The Zero Hour
The most important cities in the country, Tegucigalpa-- in the south-center-- and San Pedro Sula-- in the north-- are replete with demonstrators who have turned up from their respective zones of influence to strengthen their opposition to the de facto regime and their demand that constitutional order be restored.
The fact that thousands of citizens have carried out a march of a week long, from distant places to the political and industrial capitals, under a burning sun and innumerable privations, with the goal of defending the State of Law, is something never seen in Central America, and possibly, not even in Latin America.
It is an astonishing collective attitude that the Hondurans have not yet begun to analyze in depth, but are guessing its repercussions on the dynamic of political and social change that the majority of the people demand and that inevitably will have to follow its natural course to be realized, in conformity with the obstacles or assistance that is presented along the way.
Until now, the national resistance movement against the coup d'Etat of June 28-- which is already a symbolic date in history-- has not lost heart. On the contrary: it is seen to strengthen with the "institutional" repression that has applied a large range of means, from the media to physical and psychological brutality, that in total conform to a system of dictatorial terrorism.
This strengthening of the peaceful resistance is not casual, but rather proper to the evolution of human nature, as we can validate throughout history, from the dawn of Christianity, through the Jewish Holocaust in the second World War, to the passive resistance of Ghandi in his quest for independence for India, and that of Nelson Mandela against apartheid in South Africa.
From this perspective, although it may appear exaggerated for the smallness of our country in the world concert of nations, we Hondurans should begin to reason consciously about the opportunities that this popular awakening offers to advance toward the necessary political, economic, social and cultural reforms that are necessary in Honduras, in place of attempting to intercept them and sharpen the conflict.
To do this is the job of the politicians who, effectively, know and comprehend the national reality and would be disposed to act in consequence. As happens almost always in these cases, the inertia against change also levels the obsolete and refractory leadership and affirms or creates new leaders. All this forms part of the social and political dynamic, that to a certain extent achieves its own autonomy.
In this conjuncture, Honduras is not alone. It has the rest of the world on its side, and we Hondurans should not lose this extraordinary circumstance, unique, independent of the side of the controversy on which we are found: golpistas, constitutionalists, or neutral. In historic terms, we have arrived at the Zero Hour.
In the coming days-- days of resistance-- two important events are foreseen, definitive in this situation and linked together: the visit by the Interamerican Commission on Human Rights, and then, the presence of a mission of foreign ministers of the OAS and of Secretary José Insulza to promote the approval by the de facto regime of the San Jose Accord.
This is the right moment-- and, surely, the last opportunity-- to enable constitutional order and national reconciliation without more traumatic consequences. It is the correct moment for a patriotic decision.
Responses to the Coup d'etat in Honduras on Sunday June 28, with special emphasis on producing English-language versions of commentaries by Honduran scholars and editorial writers and addressing the confusion encouraged by lack of basic knowledge about Honduras.