Monday, August 31, 2009

times, they are a-changing

Roatan's first Wendy's fastfood restaurant opened this past week. It's located in the new MegaPlaza shopping center in French Harbour. I know that for many old-time Roatan visitors this is the equivalent of sacrilege. Some may even take this as a sign that it is time to move on to less-developed pastures. Like I always say, development... she's a double-edged sword. One bright spot: it's located on the Western side of the island, far away from the peace, tranquility, and authenticity of our fabulous East End. Coming soon to the same shopping center: Applebee's... wwoh, wwohh, wwwohhh...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

quote of the day

There come times in a man's life when he just has to say, 'Enough is enough.'

- Shelly Cooper. My maternal uncle.

Friday, August 28, 2009

the new stairs are in!

A stairway into the new swimming area was completed today. This project was conceived, visualized, and materialized by my father, the one-and-only Mervin McNab. Check out the HOT, ultra-hip, perfectly shaped 'monorail' in the center of the stairs. Very nice! Nirvana continues to unfold at Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

democracy again under seige

The OAS Democratic Charter guards democracy against bygone threats but not from today's as posed by Chávez and his ilk. That, too, is a political issue. How long will countries such as Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Mexico continue in public denial of the obvious? Democracy is again under siege but from new quarters.

- Marifeli Perez-Stable, Miami Herald

Micheletti proposes new plan

I’m ready to present my resignation.

- Interim President Roberto Micheletti

The proposal:
  • Both President Micheletti and Manuel Zelaya would resign, leaving the presidency to a third person (the President of the Supreme Court, Jorge Rivera, who is next in line).
  • International observers would be welcomed to observe the November general elections.
  • An amnesty - that would have to be approved by Congress - for political crimes (but not common crimes) of all parties involved in recent events.
Source: New York Times

Interim President Roberto Micheletti is a true patriot and hero. He's willing to do whatever it takes for peace, democracy, stability, and a return to normality in Honduras. Compare and contrast his attitude with that of what's-his-face, who is doing everything he can to "destroy and punish" Honduras for casting him aside as a direct result of his betrayal of our basic democratic values. Judge a man by his actions, not his words.

Sr. Micheletti, Usted es mi héroe. Yo sé que Usted no escogió este rol, pero el Universo se lo ha dado de todas maneras. Con el tiempo todos entenderemos porque pasaron así las cosas. Le tengo un exagerado respeto y admiración por la fuerza de convicción que ha demostrado. Gracias, gracias, gracias por ser tan hermoso ejemplo del amor patrio para la nueva generación de hondureños. Le deseo solo bien. Ni un paso para atrás. Tiene el apoyo de todos los hondureños que en verdad queremos a este hermoso país. Somos la gran mayoría. Para nosotros Usted representa la democracia, la libertad, la seguridad, la soberanía y el Estado de Derecho.

the three choices we had

I came across a slightly dated (July 1) editorial in a Salvadoran paper in which the author discusses the situation Honduran institutions faced in the days running up to June 28. It's a reminder of the unenviable position Manuel Zelaya put Honduras in.
The Honduran institutions had only three options. The first was to sit back and let things run their course until they resulted in the irreversible introduction of a Chavista regime managed in perpetuity by Zelaya. The second was to try to get rid of the president nicely (that is arrest and hold him), which would have granted Zelaya enough time to ask the Venezuelans for military backing, making Honduras the scene of a bloody war. They chose the third, a surprise and bloodless military coup to prevent the consummation of Zelaya's plan to remain in power.

- Joaquín Samayoa, La Prensa Grafica [Google translation]

Semantics are important here. A coup definitely occurred, and the military played a critical role in it, but I'm not convinced military coup is the correct label to put on it. The military acted on a court order, carried out their mission, and returned to the barracks. A civilian, Roberto Micheletti, was elevated by the Honduran Congress to replace Zelaya in a constitutional succession procedure. All democratic institutions that existed prior to June 28 have remained intact, functioning, and headed by civilians. Unless they are needed for security operations, the military is nowhere to be seen. Seems to me a judicial coup is a much more accurate and appropriate label. The judiciary acted to neutralize a President gone rogue who was an extreme danger to the state.

no mas Chavez .org

The people behind the (no more Chavez) Web site are organizing a worldwide march against Hugo Chavez on September 4, 2009. The goal is to have marches in the "principal plazas of world cities" at 12 noon that day. If you are one of the many people who despise this evil man, I encourage you to help spread the word and (if you are in a major world city) to participate. The site is in Spanish.

Latinoamerica ya se cansó. Latin America has grown tired.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

the arsonist

Two months [since Zelaya was removed from office] Chavez and company still want the arsonist returned to put out the blaze. Having hastily joined the multilateral consensus that condemned the defensive actions of Honduras’ Supreme Court and legislature as a “coup”, the Obama Administration still insists Zelaya must be returned to office. While a democratic outcome in Honduras hinges on the legitimacy and fairness of the November electoral process, Washington joins with Chavez in pressing for Zelaya’s return.

- Heritage Foundation

They want the arsonist returned to put out the blaze...

Wow, if that isn't the perfect metaphor for describing the Honduran situation, I don't know what is. The only thing I could add: ... and Hugo Chavez is contributing drums of gasoline ... while the United States is turning off the water supply.*

WTF?! This is beyond surreal. What has happened in the world when your supposedly good Big Brother is no longer there to help you defeat the Bad Nasty Bully? When, to your heartbreaking surprise, you realize your Big Brother is instead assisting the bully? Adding insult to injury, your Big Brother is doing this despite the fact that you've allowed him to use your territory for decades in defending against his enemies. Whatever has happened, it's just plain wrong. It's seeming nowadays that the world is upside down: good is bad, and bad is good.

We Hondurans will face the challenges that lie ahead knowing deep inside that we are good people, that we are doing right in defending our democracy, and that somehow we will prevail.

Take action! If you are an American citizen and you are unhappy with your government's actions regarding the situation in Honduras please contact your U.S. Senator and/or Representative and let them know how you feel.

* see comments.

he's not trustworthy

I would honestly like to know how the U.S., the OAS and the rest of the world (in the unlikely event of Zelaya's return) are going to ensure the former president complies with the San Jose Agreement? The "resistance" leaders are saying they will demand that Mel convenes the Constituent Assembly.

- Carlos Canelo, Honduran citizen commenting on the political situation.

Mr. Canelo is asking a very relevant question. Manuel Zelaya has already shown contempt for and disobedience of Honduran courts. That's the main reason he was thrown out of the country. How can someone with this mentality, who feels he's above the rule of law, be expected to abide by a "political agreement"? Plus, everyone knows Zelaya is just a puppet of Hugo Chavez, and that Chavez, in particular, has zero scruples. Given the opportunity they, together, will slash and burn Honduras's democratic institutions so that no obstacles to Chavez's expansionist ambitions remain.

Manuel Zelaya is not trustworthy. This is a major reason the authorities of the Interim Government are so adamant and unyielding that Zelaya cannot return to the country as president. Only snakes are chavistas. Chavistas are all snakes.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Rep. Connie Mack lashes out at OAS

It is clear that the OAS and Secretary General Jose Insulza are taking orders from Hugo Chavez.

Chavez will not rest until his friend and fellow thugocrat, Manuel Zelaya, is forced back into power. The Venezuelan leader continues to use the OAS as a tool to overrule the popular will of the Honduran people.

In what seems to be an attempt to overrule a sovereign nation’s Supreme Court, the OAS team in Honduras is attempting to circumvent the judicial decisions of independent bodies that have already said that Mr. Zelaya cannot return to Honduras as president. The OAS continues to undermine the Honduran Constitution, Honduran judges and the rule of law for the sake of political expediency.

After silencing Venezuelan judges, Chavez now is trying to silence Honduran judges by using the OAS as his tool.

- U.S. Representative Connie Mack (R, FL14)

Bravo, Rep. Mack! Tell it like it is. Again, I never thought I'd ever say this, but thank goodness for Republicans.

"a total rejection"

Zelaya's return generates a total rejection by civilian groups (from businessmen to religious groups) who met with the foreign ministers. In this regard, we did not find anybody to agree, they were all opposed.

- OAS Secretary General Insulza. A shocking acknowledgment by this Hugo Chavez order taker of how Hondurans truly feel about Manuel Zelaya.

You know why this is, Mr. insulza? It's because Manuel Zelaya was trying to force something on the Honduran population that we do not want: A Hugo Chavez-style socialist dictatorship. Zelaya totally and absolutely disrespected and disregarded the will of the Honduran people. He disobeyed the rulings of our courts. He's an alleged traitor to the very Constitution he promised to uphold and defend when he took the oath of office. He was basically selling our country and our future to Hugo Chavez. We have no use for him. None! He should count himself lucky that our military had the self-restraint and professionalism to drop him off in Costa Rica intact.

U.S. suspends travel visas for Hondurans

There will be [those] who [will] consider as exaggerated or undeserved the decision by Washington, basically by the State Department, to suspend the travel visas for Honduras, with the exception of immigrant or humanitarian visas. Naturally, those who are in solidarity with the Honduran constitutional government, presided by Roberto Micheletti, who consider deposed President Zelaya to be an ally of Chávez, of Fidel Castro and of all the enemies of the American people, believe that this measure is unfair and incoherent with the true interests of the American nation in the face of its enemies.

- Diario Las Americas

Exaggerated. Undeserved. Unfair. Incoherent. Stupid.

Why is the current U.S. administration punishing and antagonizing Honduras, a historical friend and ally of the United States, and supporting the enemies of the American people? Tell me why. The U.S. has sadly lost 4,253 servicemen and spent $677 billion in Iraq (so far) to remove a dictator and 'restore democracy' in that country. The Honduran military (acting on court orders) preemptively dispatched a would-be dictator (Zelaya) and salvaged our democracy for what I estimate was less than $50,000. Not a single Honduran (or American or Canadian or Mexican or Brazilian, etc.) lost his or her life in the operation. Tell me which approach is smarter.

what's new

A new swimming area is being constructed between Buccaneer Landing and Secret Cove. Located on the leeward side of the Paya Bay peninsula, this area is always very calm. Stairs will be put in for easy access to the water.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

OAS mission fails to twist Honduras's arm

Photo: El Heraldo

An OAS commission that included such heavyweight foreign ministers as those of Mexico, Argentina, and Canada stated late today that it has failed in its mission to convince the Interim Honduran Government headed by Roberto Micheletti to accept the San Jose Proposal. The interim government reiterated that the return of Manuel Zelaya to the presidency (one of the main points of the proposal) is unacceptable and non-negotiable.

In a move that indicated that hemispheric governments have been forced to recognize the strength, stability, and legality of the Interim Government, the commission met with President Micheletti this afternoon. Previously, OAS Secretary Insulza had arrogantly refused to meet with Micheletti, claiming the interim government was not recognized by the OAS.

Perhaps the reality that Zelaya is history is sinking in. With all branches and institutions of government, the military, the police force, the private business sector, and 90% of the people opposed to Zelaya's return, the world community would basically have to destroy Honduras (economically and/or militarily) to impose the Hugo Chavez freak back on us.

Why would anyone do that us? Deliberately create chaos, uncertainty, and instability in Honduras so an alleged traitor to the country can finish the six remaining months of his term?! Deliberately weaken the country's democratic institutions so that Chavez could swoop in and take control?! I call bullshit! It makes absolutely no sense. We are a sovereign country. Zelaya's deserved removal was carried out because he screwed up bigtime. General elections are coming up on November 29. Come January 23, 2010 the winner of the elections will take over from President Micheletti. If viewed correctly, this situation has ceased to be a crisis. It will take care of itself in a matter of a short time.

Everybody, including Manuel Zelaya, just need to chill and back the hell off. If Zelaya had not broken the law, disobeyed our courts, and attempted against our Constitution, none of this would have ever happened. He is the one that went rogue (obviously following the orders of Hugo Chavez). The economic and mental duress on Honduran society that has resulted from his actions are unpardonable. Additionally, he now has blood on his hands. If this man had even a shred of dignity, he would abandon any claim on the Honduran Presidency and come face the criminal charges pending against him in Honduras.

If he had a shred of dignity...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

quote of the day

Be "bad," Davinci, it's more fun.

- Don Alfredo, a wise Costa Rican world traveler (he leaned over and with a sly grin whispered this advice to me as he and his wife, Doña Elizabeth, departed the table we had been sharing.)

The gentleman's advice is something I realized a long time ago.


A guest from Spain reads stories to his children.
Bliss Beach. Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

Supreme Court issues opinion on San Jose proposal

The implementation of the San Jose proposal can only be done if it conforms to national law, concluded the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ, by its Spanish acronym) in a report requested by the Executive.

With regard to amnesty for Zelaya and his followers, who intended to destroy the Constitution, the CSJ said, "the only way to terminate or suspend these criminal proceedings is in conformity with our legislation on criminal procedure, so that any political arrangement must pass through respect for legality and legal control."

According to the CSJ, prosecutions already begun for crimes against the form of government, treason, abuse of authority, and usurpation of power must continue, otherwise "it would be an authentic contradiction that the search for and construction of a binding agreement - in a state ruled by law - violates or sets aside the Constitution and the laws."

Regarding the return of Zelaya to power, as proposed by the Arias plan, they warn that there are criminal proceedings begun by the Attorney General, "therefore, in strict legality, while there are no other applicable laws, it could not be avoided that (Zelaya and his associates) must undergo the procedures established in our criminal procedural law."

Photo and source: El Heraldo [Google translation]

Cold. Brutal. Clear. The death knell of the Manuel Zelaya administration. There will be no amnesty. Zelaya and his associates must face justice for their alleged crimes.

Manual Zelaya is history.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Obama administration "all wrong" on Honduras

My dismay is over the position that the United States has taken regarding the transition of power here in Honduras. I’m not going to argue whether it was a coup or not. My first question to the world leaders is, where was your indignation when the then-President Zelaya violated the Honduran Constitution, the rulings of the Supreme Court, the Congress, the Attorney General and the National Prosecutor by proceeding with an illegal action referring to changing the prohibition of presidential reelection?
Where were the voices of democracy when Zelaya defied these branches of government? When Zelaya publicly said many times that he was ignoring their rulings and was going forward with his illegal referendum, where were questions from the OAS, UN, or individual countries? When Zelaya led a mob and broke into a military base to steal voting materials that had been legally confiscated by the Attorney General, where was the outrage?

Some ask what would we do if the U.S. military entered the White House, arrested the president and exiled him. I ask this question, what would we do if the United States President defied rulings of its Supreme Court. I have to believe that the American public would be as outraged as the Hondurans were by Zelaya’s actions.

- Mitch Cummins & Judith Allred, San Antonio Express

Excellent piece, guys! These are the voices of American-Hondurans. That is, U.S. citizens who live full- or part-time in Honduras. They have a much better understanding of the 'lay of the land' in Honduran politics. Certainly their understanding is much clearer than some academic, so-called "Latin America expert" sitting behind a desk in Berkeley, CA.

No one -- including a President -- is above the law. Zelaya arrogantly, defiantly, and criminally stepped way outside the boundaries established by the laws of Honduras. Someone with his twisted mindset is extremely dangerous in a position of power. (See Hugo Chavez, Venezuela). This rogue actor had to go.

One elected official does not a democracy make.

not-so-glam life in exile

Enrique Flores Lanza, ex-Minister of the Presidency under Zelaya (considered Zelaya's right-hand man), was spotted taking an exercise walk yesterday in Managua, Nicaragua with his beard wife. What's the matter, Lanza? Has Papi Chavez started cutting back on you bunch of tools now that you're no longer of use to him? No more narco- petro-dollars for gym memberships? Tsk, tsk.

Flores Lanza has an arrest warrant against him in Honduras for allegedly illegally removing some 40 million lempiras from the Central Bank in the days leading up to June 28. I can imagine Missy is edgy. He was obviously caught by surprise by the photographer, and the look on his face is just priceless. It's hard to determine whether that look of utter disgust and repugnance is directed at the photographer, or if it is directed at himself for the stinky mess he has made in his pants. I'm guessing the latter.

It must really suck to be you. In so many ways.

Photo and source: La Prensa

Friday, August 21, 2009

what's your number?

Guests from Costa Rica currently staying with us at Paya Bay told me about the Web site Apparently there are 762 places (so far) that one must visit to "see it all."
According to our members, the world is made up of 762 countries, territories, autonomous regions, enclaves, geographically separated island groups, and major states and provinces. To visit all 762 would be to go everywhere.

I signed up. My number so far: 61 (of the 762). Not shabby. I've obviously been very fortunate to travel so much. Check out the Web site!

BTW, the Bay Islands (Islas de la Bahia in Spanish) are currently a candidate to become a distinct MTP location (separate from the Honduran mainland).

feeling good, being happy

Guests dance "punta" on the beach with the Garifunas last night.
Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

quote of the day

Oh, now [Manuel Zelaya] wants the intervention of the "Yankee empire." Now we rely on the "Northern oligarchy." Now "the Empire" has to meddle. Pity that this man has no character. Why doesn't he now request the intervention of Chavez, Correa, Fernandez, Ortega or, particularly, Fidel? What's up with the "Cowboy Commander"? Does he feel unprotected? He should have thought about that before.

- Edy Monti, Honduran citizen commenting on the current political situation

I'm with you, Edy. As President Obama so elegantly noted, these calls for U.S. intervention are shameless, blatant hypocrisy.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

feeling good, being happy

Dancing with a Garifuna lady at Paya Bay Resort.
Photo: S. Jennings

latin american leftists fear domino effect

Who's next?

I think Zelaya gave enough reasons to be removed from government — reasons that exist in abundance in Venezuela. Chavez has violated the constitution a lot more than Zelaya did.

- Venezuelan opposition leader Jose Luis Farias

Photo and Source: AP. Full article

I believe in the self determination of nations. If the Ecuadorans, Bolivians, Nicaraguans, and - especially - the Venezuelans are okay with living under freedoms-suffocating, oppressive, socialist regimes, that is their choice. Hondurans have said "Thanks, but no thanks" to this option. That's our choice. That's our truth. It must be respected and honored.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Micheletti: exile was an error

Acting Honduran President Roberto Micheletti said forcing deposed President Manuel Zelaya to leave the country, instead of arresting him, was an error and those who removed him should be punished.

“There was an error by a certain sector,” Micheletti said today in an interview in Tegucigalpa. “It wasn’t correct. We have to punish whoever allowed that to happen. The rest was framed within what the constitution requires.”
Micheletti said that by removing Zelaya from power, Honduras has stopped Chavez’s influence from spreading. Chavez’s brand of socialism will never gain a foothold in Honduras, Micheletti said.

“All we had done over 20 years in our fight for democracy was going to end up in the hands of one man, a new dictator, and a small group of leftists bent on staying in power,” Micheletti said. “I don’t think Chavez has any more chances here.”

- Andres R. Martinez and Blake Schmidt,

Military authorities argue that removing Zelaya from the country was the best option they had to avoid a bloodbath. Had he simply been arrested and held, Zelaya's supporters would surely have tried to retrieve him, possibly forcing the military to act with deadly force. If by "punish" President Micheletti simply means a 'slap on the wrist and a wink,' I'm cool with that. I continue to believe our authorities did what was best to protect and conserve true democracy in Honduras.

One elected official does not a democracy make.

Obama's support of Zelaya makes no sense

Hugo Chávez took a break last week from lobbying Washington on behalf of deposed Honduran President Manuel Zelaya to travel to Quito, Ecuador, for a meeting of South American heads of state.

There he launched a virulent assault on the U.S. military, reiterated his commitment to spreading revolution in the region, and threatened the continent with war. Mr. Zelaya was by his side.

The Venezuelan's tirade against the U.S. and its ally Colombia raised the question yet again of what the U.S. could possibly be thinking in pushing Honduras to reinstate Mr. Zelaya. He was removed from office by the Honduran Congress in June because he violated the country's constitution and willfully incited mob violence.

But that's not the only thing that made him unpopular at home. He also had become an important ally of Mr. Chávez and was quite obviously being coached to copy the Chávez power grab in Venezuela by undermining Honduras's institutional checks and balances.

If Honduras has been able to neutralize Mr. Chávez, it's something to celebrate. A Chávez-style takeover of institutions in Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua has quashed political pluralism, free speech and minority rights in those countries. There is now a heavy presence of Cuban state intelligence throughout the Venezuelan empire. Mr. Zelaya literally has become a fellow traveler of Mr. Chávez, leaving no doubts about the course he would put Honduras on if given the chance.

- Mary Anastasia O'Grady, Wall Street Journal

I insist, Ms. O'Grady is a hero.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

naturist freedom

A naturist guest takes the stairs to Buccaneer Landing in clothing optional Zone 3. The trail to the right leads into the Tropical Garden Reserve. Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

Photo: S. Jennings

Saturday, August 15, 2009

mel's latest call: "prevent the elections"

Former [Honduran] President Manuel Zelaya called on [his supporters] to "prevent" the general elections scheduled for next November 29.
He had previously been criticized for calling for "insurrection" and inciting violence in the country.
The Supreme Electoral Tribunal had called the General Elections on May 29, long before Zelaya was removed from the presidency for violating the Constitution and laws of Honduras.

Source: El Heraldo [Google translation]

What a DAZZLING DEMOCRAT! Manuel Zelaya continues to show his true colors. What a pathetic little excuse for a man. As is typical of an egomaniac, all he thinks about is himself. As far as he's concerned, Honduras and its 8 million people can be damned. As long as the 'world community' continues to support this creep, however, he'll continue to feel he has the right to make these ridiculous "calls." Shame on any country out there who supports this anti-democracy outcast. Yes, Chile, Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico... I'm looking at you.

Mel, Mel, Mel. Your final goal was, is, and will always be that there be no elections in November. First, you tried through your "fourth urn" project to install the constituent assembly on June 29. Now, it is that the elections are "illegal." Tomorrow, who knows what you will invent. Let the Honduran people decide and don't stick your hands in. For you, the only legal thing, the best thing, is for you to be president forever. Get out of the clouds!

- Coralia, a Honduran citizen responding to the above story.

bliss beach [update]

Level One of the Bliss Beach project is rapidly approaching completion! Just a few more weeks to go before all the final details are completed and we are able to inaugurate this beautiful seaside plunge pool. Level Two will be an exterior lounge area. The beach bar itself will be on Level Three with a commanding view of the beach and the two other levels.

spotted at bliss bar

Guests enjoy Friday night cocktails at the Bliss Bar, Paya Bay Resort.

Friday, August 14, 2009

visitors from faraway places

A honeymoon couple visiting Paya Bay from Israel prepare for the sunset yoga session at Buccaneer Landing. Doing yoga in this beautiful space right next to the water is an exquisite experience.

care package arrived

Back in May I blogged about the 7.3 earthquake that rattled us here in Roatan, noting that my only lost of any significance had been my collection of wine and martini glasses. Previous Paya Bay guests and now friends Peter and Margaret of California subsequently let me know that they had sent me an 'earthquake care package.' They sent the parcel through Honduran mail (infamous for its slowness), but it finally arrived. Thanks so much, guys! So sweet of you!

not returning

Manuel Zelaya stated that "for now" he will not return to Honduras because he has received "death threats." He did not specify from whom these alleged "threats" came.

Source: Proceso Digital [Google translation]

Whatever. More likely, it is finally starting to sink in to Zelaya's thick skull that some 90% of Hondurans don't want him back in the country unless it is to face the charges that have been brought against him.

An alleged traitor to the nation that gave him the honor and privilege of governing it, history will not be kind to this man.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Honduras 4 - Costa Rica 0

Last night the national soccer team beat Costa Rica 4-0 in San Pedro Sula. This was a qualifying match for the South Africa 2010 World Cup.

These young Hondurans deserve to inherit a country that is democratic and where freedom reigns, not some Hugo Chavez-created nightmare. The battle being won is for them.

Viva la H!

Photos: La Prensa

Monday, August 10, 2009

the FARC’s Honduran friends

The FARC is a major player in the cocaine trade, and documents found in computers captured by the Colombian military in a raid last year on a FARC camp in Ecuador show that the rebels have been active in Honduras. A number of those documents came into my possession last week. One is a March 2005 letter to the now-deceased rebel leader Raúl Reyes from another FARC honcho. It provides a list of “political contacts” that have been established around the region and in Spain to provide “support” and help “coordinate the work” of the FARC.

Honduras’s Partido de Unificación Democrática (UD) is on the list. The party has only a small representation in Congress, but it is the only political party that supports the return of Mr. Zelaya. Wherever there are violent demonstrations and roadblocks advocating for Mr. Zelaya, the UD is there.
Mr. Calderón has been waging a “war” on drug cartels in Mexico that has cost the lives of 1,077 law-enforcement agents since December 2006. Now both he and Mr. Obama are going to have to explain their support for a political faction in Honduras that is allied with organized crime. According to the evidence collected by Colombian intelligence that came to me indirectly, that’s exactly what they are doing.

Hondurans don’t want Mr. Zelaya in their country because he leads a violent, antidemocratic mob, and he tried to use it to undermine the country’s institutions in exactly the same way that Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez has done.
The FARC connection could go a long way in explaining why Mr. Chávez is pushing so hard for Mr. Zelaya to be restored to power. It is already well established that the Venezuelan strongman actively supports the FARC in South America. Rebels have a safe haven across his border and just last month a Colombian army raid on a FARC camp yielded a cache of Swedish-made anti-tank rocket launchers that originally had been sold to Venezuela. Mr. Chávez has still not come up with a credible explanation of how the Colombian terrorists got hold of them.
The leaders at the summit today are going to talk about their war on drugs. Perhaps Mr. Calderón and Mr. Obama will tell us why they are backing an ousted Honduran politician whose supporters make common cause with drug-trafficking terrorists. All North Americans deserve an explanation.

- Mary Anastasia O'Grady, Wall Street Journal

More journalistic excellence from one of the Heroes of June 28. Bravo, Ms. O'Grady!

Zelaya's hypocrisy

"The same critics who say the US has not intervened in Honduras are the same people who say we are always intervening and Yankees need to get out of Latin America," [U.S. President Barack Obama] said, accusing such opponents of "hypocrisy."

"You can't have it both ways," he told reporters after the summit in the Mexican city of Guadalajara, adding that Washington had done everything it could since Zelaya was ousted in a coup in June.

Source: AFP

Well, "everything it could" is debatable, but why should the U.S. be in any hurry to help reinstall a leftist, Hugo Chavez puppet who has been bitterly critical of its policies? Zelaya chose the wrong friends. Now he's realizing those "friends" don't have anything near the influence and clout that the United States has. Sounds like you're S.O.L., SOLaya.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

yoga at paya

Guests practice sunset yoga at Buccaneer Landing, Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.


A view from Pigeon Cay, Bay Islands, Honduras.

Insulza, non grata

The Government of Honduras has postponed the visit of a mission of OAS foreign ministers expected to assess the country's political situation because it includes the head of that organization, Jose Miguel Insulza.

The "intransigence" of Insulza to be part of the mission and his exclusion from the delegation of countries open to reconsidering the suspension of Honduras from the OAS "has made it impossible to agree to the appointment as scheduled," said a communique released by the Foreign Ministry.

The delegation from the Organization of American States (OAS), formed by six foreign ministers and officials of the agency, was scheduled to arrive in Tegucigalpa on Tuesday, but the Government of Roberto Micheletti said that it would be received on another date as long as it does not include Insulza.

"The mission must not include the Secretary General, in view of his lack of objectivity, impartiality and professionalism in the performance of his duties."

Source: La Tribuna [Google translation]

Bravo! It is blatantly obvious that Insulza is beholden to and takes orders from Hugo Chavez. Why would we want this biased, leftist, Hugo Chavez puppet assessing anything in Honduras? You might as well just have Chavez himself be a member of the delegation.

The strength being displayed by our current authorities is awe-inspiring. Viva Honduras!

AUG. 10 UPDATE: Insulza will be allowed to come, but only as an observer. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a brief statement that stated: "We have reconciled the differences that emerged in the composition of the mission of foreign ministers of member states of the Organization of American States that will visit Honduras. The Secretary General will participate as an observer."

Still, he knows he's not welcome.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

this says it all

Damn, look at the SIZE of those things!

Honduras has won

The U.S. at first supported Zelaya, a man who had been elected democratically but didn't govern that way. Now they're reaching out to average Hondurans, the real democrats.

Sure, the U.S. continues to condemn Zelaya's ouster and still seeks mediation of the dispute through Costa Rican President Oscar Arias. But no U.S. sanctions means Hondurans have won.

Things could have worked out differently. Venezuela's Hugo Chavez first called for invading Honduras. That threat passed as it became clear Chavez couldn't project his power there.

Next, civil unrest was threatened by Zelaya. But Hondurans astounded the world by standing by their Congress, Supreme Court, attorney general, businesses and the church, all of which declared that Zelaya had violated the constitution and had to go.
The scariest outcome for Honduras was U.S. sanctions. They would have crushed the tiny country dependent on the U.S. for 80% of its trade. No sanctions, no Zelaya.
The U.S. was smart to take the side of freedom. The Hondurans, however, were right all along. After all, it's their democracy. And now they've won it back.

- Investor's Business Daily

My little country has grown up. We can finally shake free from the "banana republic" carapace that has been unfairly imposed on us for way too long. Today the world must view us as a country of courageous democrats who have stood up for liberty, democracy, and free enterprise. We deserve the free world's respect, admiration, support, and, yes, even its gratitude.

Friday, August 7, 2009

kicked to the curb. again.

Sometimes it was better to feel like the president than to be the president. I say this to Lopez Obrador, who is listening.

Manuel Zelaya made this controversial statement at a public event in Mexico City attended by leftist supporters of Manuel Lopez Obrador. Lopez Obrador was narrowly defeated by Felipe Calderon in the last Mexican elections and refused to accept Calderon's victory, calling himself the "legitimate president" of Mexico. Zelaya's statement was intended to recognize Obrador's position. Amazingly, he made this statement shortly after President Calderon had invited him to Mexico and received him with honors reserved for a head of state. What an idiot!

Apparently, Lopez Obrador was not the only one "listening." Mexican senators and representatives called Zelaya's statement "disrespectful" and referred to him as "an ungrateful traitor." "The chavista bit the hand that was giving him a piece of bread," said one. President Calderon was so pissed he ordered his people to immediately escort Zelaya to the airport and not allow him any contact with the press. Zelaya tried to hold a press conference anyway, but the Mexican authorities did not allow it. Even though President Calderon happened to be at the presidential hangar at airport at the same time, he made no attempt to acknowledge Zelaya. Mexican media reported that a "visibly rattled" Zelaya was almost pushed unto the plane that returned him to Managua, Nicaragua. Ouch!

Yet another country kicks this moron to the curb.

Source: [Google translation]

Note: Zelaya travels on a jet provided by Hugo Chavez.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

sorry ALBA, you're not welcome

The Micheletti Administration has welcomed the idea of a visit by an OAS delegation composed of foreign ministers from up to six American countries to assess the political situation in Honduras. Not welcome, however, are foreign ministers from any ALBA countries.

Anyone who wants to come to Honduras is more than welcome, because we are making a very important effort to maintain democracy in this country even though we are so misunderstood by the international community. As the days have gone by it seems that many have begun to understand why we were obligated to act the way we acted. The actions of former President Manuel Zelaya have also corroborated the situation which led to those extremes.

In this sense, the hope is that Mr. (Jose Miguel) Insulza -- who has a lot to do with the international reaction by not being open to the positions that were presented here and who maintains a close relationship with the ALBA countries -- this time his intention will be to be more open, fair, and positive. Part of the problem are the ALBA countries which have made public threats of war against Honduras.

- Martha Lorena Alvarado, Deputy Foreign Minister of Honduras

Source: La Tribuna [Google translation]

In this statement, Ms. Alvarado diplomatically eviscerates Manuel Zelaya ("the actions of former President Manuel Zelaya have also corroborated the situation which led to those extremes") and exposes OAS Secretary General Insulza ("[we hope] this time his intention will be to be more open, fair, and positive") as a Hugo Chavez lackey . I love this fierce woman!

Martha para Presidente en el 2014!

feeling good, being happy

My friends Trevor and Petra sent me some photos from their recent visit to Roatan. Good, happy friends make life awesome!

Bad boys strolling in West End, Roatan, Honduras.

swimsuit or no swimsuit?

The results from TripAdvisor's survey are in!

For the 61% of you who would either participate or not mind a clothing optional scene, Paya Bay Resort's naturism program is for you.

the U.S. seems back on track

With Washington unwilling to take drastic steps such as sanctions to restore Mr. Zelaya to power, it seems increasingly unlikely that the leftist politician will return to his seat, analysts said. Honduras's interim government, backed by much of the country's establishment and middle class, appears unwilling to have Mr. Zelaya back, and Washington seems in no mood to force the issue.

- Wall Street Journal

I'm loving it! At the end of the day, the United States is the only trading partner and military ally that truly matters. Zelaya made his own bed when he defied our courts and the rule of law. Who cares what Cristina Kirchner, Rafael Correa, Evo Morales, Daniel Ortega, and - especially - Hugo Chavez and Raul Castro have to say about what occurred in Honduras. As far as most Hondurans are concerned, they can keep Manuel Zelaya and share him around. What's more, they deserve him.

Today is a great day for Honduras! May peace settle like a mist over this beautiful little country and its courageous, freedom-loving people.


Secret Cove, Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

the Chavez threat to the U.S.

”Chavez has the means and motivation to harm the United States in a way that no other country – and perhaps no other terrorist organization – could,” they argue.

Venezuela’s leader has more soldiers on active and reserve duty than any other nation in Latin America, has forged a strategic military and oil alliance with terrorist sponsor Iran and funds a Communist insurgency against the United States, Schoen and Rowan say. He has also let the Hezbollah terrorist group set up a base in Venezuela and supported the FARC terrorists in neighboring Colombia, they add.

- Joachim Bamrud, Latin Business Chronicle (excellent book review, btw)

In their book The Threat Closer to Home American authors Schoen and Rowan argue that Hugo Chavez is "fund[ing] a Communist insurgency against the United States." This is a very similar to the statement Honduran Army Commander, General Garcia Padget, made on the subject yesterday: "Honduras stopped the expansion plan to bring socialism disguised as democracy to the heart of the United States."

Plus, note what else they are saying:
  • Chavez has forged a strategic military and oil alliance with terrorist sponsor Iran.
  • He has also let the Hezbollah terrorist group set up a base in Venezuela.
  • He has Supported the FARC terrorists in neighboring Colombia.
Consider this: Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, and a few minor Caribbean states have already fallen under Chavez's dominion. Honduras has (so far) been his first defeat. In the ongoing battle between good and evil, little Honduras has handed this particular manifestation of evil its first ass kicking. We have stood up for democracy, free enterprise, peace, and liberty. As a people, we Hondurans share very similar values, hopes, and aspirations with the American people. We have shown that we are courageous, strong-minded, and lionhearted. How could the United States possibly turn its back on us at this critical juncture?

U.S. support for Zelaya softens

Our policy and strategy for engagement is not based on supporting any particular politician or individual. Rather, it is based on finding a resolution that best serves the Honduran people and their democratic aspirations.

- Richard Verma, Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs, United States State Department

quote of the day

[Zelaya and his supporters] have used strategies to attempt to divide the armed forces. Many commanders have been called and offered money, but they did not count on the honor we have that precludes us from selling out to anyone. They also want to weaken the police, but we are all united and are prepared to deal with these strategies.

- General Romeo Vasquez, Chief of Joint Staff, Honduran Armed Forces

Source: Proceso Digital [Google translation]

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

expansion plan stopped

One of the generals who executed the arrest warrant and exiled former President Manuel Zelaya said the military stopped an "expansion plan" which sought to bring "socialism disguised as democracy" even to the United States.

"For a leader in South America, Honduras (Honduran society, its armed forces) stopped the expansion plan to bring to the heart of the United States socialism disguised as democracy," said Army Commander, General Miguel Angel Garcia Padget, alluding to the alleged attempt by Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez to expand his "21st Century Socialism" throughout the continent.

Photo and source: La Prensa [Google translation]

Yet the Obama Admininistration is pressuring the interim authorities in Honduras to reinstate Zelaya. I predict that when the dust settles from this 'political crisis' there are going to be a lot of people with egg on their faces. There are also going to be a lot of people grateful to Hondurans for standing up to Hugo Chavez.

buying support

It is common knowledge in Honduras that support for Zelaya's return is so minimal that his people have resorted to buying support from the poorest classes of society. In this photo one can observe Rafael Alegria with a bag of money that is being handed out to Zelaya supporters. Supposedly much of this money was illegally removed from the Central Bank in the days days before Zelaya's referendum was to take place. (Additional sources are rumored to include Hugo Chavez and Colombia's FARC). The original intent was to use this money to stir up huge marches and manifestations in Zelaya's favor when he called the constituent assembly and dissolved the Congress and Supreme Court on June 28. In other words, Zelaya wanted to make it appear to the world that "the people of Honduras" were "massively in favor" of his constituent assembly and also intimidate what would have been the substantial opposition into accepting that he had gotten his way. Yet another play from the CastroChavez playbook. Since things didn't go as planned on June 28, they are now using the money to buy supporters. People are being paid as much as 500 lempiras (US$25) to participate in the marches for Zelaya.

Pathetic. Desperate. Evil.

Rafael Alegria
Peasant leader and staunch Zelaya ally. The accounting must be interesting when you are a guy of modest means who suddenly has access to bags of cash, especially when it's other people's (taxpayers') money.


Guests enjoy Bliss Beach. Paya Bay Resort, Roatan, Honduras.

Monday, August 3, 2009

quote of the day

Americans are free to disagree with the law but not to disobey it. For a government of laws and not of men, no man, however prominent and powerful, no mob, however, unruly or boisterous, is entitled to defy a court of law. If this country should ever reach the point where any man or group of men, by force or threat of force, could long defy the commands of our courts and our Constitution, then no law would stand free from doubt, no judge would be sure of his writ and no citizen would be safe from his neighbors.

- President John F. Kennedy, September 1962

Manuel Zelaya defied Honduran courts and he defied our Constitution. People don't change. If given another chance he will do it again (especially if he's being pressured by Hugo Chavez). There is now way he can be allowed back in the Presidency. The risk is too great. Hugo Chavez must be denied even a toehold on Honduras.

the $339,000 girl

Beatriz Valle, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs during Manuel Zelaya's administration, earned US$24,239 a month - that's US$339,346 a year*! To put this in proper perspective, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton earns $196,700 a year (and she works for what is arguably the world's wealthiest country). Hell, Ms. Valle was just $60K shy of earning the same salary as the President of the United States! This size salary for a Honduran bureaucrat is a travesty beyond comprehension in a poor country with so many underfunded - and unfunded - projects. This sense of entitlement to shovel taxpayers' monies into their bank accounts is simply disgusting. It makes you wonder what Zelaya owed Ms. Valle. Moreover, this underlines the fact that Zelaya was really no "champion of the poor." If anything, he was the champion of his social circle. This is exactly what many suspect the so-called "21st Century Socialism" is all about.

*Hondurans get paid two extra monthly salaries each year (one in June and one in December), therefore, 24,239 x 14 = $339,346.

Source: El Heraldo [Google translation]

If this is how much the deputy minister earned, I wonder how much Patricia Rodas, his actual foreign minister, was taking home? This is all so disgusting.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

hmm... could this be it?

Chancho Lanza
Enrique Flores Lanza, formerly Zelaya's Minister of the Presidency, has an arrest warrant against him in Honduras for, among other things, allegedly illegally withdrawing 40,000,000 lempiras (some US$2 million) from the Central Bank to support Zelaya's illegal referendum. Flores Lanza is short in stature and, apparently, morality.

Zelaya's "militia"

Mel announced on Wednesday that he will form a "popular army" with his followers on a farm near the city [of Ocotal, Nicaragua], to join him in his third attempt to return to Honduras. Zelaya left for Managua on Thursday, but delegated to Carlos Reina the organization and training of his "soldiers" in Ocotal. "We have received no training," said Ruben Ortiz, a peasant of 60 years who soon after was ordered to shut up.

Photo and source: La Prensa [Google translation]

Again, I pose the question: What's this cracker on? Sometimes I feel like I'm trapped in someone else's drug trip. This shiz is surreal! His behavior and antics read like a chapter from Garcia Marquez's Cien Anõs de Soledad. Or an Almodovar movie. Even before he tried to sack the Constitution this dude obviously had no business running a country.