Miguel Estrada: Zelaya has “a meritorious immigration beef.”

Which is, of course, much different than being ‘a victim of a coup.’ After carefully and reasonably setting out the chain of events of the Honduran non-coup (something, I am forced to note, that this slapdash administration we have running foreign affairs neglected to do before reflexively supporting Zelaya*), Estrada finishes up:

It cannot be right to call this a “coup.” Micheletti was lawfully made president by the country’s elected Congress. The president is a civilian. The Honduran Congress and courts continue to function as before. The armed forces are under civilian control. The elections scheduled for November are still scheduled for November. Indeed, after reviewing the Constitution and consulting with the Supreme Court, the Congress and the electoral tribunal, respected Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga recently stated that the only possible conclusion is that Zelaya had lawfully been ousted under Article 239 before he was arrested, and that democracy in Honduras continues fully to operate in accordance with law. All Honduran bishops joined Rodriguez in this pronouncement.

True, Zelaya should not have been arbitrarily exiled from his homeland. That, however, does not mean he must be reinstalled as president of Honduras. It merely makes him an indicted private citizen with a meritorious immigration beef against his country.

Continue reading Miguel Estrada: Zelaya has “a meritorious immigration beef.”

Turns out that Honduras did not have a coup after all.

[UPDATE]: Welcome, Instapundit readers – but really, this story’s been covered by Fausta better than by myself.

(Background here)

They had a court order.  Fausta updated:

Indeed, Honduras’ La Prensa states that (My translation: If you use this, please credit me and link to this post)

An official statement of the Supreme Court of Justice explained that the Armed Forces acted under lawful grounds when detaining the President of the Republic, and by decommissioning the materials to be used on the illegal poll which aimed to bring forth Executive Power against a judicial order.Other sources verified that the president of the Congress, Roberto Micheletti, will assume the presidency of the republic in a few hours.

Honduran president Manuel Zelaya was detained this morning by the military in compliance with an order of the courts of law.

Meanwhile, the foreign policy experts over at State and the White House* have gone into, bluntly, full Ugly American mode: they’re currently declining to recognize the right of the Hondurans to remove their own head of state on constitutional grounds. Apparently, when it’s a choice between a chief executive on the one hand and said chief executive’s country’s judiciary, legislature, military, and own political party on the other… well, it all apparently depends on what Hugo Chavez thinks.

Let’s just hope that they don’t ask Chavez what he thinks about the Jews.

Moe Lane

PS: Let me expand on that just a little.  I don’t think that this administration is slavishly following Chavez’s lead: I think that they care so little about South American affairs that accommodating their stance to that of a darling of the radical Left seems to them to be a no-brainer.  If the White House is worried about getting the answer to this wrong, it’s not immediately obvious.

*H/T: Gateway Pundit, Hot Air.

Crossposted to RedState.

By the way, they just had a coup in Honduras.

Via Fausta’s Blog:

Soldiers arrest Honduran president: AP+

MECIXO CITY, June 28 (AP) – (Kyodo)—Soldiers on Sunday arrested the Honduran president and took him to an air force base just before voting was to begin on a disputed constitutional election, according to the Associated Press.

President Manuel Zelaya’s private secretary told the AP that Zelaya was arrested and brought to a base on the outskirts of the capital, Tegucigalpa.


Zelaya had pledged to go forward with a referendum on constitutional reform despite the opposition of the Supreme Court, the military, Congress and members of his own party.

Fausta has background here: if you don’t have time to read it, note that proto-dictator Hugo Chavez (and whoever’s channeling Fidel Castro this week) is spitting nails on this. Given that, as the Wall Street Journal notes, this entire thing got started over President Zelaya’s attempt to set up a referendum* in opposition to pretty much the opposition of the rest of the Honduran government, civilian and military… well.  A man is known by his friends, and I wish I knew what the equivalent Spanish idiom is.

Moe Lane

*One that would allow him to run for re-election.  The Honduras Constitution forbids that; given of what I know of South American history, this isn’t exactly surprising.

Crossposted to RedState.