Zelaya and Insulza: All hugs and all smiles
Much has been written about the role the Organization of America States (OAS) played in the aftermath of President Mel Zelaya’s forced removal. Most observers have concluded that this was not the OAS’s finest hour. We have detected remorse and doubts from various officials from key member states. The fact remains that Honduras has not yet achieved global recognition for its new, democratically elected, government, nor has it rejoined an OAS that has willfully ignored the systematic democratic and human rights transgressions of other member states.
Now, the General Counsel of the HRF has isolated and summarized the role of OAS Secretary General Insulza in the crisis. Interestingly, he sheds new light on the critically important period that preceded the ouster of the hatted Mr. Zelaya.
General Counsel Javier El-Hage in his surgical post-mortem of the handling of this crisis reaches the following damning conclusion on Insulza’s contribution to the crisis itself:
HRF’s legal report contends that if Secretary General Insulza had acted in adherence to his obligations, all anti-democratic events that led to the interruption of democracy in Honduras could have been avoided. It is reasonable to assume that if Insulza—instead of encouraging and endorsing a poll that went against multiple court orders—had refrained from rendering legitimacy to President Zelaya’s anti-democratic actions, the OAS could have deterred the June 28 coup d’état and the unconstitutional removal of the president by Congress, as well as the Supreme Court validation of these anti-democratic events later. Sadly, however, throughout the Honduran crisis, Insulza acted as a mere international agent of President Zelaya, rather than as the leader of an international organization called to promote and protect democracy in its member state.
This conclusion, contained in a brief two and a half page document (see below and attached) is a clear indictment of a man who in all likelihood will be reelected – uncontested, but not by joyful acclamation - on March 24th to a lofty post he has served with blemished success and with obvious disregard for much of what justifies and assures the OAS's existence. PMB
As I count myself among those who opposed Insulza’s original election
and now oppose his reelection, I will post, for the record, in the next few days, my personal “10 Top Reasons Why Insulza Should Not Be Reelected”. Suffice to say that the handling of Honduras, where I agree wholeheartedly with the conclusion of the HRF, takes the #1 spot ahead even of #2, his reckless, and futile, campaign to have Cuba readmitted into the Inter American system without conditions ,and #3, his very weak and unprincipled handling of Hugo Chavez’s abuses at home and his meddling in the region.