"......JP Morgan's name had been circulating the market all day as the most likely buyer, especially since it is about to launch a physically-backed "exchange-traded fund" (ETF) in copper imminently.
One metals broker dealing on the LME said: "The story is that they're positioning themselves in front of the ETF. There's been a lot of speculation it's them."
Traders noted that there was no physical shortage of copper in the markets but that fears of a squeeze have persisted ever since a raft of investment banks announced their intention to launch ETFs this autumn."
The Daily IKN email digest, get all daily posts sent to you next day (& no ads)
TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - 12/03/10) - HudBay Minerals Inc. ("HudBay", the "company") (TSX:HBM - News)(NYSE:HBM - News) announced today that David Garofalo, President and Chief Executive Officer, will be speaking on Monday, December 6, 2010 at 10:30 a.m. ET at the 2010 Desjardins Securities Basic Materials Conference held in Montreal, Quebec at Le Windsor. CONTINUES
For immediate release: December 1, 2010
Toronto, Canada and Guatemala City, Guatemala: Angelica Choc and her lawyers announced
today a lawsuit against Canadian mining company HudBay Minerals Inc. relating to the killing
of her husband, Adolfo Ich Chamán. On September 27, 2009, Adolfo Ich, a respected Mayan
Q’eqchi’ community leader and an outspoken critic of harms and rights violations caused by
mining activities in his community, was hacked and shot to death by security forces employed at
HudBay Minerals’ Fenix Mining Project in an unprovoked attack near the town of El Estor,
Guatemala. continues here
My name is Angelica Choc, and I am indigenous Mayan Q’eqchi’ from the community of La
Uníon, in the Municipality of El Estor, Republic of Guatemala.
Just over a year ago, my husband, Adolfo Ich Chamán, was killed by security forces employed at the Fenix mining project in Guatemala – a mining project owned by Canadian company HudBay Minerals. In the afternoon of September 27, 2009, I watched my husband leave our house for the last time. I later learned that mine security forces had surrounded my husband, dragged him through a gap in a fence and hacked at him with machetes. Then the mine’s chief of security shot him in the neck at close range. This attack was unprovoked. My husband was a teacher, a community leader and a defender of indigenous Q’eqchi’ land rights. I believe he was killed because he spoke out about the rights violations caused by Canadian mining in Guatemala. I believe he was killed because he was encouraging communities to stay united against the harmful practices of the mining company. It is very painful to remember such shocking tragedy. The days since my husband was killed have been very hard. There has been no justice. The man who killed Adolfo remains free. And the mining company has not been held accountable. My five children have lost a father; I have lost my husband; and our community has lost a leader. We need justice for these losses.
If my husband were here today, I know what he would say. He would say the same things he has been saying for years. He would say that our Q’eqchi’ communities are part of an ancient people. That we retain our own customs, traditions and values from the time before our grandfathers and grandmothers. He would say that we reject the way the mining company has operated in our community. That we demand justice for the harms that they have caused to us. And he would say that we must continue the struggle.
This past year has been a time for silence and for mourning; now the time for action has come.
UPDATE: Jack Caldwell over at I Think Mining also examines the HudBay Fenix case today. Fortunately for the world his prose is far more measured than the IKN snarkfest, but Caldwell does finish with a flourish (and one this author thoroughly agrees with):
"HudBay says it is continuing to evaluate the property. I bet that they, as many other Canadian mining companies, will choose to stay away from mining in Guatemala for the foreseeable future. I for one would not buy shares in the hope of successful mining by Canadians in Guatemala."
Here's the whole I Think Mining post. It's well worth a read and Caldwell knows Guatemala as well, having recently been there on mining biz.
No, it doesn't.
- Between 2000 and 2010, PAAS has seen 25 worker deaths in its Peru operations.
- Between 2000 and 2009, there were 23. That works out at an average of 2.55 every year.
- In 2010 PAAS has only managed to kill 2 of its workforce.
Is there any reason to hold this stock? Just buy the metal and be done.
This looks like a smart, deep-pocketed play. Here's the Reuters version:
SINGAPORE Dec 3 (Reuters) - A single trader is holding up to 80 percent of copper stockpiles at the London Metal Exchange, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.
The dominant position holder, who was not identified, owns between 50 percent and 80 percent of the 355,750 tonnes of copper held in LME listed warehouses, the newspaper said, estimating at least half of the holdings at about $1.5 billion.
The exchange first disclosed the large position in its daily inventory holder report on Nov. 23, the newspaper said. CONTINUES HERE
Here's the Daily Telegraph:
Mystery trader captures 80pc of London's copper market
A single trader has gobbled up to four-fifths of the copper traded in London, stockpiling it in warehouses.
The unknown buyer has been building up the dominant position since at least last week, putting a squeeze on the market.According to the rules of the London Metal Exchange, the trader must lend out copper if it holds between 50pc and 80pc of the total to maintain day-to-day liquidity in the market. The trader is currently lending at a 0.5pc premium to the cash price.The premium for spot price copper over delivery in three months' time reached $89 in the middle of this week - the highest in two years. CONTINUES
But want for volatile? Yeah, this one could get volatile.
some days are better than others.
Catch you tomorrow.
power cut at IKN nerve centre is putting paid to normal service today. Talk amongst yourselves, yeah?
From yesterday's post "Fronteer Gold: Time for ten":
"FRG closed at U$9.42 last night. It'll be higher than that very soon and if we don't see 10 today, it's only a matter of time before we do. DYODD."Here's the two day chart:
This is why. DYODD, dude (the podcast is well worth your time, by the way).
Despite the official government position that President Morales will undergo treatment to correct a deviated septum immediately following the referendum, several contacts confirm that the problem is actually a tumor in the pituitary near the sella turcica and that Morales will travel to Spain for the operation. xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx told us Morales' first choice, Cuba, could not perform the surgery.
Detailed stuff, right? In the end, note that Evo didn't travel to Spain or Cuba but had the corrective surgery in La Paz Bolivia. However, it was performed by Cuban surgeons.
...the gold/silver ratio.
Another cute leak this morning:
C O N F I D E N T I A L BRASILIA 000093 SIPDIS STATE FOR WHA/BSC, WHA/AND, INR E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/22/2019 TAGS: PREL PINR BO BR SUBJECT: BRAZIL'S LULA OFFERS BOLIVIA'S MORALES TREATMENT FOR TUMOR Classified By: Ambassador Clifford M. Sobel, Reason 1.4 (b) and (d) ¶1. (C) In a conversation with Ambassador Sobel following the January 15, 2009 La Paz meeting between Brazilian President Lula and Bolivian President Morales, Brazilian Defense Minister Nelson Jobim (protect) confirmed an earlier rumor that Morales is suffering from a serious sinus tumor. Jobim told the Ambassador that Lula had offered Morales an examination and treatment at a Sao Paulo hospital. Although there have been been public reports that Morales needs surgery for "acute sinusitis," and related otitis and headaches, according to Jobim his problems in fact are caused by a serious tumor and the surgery will be an effort to remove it. Treatment has been put off, however, until after the constitutional referendum scheduled for January 25. Jobim, who attended the meeting between Lula and Morales, commented that the tumor might explain why Morales has seemed unfocussed and not his usual self at this and other recent meetings. SOBEL
UPDATE: Bolivia is denying that Evo ever had a tumour. From this WaPo story:
"Morales' spokesman Ivan Canelas denied there had ever been any tumor, saying Morales had surgery last year for a problem with his nasal septum that was causing him constant colds. In a radio interview, he said the leaked cable "had a big dose of speculation.""
WhaaAAAAAaaaaAAAAt? Y-y-y-y-y-y-you mean it's remotely possible that the US Diplo corps in South America has been making shit up about Evo Morales? WHAT A SHOCKAH!
Focus Acquires High-Grade Silver-Lead-Zinc Project in Peru; Samples up to 107 oz/t Ag, 11.7% Pb, 11.8% Zn over 0.7mVANCOUVER, Nov. 30 /CNW/ - Focus Ventures Ltd. (TSX-V: FCV.V) is pleased to announce that it has signed an Option and Purchase Agreement to acquire the Santa Rosa Mine, a high-grade Ag-Zn-Pb deposit located 100km north of the Peruvian capital, Lima, and 70km southeast of Focus' Minas Chanca silver project.The 551 hectare property is situated at an altitude of between 4,000m and 4,500m above sea level within the prolific Central Peru Polymetallic Belt, which hosts a number of world class silver, lead and zinc deposits such as Iscay Cruz, Uchucchagua and Cerro de Pasco. The Santa Rosa project represents the Company's fourth acquisition in its on-going search for high-potential, advanced-stage projects across Peru. Focus is currently CONTINUES HERE
Want a stock to play the move in spot gold this morning? Look no further:
Unfortunately for people with short attention spans and the tendency to believe anything they read, research and fundies analysis is still necessary in this market
My respects via his genius. Just 11 seconds long, but awesome all the same.
So apparently, the reason why Focus Ventures (FCV.v) stock has done this in the past few days.....
Strange, you'd have thought that jungledrums getting out like this would be frowned upon by Ridgway&Co, what with their normally decent industry reputations, but it seems that they don't care so much. DYODD dude and watch those wires to see if the IKN dope is vrai, faux ou salade.
UPDATE: O RLY?
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, Nov 29, 2010 (Marketwire via COMTEX) -- The following issue(s) have been halted on the TSXV today:
Company / Compagnie Focus Ventures Ltd.
TSX-V Symbol / Symbole FCV
Reason / Motif Company request pending news
Halt Time (ET) / Heure de l'Arret 15:05 E.T.
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Nov. 29, 2010) - Greystar Resources Ltd. is pleased to announce that the Public Hearing to consider the Company's Angostura Project Environmental Impact Study ("EIS") was held on November 21st, 2010 in California, Santander, the community nearest to the project......Steve Kesler, President and CEO of Greystar commented, "We are very pleased that.....".......There was strong support for the project, and the opportunities it would bring, not just for California, but for Santander and the country as a whole...... the EIS review will continue.......Greystar.... has stressed its commitment to create a lasting and positive contribution toward sustainable development...... will utilize leading technology...... no impact on water supply or quality ......
In the blue corner, Owly:
Here's the note that kicked off IKN82, sent out to subscribers yesterday.
Ted Butler is a charlatan. Look at this chart:
Where are the Ted Butler Comex Gold manip lessons, or the Ted Butler LME copper manip lessons? THEY ARE EXACTLY THE SAME CHARTS! Silver's rise is a product of true supply and demand, not some rigging done by the middle men that sit between you and the metals.
So what happens with Butler, or GATA, or that brainless twerp Jim Willie, or that religious nutcase Jason Hommel is that they call the metal's move correctly. OK fine, not going to deny them that, but first they call a basic binary trade right for all the wrong reasons and they then lump on all the ridiculous baggage they want because they called the metal right.
- Butler: Silver is up and that proves I'm right about JPM manipulations
- Hommel: Silver is up and the rapture is on the way...toldya so
- Willie: Gold is up and it proves I'm right about the Amero on the way
- GATA: Gold is up and it proves we're right about the manifold windmill tilting all these years even though we can't read a freakin' balance sheet to save our ignorant lives..It's bullshit. Look at copper, man! Look at the inverse relationship gold and silver has with the US dollar!
chart courtesy sez_me_man (someone who's worth listening to re silver)
But these people will never, ever tell you that because they all have their own neat and profitable scams going on, namely "sell that newsletter". They attract thousands upon thousands of conspiracy theorists that WANT to believe all this shit and feel justified by a price movement that's utterly out of the control of the so-called manipulators over the longer term.
Basic point: If gold/silver whatever were successfully manipulated, they wouldn't have gone up.Basic point: Where are the "copper manipulators"? Where are the "oil manipulators"?
Now, I'm not saying there is no manip in the market because there is. Always has been, always will be. But 1) it's not illegal, 2) they can affect things over a shorter-term and not over long periods because 3) nature abhors a vacuum and will seek to fill in any market advantage offered (look at the GBP and George Soros...he didn't manip the GBP to win his multi-billion dollar bet, he saw the manip that the UK govt was doing and simply took the other side of the trade).
These people aren't stupid, they're sly. They're on to a good little thing and so stoke the fire as much as they can, thereby parting the innocent and gullible from their hard-earned cash. They make me want to vomit, the lot of them.
...the ten year price chart overlay for silver, copper and gold.
My stars, this is good stuff. Here's the link and here's the text:
C O N F I D E N T I A L TEGUCIGALPA 000645 SIPDIS WHA FOR A/S TOM SHANNON L FOR HAROLD KOH AND JOAN DONOGHUE NSC FOR DAN RESTREPO E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/23/2019 TAGS: PGOV KDEM KJUS TFH01 HO SUBJECT: TFHO1: OPEN AND SHUT: THE CASE OF THE HONDURAN COUP REF: TEGUCIGALPA 578 Classified By: Ambassador Hugo Llorens, reasons 1.4 (b and d) ¶1. (C) Summary: Post has attempted to clarify some of the legal and constitutional issues surrounding the June 28 forced removal of President Manuel "Mel" Zelaya. The Embassy perspective is that there is no doubt that the military, Supreme Court and National Congress conspired on June 28 in what constituted an illegal and unconstitutional coup against the Executive Branch, while accepting that there may be a prima facie case that Zelaya may have committed illegalities and may have even violated the constitution. There is equally no doubt from our perspective that Roberto Micheletti's assumption of power was illegitimate. Nevertheless, it is also evident that the constitution itself may be deficient in terms of providing clear procedures for dealing with alleged illegal acts by the President and resolving conflicts between the branches of government. End summary. ¶2. (U) Since the June 28 removal and expulsion of President Zelaya by the Honduran armed forces, the Embassy has consulted Honduran legal experts (one cannot find a fully unbiased professional legal opinion in Honduras in the current politically charged atmosphere) and reviewed the text of the Honduran Constitution and its laws to develop a better understanding of the arguments being parlayed by the coup's supporters and opponents. ------------------------------- Arguments of the Coup Defenders ------------------------------- ¶3. (SBU) Defenders of the June 28 coup have offered some combination of the following, often ambiguous, arguments to assert it's legality: -- Zelaya had broken the law (alleged but not proven); -- Zelaya resigned (a clear fabrication); -- Zelaya intended to extend his term in office (supposition); -- Had he been allowed to proceed with his June 28 constitutional reform opinion poll, Zelaya would have dissolved Congress the following day and convened a constituent assembly (supposition); -- Zelaya had to be removed from the country to prevent a bloodbath; -- Congress "unanimously" (or in some versions by a 123-5 vote) deposed Zelaya; (after the fact and under the cloak of secrecy); and -- Zelaya "automatically" ceased to be president the moment he suggested modifying the constitutional prohibition on presidential reelection. ¶4. (C) In our view, none of the above arguments has any substantive validity under the Honduran constitution. Some are outright false. Others are mere supposition or ex-post rationalizations of a patently illegal act. Essentially: -- the military had no authority to remove Zelaya from the country; -- Congress has no constitutional authority to remove a Honduran president; -- Congress and the judiciary removed Zelaya on the basis of a hasty, ad-hoc, extralegal, secret, 48-hour process; -- the purported "resignation" letter was a fabrication and was not even the basis for Congress's action of June 28; and -- Zelaya's arrest and forced removal from the country violated multiple constitutional guarantees, including the prohibition on expatriation, presumption of innocence and right to due process. ------------------------------------------- Impeachment under the Honduran Constitution ------------------------------------------- ¶5. (U) Under the Honduran Constitution as currently written, the President may be removed only on the basis of death, resignation or incapacitation. Only the Supreme Court may determine that a President has been "incapacitated" on the basis of committing a crime. ¶6. (U) There is no explicit impeachment procedure in the 1982 Honduran Constitution. Originally, Article 205-15 stated that Congress had the competence to determine whether "cause" existed against the President, but it did not stipulate on what grounds or under what procedure. Article 319-2 stated that the Supreme Court would "hear" cases of official or common crimes committed by high-level officials, upon a finding of cause by the Congress. This implied a vague two-step executive impeachment process involving the other two branches of government, although without specific criteria or procedures. However, Article 205 was abrogated in 2003, and the corresponding provision of Article 319 (renumbered 313) was revised to state only that the Supreme Court would hear "processes initiated" against high officials. Thus, it appears that under the Constitution as currently written, removal of a president or a government official is an entirely judicial matter. ¶7. (U) Respected legal opinion confirms that the removal of a president is a judicial matter. According to a 2006 book by respected legal scholar Enrique Flores Valeriano -- late father of Zelaya's Minister of the Presidency, Enrique Flores Lanza -- Article 112 of the Law of Constitutional Justice indicates that if any government official is found to be in violation of the Constitution, that person should be removed from office immediately with the ultimate authority on matters of Constitutionality being the Supreme Court. ¶8. (U) Many legal experts have also confirmed to us that the Honduran process for impeaching a President or other senior-level officials is a judicial procedure. They assert that under Honduran law the process consists of formal criminal charges being filed by the Attorney General against the accused with the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court could accept or reject the charges. If the Court moved to indict, it would assign a Supreme Court magistrate, or a panel of magistrates to investigate the matter, and oversee the trial. The trial process is open and transparent and the defendant would be given a full right of self-defense. If convicted in the impeachment trial, the magistrates have authority to remove the President or senior official. Once the President is removed, then the constitutional succession would follow. In this case, if a President is legally charged, convicted, and removed, his successor is the Vice President or what is termed the Presidential Designate. In the current situation in Honduras, since the Vice President, Elvin Santos, resigned last December in order to be able to run as the Liberal Party Presidential candidate, President Zelaya's successor would be Congress President Roberto Micheletti. Unfortunately, the President was never tried, or convicted, or was legally removed from office to allow a legal succession. ----------------------------- The Legal Case Against Zelaya ----------------------------- ¶9. (C) Zelaya's opponents allege that he violated the Constitution on numerous grounds, some of which appear on their face to be valid, others not: -- Refusing to submit a budget to the Congress: The Constitution is unambiguous that the Executive shall submit a proposed budget to Congress by September 15 each year (Art. 367), that Congress shall approve the budget (Art. 366) and that no obligations or payments may be effectuated except on the basis of an approved budget (Art. 364); -- Refusing to fund the Congress: Article 212 states that the Treasury shall apportion quarterly the funds needed for the operation of the Congress; -- Proposing an illegal constitutional referendum: The Constitution may be amended only through two-thirds vote of the Congress in two consecutive sessions (Art. 373 and 375); a constituent assembly to rewrite the constitution, as Zelaya promoted, is therefore unconstitutional; however, it is not clear that proposing a constituent assembly in itself violates the constitution, only that any changes ensuing from that assembly would be invalid; -- Defying the judgment of a competent court: Zelaya insisted on pushing ahead with his constitutional reform opinion poll after both a first-instance court and an appeals court ordered him to suspend those efforts; however, while he clearly intended to follow through with the poll, he never actually did it; -- Proposing to reform unreformable articles: Since Zelaya's proposed constituent assembly would have unlimited powers to rewrite the constitution, it violated Article 374, which makes certain articles unamendable; once again, though, Zelaya never actually attempted to change the so-called "carved in stone" articles; it was only assumed he intended to; -- Dismissing the armed forces chief: The Supreme Court's Constitutional Hall ruled June 25 that Zelaya was in violation of the Constitution for dismissing Defense Chief Vasquez Velasquez; the Constitution (Art. 280) states that the President may freely name or remove the chief of the armed forces; but the court ruled that since Zelaya fired him for refusing to carry out a poll the court had ruled illegal, the firing was illegal. ¶10. (C) Although a case could well have been made against Zelaya for a number of the above alleged constitutional violations, there was never any formal, public weighing of the evidence nor any semblance of due process. ----------------------- The Article 239 Cannard ----------------------- ¶11. (U) Article 239, which coup supporters began citing after the fact to justify Zelaya's removal (it is nowhere mentioned in the voluminous judicial dossier against Zelaya), states that any official proposing to reform the constitutional prohibition against reelection of the president shall immediately cease to carry out their functions and be ineligible to hold public office for 10 years. Coup defenders have asserted that Zelaya therefore automatically ceased to be President when he proposed a constituent assembly to rewrite the Constitution. ¶12. (C) Post's analysis indicates the Article 239 argument is flawed on multiple grounds: -- Although it was widely assumed that Zelaya's reason for seeking to convoke a constituent assembly was to amend the constitution to allow for reelection, we are not aware that he ever actually stated so publicly; -- Article 239 does not stipulate who determines whether it has been violated or how, but it is reasonable to assume that it does not abrogate other guarantees of due process and the presumption of innocence; -- Article 94 states that no penalty shall be imposed without the accused having been heard and found guilty in a competent court; -- Many other Honduran officials, including presidents, going back to the first elected government under the 1982 Constitution, have proposed allowing presidential reelection, and they were never deemed to have been automatically removed from their positions as a result. ¶13. (C) It further warrants mention that Micheletti himself should be forced to resign following the logic of the 239 argument, since as President of Congress he considered legislation to have a fourth ballot box ("cuarta urna") at the November elections to seek voter approval for a constituent assembly to rewrite the constitution. Any member of Congress who discussed the proposal should also be required to resign, and National Party presidential candidate Pepe Lobo, who endorsed the idea, should be ineligible to hold public office for 10 years. --------------------------------------------- - Forced Removal by Military was Clearly Illegal --------------------------------------------- - ¶14. (C) Regardless of the merits of Zelaya's alleged constitutional violations, it is clear from even a cursory reading that his removal by military means was illegal, and even the most zealous of coup defenders have been unable to make convincing arguments to bridge the intellectual gulf between "Zelaya broke the law" to "therefore, he was packed off to Costa Rica by the military without a trial." -- Although coup supporters allege the court issued an arrest warrant for Zelaya for disobeying its order to desist from the opinion poll, the warrant, made public days later, was for him to be arrested and brought before the competent authority, not removed from the county; -- Even if the court had ordered Zelaya to be removed from the country, that order would have been unconstitutional; Article 81 states that all Hondurans have the right to remain in the national territory, subject to certain narrow exceptions spelled out in Article 187, which may be invoked only by the President of the Republic with the agreement of the Council of Ministers; Article 102 states that no Honduran may be expatriated; -- The armed forces have no/no competency to execute judicial orders; originally, Article 272 said the armed forces had the responsibility to "maintain peace, public order and the 'dominion' of the constitution," but that language was excised in 1998; under the current text, only the police are authorized to uphold the law and execute court orders (Art. 293); -- Accounts of Zelaya's abduction by the military indicate he was never legally "served" with a warrant; the soldiers forced their way in by shooting out the locks and essentially kidnapped the President. ¶15. (U) The Armed Forces' ranking legal advisor, Col. Herberth Bayardo Inestroza, acknowledged in an interview published in the Honduran press July 5 that the Honduran Armed Forces had broken the law in removing Zelaya from the country. That same day it was reported that the Public Ministry was investigating the actions of the Armed Forces in arresting and deporting Zelaya June 28 and that the Supreme Court had asked the Armed Forces to explain the circumstances that motivated his forcible exile. ¶16. (C) As reported reftel, the legal adviser to the Supreme Court told Poloff that at least some justices on the Court consider Zelaya's arrest and deportation by the military to have been illegal. ------------------------------------------ Congress Had no Authority to Remove Zelaya ------------------------------------------ ¶17. (C) As explained above, the Constitution as amended in 2003 apparently gives sole authority for removing a president to the judiciary. The Congressional action of June 28 has been reported in some media as acceptance of Zelaya's resignation, based on a bogus resignation letter dated June 25 that surfaced after the coup. However, the June 28 Congressional resolution makes no mention of the letter, nor does it state that Congress was accepting Zelaya's resignation. It says Congress "disapproves" of Zelaya's conduct and therefore "separates" him from the office of President -- a constitutional authority Congress does not have. Furthermore, a source in the Congressional leadership told us that a quorum was not present when the resolution was adopted, rendering it invalid. There was no recorded vote, nor a request for the "yeas" and "nays." ¶18. (C) In sum, for a constitutional succession from Zelaya to Micheletti to occur would require one of several conditions: Zelaya's resignation, his death, or permanent medical incapacitation (as determined by judicial and medical authorities), or as discussed previously, his formal criminal conviction and removal from office. In the absence of any of these conditions and since Congress lacked the legal authority to remove Zelaya, the actions of June 28 can only be considered a coup d'etat by the legislative branch, with the support of the judicial branch and the military, against the executive branch. It bears mentioning that, whereas the resolution adopted June 28 refers only to Zelaya, its effect was to remove the entire executive branch. Both of these actions clearly exceeded Congress's authority. ------- Comment ------- ¶19. (C) The analysis of the Constitution sheds some interesting light on the events of June 28. The Honduran establishment confronted a dilemma: near unanimity among the institutions of the state and the political class that Zelaya had abused his powers in violation of the Constitution, but with some ambiguity what to do about it. Faced with that lack of clarity, the military and/or whoever ordered the coup fell back on what they knew -- the way Honduran presidents were removed in the past: a bogus resignation letter and a one-way ticket to a neighboring country. No matter what the merits of the case against Zelaya, his forced removal by the military was clearly illegal, and Micheletti's ascendance as "interim president" was totally illegitimate. ¶20. (C) Nonetheless, the very Constitutional uncertainty that presented the political class with this dilemma may provide the seeds for a solution. The coup's most ardent legal defenders have been unable to make the intellectual leap from their arguments regarding Zelaya's alleged crimes to how those allegations justified dragging him out of his bed in the night and flying him to Costa Rica. That the Attorney General's office and the Supreme Court now reportedly question the legality of that final step is encouraging and may provide a face-saving "out" for the two opposing sides in the current standoff. End Comment. LLORENS
"Levitte observed that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is "crazy" and said that even Brazil wasn't able to support him anymore. Unfortunately, Chavez is taking one of the richest countries in Latin America and turning it into another Zimbabwe."
UPDATE 2: Sketch adds another in the comments section. Thanks Sketch, here it is:
Have you seen the one from the US Embassy in Tegucigalpa?
""there is no doubt that the military, Supreme Court and National Congress conspired on June 28 in what constituted an illegal and unconstitutional coup against the Executive Branch,"
"There is equally no doubt from our perspective that Roberto Micheletti's assumption of power was illegitimate."
"Forced Removal by Military was Clearly Illegal"
"Congress Had no Authority to Remove Zelaya"
Sir Walter Raleigh.