Before her assassination, Berta Cáceres singled out Hillary Clinton for backing Honduran coup
Democracy Now's Amy Goodman & Juan Gonzalez interview Historian Greg Gradin
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is facing a new round of questions about her handling of the 2009 coup in Honduras that ousted democratically elected President Manuel Zelaya. Since the coup, Honduras has become one of the most violent places in the world. Last week, indigenous environmental activist Berta Cáceres was assassinated in her home. In an interview two years ago, Cáceres singled out Clinton for her role supporting the coup. "We’re coming out of a coup that we can’t put behind us. We can’t reverse it," Cáceres said. "It just kept going. And after, there was the issue of the elections.
The same Hillary Clinton, in her book, 'Hard Choices,' practically said what was going to happen in Honduras. This demonstrates the meddling of North Americans in our country. The return of the president, Mel Zelaya, became a secondary issue. There were going to be elections in Honduras. And here she [Clinton] recognized that they didn’t permit Mel Zelaya’s return to the presidency." We play this rarely seen clip of Cáceres and speak to historian Greg Grandin
Hillary Clinton’s link to a nasty piece of work in Honduras
By Marjorie Cohn, Truthdig, March 15, 2016
A critical difference between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton is their position on whether children who fled violence in Central American countries, particularly Honduras, two years ago should be allowed to stay in the United States or be returned.
Sanders states unequivocally that they should be able to remain in the U.S. Clinton disagrees. She would guarantee them “due process,” but nothing more.
In 2014 Clinton told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, “It may be safer [for the children to remain in the U.S.],” but “they should be sent back.” By supporting the June 28, 2009, coup d’état in Honduras when she was secretary of state, Clinton helped create the dire conditions that caused many of these children to flee. And the assassination of legendary Honduran human rights leader Berta Cáceres earlier this month can be traced indirectly to Clinton’s policies.
Drugs, dams, and power: The murder of Honduran activist Berta Caseres
By Danielle Marie Mackey, the Intercept, March 11, 2016
Early in the morning, on March 3, in La Esperanza, Honduras, unidentified men broke into the home of the environmental activist Berta Cáceres and murdered her. Cáceres was the cofounder of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Movements of Honduras (COPINH) and the 2015 winner of the Goldman Environmental Prize, and her murder has prompted an international outcry as well as investigations supported by the United Nations and the FBI. The Mexican environmental activist Gustavo Castro, who was staying in Cáceres’s home in hopes of deterring violence against her, witnessed the murder and was subsequently detained by Honduran authorities. Amnesty International has warned that Castro, who was shot twice in the attack, is in “grave danger.”
Cáceres’s activism spanned several issues, including indigenous rights, feminism, LGBT rights, and environmentalism, but recently, “more than anything,” her sister Agustina Flores told me, “it was Agua Zarca,” a proposed hydroelectric dam project, which was to be built on the territory of the indigenous Lenca people. Flores, a retired teacher, says that Cáceres had received repeated death threats related to her work. The threats were so serious in recent months that the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights repeatedly called on the Honduran government to provide her with protection. Her sister said that protection was never provided. “We have feared for her life for a long time,” Flores said in a telephone interview, adding that in November, Cáceres told her she was being “seriously harassed” by three local politicians who she believed were acting at the behest of Desarrollos Energéticos, SA (DESA), the private energy company behind the Agua Zarca dam.
DESA is partially controlled by the controversial Honduran Atala family, whose members are involved in a variety of business ventures and suspected by many of having backed the 2009 coup. Best known among them is billionaire Camilo Atala, president of Banco Ficohsa, a regional bank that in 2014 acquired most of Citibank’s assets in the region, making it the largest bank in Honduras.
Berta Caceres Received Death Threats from Canadian Company
Murdered Honduran Indigenous activist Berta Caceres warned on multiple occasions that she had received death threats and other harassment from state and corporate agents, including Canadian hydroelectric giant Blue Energy, as a result of her activism resisting unwanted development projects on Indigenous territory.
Caceres made statements last April claiming that “men close to Blue Energy,” a transnational Canadian company looking to build a dam in the Rio Blanco area in western Honduras, or people “close to politicians” and “death squads promoted from government policies” were behind the death threats leveled against her.
“I have received direct death threats, threats of kidnapping, or disappearance, of lynching, of pummeling the vehicle I use, threats of kidnapping my daughter, persecution, surveillance, sexual harassment, and also campaigns in the national media of powerful sectors,” Caceres told EFE last year.
Posted March 17, 2016