Past Sins: Death of Honduran Activist Cast Shadow on Hillary Clinton?

Past Sins: Death of Honduran Activist Cast Shadow on Hillary Clinton? © Sputnik/

03:21 06.03.2016(updated 03:32 06.03.2016) Get short URL
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Journalist Greg Grandin claims Honduran government backed by Hillary Clinton responsible for death of the idigenous Lenca activist.

The local Honduran activist, a supporter of president Manuel Zelaya, who was deposed during a coup in 2009, Berta Cáceres was murdered. The murderers remain unknown but Greg Grandin of The Nation argues that the Honduran government is responsible which further implicates the US and president candidate Hillary Clinton.

Cáceres was a leader of COPINH, the National Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (Consejo Cívico de Organizaciones Populares e Indígenas de Honduras), originally founded in 1993 to address the growing threats posed to indigenous Lenca communities, fight for their territorial rights and improve their livelihoods.

COPINH activity turned political around 2009, after the coup that led to President Zelaya’s ouster. The new government accepted an intense industrialization program that created a demand for large amounts of cheap energy in Honduras. The government needed to construct hundreds of electric dams to support extensive mining operations across the country. All this construction subsequently led to destruction of indigenous Lenca communities. Lenca people have repeatedly come in conflict with the government, accusing it of cutting off the supply of water, food, medicine and of aggression against places of spiritual importance of Lenca people.

Cáceres’ latest activity involved the construction of a hydroelectric dam on River Gualcarque by an internationally financed company DESA.

However, Grandin of The Nation accuses not just DESA of Berta Cáceres’ demise, but places blame on the government of Honduras. Then Grandin goes on to recall how this government came to power. He cites Investigations by Alexander Main from Center for Economic and Policy Research, Huffington Post’s Robert Naiman and Mark Weisbrot of Hillary Clinton’s involvement in the Honduran political crisis, following the notorious Clinton email controversy in March 2015.

Apparently, Hillary Clinton effectively enabled the coup while officially joining the unanimous condemnation of the coup by the United Nations and the Organization of American States. In a nutshell, she, as a State Secretary at the time, did not suspend non-humanitarian aid to Honduras, as required by American law. Pretending that the situation in Honduras was “unclear”, she delayed the suspension of US aid, effectively cementing the coup regime led by Roberto Micheletti.

According to Grandin, the subsequent government activity has led to numerous violations of human rights, repressive laws and murders in Honduras on one hand and to intensive environmentally destructive industrialization on the other hand which has supposedly eventually led to Berta Cáceres’ demise.

In her book, “Hard Choices”, published in 2014, Hillary Clinton holds up her Honduran settlement as a proud example of her trademark clear-eyed, “pragmatic” foreign policy approach.

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