Honduras left-wing leader may provide opportunities for the United States

There will be some painful history to overcome, mainly due to the initial sluggishness of the U.S. government, calling Castro’s husband Manuel Zelaya’s resignation in 2009 as a coup-and then continuing with the subsequent Conservative National Party president Work closely together. From a US perspective, how Castro and Zelaya get along well with the then Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (an opponent in Washington).

The presidents of Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua first congratulated Castro on his success—even before the Honduras electoral authorities—that they were the three left-wing dictators in the hemisphere.

Although the United States has not yet anticipated the official result, an American official appeared to have a positive attitude towards Castro when he testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday.

Brian Nichols, Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, said: “The main candidate at this time has shown her commitment to fighting corruption, dealing with the causes and drivers of immigration, and promoting employment and income in the country.” We look forward to working with her in this regard.”

The Honduras National Electoral Commission stated that after counting more than half of the votes in polling stations, Castro received 53% of the votes, while the National Party’s 33% of the votes were Nasry Asfura.

There are at least three key areas in common between Castro and the US government: immigration, drug trafficking, and corruption. With the tensions between Washington and the leaders of El Salvador and Guatemala, the US government can take advantage of the fruitful relationship with Honduras.

Although opponents have tried to portray Castro as a communist, experts expect her to govern as a centrist, hoping to attract foreign investment while raising the poor in Honduras.

Castro’s June speech to her Liberty and Re-Foundation party is still her clearest expression of how to manage American relations.

Castro said: “In the first 100 days, we will implement and present a plan to the governments of President Joe Biden and President Kamala Harris to combat and address the real causes of immigration.”

Castro described the immigration of Hondurans from the perspective of fleeing inequality, corruption, poverty and violence. This sounds a lot like Harris’ assessment of the Biden administration’s desire to focus US aid on the root cause.

But Castro also blamed part of the blame on the US government.

“I believe the Biden administration has a huge opportunity to solve the immigration problem,” Castro said in a speech in June. “First, recognize that they are partly responsible for what happened in our country,” she added, referring to the coup in 2009.

“I think Xiomara Castro understands better than the United States. If you want to solve the immigration problem, you have to solve the root cause,” said Dana Frank, a Honduras expert and professor emeritus of history at the University of California, Santa Cruz. “This means having a functioning economy. It means having a functioning state.”

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, poverty has only deepened.

As the Biden administration looks for ways to stimulate investment, help develop the Honduran economy and create jobs, making fewer people feel the need to flee, “some of her priorities may be well-suited to what the government wants to do,” Maureen Meyer said , Vice President of Latin American Affairs of the Human Rights Organization Washington’s Latin American Office.

Meyer warned that it is not yet clear how Castro will accept the US proposal to establish a border patrol in Honduras. In the same speech in June, Castro also stated that she hopes to establish relations with China, which is another potential point of friction with the US government.

Castro criticized the outgoing Hernandez government for corruption. It was the Hernandez government that allowed the Organization of American States’ anti-corruption mission in Honduras to expire in 2020, after the organization’s work had previously affected some legislators in the National Party due to alleged misuse of public funds.

She has stated that she is interested in returning the international anti-corruption mission to Honduras. Coupled with a strong independent attorney general, one can begin to solve one of the country’s most serious problems.

“A key priority of the Biden administration in international cooperation, especially in Central America, is the rule of law and anti-corruption efforts,” Meyer said. Castro’s interest in this subject can reopen the door Hernandez closed.

US federal prosecutors put this corruption under the microscope in drug trafficking cases involving senior Honduran politicians.

Most notable is the brother of Hernández, a former federal lawmaker, who was convicted of drug trafficking, which resulted in him being sentenced to life imprisonment in the United States. In his trial and other cases, U.S. prosecutors accused President Hernandez of using drug traffickers’ money to promote his political rise. Hernandez has not been charged and has denied these allegations.

US prosecutors also accused Zelaya of accepting money from drug dealers, which he denied.

Castro liked to call the Hernandez government a “drug dictatorship.”

At the end of a speech to supporters on Sunday night, Castro made it clear that she wanted to completely break the link between the government and drug dealers.

“Get out of the war! Get out of hatred! Get out of the death squad! Get out of corruption! Get rid of drug trafficking and organized crime,” Castro said. “Honduras no longer has poverty and suffering.”