Honduran workers are appealing to US and European consumers to boycott products sold by the fruit company. Photograph: Fajrul Islam/Getty Images

Honduran workers are appealing to US and European consumers to boycott products sold by the fruit company.
Photograph: Fajrul Islam/Getty Images

From the Guardian, November 29, 2016

Fyffes melons at centre of labour abuse claims from Honduran workers

Thousands of miles from the supermarkets in the west that they supply with cantaloupes, a community of Honduran melon plantation labourers say they are threatened with dismissal and destitution because they have tried to form a union at their Irish-owned company.

The workers – the vast majority of whom are women – are now appealing to US and European consumers to boycott products sold by the fruit multinational Fyffes until it improves working conditions and allows collective bargaining.

From The Guardian, November 23, 2016

'It's a crime to be young and pretty': girls flee predatory Central America gangs

Sara Rincón was walking home from college in the capital of El Salvador when she was confronted by three heavily tattooed gang members who had been harassing her for weeks.

The group’s leader – a man in his 30s, with the figure 18 etched on to his shaven head – threw her against a wall, and with his hands around her neck gave her one last warning.

A woman holds a portrait of Berta Cáceres Flores in Tegucigalpa in March. Photograph: Orlando Sierra/AFP/Getty Images

A woman holds a portrait of Berta Cáceres Flores in Tegucigalpa in March. Photograph: Orlando Sierra/AFP/Getty Images

From The Guardian, November 15, 2016

Berta Cáceres murder: international lawyers launch new investigation

A group of international legal experts has launched an independent inquiry into the murder of Honduran environmental activist Berta Cáceres amid widespread concerns over the official investigation.

Five lawyers from the US, Guatemala and Colombia are in Honduras to try to uncover the intellectual authors behind the assassination of Cáceres and the attempted murder of her colleague the Mexican environmentalist Gustavo Castro.

 
 
 
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

From the Intercept, October 4, 2016

Tim Kaine, John Negroponte, and the Priest Who Was Thrown From a Helicopter

A story published this week by the Daily Beast about the nine months Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine spent working as a volunteer in a Jesuit community in Honduras in 1980 and 1981 has been making the conservative rounds. The Beast’s tabloid headline is a cheap exercise in red-baiting: “Tim Kaine’s Time with a Marxist Priest.”

That priest, Fr. James Carney, was indeed a revolutionary and, as a practitioner of liberation theology in Latin America during a period marked by populist movements fighting against death squads and murderous regimes backed by the U.S., an avid student of Marxist theory.

 
Waving a Honduran flag during a protest against corruption this month in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Credit Gustavo Amador/European Pressphoto Agency

Waving a Honduran flag during a protest against corruption this month in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Credit Gustavo Amador/European Pressphoto Agency

From the New York Times, September 22, 2016

End U.S. Support for the Thugs of Honduras

Santa Cruz, Calif. — Around midnight on March 2, the indigenous peoples’ rights and environmental activist Berta Cáceres was shot dead by gunmen who entered her residence in La Esperanza, Honduras. A longtime campaigner against illegal logging operations, Ms. Cáceres had been repeatedly threatened because of her opposition to the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project, one of the largest of its kind in Central America.

“I have no doubt that she has been killed because of her struggle, and that soldiers and people from the dam are responsible, I am sure of that,” her 84-year-old mother told a local radio station. “I hold the government responsible.”

Un hombre en una protesta en contra de la corrupción el 19 de septiembre de 2015, en Tegucigalpa Credit Gustavo Amador/European Pressphoto Agency

Un hombre en una protesta en contra de la corrupción el 19 de septiembre de 2015, en Tegucigalpa Credit Gustavo Amador/European Pressphoto Agency

From the New York Times, September 22, 2016

Es hora de que Estados Unidos deje de financiar a los delincuentes en Honduras

Alrededor de la medianoche del 2 de marzo, la activista por los derechos de los indígenas y el medioambiente Berta Cáceres fue asesinada por sicarios que entraron a su casa en La Esperanza, Honduras. Llevaba tiempo luchando contra la tala de los bosques y había sido amenazada en repetidas ocasiones por su oposición al proyecto hidroeléctrico de Agua Zarca, uno de los más importantes de América Central.

A mural on the side of the COPINH's "Utopia" training center in La Esperanza.

A mural on the side of the COPINH's "Utopia" training center in La Esperanza.

From Al Jazeera's Fault Lines, September 21, 2016

Honduras: Blood and the Water (Video)

In early March 2016, Honduras's most prominent and outspoken environmental activist, Berta Caceres, was killed in her home. While shocking, her murder did not come as a surprise to her colleagues or family.

For years, Caceres had received thousands of threats because of her work, fighting for the rights of indigenous communities and for her attempts to stop a hydro-electric dam from being built on indigenous land.

Santa Cruz, Calif. — Around midnight on March 2, the indigenous peoples’ rights and environmental activist Berta Cáceres was shot dead by gunmen who entered her residence in La Esperanza, Honduras. A longtime campaigner against illegal logging operations, Ms. Cáceres had been repeatedly threatened because of her opposition to the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project, one of the largest of its kind in Central America.

Santa Cruz, Calif. — Around midnight on March 2, the indigenous peoples’ rights and environmental activist Berta Cáceres was shot dead by gunmen who entered her residence in La Esperanza, Honduras. A longtime campaigner against illegal logging operations, Ms. Cáceres had been repeatedly threatened because of her opposition to the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project, one of the largest of its kind in Central America.

From the New York Times Opinion Pages, September 16, 2016

End U.S. Support for the Thugs of Honduras

Santa Cruz, Calif. — Around midnight on March 2, the indigenous peoples’ rights and environmental activist Berta Cáceres was shot dead by gunmen who entered her residence in La Esperanza, Honduras. A longtime campaigner against illegal logging operations, Ms. Cáceres had been repeatedly threatened because of her opposition to the Agua Zarca hydroelectric project, one of the largest of its kind in Central America.

 
A Woman holds a honduran flag in a march demanding the resignation of president juan orlando hernandez in tegucigalpa, july 3, 2015 | photo: reuters

A Woman holds a honduran flag in a march demanding the resignation of president juan orlando hernandez in tegucigalpa, july 3, 2015 | photo: reuters

From TeleSUR English, September 15, 2016

Honduras Independence Day: The Unrealized Promise of Liberation

Honduras marks 195 years Thursday since winning its independence from Spain, but the small Central American country remains deprived of a second and true independence as it is stuck under ongoing domination of wealthy local oligarchs, foreign corporations, and a lasting legacy of longstanding U.S. imperialism.

A soldier stands guard as parolees paint over gang-affiliated graffiti in El Salvador. A recent report questions whether U.S. funding to stop gang-related crime in the region has been effective. (Marvin Recinos/AFP/Getty Images)

A soldier stands guard as parolees paint over gang-affiliated graffiti in El Salvador. A recent report questions whether U.S. funding to stop gang-related crime in the region has been effective. (Marvin Recinos/AFP/Getty Images)

From In These Times, September 12, 2016

The U.S. Spends Millions Funding Central America’s Drug War. A New Report Says It Hasn’t Worked

A new paper released last week by the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) disputes data from a 2014 report on U.S.-funded anti-crime programs in Central America, suggesting these programs may not have been as effective as previously thought.

In 2007, then-president George W. Bush created the Merida Initiative, a security cooperation agreement between the United States, Mexico and Central America, as a regional response to rising drug trafficking and violence in Central America. Furthering this approach, in 2010 President Obama created the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI), separating the Central American countries from the Merida Initiative.

 
GOLPISTA.jpg

From Sydney with Honduras, August 2016

August 2016 Honduras Coup Update

A great summary of human rights violations and issues related to Honduran social movements for the month of August 2016.

 
A Green Beret from the 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) observes Honduran TIGRES, the country's SWAT squad. (Photo: Capt. Thomas Cieslak)

A Green Beret from the 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) observes Honduran TIGRES, the country's SWAT squad. (Photo: Capt. Thomas Cieslak)

From Common Dreams, August 31, 2016

US Special Ops Training in Latin America Tripled, Docs Reveal

U.S. Special Operations Forces training missions to Latin America tripled between 2007 and 2014, newly obtained documents by a human rights advocacy organization reveal, offering further evidence that it is "the golden age" of secret operations by these elite fighters.

The Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) says the uptick happened during "a period when overall military aid to the region was decreasing" and as overall transparency about these forces, which include the Green Berets, the Navy SEALs, and Rangers, is waning.

 
 

From Now Magazine Toronto, August 31, 2016

Gravedigging for Gold

Blockade near ancient cemetery where Toronto-based Aura Minerals wants to expand its gold mining operations in Honduras. (Karen Spring)

Blockade near ancient cemetery where Toronto-based Aura Minerals wants to expand its gold mining operations in Honduras. (Karen Spring)

What's a gold pendant or ring worth in the grand scheme of things? If you're living in the path of a Canadian gold mining company in Azacualpa, Honduras, the cost includes digging up a local cemetery where six communities have been burying their dead for two centuries.

Since the late 90s, three successive Canadian mining companies have operated the open-pit San Andres gold mine in the highlands of western Honduras. The mine's history hasn't been pretty: cyanide spills, health complaints and forced displacements. 

SPECIAL Operations FORCES JCET DEPLOYMENTS 2007-2014 https://www.wola.org/analysis/u-s-special-operations-latin-america-parallel-diplomacy/

SPECIAL Operations FORCES JCET DEPLOYMENTS 2007-2014

https://www.wola.org/analysis/u-s-special-operations-latin-america-parallel-diplomacy/

From WOLA, August 30, 2016

U.S. Special Operations in Latin America: Parallel Diplomacy?

The U.S. military’s most elite forces have been increasing their deployments across the globe, and Latin America and the Caribbean are no exception. But as Special Operations Forces activity grows, the already low amount of transparency and available information about their actions is shrinking.

 
President Rivlin meets President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernandez Alvarado (Youtube grab)

President Rivlin meets President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernandez Alvarado (Youtube grab)

From MintPressNews, August 29, 2016

Israel And Honduras Enter New, Blood-Soaked Military Alliance To Support State-Sponsored Terrorism

AUSTIN, Texas — Israel and Honduras announced a new security agreement this month in which Israel will supply weapons and training to the Honduran military.

Honduras is ruled by an oppressive and murderous regime that took power after a 2009 coup, and the agreement marks just the latest chapter in Israel’s long, bloody history of arming Central American despots.

The deal, inked on Aug. 20, would dramatically upgrade the Honduran regime’s offensive capabilities.

 
The security agreement, announced on August 20, would add to an existing collection of pacts cemented during President Juan Orlando Hernandez's visit to Israel last year. Photo: AFP

The security agreement, announced on August 20, would add to an existing collection of pacts cemented during President Juan Orlando Hernandez's visit to Israel last year. Photo: AFP

From TeleSUR English, August 25, 2016

Honduras and Israel: A New Special Relationship

In the aftermath of the 2009 coup in Honduras, I had the opportunity to interview deposed President Manuel Zelaya, who, having been kindly escorted in his pajamas to Costa Rica by the Honduran military, had then resurfaced in Tegucigalpa and taken refuge in the embassy of Brazil. The interview took place via an intermediary inside the embassy, who conveyed my questions to Zelaya.

One topic we touched on was a comment the left-leaning Zelaya had made concerning “Israeli mercenaries” operating in Honduras. This had unleashed a predictable hullabaloo in international media, with commentators tripping over each other to portray the besieged leader as an anti-Semite extraordinaire on some sort of permanent acid trip.

Military police personnel raid dwellings in search of leaders of the MS-13 gang in Tegucigalpa on 20 May 2016. Photograph: Orlando Sierra/AFP/Getty Images

Military police personnel raid dwellings in search of leaders of the MS-13 gang in Tegucigalpa on 20 May 2016. Photograph: Orlando Sierra/AFP/Getty Images

From the Guardian, July 8, 2016

US investigating allegations Honduran military had hitlist of activists to target

The US government is investigating allegations that a hitlist of activists was circulated to special forces units of the Honduran military with instructions to eliminate the targets, including Berta Cáceres, the celebrated environmental campaigner who was later gunned down in her home.

US officials have been in contact with counterparts in the Honduran government, as well as individuals and groups that monitor human rights in the country, to look into the allegations of a hitlist that were first reported in the Guardian.

 
One human rights expert said: ‘This … reinforces calls that the US must withdraw military aid from Honduras where there’s been a bloodbath since the 2009 coup.’ Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

One human rights expert said: ‘This … reinforces calls that the US must withdraw military aid from Honduras where there’s been a bloodbath since the 2009 coup.’ Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

From the Guardian, June 21, 2016

Berta Cáceres's name was on Honduran military hitlist, says former soldier

Berta Cáceres, the murdered environmental campaigner, appeared on a hitlist distributed to US-trained special forces units of the Honduran military months before her death, a former soldier has claimed.

Lists featuring the names and photographs of dozens of social and environmental activists were given to two elite units, with orders to eliminate each target, according to First Sergeant Rodrigo Cruz, 20.