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Lustful Monkey

Us men, in our desire to demonstrate an intelligent machismo, often suffer disappointments, as it happened to a good friend of ours:

At El Arenal there is a center that Danlidenses know as “El Lugar Tranquilo” (The Quiet Place) where you can eat grilled meat, cassava rind, soft drinks and other goodies.

There is also a small zoo where you can visit monkeys, flamingoes, coatis, rabbits and many other birds.

In the place rooms are rented to couples who request them.

Once, our macho friend brought a female friend to El Lugar Tranquilo, rented a room, and both surrendered to the desires and rejoicing.

A monkey managed to escape from captivity and began walking across the ceiling of the room where the couple was located.

They were so absorbed in their caresses, that did not realize the monkey was wrenching up the room; and seeing the couple, it aroused in the animal his sexual appetites, and neither short nor lazy, he fell upon our friends, with such accuracy that he fell on the man’s bare back, put his tail between the man’s legs and with his arms gripped his neck.

Our macho friend, feeling that lump on his body, feeling surprised got up, and looking at the monkey he thought it was the devil, and started screaming, going out naked with the lady, to the surprise of the clientele of the place.

Had it not been for the business owner who came out and grabbed the monkey, our friend were still running. Thus concluded the biggest perra of Danli.

Story taken from the magazine “Danlí: Leyenda y Misterio.” II Edition.

Interesting facts about Honduras

Honduras Map

Honduras Map.

Bandera de Honduras

Honduras Flag.

  1. The term “Banana Republic” was first applied to Honduras by the American writer O. Henry, for the influence the U.S. banana companies had at some time.
  2. The Honduras official language is Spanish.
  3. Christopher Columbus is said to have said after leaving behind a storm: “Thank God we’ve left these Depths.” And he called Depths (Honduras) the area, and Thank God (Gracias a Dios) the Cape he left.
  4. As “Soccer War” is known the armed conflict that occurred as a result of a military aggression of El Salvador against Honduras after a soccer match between the two countries in 1969. The real reason of the aggression was to contain the Salvadoran population pressure.
  5. Hondurans are also called “Catrachos” because of general Florence Xatruch, who fought in Nicaragua against the American filibuster William Walker. “Catrachos” is a corruption of the name Xatruch. “Here come the Xatruches” they said in the beginning; within a time they said: “Here come the Catrachos”.
  6. The capital of Honduras is composed of two cities: Tegucigalpa and Comayagüela.
  7. The Honduran currency is the lempira, and it is named after an Indian chief that fought to death against the Spanish conquerors. It is assumed that a lempira bill has an image representing the face of the legendary chief Lempira, but instead contains the image of an American Red Indian.
  8. Honduras is located in the waist or isthmus that links North America with South America, and it was the result of the clash of these two landmasses. If not for the existence of the Central American isthmus, in which Honduras is in the middle, sea currents would have taken other directions, the weather had been different in Africa, and humans would not have evolved as they did.
  9. The military base of Soto Cano, known as Palmerola, is of strategic importance to the United States.
  10. For its strategic geographical position, Honduras is a necessary step for the drug that comes from South America.
  11. Trujillo is believed to be the place where the first Mass was celebrated in the Americas.
  12. Platano Forest was nominated as one of the new seven new wonders of the world.
  13. There are no active volcanoes in Honduras, and there is only one natural lake: Lake Yojoa.
  14. Comayagua has one of the oldest clocks in the world.
  15. In Yoro there is the phenomenon of fish rain (lluvia de peces). Literally, fish fall from the sky.
  16. Most of the population is Catholic, and the Virgin of Suyapa —represented by a tiny statuette— is considered the patron saint of Honduras. There is also a significant growth of evangelical sects, which are competing for the faithful with the Catholic Church.
  17. Contrary to what happens on mainland, Bay Islands is predominantly Protestant, because of the early English influence.
  18. With the amount of coral reefs that are in the Bay Islands, Honduras is the second country in the world with more coral reef after Australia.
  19. In addition to receiving gifts at Christmas, children are celebrated and receive gifts on 10 September, day of the Honduran Child.
  20. The Maya were the pre-colombian culture most advanced in the present territory of Honduras, but when the Spanish conquistadors arrived, this magnificent culture had already disappeared. The Mayan people did not disappeared, but returned to lower levels of development. It is unknown if their disappearence was by natural causes or by the collapse of its social organization. The Copan Ruins are the most important Mayan ruins in Honduras.
  21. Most Hondurans are mestizos.
  22. Ethnic groups in Honduras mentioned in the textbooks are the Lenca, Tolupanes, Pech, Tawahka, Chorti, Miskito and Garifuna. Also important in Honduras are Arabs, Jewish and Chinese.
  23. The most important national hero of Honduras is Francisco Morazán, who fought for the unity of Central America and died executed for his ideals in Costa Rica.
  24. September 15th is celebrated as Independence Day in Honduras, which coincides with that of the other countries in Central America.
  25. The national flower of Honduras is the Rhyncholaelia digbyana (formerly known as Brassavola digbyana) which replaced the rose in 1969.
  26. The national mammal is the white-tailed deer, the national bird is the scarlet macaw.
  27. The Honduran flag consists of three horizontal stripes: the upper and lower stripes are blue, and the center stripe is white. In the central stripe there are five blue stars representing the five republics of Central American Union, and the central star represents Honduras.
  28. The National Anthem of Honduras consists of a choir and seven stanzas, but usually only the chorus and the last stanza are singed in public events.
  29. Soccer is the favorite sport, the passion of multitudes.
  30. The main export products are bananas, coffee and wood.
  31. Remittances represent about a quarter of GDP, and about three quarters of exports.
  32. The population below the poverty line was 50.7% in 2004.
  33. The population is around 7.8 million inhabitants.
  34. The area of Honduras is 112.090 square kilometers.

Honduras Newspapers and Magazines

Newspapers in English
Honduras this Week
Honduras News

The Four Main National Newspapers:
La Tribuna
El Heraldo
La Prensa
El Tiempo

Tegucigalpa Newspapers:
La Tribuna
El Heraldo

San Pedro Sula Newspapers:
La Prensa
El Tiempo

Digital Newspapers:
El Proceso Digital
Honduras News

Zelayista Newspapers:
El Libertador
El Patriota

Business Magazines
Hablemos Claro Financiera

Hablemos Claro
Hablemos Claro

Rich and Famous Magazine

Honduran Community in America Newspaper:
La Tribuna USA

Sports Newspapers
As deportiva
La Tribuna Deportiva

La Tribuna’s Supplements

Only online newspapers and magazines are included.

Was it a coup or not?

“Was it a coup or not?”. This is a question I ask myself many times, especially since Zelaya’s supporters never get tire of branding us as “coupsters” every time they have the chance, to those of us who support the outcome of 28 June, when president Zelaya was ousted and expelled from Honduras.

I must admit that the legality of what happened is uncertain. It would have been better to proceed with a legal process against Manuel Zelaya without any apparent irregularity, but my reaction since Zelaya was ousted was a warm endorsement.

The political crisis did not begin, as many say, on June 28, but with a growing confrontational attitude of President Zelaya which threatened to reach intolerable levels.

It seems clear that the real reasons behind the removal of Zelaya were not legal technicalities or the corruption of his government, not even his violation of the Constitution (in previous governments there was also corruption and violations of the Constitution). Zelaya was expelled for creating the threat of a Chavista regime which would destroy the existing constitutional order replacing it with a system of concentration of powers in the figure of a caudillo, and the possibility of permanent re-election of the caudillo by way of electoral fraud (The caudillo being Zelaya himself).

The intended use of the referendum only served to legitimize the dictatorial ambitions.

The strategy followed to halt this authoritarian project was to invoke respect for the law. However, the illegal procedure that was used to oust Zelaya clouded that claim of respect for the law. It was denounced the contradiction of defending the law through the violation of it.

But one can argue that a rational application of the law needs to use a hierarchy of legal and ethical principles, and it is sometimes necessary to choose between a greater evil and a lesser evil.

The expulsion of Zelaya was a crime, but it was through that crime that the current legal order was saved. This would not be the case had Zelaya fulfilled his intention to convene a Constituent Assembly, and to dissolve the Congress and the Supreme Court. This is a case analogous to the principle of self-defense in criminal law. In expelling Zelaya the system acted in self defense for its own self-preservation.

The ideal thing would have been to judge Zelaya within Honduran territory, but with him imprisoned there was the danger of more violence and deaths.

A coup without breaking the constitutional order

When a coup d’Etat is perpetrated the constitutional order is lost, the legislature and judiciary branches are dissolved to make way for a government of force.

This has not happened in Honduras at the moment. Here the constitutional order with its three branches structure remains intact.

All we have is a controversy over the legitimacy of the current holder of the executive branch.

However, we hear over and over the claim that in Honduras the constitutional order was broken by a coup d’Etat. This falsehood, which is often being promoted in a malicious way, is somewhat an understandable misunderstanding because there is no historical precedent for the presidential succession that occurred in Honduras. This explains the misuse of the concept of coup d’Etat, which was used in the context of the violent takeover of power by the military in Latin America.

Article 239

Article 239 of the Constitution forbids the president’s reelection, and states that any public official attempting to reform this Article ceases to hold office immediately. Based on that article it is said that Zelaya was no longer president when he was expelled from the country, so that the presidential succession that took place was perfectly legal, despite the fact that the removal of Zelaya was illegal.

The problem with this interpretation is that Zelaya was careful to not openly express his intention to allow re-election in the new Constitution.

The strongest public statement that Zelaya made to that effect was one in which he mentioned that other State officials could exercise their functions for various terms, and that the issue of presidential re-election will be the subject of the upcoming Constituent Assembly.

The intention of allowing presidential reelection was clear, although the lack of an explicit statement of this purpose produces doubts in the use of Article 239 to justify his ouster.

If Article 239 is not applicable, this suggests that Zelaya is still the constitutional President of Honduras, despite his attempts to destroy the present legal order, and that Micheletti is an usurper of the presidential functions.

However, there is an alternative interpretation that says that at the time the arrest warrant against Zelaya was given there was a power vacuum that needed to be filled by a presidential succession.

Both theories are questionable and in order to clarify whether the replacement in office was legal or not, it is necessary to solve it through a trial. Ideally, Zelaya would come to Honduras to face justice over the allegations made against him. This would clarify definitively whether the current President in office is legitimate or not.

The problem is that Zelaya seems unwilling to submit to the law, but remains committed to disown it. If Zelaya insists on ignoring the Honduran legal institutions he looses the right to hold the presidential chair, and has committed perjury, because in order to take up his duties he swore to uphold and enforce the Constitution and the law. Presidential powers are legitimate only within the constitutional framework, and by virtue of having undertaken to comply with that order. When he rebels against that framework he has no right to remain president.

Anyway, whether the presidential substitution occurred on June 28 was legally justified or not, is a fait accompli and the return to power of Zelaya is not politically feasible, despite international pressure to reinstate him. The next presidential elections we will give a new president-elect free of suspicion about his legitimacy, as the electoral process is developing properly, and this despite threats from other countries to ignore the outcome of the elections.

“We shall pay any price": Honduras’ Ministry of Interior

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

The Interior and Justice Secretary, Oscar Raul Matute, issued a statement this Thursday, minutes after being reported the suspension of U.S. aid to Honduras.

In statements to Radio HRN, Matute relies on a U.S. government reaction “when they read these concepts.” He expressed confidence that “the American people is a noble people” and that “the U.S. government will consider these concepts (…)” which give elements of judgment that “they do not know (and that) if they are brought to them they will have a completely clear understanding of what is our truth.”

The message, addressed “with approval of the Constitutional President of the Republic of Honduras, Roberto Micheletti” to the American people and the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, in particular, and expressing the government’s response through the Ministry of Interior and Justice, reads as follows:

“We are a peaceful people with deep Christian values and we have been forged in the heroic struggle with the hoe and rifle, and forged our character in one of the most ardent geographies of the Americas. The heroic struggle of our people to preserve their national, spiritual and moral values has led us to the current political situation and to strengthen our fight to increase our ideals and achieving our goals.

We invoke the lapidary and historical concepts that inform the principles to be observed by all nations of universal singular idiomatic expression and we bring to our minds those concepts expressed by the remembered, loved and respected U.S. president John Fitzgerald Kennedy and making ours his words we also say that in the long history of the world only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in the moments of its greatest danger.

We do not shrink from this responsibility, we welcome it, none of us would exchange place with anyone from another generation. The energy, faith, and devotion we have brought will illuminate our country and those whom we serve.

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of the liberties of our people and of democracy.

And along with the recalled President Kennedy we also say that our conscience is clear, and to keep our promise to our people is our only sure reward with history as the final judge of our deeds; we go forward for the land we love and we are asking God’s blessing.

Madam Secretary of State: in your hands is to make decisions that could affect our condition of being Hondurans, therefore we respectfully ask you to take those decisions which would take the noble American people if they were in the political context in which our people are.

I profess to the noble American people and to the Secretary and lawyer Hillary Clinton assurances of my highest and distinguished consideration.

Taken from El Heraldo.

State Department puts more pressure on Honduras

The State Department does it again. It acusses Honduras of having a de facto government product of a coup d’etat, but is unable to present a legal analysis justifying this position.

Apart from the termination of assistance in an amount not yet exactly determined, what seems more worrying is their position regarding the coming elections when they say: “At this moment, we would not be able to support the outcome of the scheduled elections”.

And I think: “Well, maybe at this moment they are unable to support the outcome of the escheduled elections, but they will have to, eventually”. To do otherwise would be to support a de facto government, which would be contradictory with their stated purpose of supporting democracy.

Read the whole communiqué:

Termination of Assistance and Other Measures Affecting the De Facto Regime in Honduras

Ian Kelly
Department Spokesman
Washington, DC
September 3, 2009

The Department of State announces the termination of a broad range of assistance to the government of Honduras as a result of the coup d’etat that took place on June 28

The Secretary already had suspended assistance shortly after the coup. The Secretary of State has made the decision, consistent with U.S. legislation, recognizing the need for strong measures in light of the continued resistance to the adoption of the San Jose Accord by the de facto regime and continuing failure to restore democratic, constitutional rule to Honduras.

The Department of State recognizes the complicated nature of the actions which led to June 28 coup d’etat in which Honduras’ democratically elected leader, President Zelaya, was removed from office. These events involve complex factual and legal questions and the participation of both the legislative and judicial branches of government as well as the military.

Restoration of the terminated assistance will be predicated upon a return to democratic, constitutional governance in Honduras.

The Department of State further announces that we have identified individual members and supporters of the de facto regime whose visas are in the process of being revoked.

A presidential election is currently scheduled for November. That election must be undertaken in a free, fair and transparent manner. It must also be free of taint and open to all Hondurans to exercise their democratic franchise. At this moment, we would not be able to support the outcome of the scheduled elections. A positive conclusion of the Arias process would provide a sound basis for legitimate elections to proceed. We strongly urge all parties to the San Jose talks to move expeditiously to agreement.

PRN: 2009/869

America revokes visas to “coupsters”

The State Department has decided to revoke diplomatic visas to what it believes are four members of the “de facto” government of Honduras. These people have been working for the government of Manuel Zelaya, but now serve to the “de facto government.”

And as America does not recognize this “de facto” government, these diplomatic visas are expected to be removed from its members, as they would be useless, unable these people to represent the government of Honduras in America.

These individuals are: Alfredo Saavedra, President of the Congress; Adolfo Sevilla, Defense Minister, Ramon Custodio, Human Rights Commissioner, and Arita Thomas, Judge of the Supreme Court.

My comment:

If this is a measure of pressure, I should say it is not a very effective deterrent.

These officers have a tourist visa, so they can travel to America as many times as they deem necessary.

Mr. Alfredo Saavedra, president of the Congress, confessed that he had never used his diplomatic visa. Adolfo Sevilla said he rarely travels abroad. And Ramón Custodio has said he has a tourist visa, but will not use it because he believes that this measure is an insult to the Honduran people. He doesn’t consider himself as part of the government.

The State Department is somewhat disoriented. This government is not a de facto government, it is a legitimate government under Honduran law. Representative Saavedra was elected in free elections, and has all the legitimacy to represent the people of Honduras in the Congress, he is not a “de facto” legislator.

Mr. Thomas Arita, judge of the Supreme Court, is not a “de facto judge”. He was appointed when Zelaya was in office. The removal of his diplomatic visa for his arrest warrant against Zelaya suggests a repudiable interventionism in the internal affairs of the State of Honduras. It sends a wrong message to international public opinion: that presidents anointed with the popular vote are above the law.

These actions will not produce the return of Zelaya to power, but will cause the Honduran people to distrust the American government, which we felt was our ally.

The alleged racism of Enrique Ortez Colindres

We Hondurans know so well that there is a vast disinformation campaign against this interim government, because we moved to the center of the Chavista ideological struggle field.

And part of that campaign is to slander those linked to this government. And character assassination is frequently used in order to make people look as despicable monsters deserving to be trampled.

Chavista Leftists have no manners: They insult, lie and denigrate with no qualms.

It has been said that in Honduras there is a repressive military regime, that there are many dead, wounded and desaparecidos. These are lies.

One recent victim of character assassination is Mr. Enrique Ortez Colindres, who was Foreign Minister for a few days and then had to resign, under pressure from the American Embassy.

American Ambassador in Honduras, Hugo Llorens, released a communiqué in which he said he felt “deeply outraged” by the alleged racist statements from Ortez Colindres. Ortez Colindres said in the television show “Frente a Frente” of Televicentro Network that Obama was “a Negrito who did not know where Tegucigalpa [Honduras’ capital city] was”.

Llorens interpreted the word Negrito as a racist and derogatory term.

(Negrito means in Spanish “black boy”, with different connotations).

We Hondurans are not obsessed with racial issues and political correctness the way Americans are. The word “Negrito” is not necessarily racist. Therefore there was no reason to feel “deeply outraged”. These statements were given before Ortez was sworn as Foreign Minister.

However, one might object that having said that Obama “does not know where Tegucigalpa is” is demeaning, because it is like saying that Obama is an ignorant fool.

But it is not. It is a fact that many Americans do not know where Honduras is, and can not locate it on the map. And this happens to Americans of all colors, it is not a racial issue.

What Ortez Colindres meant is that we Hondurans can not expect America to solve all our problems, and we must take our responsibility to save our motherland. This is certainly a message that many people from the Left can identify with.

I do not know if Hugo Llorens sympathizes with Chavismo. I hope not, but his interpretation of the comments from Ortez Colindres has served to Ortez’s unfair denigration, and to denigrate this interim government, which is not a de facto government, or military government, as is maliciously repeated.

Enrique Ortez Colindres is a career diplomat who studied in France. He is around eighty years old, but is full of energy and good humor, with all the intention of serving his country. Ortez Colindres was an adviser to the former president Manuel Zelaya, of which he is relative. He was the first to denounce his plans for continuism.