Anti-democratic Democrats, Jan Schakowsky edition

March 14, 2012

I’ve written before about the Administration’s shameful interference in the 2009 constitutional crisis in Honduras. Strangely quiet during revolts by people demanding fair elections in Iran, they were Johnny-on-the-spot with protests against the removal of a man who wanted to be another Hugo Chavez.

Well, there they go again. Not the White House or State, this time, but in the person of Representative “Red” Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), a member of the House Progressive caucus and (as of 2009) a member of the Democratic Socialists of America. Schakowsky is continuing her efforts in support of the ousted would-be dictator, Manuel Zelaya, and ignoring his blatant Jew-baiting:

Schakowsky has circulated a letter among Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives (a similar letter exists in the Senate) that asks the state department to suspend aid to the Honduran military and police because of alleged human rights abuses.

(…)

In the wake of his removal, Zelaya incited a wave of anti-Jewish violence in Honduras by claiming that “Israeli mercenaries” had been trying to poison him. Schakowsky visited and embraced Zelaya as he hid in the Brazilian embassy. Her congressional office notes that she “raised serious concerns about the widespread human rights abuses,” yet she failed to say anything about Zelaya’s own abuses or his anti-Semitism. She also co-sponsored of H. Res. 630, calling for Zelaya’s reinstatement as president of Honduras.

Of course, Leftists will answer with the ever-popular “You did it, too!”, pointing out US support for dictatorial regimes in the decades after World War II, such as in Greece, Chile, and South Korea. In that case, though, those were unpleasant choices made in the context of a global struggle (1) with the Soviet Union and Communist China, choices made for a perceived greater good. (2) And they were bipartisan, supported by both Republican and Democratic presidents. I’ve no doubt that some wrong choices were made, that America’s interests in spreading liberty and liberal democracy were sometimes unduly sacrificed on the altar of “realism,” but those decisions can’t be understood without acknowledging the context.

So, let me ask this: When Obama, Clinton, Schakowsky and others among our Progressive Betters (all bow) coddle leftist, anti-American and antisemitic dictators; when they stay silent while oppressed people in other lands fight for democracy and women for basic human rights; and when they coddle and apologize to their oppressors while slapping our allies, what is the context? What is the global struggle that justifies these choices? If there is one, I’m not seeing it.

Unless, of course, it’s the struggle against liberty and democracy, and for American decline.

Nah. Couldn’t be.

LINKS: Linked by Fausta. Thanks!

Footnotes:
(1) Cold or not, it really was a war.
(2) Just as with the US/UK “deal with the Devil” alliance with the USSR to defeat Hitler.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

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Honduras, perhaps not as bad as we thought?

November 1, 2009

Earlier I went on a tirade about the Obama administration’s foreign policy and its alliance with Latin American dictators against constitutionalism and the rule of law in our ally, Honduras. While I maintain my criticisms of US policy under the President and Secretary Clinton, the situation in Honduras may not be as bad as first thought in the wake of the agreement between the legitimate Honduran government and deposed President Zelaya. Otto Reich at National Review’s The Corner blog explains why:

Contrary to press reports, Zelaya is not in any way automatically returned to office by the accord.  First, there must be a vote by the entire Honduran congress on whether Zelaya is fit to return to office.  Prior to that, the Honduran supreme court, which ruled against Zelaya in June by a vote of 15 to 0, must issue an opinion on the same.

In other words, Zelaya must pass two big tests which he failed before: a judicial review by the highest court in the land, and approval by the legislature.  While Zelaya’s Liberal party has the largest faction in the congress, it is also the party of Micheletti.  According to my Honduran sources, there is no way that Zelaya can win a free and transparent ballot.  At the present time Zelaya can count on less than 25 percent of the congress.  In June, the same legislative body voted 122 to 6 against him.  There will doubtless be a battle this time, and the anti-Zelaya forces fear that Hugo Chavez will try to buy votes for Zelaya.  They are also concerned that the U.S. government not involve itself in the legislative process, especially U.S. Ambassador Hugo Llorens, who is widely seen as favoring Zelaya.  The accord was facilitated when Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Shannon reportedly promised Micheletti that Llorens will not attempt to influence the vote.

If Reich is right, then he correctly calls this a defeat for the leftist ideologues in the White House, something anyone who cares about democracy should be grateful for. He worries that Venezuela’s dictator Hugo Chavez might try to buy-of votes in the Honduran Congress to get a majority to restore his protege Zelaya to power; let’s hope that the Hondurans, who’ve shown great resolve and commitment to the integrity of democratic institutions so far, continue to hold their ground.


Honduras: An Obama-Clinton disgrace

October 30, 2009

Today’s Times Online brings news of a resolution to the months-long crisis in Honduras, in which a constitutional democracy defended itself from a budding dictator, President Manuel Zelaya, by removing him from office, replacing him with the proper constitutional officials, and sending the would-be caudillo into exile. Elections would be held as scheduled and the interim president, Micheletti, had promised not to run. Because Zelaya refused to accept his ouster and had gathered allies in the hemisphere, a standoff ensued. Now that standoff is over, with the result that … Manuel Zelaya will be restored to power:

The interim government of Honduras has yielded to international pressure and agreed to allow the return to power of Manuel Zelaya, the ousted President who was toppled in a military coup four months ago.

The breakthrough came after renewed pressure from senior US officials who travelled to Honduras this week for a last-ditch effort to end the crisis.

“It is a triumph for Honduran democracy,” said Mr Zelaya after the rival sides agreed to a deal under which he may be reinstated as President within days.

Roberto Micheletti, the president of the interim government that took power after the coup on June 28, announced that he had agreed to reinstate his political rival.

“I am pleased to announce that a few minutes ago my negotiating team signed an agreement that marks the beginning of the end” of the four-month stand-off, Mr Micheletti said in a statement from the presidential palace.

Mr Zelaya was sent into exile at gunpoint on June 28 but returned secretly to Honduras last month where he has taken refuge in the Brazilian embassy.

For background on the crisis, see my earlier post.

This is another new low for American foreign policy under President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton. Instead of gathering the facts and then backing the defense of constitutional order in Honduras, the White House and Foggy Bottom jerked their collective knees and condemned the legitimate government, demanding Zelaya’s restoration, which left them in the grotesque position of allying the government of the United States with its sworn enemies in Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua, who were backing their anti-democratic protege.

Not at all phased by this diplomatic cluster-frak, the administration kept beclowning itself by cutting off aid to Honduras, denying visas to its officials to visit the UN (while granting them to Burmese dictators), and supporting diplomatic missions meant to strongarm the Honduran democracy into surrender. At long last, it worked.  Congratulations on the win, Team Obama!

Let me make this as plain as I can: the President of the United States, the moral leader of the democratic  nations of the world, and his chief diplomat allied his administration with some of the hemisphere’s worst dictators in order to bully a constitutional democracy and ally into accepting the restoration of a man who is definitely anti-democratic, anti-constitutional, and probably mad. And all this was done in the face of a finding by the Law Library of Congress that the removal of Zelaya was legal under Honduran law (PDF). (For a strong dissent, see here)

Forget constitutionality, forget rule-of-law, and forget supporting a democratic ally defending itself from dictatorial neighbors. All that matters to Obama and Clinton is that they got what they wanted and once again showed that they prefer thugs and tyrants to genuine democrats. Israel versus the Palestinians, Iran’s mullahs versus Iran’s people, Russia versus our Central European allies and Georgia, and now Venezuela versus Honduras. In each case the administration has hugged the enemy and slapped the friend.

The only good in this is that Zelaya is bound by the agreement to honor the election results and that command of the Army is taken away from him. On the other hand, the Obama administration still has three years to go, yet it’s already an embarrassing disgrace.

LINKS: Power Line; Fausta (The best source on Honduras); Ed Morrissey; and Legal Insurrection.

RELATED: That staunch defender of democracy, Senator John “Don’t Question My Patriotism” Kerry wants the Law Library of Congress to retract its report as unhelpful. In return, the Law Library has told Kerry to drop dead.

UPDATE: Reader Karateka has posted a darkly funny (and sadly accurate) political cartoon at his blog, Innovation and Politics.