Before he was tossed out of Honduras in his pajamas by the Honduran military, President Manuel Zelaya was a proud populist buddy of Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, who — like Chavez — was looking to rewrite his country’s constitution to allow himself to stay in office.
For the poor, he said.
Now, Honduras has had a 21st century coup d'etat. And Zelaya has turned to Washington — which he and Chavez demonize — for help in getting back into power.
It’s quite a picture. And Hondurans are still poor.
This hour, On Point: coup, and the hard backstory, in Honduras.
You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.Guests:
From Atlanta, Georgia, we're joined by Jennifer McCoy, professor of political science at Georgia State University and director of the Americas program at The Carter Center in Atlanta. She’s an expert on democracy in Latin America and is editor of the book "The Unraveling of Representative Democracy in Venezuela."
And from Washington we're joined by Alvaro Vargas Llosa, a senior fellow at the Independent Institute's Center on Global Prosperity. His opinion piece “Honduras's Coup Is President Zelaya's Fault” appeared in The Washington Post on July 1. His op-ed for The New York Times on June 30 was headlined “The Winner in Honduras: Chávez.” He's the author of "The Che Guevara Myth" and "Liberty for Latin America," among other books.
And from Guatemala City, we're joined by Greg Grandin, a professor of history at New York University and author of "Empire's Workshop: Latin America, the United States, and the Rise of the New Imperialism." His piece "Democracy Derailed in Honduras" appeared recently in The Nation.
This program aired on July 8, 2009.