In yet another demonstration of the United Nations’ double-standard, the General Assembly on June 30th unanimously demanded the immediate re-instatement of the deposed Honduran president Manuel Zelaya, who was ousted in a bloodless military coup, while ignoring the blood spilt in the streets by Iranian president Ahmadinejad’s thugs during their brutal suppression of peaceful protests against his stolen election.
Zelaya is a committed leftist, whom the UN General Assembly president Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann – the Sandinista friend of Ahmadinejad – has made his personal cause. D’Escoto Brockmann invited Zelaya to address the General Assembly.
Their mutual buddy, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, threatened military action to restore Zelaya to power – an offer that Zelaya did not outright refuse.
And President Obama did not help matters when he quickly hopped on board the save-the-leftist bandwagon while being very slow to react to the outrageous crack-down in Iran.
Zelaya told the General Assembly that “A crime has been committed against humanity, a crime which we all reject. Whenever brute force prevails over reason, humankind returns to its primeval state, to the era of the garrote, where everything is reduced to force”.
His words would have perfectly suited the occasion – if he had been talking about the situation in Iran where at least seventeen protestors were killed and hundreds more were injured and thrown into jail. But, alas, it was all about Zelaya who shamelessly likened himself to Mahatma Ghandi, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King. He was roundly applauded by his international audience, with the United States joining hands with Venezuela and Cuba in supporting a resolution condemning Zelaya’s removal from office and demanding his “immediate and unconditional restoration” to power.
After his speech to the General Assembly, Zelaya spoke to reporters. He invoked Jesus Christ in his cause, declaring that “We are the blood of Jesus Christ, as we say”. He also announced his intention to return immediately to Honduras to reclaim his office, accompanied by General Assembly president d’Escoto Brockmann and other leftist Latin American leaders.
“I am going to fulfill my four years; I am going to fight to have the four years respected, because it’s part of our law,” Zelaya told reporters.
Zelaya’s ouster by the military on June 28th was precipitated by his apparent efforts to lift the presidential one term limit stipulated in the Honduran constitution by means of a referendum that would have gone outside of the constitution – the same kind of technique used by Hugo Chavez to consolidate his power. Honduras’s Supreme Court had declared the planned referendum to be illegal, but Zelaya was determined to go ahead anyway. He now denies that it was ever his intention to remain in power beyond his current term.
Whatever the merits of Zelaya’s ouster may be, it is an internal matter into which neither the UN nor the Obama administration has any business sticking their noses. The military did not install one of its own to take over the country. Rather, the speaker of Congress Roberto Micheletti was sworn in by his fellow lawmakers to replace Zelaya. And Micheletti assured Honduran citizens that the elections already scheduled for this November would proceed.
“We respect the whole world, and we only ask that they respect us and leave us in peace”, Micheletti pleaded to the international community.
Unfortunately, the United Nations is now on record – with the Obama administration’s full support – of doing precisely the opposite. And the hypocrisy of it all is outrageous. The rights of the “people” are sacrosanct when a leftist leader seeking to stretch his powers is ousted, but the dictator of the Islamic Republic of Iran can trample on the rights of his people and still be regarded as a hero at the United Nations.
For his part, President Obama had declared the day before the UN vote that the United States still considers Manuel Zelaya to be the president of Honduras. He said that Zelaya’s ouster was "not legal". In other words, without bothering to consider the opinions of Honduras’s other branches of civil government, Obama rendered his verdict and refuses to have anything to do with Zelaya’s replacement.
Yet Iran gets a softer touch. In a June 28th interview on CBS’s Face the Nation, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice danced around a question regarding the legitimacy of the Iranian regime after the stolen election. Said Rice: “Obviously the government’s legitimacy has been called into question by the protests. . . . But that’s not the critical issue in terms of our dealings with Iran… We’ve left the door open to bilateral diplomacy”.
It’s time for Obama and the international community to let harmless Honduras work out its own internal problems and to concentrate instead on the real threats to international peace and security such as the present, illegitimate government of Iran that is developing nuclear arms and sponsoring terrorist groups.