Honduras, in which the United States is deeply complicit.”

“With the coup, Clinton had a real opportunity to do the right thing and shift US policy to respect democratic processes,” added Alex Main, an expert on US policy in Central America at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, after being told of the program. “But she completely messed it up, and we’re seeing the consequences of it now.”

Honduras Convive (“Honduras Coexists”) was the brainchild of the Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI), a controversial unit of USAID that operates overseas much like the CIA did during the Cold War.

Sanctioned by Congress in 1994, OTI intervenes under the direction of the State Department, the Pentagon, and other security agencies in places like Afghanistan, Haiti, and Colombia to boost support for local governments backed by the United States. Sometimes, as it has in Cuba and Venezuela, its programs are directed at stirring opposition to leftist regimes. Clinton gave the office a major boost after she became Secretary of State; its programs are overseen by an under secretary of state as well as the top administrator of USAID.

OTI’s activities, the Congressional Research Service noted in a 2009 report, “are overtly political” and based on the idea that “timely and creative” US assistance can “tip the balance” toward outcomes “that advance U.S. foreign policy objectives.”

In Honduras, OTI seems to have followed the model it set in Iraq, where it sent some of the first US aid personnel after the 2003 invasion. At the time, CRS said, OTI’s strategy in Iraq was to convey “the tangible benefits of the regime change.”

The objective of Honduras Convive is spelled out on USAID’s website: “To disrupt the systems, perceptions and behaviors that support violence by building alliances between the communities and the state (especially the police and security forces).” A USAID official confirmed that the program is still ongoing, but played down US ties with Honduran security forces. Convive, he said, is “working in communities to build the capacity of civil society and government institutions, while strengthening community cohesion.” It was initiated “at the request of USAID and the broader U.S. Government due to high levels of violence in Honduras,” he added. “The beneficiaries of the Convive program are the Honduran people.” Much of the country’s violence is blamed on gangs and drug cartels and has led thousands of Hondurans to send their children north to flee the region.

But contractor documents obtained about the program show that it was based in part on communications strategies to win “hearts and minds” developed during the counterinsurgency phase of the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Several OTI officials and contractors overseeing the project came to Honduras from Afghanistan, where they managed the civilian, nation-building side of the war. They included Miguel Reabold, OTI’s country representative in Honduras, who previously represented OTI in Afghanistan.

Part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by counterinsurgency adviser David Kilcullen.

In addition, a key part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by David Kilcullen, who was the senior counterinsurgency adviser to Army General David Petraeus in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Kilcullen’s research methodology, according to a contract proposal I obtained, was “built around a streamlined set of metrics” that provide a “manageable method for assessing counterinsurgency campaigns that can be replicated and customized in other insecure environments.” The contract was submitted to Reabold on October 16, 2012.

The USAID official confirmed that Kilcullen’s company, Caerus Associates, “received two grants totaling approximately $77,000 to assist USAID/OTI to assess licit and illicit networks in San Pedro Sula,” Honduras’s largest and most violent city. But, he added, “the Honduras Convive program is not a counterinsurgency program.”

LIKE THIS? GET MORE OF OUR BEST REPORTING AND ANALYSIS

In a lengthy e-mail, the official added that Convive “has drawn its lessons from best practices in violence prevention, community policing, and community cohesion from urban environments all over the world.” Since the program began, he insisted, violence has declined. He provided figures showing “marked reductions in homicides between 2013 and 2014 in some of the city’s most dangerous communities,” with declines of between 18 and 46 percent in several municipalities.

“USAID believes that homicides are decreasing due to a combination of factors, included among them a more cohesive community, represented by empowered leaders, working closely with Honduran government partners (including the police); international donors; and complementary USAID programs,” the official wrote in his e-mail.

But nowhere in the USAID documents does the word “coup” appear. The agency’s claims and statistics stand in stark contrast to the situation in Honduras, where civil society has been reeling from a wave of political violence and assassinations perpetuated by what many believe are state-sponsored death squads.

Even as Convive was being formulated in 2012, repression and violence had become a pressing issue for Hondurans. That January, UC-Santa Cruz historian Dana Frank described the carnage in The New York Times, reporting that “more than 300 people have been killed by state security forces since the coup, according to the leading human rights organization Cofadeh.” It appears to be just as bad in 2016.

A month ago, on March 3, the renowned environmental activist Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home by unknown gunmen. Two weeks later, Nelson Garcia, a member of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), co-founded by Cáceres, was shot to death. Since then, thousand of Hondurans have protested what Democracy Now! has described as a “culture of repression and impunity linked to the Honduran government’s support for corporate interests.”
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Subscribe

The killings have brought the US government’s programs in Honduras under increased scrutiny and drawn sharp criticism of Clinton’s covert support for the 2009 coup while she was Secretary of State.

In particular, opponents of Clinton have seized on her own admissions in her autobiography, Hard Choices, that she used her power as Secretary of State to deflect criticism of the coup and shift US backing to the new government. “We strategized on a plan to restore order in Honduras and ensure that free and fair elections could be held quickly and legitimately, which would render the question of Zelaya moot,” Clinton wrote.

In 2014, two years before her murder, Cáceres herself condemned Clinton’s statements about the coup, saying “this demonstrates the meddling of North Americans in our country.” Clinton, she added, “recognized that they didn’t permit Mel Zelaya’s return to the presidency…even though we warned this was going to be very dangerous and that it would permit a barbarity.”

The Clinton campaign did not respond to e-mails seeking comment on her department’s role in Honduras Convive or in shaping US policy toward Honduras. But in March, after Cáceres’s statements on Clinton were reported in The Nation, a campaign official told Latino USA that charges that the former Secretary of State supported the 2009 coup were “simply nonsense.” “Hillary Clinton engaged in active diplomacy that resolved a constitutional crisis and paved the way for legitimate democratic elections,” she said.

* * *

The players in Honduras Convive provide a glimpse into the privatized world of covert operations managed by USAID and OTI, and how they dovetail with broader US foreign-policy goals of supporting governments friendly to US economic and strategic interests. They also show how Hillary Clinton might manage US foreign policy as president.

Under Clinton’s 2010 Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, OTI’s programs were expanded and strengthened, and the State Department pledged to “work much more closely” with the office. “We will build upon OTI’s business model of executing programming tailored to facilitate transition and promote stability in select crisis countries,” the review said. The overall plan for OTI was overseen by a Clinton deputy and the administrator of USAID. Most of its projects are contracted to a group of private aid companies in Washington.

Honduras Convive, for example, was outsourced to Creative Associates International (CAI), a company that has worked closely with USAID’s OTI on projects in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Libya. In 2010, CAI teamed up with OTI to run a clandestine operation in Cuba dubbed “Cuban Twitter,” as revealed in 2014 by the Associated Press. It was designed to use social media to spark anti-government unrest in that country.

A key piece of CAI’s project in Honduras, determining the social networks responsible for violence in the country’s largest city, was subcontracted to Caerus, Kilcullen’s company. It was founded in 2010 while Kilcullen was working as a top counterinsurgency adviser to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. In addition to advising Petraeus, Kilcullen served during the Bush administration as a senior adviser on counterinsurgency to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

One of Kilcullen’s first contracts in Afghanistan, according to the Caerus documents I obtained, was to design and manage a $15 million USAID program measuring stability in Afghanistan—a key task of the counterinsurgency effort. Kilcullen also developed close ties to the Office of Transition Initiatives. OTI is “the closest thing we have now to an organizational structure specifically designed to deal with the environments of the last ten to twenty years,” Kilcullen said in a talk to the New America Foundation in 2013.

Like Kilcullen himself, the Caerus contractors who led the Honduras project had extensive experience with the wars in Afghanistan. Stacia George, Caerus’s “Team Leader” on the Honduras project, was employed at Caerus from 2012 to 2014, where one of her tasks was training “Department of Defense professionals on using development as a counterinsurgency tool in Afghanistan” (she is now deputy director of OTI). Another Caerus associate involved in the Honduras program, William Upshur, taught counterinsurgency tactics in Afghanistan for the Army’s 10th Mountain and 82nd Airborne divisions from 2010 to 2013 (he’s now an associate with intelligence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton).

The Caerus proposal to OTI, which I obtained, emphasizes the company’s extensive experience with counterinsurgency, surveillance, and data collection in Afghanistan as well as its ties to OTI. Many Caerus staffers “have worked directly for [OTI] developing policy, implementing field programs, and managing program evaluations based on stabilization goals and objectives,” it says.

CAI, the prime contractor for Honduras Convive, deferred all questions about the project to USAID. But a CAI spokesperson said that “Creative doesn’t do counterinsurgency work and doesn’t have anybody on staff involved in counterinsurgency.”

* * *

“U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region.” —Alex Main, NACLA Report

The AID/OTI program was part of a grand US plan to improve security in Central America by building closer ties with local military forces and using US troops to train their police. Honduras has become a litmus test for the plan.

Today, hundreds of US Special Forces and Navy SEALs are training Honduran units for civilian law enforcement. The plan is “driven by the hope that beefing up police operations will stabilize a small country closer to home,” The Wall Street Journal reported. The training is set to expand in the $1 billion “Alliance for Prosperity” program for the region that was unveiled in late January of 2015 by Vice President Joe Biden.

Main, the CEPR analyst, says Central Americans should greet the Biden plan with skepticism. “From the U.S.-backed dirty wars of the 1980s to the broken promises of economic development under the Central American Free Trade Agreement, the historical record shows that U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region,” he wrote last year in NACLA Report on the Americas.

In Honduras, Main told me, the overriding US interest has been “keeping this government in power.” The “window dressing” of Honduras Convive, he added, has “been going on pretty much since the coup.” Many observers, including lawmakers, agree.

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras.” —Lawrence Wilkerson, former adviser to Colin Powell

On March 16, 730 scholars organized by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs signed a letter urging the State Department to demand human rights accountability in its dealings with Honduras. “We are deeply concerned that the U.S. government condones and supports the current Honduran government by sending financial and technical support to strengthen the Honduran military and police, institutions that have been responsible for human rights violations since the coup d’état of 2009,” the letter stated.

That same week, 23 members of Congress and the AFL-CIO called on Secretary of State John Kerry to address the violence in Honduras directed against trade unionists and human rights defenders. And on March 14, activists with SOA Watch, which opposes the School of the Americas, where many Honduran and Central American military leaders have been trained, raised a banner in front of USAID’s headquarters in Washington reading “Stop Funding Murder in Honduras!”

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras,” Lawrence Wilkerson, the former deputy to Secretary of State Colin Powell, told me when I brought OTI’s Honduras program to his attention in an interview last year. “If I could sum it up for what it’s been for so many years, that’s protecting all the criminals in power, basically for US commercial interests.”

Origen: How Hillary Clinton Militarized US Policy in Honduras

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OTI’s activities, the Congressional Research Service noted in a 2009 report, “are overtly political” and based on the idea that “timely and creative” US assistance can “tip the balance” toward outcomes “that advance U.S. foreign policy objectives.”

In Honduras, OTI seems to have followed the model it set in Iraq, where it sent some of the first US aid personnel after the 2003 invasion. At the time, CRS said, OTI’s strategy in Iraq was to convey “the tangible benefits of the regime change.”

The objective of Honduras Convive is spelled out on USAID’s website: “To disrupt the systems, perceptions and behaviors that support violence by building alliances between the communities and the state (especially the police and security forces).” A USAID official confirmed that the program is still ongoing, but played down US ties with Honduran security forces. Convive, he said, is “working in communities to build the capacity of civil society and government institutions, while strengthening community cohesion.” It was initiated “at the request of USAID and the broader U.S. Government due to high levels of violence in Honduras,” he added. “The beneficiaries of the Convive program are the Honduran people.” Much of the country’s violence is blamed on gangs and drug cartels and has led thousands of Hondurans to send their children north to flee the region.

But contractor documents obtained about the program show that it was based in part on communications strategies to win “hearts and minds” developed during the counterinsurgency phase of the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Several OTI officials and contractors overseeing the project came to Honduras from Afghanistan, where they managed the civilian, nation-building side of the war. They included Miguel Reabold, OTI’s country representative in Honduras, who previously represented OTI in Afghanistan.

Part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by counterinsurgency adviser David Kilcullen.

In addition, a key part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by David Kilcullen, who was the senior counterinsurgency adviser to Army General David Petraeus in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Kilcullen’s research methodology, according to a contract proposal I obtained, was “built around a streamlined set of metrics” that provide a “manageable method for assessing counterinsurgency campaigns that can be replicated and customized in other insecure environments.” The contract was submitted to Reabold on October 16, 2012.

The USAID official confirmed that Kilcullen’s company, Caerus Associates, “received two grants totaling approximately $77,000 to assist USAID/OTI to assess licit and illicit networks in San Pedro Sula,” Honduras’s largest and most violent city. But, he added, “the Honduras Convive program is not a counterinsurgency program.”

LIKE THIS? GET MORE OF OUR BEST REPORTING AND ANALYSIS

In a lengthy e-mail, the official added that Convive “has drawn its lessons from best practices in violence prevention, community policing, and community cohesion from urban environments all over the world.” Since the program began, he insisted, violence has declined. He provided figures showing “marked reductions in homicides between 2013 and 2014 in some of the city’s most dangerous communities,” with declines of between 18 and 46 percent in several municipalities.

“USAID believes that homicides are decreasing due to a combination of factors, included among them a more cohesive community, represented by empowered leaders, working closely with Honduran government partners (including the police); international donors; and complementary USAID programs,” the official wrote in his e-mail.

But nowhere in the USAID documents does the word “coup” appear. The agency’s claims and statistics stand in stark contrast to the situation in Honduras, where civil society has been reeling from a wave of political violence and assassinations perpetuated by what many believe are state-sponsored death squads.

Even as Convive was being formulated in 2012, repression and violence had become a pressing issue for Hondurans. That January, UC-Santa Cruz historian Dana Frank described the carnage in The New York Times, reporting that “more than 300 people have been killed by state security forces since the coup, according to the leading human rights organization Cofadeh.” It appears to be just as bad in 2016.

A month ago, on March 3, the renowned environmental activist Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home by unknown gunmen. Two weeks later, Nelson Garcia, a member of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), co-founded by Cáceres, was shot to death. Since then, thousand of Hondurans have protested what Democracy Now! has described as a “culture of repression and impunity linked to the Honduran government’s support for corporate interests.”
GET A DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTION FOR JUST $9.50!
Subscribe

The killings have brought the US government’s programs in Honduras under increased scrutiny and drawn sharp criticism of Clinton’s covert support for the 2009 coup while she was Secretary of State.

In particular, opponents of Clinton have seized on her own admissions in her autobiography, Hard Choices, that she used her power as Secretary of State to deflect criticism of the coup and shift US backing to the new government. “We strategized on a plan to restore order in Honduras and ensure that free and fair elections could be held quickly and legitimately, which would render the question of Zelaya moot,” Clinton wrote.

In 2014, two years before her murder, Cáceres herself condemned Clinton’s statements about the coup, saying “this demonstrates the meddling of North Americans in our country.” Clinton, she added, “recognized that they didn’t permit Mel Zelaya’s return to the presidency…even though we warned this was going to be very dangerous and that it would permit a barbarity.”

The Clinton campaign did not respond to e-mails seeking comment on her department’s role in Honduras Convive or in shaping US policy toward Honduras. But in March, after Cáceres’s statements on Clinton were reported in The Nation, a campaign official told Latino USA that charges that the former Secretary of State supported the 2009 coup were “simply nonsense.” “Hillary Clinton engaged in active diplomacy that resolved a constitutional crisis and paved the way for legitimate democratic elections,” she said.

* * *

The players in Honduras Convive provide a glimpse into the privatized world of covert operations managed by USAID and OTI, and how they dovetail with broader US foreign-policy goals of supporting governments friendly to US economic and strategic interests. They also show how Hillary Clinton might manage US foreign policy as president.

Under Clinton’s 2010 Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, OTI’s programs were expanded and strengthened, and the State Department pledged to “work much more closely” with the office. “We will build upon OTI’s business model of executing programming tailored to facilitate transition and promote stability in select crisis countries,” the review said. The overall plan for OTI was overseen by a Clinton deputy and the administrator of USAID. Most of its projects are contracted to a group of private aid companies in Washington.

Honduras Convive, for example, was outsourced to Creative Associates International (CAI), a company that has worked closely with USAID’s OTI on projects in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Libya. In 2010, CAI teamed up with OTI to run a clandestine operation in Cuba dubbed “Cuban Twitter,” as revealed in 2014 by the Associated Press. It was designed to use social media to spark anti-government unrest in that country.

A key piece of CAI’s project in Honduras, determining the social networks responsible for violence in the country’s largest city, was subcontracted to Caerus, Kilcullen’s company. It was founded in 2010 while Kilcullen was working as a top counterinsurgency adviser to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. In addition to advising Petraeus, Kilcullen served during the Bush administration as a senior adviser on counterinsurgency to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

One of Kilcullen’s first contracts in Afghanistan, according to the Caerus documents I obtained, was to design and manage a $15 million USAID program measuring stability in Afghanistan—a key task of the counterinsurgency effort. Kilcullen also developed close ties to the Office of Transition Initiatives. OTI is “the closest thing we have now to an organizational structure specifically designed to deal with the environments of the last ten to twenty years,” Kilcullen said in a talk to the New America Foundation in 2013.

Like Kilcullen himself, the Caerus contractors who led the Honduras project had extensive experience with the wars in Afghanistan. Stacia George, Caerus’s “Team Leader” on the Honduras project, was employed at Caerus from 2012 to 2014, where one of her tasks was training “Department of Defense professionals on using development as a counterinsurgency tool in Afghanistan” (she is now deputy director of OTI). Another Caerus associate involved in the Honduras program, William Upshur, taught counterinsurgency tactics in Afghanistan for the Army’s 10th Mountain and 82nd Airborne divisions from 2010 to 2013 (he’s now an associate with intelligence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton).

The Caerus proposal to OTI, which I obtained, emphasizes the company’s extensive experience with counterinsurgency, surveillance, and data collection in Afghanistan as well as its ties to OTI. Many Caerus staffers “have worked directly for [OTI] developing policy, implementing field programs, and managing program evaluations based on stabilization goals and objectives,” it says.

CAI, the prime contractor for Honduras Convive, deferred all questions about the project to USAID. But a CAI spokesperson said that “Creative doesn’t do counterinsurgency work and doesn’t have anybody on staff involved in counterinsurgency.”

* * *

“U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region.” —Alex Main, NACLA Report

The AID/OTI program was part of a grand US plan to improve security in Central America by building closer ties with local military forces and using US troops to train their police. Honduras has become a litmus test for the plan.

Today, hundreds of US Special Forces and Navy SEALs are training Honduran units for civilian law enforcement. The plan is “driven by the hope that beefing up police operations will stabilize a small country closer to home,” The Wall Street Journal reported. The training is set to expand in the $1 billion “Alliance for Prosperity” program for the region that was unveiled in late January of 2015 by Vice President Joe Biden.

Main, the CEPR analyst, says Central Americans should greet the Biden plan with skepticism. “From the U.S.-backed dirty wars of the 1980s to the broken promises of economic development under the Central American Free Trade Agreement, the historical record shows that U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region,” he wrote last year in NACLA Report on the Americas.

In Honduras, Main told me, the overriding US interest has been “keeping this government in power.” The “window dressing” of Honduras Convive, he added, has “been going on pretty much since the coup.” Many observers, including lawmakers, agree.

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras.” —Lawrence Wilkerson, former adviser to Colin Powell

On March 16, 730 scholars organized by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs signed a letter urging the State Department to demand human rights accountability in its dealings with Honduras. “We are deeply concerned that the U.S. government condones and supports the current Honduran government by sending financial and technical support to strengthen the Honduran military and police, institutions that have been responsible for human rights violations since the coup d’état of 2009,” the letter stated.

That same week, 23 members of Congress and the AFL-CIO called on Secretary of State John Kerry to address the violence in Honduras directed against trade unionists and human rights defenders. And on March 14, activists with SOA Watch, which opposes the School of the Americas, where many Honduran and Central American military leaders have been trained, raised a banner in front of USAID’s headquarters in Washington reading “Stop Funding Murder in Honduras!”

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras,” Lawrence Wilkerson, the former deputy to Secretary of State Colin Powell, told me when I brought OTI’s Honduras program to his attention in an interview last year. “If I could sum it up for what it’s been for so many years, that’s protecting all the criminals in power, basically for US commercial interests.”

Origen: How Hillary Clinton Militarized US Policy in Honduras

She used a State Department office closely involved with counterinsurgency efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq to aid the coup regime in Honduras.

n 2012, as Honduras descended into social and political chaos in the wake of a US-sanctioned military coup, the civilian aid arm of Hillary Clinton’s State Department spent over $26 million on a propaganda program aimed at encouraging anti-violence “alliances” between Honduran community groups and local police and security forces.

The program, called “Honduras Convive,” was designed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to reduce violent crimes in a country that had simultaneously become the murder capital of the world and a staging ground for one of the largest deployments of US Special Operations forces outside of the Middle East.

It was part of a larger US program to support the conservative government of Pepe Lobo, who came to power in 2009 after the Honduran military ousted the elected president, José Manuel Zelaya, in a coup that was widely condemned in Central America. In reality, critics say, the program was an attempt by the State Department to scrub the image of a country where security forces have a record of domestic repression that continues to the present day.

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence.” —Adrienne Pine, American University

“This was all about erasing memories of the coup and the structural causes of violence,” says Adrienne Pine, an assistant professor of anthropology at American University who spent the 2013-14 school year teaching at the National Autonomous University of Honduras. “It’s related to the complete absence of participatory democracy in Honduras, in which the United States is deeply complicit.”

“With the coup, Clinton had a real opportunity to do the right thing and shift US policy to respect democratic processes,” added Alex Main, an expert on US policy in Central America at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, after being told of the program. “But she completely messed it up, and we’re seeing the consequences of it now.”

Honduras Convive (“Honduras Coexists”) was the brainchild of the Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI), a controversial unit of USAID that operates overseas much like the CIA did during the Cold War.

Sanctioned by Congress in 1994, OTI intervenes under the direction of the State Department, the Pentagon, and other security agencies in places like Afghanistan, Haiti, and Colombia to boost support for local governments backed by the United States. Sometimes, as it has in Cuba and Venezuela, its programs are directed at stirring opposition to leftist regimes. Clinton gave the office a major boost after she became Secretary of State; its programs are overseen by an under secretary of state as well as the top administrator of USAID.
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OTI’s activities, the Congressional Research Service noted in a 2009 report, “are overtly political” and based on the idea that “timely and creative” US assistance can “tip the balance” toward outcomes “that advance U.S. foreign policy objectives.”

In Honduras, OTI seems to have followed the model it set in Iraq, where it sent some of the first US aid personnel after the 2003 invasion. At the time, CRS said, OTI’s strategy in Iraq was to convey “the tangible benefits of the regime change.”

The objective of Honduras Convive is spelled out on USAID’s website: “To disrupt the systems, perceptions and behaviors that support violence by building alliances between the communities and the state (especially the police and security forces).” A USAID official confirmed that the program is still ongoing, but played down US ties with Honduran security forces. Convive, he said, is “working in communities to build the capacity of civil society and government institutions, while strengthening community cohesion.” It was initiated “at the request of USAID and the broader U.S. Government due to high levels of violence in Honduras,” he added. “The beneficiaries of the Convive program are the Honduran people.” Much of the country’s violence is blamed on gangs and drug cartels and has led thousands of Hondurans to send their children north to flee the region.

But contractor documents obtained about the program show that it was based in part on communications strategies to win “hearts and minds” developed during the counterinsurgency phase of the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Several OTI officials and contractors overseeing the project came to Honduras from Afghanistan, where they managed the civilian, nation-building side of the war. They included Miguel Reabold, OTI’s country representative in Honduras, who previously represented OTI in Afghanistan.

Part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by counterinsurgency adviser David Kilcullen.

In addition, a key part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by David Kilcullen, who was the senior counterinsurgency adviser to Army General David Petraeus in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Kilcullen’s research methodology, according to a contract proposal I obtained, was “built around a streamlined set of metrics” that provide a “manageable method for assessing counterinsurgency campaigns that can be replicated and customized in other insecure environments.” The contract was submitted to Reabold on October 16, 2012.

The USAID official confirmed that Kilcullen’s company, Caerus Associates, “received two grants totaling approximately $77,000 to assist USAID/OTI to assess licit and illicit networks in San Pedro Sula,” Honduras’s largest and most violent city. But, he added, “the Honduras Convive program is not a counterinsurgency program.”

LIKE THIS? GET MORE OF OUR BEST REPORTING AND ANALYSIS

In a lengthy e-mail, the official added that Convive “has drawn its lessons from best practices in violence prevention, community policing, and community cohesion from urban environments all over the world.” Since the program began, he insisted, violence has declined. He provided figures showing “marked reductions in homicides between 2013 and 2014 in some of the city’s most dangerous communities,” with declines of between 18 and 46 percent in several municipalities.

“USAID believes that homicides are decreasing due to a combination of factors, included among them a more cohesive community, represented by empowered leaders, working closely with Honduran government partners (including the police); international donors; and complementary USAID programs,” the official wrote in his e-mail.

But nowhere in the USAID documents does the word “coup” appear. The agency’s claims and statistics stand in stark contrast to the situation in Honduras, where civil society has been reeling from a wave of political violence and assassinations perpetuated by what many believe are state-sponsored death squads.

Even as Convive was being formulated in 2012, repression and violence had become a pressing issue for Hondurans. That January, UC-Santa Cruz historian Dana Frank described the carnage in The New York Times, reporting that “more than 300 people have been killed by state security forces since the coup, according to the leading human rights organization Cofadeh.” It appears to be just as bad in 2016.

A month ago, on March 3, the renowned environmental activist Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home by unknown gunmen. Two weeks later, Nelson Garcia, a member of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), co-founded by Cáceres, was shot to death. Since then, thousand of Hondurans have protested what Democracy Now! has described as a “culture of repression and impunity linked to the Honduran government’s support for corporate interests.”
GET A DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTION FOR JUST $9.50!
Subscribe

The killings have brought the US government’s programs in Honduras under increased scrutiny and drawn sharp criticism of Clinton’s covert support for the 2009 coup while she was Secretary of State.

In particular, opponents of Clinton have seized on her own admissions in her autobiography, Hard Choices, that she used her power as Secretary of State to deflect criticism of the coup and shift US backing to the new government. “We strategized on a plan to restore order in Honduras and ensure that free and fair elections could be held quickly and legitimately, which would render the question of Zelaya moot,” Clinton wrote.

In 2014, two years before her murder, Cáceres herself condemned Clinton’s statements about the coup, saying “this demonstrates the meddling of North Americans in our country.” Clinton, she added, “recognized that they didn’t permit Mel Zelaya’s return to the presidency…even though we warned this was going to be very dangerous and that it would permit a barbarity.”

The Clinton campaign did not respond to e-mails seeking comment on her department’s role in Honduras Convive or in shaping US policy toward Honduras. But in March, after Cáceres’s statements on Clinton were reported in The Nation, a campaign official told Latino USA that charges that the former Secretary of State supported the 2009 coup were “simply nonsense.” “Hillary Clinton engaged in active diplomacy that resolved a constitutional crisis and paved the way for legitimate democratic elections,” she said.

* * *

The players in Honduras Convive provide a glimpse into the privatized world of covert operations managed by USAID and OTI, and how they dovetail with broader US foreign-policy goals of supporting governments friendly to US economic and strategic interests. They also show how Hillary Clinton might manage US foreign policy as president.

Under Clinton’s 2010 Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, OTI’s programs were expanded and strengthened, and the State Department pledged to “work much more closely” with the office. “We will build upon OTI’s business model of executing programming tailored to facilitate transition and promote stability in select crisis countries,” the review said. The overall plan for OTI was overseen by a Clinton deputy and the administrator of USAID. Most of its projects are contracted to a group of private aid companies in Washington.

Honduras Convive, for example, was outsourced to Creative Associates International (CAI), a company that has worked closely with USAID’s OTI on projects in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Libya. In 2010, CAI teamed up with OTI to run a clandestine operation in Cuba dubbed “Cuban Twitter,” as revealed in 2014 by the Associated Press. It was designed to use social media to spark anti-government unrest in that country.

A key piece of CAI’s project in Honduras, determining the social networks responsible for violence in the country’s largest city, was subcontracted to Caerus, Kilcullen’s company. It was founded in 2010 while Kilcullen was working as a top counterinsurgency adviser to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. In addition to advising Petraeus, Kilcullen served during the Bush administration as a senior adviser on counterinsurgency to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

One of Kilcullen’s first contracts in Afghanistan, according to the Caerus documents I obtained, was to design and manage a $15 million USAID program measuring stability in Afghanistan—a key task of the counterinsurgency effort. Kilcullen also developed close ties to the Office of Transition Initiatives. OTI is “the closest thing we have now to an organizational structure specifically designed to deal with the environments of the last ten to twenty years,” Kilcullen said in a talk to the New America Foundation in 2013.

Like Kilcullen himself, the Caerus contractors who led the Honduras project had extensive experience with the wars in Afghanistan. Stacia George, Caerus’s “Team Leader” on the Honduras project, was employed at Caerus from 2012 to 2014, where one of her tasks was training “Department of Defense professionals on using development as a counterinsurgency tool in Afghanistan” (she is now deputy director of OTI). Another Caerus associate involved in the Honduras program, William Upshur, taught counterinsurgency tactics in Afghanistan for the Army’s 10th Mountain and 82nd Airborne divisions from 2010 to 2013 (he’s now an associate with intelligence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton).

The Caerus proposal to OTI, which I obtained, emphasizes the company’s extensive experience with counterinsurgency, surveillance, and data collection in Afghanistan as well as its ties to OTI. Many Caerus staffers “have worked directly for [OTI] developing policy, implementing field programs, and managing program evaluations based on stabilization goals and objectives,” it says.

CAI, the prime contractor for Honduras Convive, deferred all questions about the project to USAID. But a CAI spokesperson said that “Creative doesn’t do counterinsurgency work and doesn’t have anybody on staff involved in counterinsurgency.”

* * *

“U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region.” —Alex Main, NACLA Report

The AID/OTI program was part of a grand US plan to improve security in Central America by building closer ties with local military forces and using US troops to train their police. Honduras has become a litmus test for the plan.

Today, hundreds of US Special Forces and Navy SEALs are training Honduran units for civilian law enforcement. The plan is “driven by the hope that beefing up police operations will stabilize a small country closer to home,” The Wall Street Journal reported. The training is set to expand in the $1 billion “Alliance for Prosperity” program for the region that was unveiled in late January of 2015 by Vice President Joe Biden.

Main, the CEPR analyst, says Central Americans should greet the Biden plan with skepticism. “From the U.S.-backed dirty wars of the 1980s to the broken promises of economic development under the Central American Free Trade Agreement, the historical record shows that U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region,” he wrote last year in NACLA Report on the Americas.

In Honduras, Main told me, the overriding US interest has been “keeping this government in power.” The “window dressing” of Honduras Convive, he added, has “been going on pretty much since the coup.” Many observers, including lawmakers, agree.

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras.” —Lawrence Wilkerson, former adviser to Colin Powell

On March 16, 730 scholars organized by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs signed a letter urging the State Department to demand human rights accountability in its dealings with Honduras. “We are deeply concerned that the U.S. government condones and supports the current Honduran government by sending financial and technical support to strengthen the Honduran military and police, institutions that have been responsible for human rights violations since the coup d’état of 2009,” the letter stated.

That same week, 23 members of Congress and the AFL-CIO called on Secretary of State John Kerry to address the violence in Honduras directed against trade unionists and human rights defenders. And on March 14, activists with SOA Watch, which opposes the School of the Americas, where many Honduran and Central American military leaders have been trained, raised a banner in front of USAID’s headquarters in Washington reading “Stop Funding Murder in Honduras!”

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras,” Lawrence Wilkerson, the former deputy to Secretary of State Colin Powell, told me when I brought OTI’s Honduras program to his attention in an interview last year. “If I could sum it up for what it’s been for so many years, that’s protecting all the criminals in power, basically for US commercial interests.”

Origen: How Hillary Clinton Militarized US Policy in Honduras

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OTI’s activities, the Congressional Research Service noted in a 2009 report, “are overtly political” and based on the idea that “timely and creative” US assistance can “tip the balance” toward outcomes “that advance U.S. foreign policy objectives.”

In Honduras, OTI seems to have followed the model it set in Iraq, where it sent some of the first US aid personnel after the 2003 invasion. At the time, CRS said, OTI’s strategy in Iraq was to convey “the tangible benefits of the regime change.”

The objective of Honduras Convive is spelled out on USAID’s website: “To disrupt the systems, perceptions and behaviors that support violence by building alliances between the communities and the state (especially the police and security forces).” A USAID official confirmed that the program is still ongoing, but played down US ties with Honduran security forces. Convive, he said, is “working in communities to build the capacity of civil society and government institutions, while strengthening community cohesion.” It was initiated “at the request of USAID and the broader U.S. Government due to high levels of violence in Honduras,” he added. “The beneficiaries of the Convive program are the Honduran people.” Much of the country’s violence is blamed on gangs and drug cartels and has led thousands of Hondurans to send their children north to flee the region.

But contractor documents obtained about the program show that it was based in part on communications strategies to win “hearts and minds” developed during the counterinsurgency phase of the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Several OTI officials and contractors overseeing the project came to Honduras from Afghanistan, where they managed the civilian, nation-building side of the war. They included Miguel Reabold, OTI’s country representative in Honduras, who previously represented OTI in Afghanistan.

Part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by counterinsurgency adviser David Kilcullen.

In addition, a key part of the project was subcontracted to a company owned by David Kilcullen, who was the senior counterinsurgency adviser to Army General David Petraeus in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Kilcullen’s research methodology, according to a contract proposal I obtained, was “built around a streamlined set of metrics” that provide a “manageable method for assessing counterinsurgency campaigns that can be replicated and customized in other insecure environments.” The contract was submitted to Reabold on October 16, 2012.

The USAID official confirmed that Kilcullen’s company, Caerus Associates, “received two grants totaling approximately $77,000 to assist USAID/OTI to assess licit and illicit networks in San Pedro Sula,” Honduras’s largest and most violent city. But, he added, “the Honduras Convive program is not a counterinsurgency program.”

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In a lengthy e-mail, the official added that Convive “has drawn its lessons from best practices in violence prevention, community policing, and community cohesion from urban environments all over the world.” Since the program began, he insisted, violence has declined. He provided figures showing “marked reductions in homicides between 2013 and 2014 in some of the city’s most dangerous communities,” with declines of between 18 and 46 percent in several municipalities.

“USAID believes that homicides are decreasing due to a combination of factors, included among them a more cohesive community, represented by empowered leaders, working closely with Honduran government partners (including the police); international donors; and complementary USAID programs,” the official wrote in his e-mail.

But nowhere in the USAID documents does the word “coup” appear. The agency’s claims and statistics stand in stark contrast to the situation in Honduras, where civil society has been reeling from a wave of political violence and assassinations perpetuated by what many believe are state-sponsored death squads.

Even as Convive was being formulated in 2012, repression and violence had become a pressing issue for Hondurans. That January, UC-Santa Cruz historian Dana Frank described the carnage in The New York Times, reporting that “more than 300 people have been killed by state security forces since the coup, according to the leading human rights organization Cofadeh.” It appears to be just as bad in 2016.

A month ago, on March 3, the renowned environmental activist Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home by unknown gunmen. Two weeks later, Nelson Garcia, a member of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), co-founded by Cáceres, was shot to death. Since then, thousand of Hondurans have protested what Democracy Now! has described as a “culture of repression and impunity linked to the Honduran government’s support for corporate interests.”
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The killings have brought the US government’s programs in Honduras under increased scrutiny and drawn sharp criticism of Clinton’s covert support for the 2009 coup while she was Secretary of State.

In particular, opponents of Clinton have seized on her own admissions in her autobiography, Hard Choices, that she used her power as Secretary of State to deflect criticism of the coup and shift US backing to the new government. “We strategized on a plan to restore order in Honduras and ensure that free and fair elections could be held quickly and legitimately, which would render the question of Zelaya moot,” Clinton wrote.

In 2014, two years before her murder, Cáceres herself condemned Clinton’s statements about the coup, saying “this demonstrates the meddling of North Americans in our country.” Clinton, she added, “recognized that they didn’t permit Mel Zelaya’s return to the presidency…even though we warned this was going to be very dangerous and that it would permit a barbarity.”

The Clinton campaign did not respond to e-mails seeking comment on her department’s role in Honduras Convive or in shaping US policy toward Honduras. But in March, after Cáceres’s statements on Clinton were reported in The Nation, a campaign official told Latino USA that charges that the former Secretary of State supported the 2009 coup were “simply nonsense.” “Hillary Clinton engaged in active diplomacy that resolved a constitutional crisis and paved the way for legitimate democratic elections,” she said.

* * *

The players in Honduras Convive provide a glimpse into the privatized world of covert operations managed by USAID and OTI, and how they dovetail with broader US foreign-policy goals of supporting governments friendly to US economic and strategic interests. They also show how Hillary Clinton might manage US foreign policy as president.

Under Clinton’s 2010 Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, OTI’s programs were expanded and strengthened, and the State Department pledged to “work much more closely” with the office. “We will build upon OTI’s business model of executing programming tailored to facilitate transition and promote stability in select crisis countries,” the review said. The overall plan for OTI was overseen by a Clinton deputy and the administrator of USAID. Most of its projects are contracted to a group of private aid companies in Washington.

Honduras Convive, for example, was outsourced to Creative Associates International (CAI), a company that has worked closely with USAID’s OTI on projects in Afghanistan, Yemen, and Libya. In 2010, CAI teamed up with OTI to run a clandestine operation in Cuba dubbed “Cuban Twitter,” as revealed in 2014 by the Associated Press. It was designed to use social media to spark anti-government unrest in that country.

A key piece of CAI’s project in Honduras, determining the social networks responsible for violence in the country’s largest city, was subcontracted to Caerus, Kilcullen’s company. It was founded in 2010 while Kilcullen was working as a top counterinsurgency adviser to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. In addition to advising Petraeus, Kilcullen served during the Bush administration as a senior adviser on counterinsurgency to former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

One of Kilcullen’s first contracts in Afghanistan, according to the Caerus documents I obtained, was to design and manage a $15 million USAID program measuring stability in Afghanistan—a key task of the counterinsurgency effort. Kilcullen also developed close ties to the Office of Transition Initiatives. OTI is “the closest thing we have now to an organizational structure specifically designed to deal with the environments of the last ten to twenty years,” Kilcullen said in a talk to the New America Foundation in 2013.

Like Kilcullen himself, the Caerus contractors who led the Honduras project had extensive experience with the wars in Afghanistan. Stacia George, Caerus’s “Team Leader” on the Honduras project, was employed at Caerus from 2012 to 2014, where one of her tasks was training “Department of Defense professionals on using development as a counterinsurgency tool in Afghanistan” (she is now deputy director of OTI). Another Caerus associate involved in the Honduras program, William Upshur, taught counterinsurgency tactics in Afghanistan for the Army’s 10th Mountain and 82nd Airborne divisions from 2010 to 2013 (he’s now an associate with intelligence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton).

The Caerus proposal to OTI, which I obtained, emphasizes the company’s extensive experience with counterinsurgency, surveillance, and data collection in Afghanistan as well as its ties to OTI. Many Caerus staffers “have worked directly for [OTI] developing policy, implementing field programs, and managing program evaluations based on stabilization goals and objectives,” it says.

CAI, the prime contractor for Honduras Convive, deferred all questions about the project to USAID. But a CAI spokesperson said that “Creative doesn’t do counterinsurgency work and doesn’t have anybody on staff involved in counterinsurgency.”

* * *

“U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region.” —Alex Main, NACLA Report

The AID/OTI program was part of a grand US plan to improve security in Central America by building closer ties with local military forces and using US troops to train their police. Honduras has become a litmus test for the plan.

Today, hundreds of US Special Forces and Navy SEALs are training Honduran units for civilian law enforcement. The plan is “driven by the hope that beefing up police operations will stabilize a small country closer to home,” The Wall Street Journal reported. The training is set to expand in the $1 billion “Alliance for Prosperity” program for the region that was unveiled in late January of 2015 by Vice President Joe Biden.

Main, the CEPR analyst, says Central Americans should greet the Biden plan with skepticism. “From the U.S.-backed dirty wars of the 1980s to the broken promises of economic development under the Central American Free Trade Agreement, the historical record shows that U.S. policies and assistance have often undermined prosperity, stability, and democracy in the region,” he wrote last year in NACLA Report on the Americas.

In Honduras, Main told me, the overriding US interest has been “keeping this government in power.” The “window dressing” of Honduras Convive, he added, has “been going on pretty much since the coup.” Many observers, including lawmakers, agree.

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras.” —Lawrence Wilkerson, former adviser to Colin Powell

On March 16, 730 scholars organized by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs signed a letter urging the State Department to demand human rights accountability in its dealings with Honduras. “We are deeply concerned that the U.S. government condones and supports the current Honduran government by sending financial and technical support to strengthen the Honduran military and police, institutions that have been responsible for human rights violations since the coup d’état of 2009,” the letter stated.

That same week, 23 members of Congress and the AFL-CIO called on Secretary of State John Kerry to address the violence in Honduras directed against trade unionists and human rights defenders. And on March 14, activists with SOA Watch, which opposes the School of the Americas, where many Honduran and Central American military leaders have been trained, raised a banner in front of USAID’s headquarters in Washington reading “Stop Funding Murder in Honduras!”

“I’ve been pretty much appalled by US policy with respect to Honduras,” Lawrence Wilkerson, the former deputy to Secretary of State Colin Powell, told me when I brought OTI’s Honduras program to his attention in an interview last year. “If I could sum it up for what it’s been for so many years, that’s protecting all the criminals in power, basically for US commercial interests.”

Origen: How Hillary Clinton Militarized US Policy in Honduras

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The Coup in Honduras and the 2016 U.S. Presidential Elections

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has admitted to having supported the 2009 coup as secretary of state in her book, “Hard Choices.” As CEPR Co-Director Mark Weisbrot explains in this video, her record sharply contrasts with that of Democratic rival.

Origen: The Coup in Honduras and the 2016 U.S. Presidential Elections

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As the United States Votes, Honduras Kills

Yet another murder of an indigenous activist under a regime supported by the Democratic front-runner.

Two weeks ago, a Honduran death squad murdered Berta Cáceres, a prominent Lenca and environmental activist. Her murder continues to receive a good deal of attention in the United States, since she was killed by the coup-regime that Hillary Clinton, as secretary of state, supported and legitimized. Cáceres herself had, before her murder, directly criticized Clinton. Responding to her death, the Clinton campaign denied that Clinton had any responsibility: “simply nonsense,” said a Clinton spokesperson, who described the candidate’s role in Honduras as “active diplomacy.”

Yesterday, March 15, as Clinton racked up a series of primary wins, Nelson Noé García Laínez, another indigenous member of Cáceres’s organization, the Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares e Indígenas de Honduras (COPINH), was executed, gunned down by two men in his home. García was 39 years old and was shot four times in the face. Earlier that day, government security forces violently expelled 150 families from a land occupation in northern Honduras that García led. The Honduran government said the eviction was “peaceful.”

Origen: As the United States Votes, Honduras Kills

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Hillary Clinton es responsable, en parte, del asesinato de Berta Cáceres: expertos

Periódico La Jornada
Viernes 11 de marzo de 2016, p. 20

Nueva York.

El asesinato de Berta Cáceres en Honduras es, en parte, responsabilidad de la actual precandidata demócrata Hillary Clinton, acusan expertos al recordar el apoyo implícito que la ex secretaria de Estado brindó a los golpistas en Honduras.

Hillary Clinton será buena para las mujeres. Pregúntenle a Berta. Pero no pueden. Está muerta…, escribió en The Nation el día del asesinato de Cáceres el reconocido historiador Greg Grandin, profesor de historia en la Universidad de Nueva York. Grandin recuerda que Berta fue una líder indígena valiente y opositora al golpe hondureño de 2009 que Hillary Clinton, como secretaria de Estado, hizo posible.

Clinton, como fue reportado tanto por él como por otros analistas y comprobado después en los correos electrónicos de la entonces secretaria, desempeñó un papel central en minar el retorno de Manuel Zelaya, el presidente depuesto. Al hacerlo, Clinton se alió con los peores sectores de la sociedad hondureña, agrega Grandin, y dio legitimidad al Congreso golpista.

Zelaya fue secuestrado por militares hondureños armados, quienes lo sacaron del país el 28 de junio de 2009, y aunque el acto fue condenado internacionalmente como un golpe, el Departamento de Estado nunca lo calificó como tal, lo cual se interpretó como un apoyo implícito a los golpistas.

Grandin reporta hoy que, antes de su asesinato, la propia Cáceres señaló a Clinton como una de las responsables de legitimar el golpe en su país. Cáceres fue una de las voces en demanda del retorno de Zelaya, pero señaló que Clinton promovía la elección de un llamado gobierno de unidad. Cáceres, en una entrevista videograbada en Argentina en 2014, recuerda que advertimos que eso sería muy peligroso (ver video).

Después del golpe se desató una ofensiva represiva contra los movimientos e intereses populares, incluyendo el de Cáceres y su agrupación Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares e Indígenas de Honduras (COPINH). Se han documentado incesantes asesinatos de activistas, periodistas y defensores de derechos humanos en ese país durante los últimos años. Clinton, en su libro Hard Choices, presenta el caso de Honduras como un gran ejemplo de su manejo pragmático de su política exterior.

TODO el artículo: http://www.jornada.unam.mx/2016/03/11/mundo/020n1mun

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Recuerdan a Hillary Clinton respaldo al dictador hondureño Micheletti

Tras una comparecencia televisada, donde Hillary Clinton (der.) se enfrentó a su rival, Bernie Sanders (izq.), miles de cibernautas le recordaron su papel en el derrocamiento del presidente hondureño Manuel Zelaya y la consumación de la dictadura del transportista Roberto Micheletti.

http://www.web.ellibertador.hn/index.php/noticias/internacionales/1110-recuerdan-a-candidata-presidencial-de-ee-uu-su-respaldo-al-dictador-micheletti

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Hillary Clinton needs to answer for her actions in Honduras and Haiti

The debate in Miami was a missed opportunity to grill Clinton on her record on democracy in Central America and Haiti

Origen: Hillary Clinton needs to answer for her actions in Honduras and Haiti

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Before Her Murder, Berta Cáceres Singled Out Hillary Clinton for Criticism

The presidential candidate has ignored criticism of her role in enabling the consolidation of the Honduran coup.

Origen: Before Her Murder, Berta Cáceres Singled Out Hillary Clinton for Criticism

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CEPR: Hillary Paved Way for Rampant Impunity in Honduras

 

http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Congresswoman-to-US-Stop-Funding-Honduras-Human-Rights-Abuses-20160310-0063.html

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Clinton Campaign: Charges of Role in 2009 Honduran Coup Are ‘Simply Nonsense’

In response to an article published last week in The Nation asking Hillary Clinton if the former Secretary of State “is still proud of the hell she helped routinize in Honduras” as a result of the country’s 2009 coup, a spokesperson for the Clinton campaign told Latino USA that such characterizations and questions are “simply nonsense.”

“That charge is simply nonsense,” Director of Hispanic Media Jorge Silva wrote in an email to Latino USA. “Hillary Clinton engaged in active diplomacy that resolved a constitutional crisis and paved the way for legitimate democratic elections.”

The Nation story, written by Greg Grandin, revisited Clinton and her role in Honduras after the murder of indigenous and environmental rights leader Berta Cáceres made global headlines last week. In his piece, Grandin, who covered the 2009 coup, wrote:

Cáceres was a vocal and brave indigenous leader, an opponent of the 2009 Honduran coup that Hillary Clinton, as secretary of state, made possible. InThe Nation, Dana Frank and I covered that coup as it unfolded. Later, as Clinton’s emails were released, others, such as Robert Naiman, Mark Weisbrot, and Alex Main, revealed the central role she played in undercutting Manuel Zelaya, the deposed president, and undercutting the opposition movement demanding his restoration. In so doing, Clinton allied with the worst sectors of Honduran society.

In a 2015 op-ed for Al Jazeera America, Weisbrot referred to what Clinton wrote about Honduras in her memoir, Hard Choices:

In “Hard Choices,” Clinton describes her role in the aftermath of the coup that brought about this dire situation. Her firsthand account is significant both for the confession of an important truth and for a crucial false testimony.

First, the confession: Clinton admits that she used the power of her office to make sure that Zelaya would not return to office. “In the subsequent days [after the coup] I spoke with my counterparts around the hemisphere, including Secretary [Patricia] Espinosa in Mexico,” Clinton writes. “We strategized on a plan to restore order in Honduras and ensure that free and fair elections could be held quickly and legitimately, which would render the question of Zelaya moot.”

This may not come as a surprise to those who followed the post-coup drama closely. (See my commentary from 2009 on Washington’s role in helping the coup succeed here, here and here.) But the official storyline, which was dutifully accepted by most in the media, was that the Obama administration actually opposed the coup and wanted Zelaya to return to office.

A 2015 report from The Intercept published more details about the 2009 coup and reported how Clinton ally Lanny Davis was brought into back-channel discussions:

At a time when the State Department strategized over how best to keep Zelaya out of power while not explicitly endorsing the coup, Clinton suggested using longtime Clinton confidant Lanny Davis as a back-channel to Roberto Micheletti, the interim president installed after the coup.

During that period, Davis was working as a consultant to a group of Honduran businessmen who had supported the coup.

Last year, Salon also published a detailed story about the Clinton-Davis connection in Honduras. That Salon story linked to a 2009 article about Davis from journalist Roberto Lovato, who said the following to Latino USA: “Beginning with the link some of us found between coup plotters and Lanny Davis, the public record is more than clear about the definitive link between Clinton and the coup in Honduras.”

Lovato shared a 2014 video in Spanish, where Cáceres made specific reference to Clinton’s Hard Choices comments about Honduras. In an interview from Buenos Aires, Cáceres said that the 2009 policy decisions by Secretary Clinton and the United States only led to more repression, militarization, increased migration and political corruption in her country.

Origen: Clinton Campaign: Charges of Role in 2009 Honduran Coup Are ‘Simply Nonsense’

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Did Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Enable the Coup in Honduras?

On June 28, 2009, when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, democratically elected Honduran President Manuel Zelaya was overthrown by a military coup. The United Nations, the European Union, and the Organization of American States condemned the coup, and on July 5, Honduras was suspended from the OAS.

Under longstanding and clear-cut U.S. law, all U.S. aid to Honduras except democracy assistance, including all military aid, should have been immediately suspended following the coup.

On August 7, fifteen House Democrats, led by Rep. Raúl Grijalva, sent a letter to the Administration which began, “As you know, on June 28th, 2009 a military coup took place in Honduras,” and said: “The State Department should fully acknowledge that a military coup has taken place and follow through with the total suspension of non-humanitarian aid, as required by law.”

Why wasn’t U.S. aid to Honduras suspended following the coup? The justification given by Clinton’s State Department on August 25 for not suspending U.S. aid to Honduras was that events in Honduras were murky and it was not clear whether a coup had taken place. Clinton’s State Department claimed that State Department lawyers were studying the murky question of whether a coup had taken place.

This justification was a lie, and Clinton’s State Department knew it was a lie. By July 24, 2009, the State Department, including Secretary Clinton, knew clearly that the action of the Honduran military to remove President Zelaya on June 28, 2009 constituted a coup. On July 24, U.S. Ambassador to Honduras Hugo Llorens sent a cable to top U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Clinton, with subject: “Open and Shut: The Case of the Honduran Coup,” thoroughly documenting the assertion that “there is no doubt” that the events of June 28 “constituted an illegal and unconstitutional coup.”

Why did Clinton’s State Department lie and pretend that it was murky whether a coup had taken place when it knew the fact that a coup had taken place was clear-cut? Because Hillary Clinton wanted the coup to succeed. Clinton’s strategy to help the coup succeed, as revealed in her emails, was “delay, delay, delay,” as Donald Trump might say. Delay any action that might help force the coup government to stand down and allow the democratically elected President to be restored to office. As she later confessed in her book, her goal was to “render the question of [President] Zelaya moot.”

Today, the rule of law in Honduras still has not recovered from the coup that Secretary Clinton helped enable. That’s a key reason that refugees have fled Honduras to the United States, only to find themselves hunted by the Department of Homeland Security raids that Secretary Clinton supported before she opposed them.

President Obama is going to visit Cuba, and that’s wonderful. Ending the embargo and normalizing relations with Cuba is a key step the U.S. must take to restore normal relations with Latin America. But it’s not the only change we need. There is a two hundred year legacy of U.S. military intervention and subversion in Latin America that didn’t stop in January 2009. It’s hard to have confidence that former Secretary Clinton will end this legacy as President when she used her power as Secretary of State to turn the clock backwards.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/secretary-of-state-hillar_b_9273712.html

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