Honduras at the Breaking Point

Ricardo Arturo Salgado Bonilla
https://cf-images.us-east-1.prod.boltdns.net/v1/static/5615998040001/bb8ff473-4d00-47e9-bf09-0121ad25ed88/d0d20bb1-2eb9-4928-87f0-ac68e49b5aa7/1280x720/match/image.jpgIn recent days, in the conversations and communications of the local petty bourgeoisie, messages have begun to intensify that speak openly of a coup d’etat to end the fraudulent mandate of Juan Orlando Hernandez. This campaign is very similar to that of the days leading up to the 2009 military coup d’état. As is well known, these campaigns are usually designed from the military intelligence corps, and their purpose is not always what they claim. Sometimes, they serve those who oppose the regime to make themselves openly known in order to repress them; other times, they imply a coup d’état.

A coup d’état at this moment in Honduras would have a precautionary character; the elites are working to avoid a complete and definitive popular victory. This type of action implies, above all, moderating the political spectrum to a point that is manageable for the United States. Radical endings are never to the liking of the ruling class or the empire.

We are clear that the regime that emerged from the coup d’état, and from electoral frauds, especially in 2017, was born weak, with deep anemia. Its actions have simply served to deepen the contradictions that continue to weaken it. At the social level, multiple conflicts have been cultivated, which today we can see in the education and health sectors. The network of doctors and teachers has waged an exceptional struggle, with the support of all the social and political groups opposed to the regime. In addition, it has demonstrated an extraordinary capacity to rectify and adopt corrective lines in a timely manner.

That platform is today the visible face of an imminent popular uprising, which is already evident in several parts of the country. The demands of the platform have climbed qualitatively to a higher level, leaving the battered government in a lose-lose situation, although they have not yet taken it to the limit of maximum pressure. The price of coup arrogance has come too high, especially because their credibility is approaching zero.

The proposal of the Partido Libre, of the left, led by former president Manuel Zelaya, to call for a general mobilization of all its bases at the national level, to the finish the dictatorship, raises the possibility of building a political and social platform to lead the mass movement to a total insurrection in the country. On the other hand, the determination to give an unconditional support to the actions of the platform closes the possibility of misunderstandings or setbacks, which can be inopportune. Libre has spoken in favour of respect for the current coordination structure of the platform and does not seek to enter it, which generates openness to the necessary confidence.

On the other hand, private enterprise is fragmented, but we can presume that there are two main groups: those businessmen who benefited from the privileges of the regime and financial speculation; and those who have lost rapidly due to the voracious and almost inquisitorial fiscal machinery of the country, which today fundamentally persecutes and extorts the companies that actually produce in Honduras. These fissures are already public, and are even debated in the media.

The scoundrel media, has moments of ambiguity, in which he flirts with the possibility of a change of regime, although still not openly breaking with Juan Orlando Hernandez, who now receives harsh criticism from sectors that until recently were his unconditional allies, such as the Episcopal Conference, which boasts the disgraceful presence of the notorious Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodriguez.

The Armed Forces directly serve the U.S. Southern Command, and that has been made clear in several incidents that suggest an American resolve to show that Juan Orlando Hernandez’s regime has lost control of the country. Since the fire at the entrance of the American embassy, mysteriously disguised in a moment of great indignation, to the burning of several containers of the Dole orchard, in the Colon area, where conflicts over land have been as active as they have been invisible by the local media for many years.

Hernandez is barely able to find any sign of support in his party, as his collaborators have abandoned him. In his Saturday morning public appearance, he was only accompanied by third-class characters, without any of the figures who have been with him for a decade. Worse still, the mobilization looked like a desperate measure, because even the most intimate details of his organization’s funding and logistics were posted on social networks.

It is no secret to anyone that the ruling Party is divided into at least three groups: those who are conspiring against Hernandez, lined up by the U.S. embassy; the most opportunistic who are calculating where they are going to fall; and those who are already packing their bags, and are not prepared for any heroic struggle.

At the end of the day, tensions multiply, and the situation of society is at a point close to a vortex of entropy. Many movements are happening at random, and are dependent on the interests they represent. The most important thing is the role played today by the mass movement, which will be decisive in the development and outcome of this situation.

While the movement of the masses remains subdued, Hernandez gains oxygen and time, which is why he urgently needs to demobilize teachers and doctors, either by giving in, or by sabotaging through bribes or extortion against leaders, especially teachers, who in a few days were overtaken by their bases again and again, who refuse to fall into the trap of dialogue. It is foreseeable that the movement will grow in the coming hours, and that the situation in the country will prove ungovernable. The platform, as we can see, is getting stronger as it moves away from JOH.

On the other hand, the political struggle is also becoming polarized, as one reaches a point where one cannot be lukewarm without losing everything that has been built. The governing party is paying for its arrogance; it has ruled as if it could keep the whole of society under its thumb, never being able to escape. They have not understood that people learn.

Certainly, one should not expect a happy ending without a revolution. If Hernandez is now removed by an operation of the empire, the power structure remains intact, and the problems of society will continue to deepen. And so this is just “a developing story”.