May 27, 2011

The second coming of Mel Zelaya

Tomorrow, May 28th is the big day. The second coming of the messiah, or at least that is how the return of the former president Mel Zelaya is being treated in some quarters. I don't know how Zelaya could possibly live up to the expectations. For that, I am sorry. Not sorry for Mel, but sorry for the people who think that his coming will somehow change their lives or prospects.

I'm also very worried about what is going to happen tomorrow. The FNRP marches have often resulted in violence. I'm afraid that the 'show' tomorrow is not only staged to show Mel's popularity, but also may be to show that Honduras is ungovernable and for that, "the conditions are not right" for Honduras to be accepted back into the OAS.

In a really strange twist, Andres Pavón, pro-Zelaya head of CODEH, announced to the media that Zelaya was only returning for 24-hours to test the waters, so to speak, regarding his personal security. Pavón is the same person who exposed a 'conspiracy' right before the 2009 elections, claiming that he had proof that the military was going to massacre 1,200 UCD members (white shirts) in order to blame the massacre on the Resistance. Yes, that makes no sense and no one paid any attention to his crazy claim, but it shows the type of person he is. I have no idea what his purpose was in making this statement about Zelaya.

Both Juan Barahona and Mel Zelaya instantly denied Pavón's report, saying that Mel was coming to stay. But the whole thing got me thinking that a big riot (or worse) is the plan, using it as 'proof' of Honduras' lack of human rights, Zelaya's inability to be safe in Honduras, or proof of repression by the security forces. Mel could go back to his life of luxury and security in the Dominican Republic and continue to cause harm to Honduras while playing the victim to the international community.

The FNRP seems more anti-everything than ever these days. Various factions of the FNRP have come out against their own leaders, against Mel Zelaya, against the Cartagena Accord, against Pepe Lobo for signing the Accord, against Honduras rejoining the OAS, against becoming a political party, against reconciliation, even against a plebiscite to hold a constitutional assembly, which has been their main demand from the very beginning. It would almost be humorous if it wasn't so seriously sad for Honduras. The FNRP has been promoting division and hate, and even violence in some cases, for two years now. It could all backfire on them and on Zelaya. When you train a dog to bite, sometimes you can't control them when you need to.

Preparations are being made — t-shirts and flags are being printed, 400 buses have been hired to transport anyone who wants to go to the party from all over the country. One expatriate asked his neighbor who was paying for all that and the response was "Who cares?! It's all for free!" Another Facebook friend mentioned that the "ricos" were getting onto planes to leave Tegucigalpa.

José Insulza, Secretary General of the OAS, is here, too, to welcome back Zelaya. They will all be having lunch at the presidential palace tomorrow. Hopefully Insulza will stay safe in his luxury hotel during the melee because the last thing that we need is for something to happen to him while he is in Honduras or to Zelaya either.

The FNRP have demanded that the police or military not be there or along the route. As of the latest word, the security forces have agreed. Of course, Lobo has guaranteed Zelaya's safety so there will have to be some around him. I wouldn't want to be in Lobo's or Minister of Security Oscar Alvarez's shoes right now. There are no good solutions. They are going to be damned if they do and damned if they don't. Mel will also have his own security to protect him against the protectors.

Really I'm just speculating about all this, but I am very worried. This is a group that wants martyrs. I'll be glued to the television tomorrow — probably with my laptop right in front of me.

But I'm a world class worrier. Don't pay any attention to me. Almost four thousand Hondurans believe the game tomorrow is more important than Zelaya's return.

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