I previously posted about Obama opposing the forced removal of the Honduras president. I didn’t look into it deep enough then but have done a little more research and found a few interesting articles…
Under the Honduras constitution no resolution can be made to extend the length a president can server. This was done to ensure the country wouldn’t end up with a life long president whom eventually acquired enough power to become a dictator. This is a very common problem in that area and developing nations.
Since the president did bring forth a resolution to extend the term of the presidency he violated their constitution. Being he violated it he was required to cease his position post haste. He did not do this so the Honduras Supreme Court ordered the military in to remove their would be dictator. Being a body of government ordered in the military to remove a corrupt head of state this situation doesn’t relaly qualify as a military coup.
A military coup is generally considered either a branch of the military or the military itself moving into remove some or all entities of government and claim power for either the military itself or the branch of government that ordered them in. In these cases the people being removed generally haven’t broken any laws, they are simply in the way of somebody else claiming power. In this situation a replacement was put in as the president the position of president wasn’t removed.
The real gray area here is the president was simply exiled from the country. This seems to ignore the idea of a trail being held and is where the real problem starts. Had the Honduras Supreme Court arrested the former president and put him on trial it wouldn’t have given everybody ammunition against what they did. Personally I detest the fact that they simply exiled a man without trial but at the same time I congratulate them on removing an obviously corrupt politician from power. Hence I’m torn on this issue but am leaning towards the side of the Honduras Supreme Court since the evidence of what the former president did is a matter of public record and hence proof is available.
This is certainly a hairy situation with nobody lacking some amount of guilt. But there is a point that I can not find argument with, if a government official is actively violating the law he is sworn to uphold and protect he must be removed. This is why the United States Bill of Rights specifially states the people have the right to bear arms. The people are the final check and balance in this country against tyranny.