Last week, tens of thousands of Hondurans took to the streets of their capital, Tegucigalpa, to commemorate Independence Day. One group, dressed in the white and blue of the Honduran flag, followed the Civic-Military March to the National Stadium, where soldiers marched, paratroopers landed dramatically, and the crowd cheered for de facto President Roberto Micheletti.
The other group, equally large, dressed in red and marched down Morazán Boulevard for La Resistencia (the resistance), and clamored for the return of President Manuel Zelaya to power while booing the military planes flying toward the stadium. From among the Micheletti supporters, the megaphones exclaimed: “Honduras is the wall that finally stopped Chávez!” Meanwhile, the red shirts cried out, “Which is the way? Getting rid of those sons of … [who deposed President Zelaya]!”
This year, Independence Day revealed the deep divisions in Honduran society following the coup. Now, with President Manuel Zelaya having sneaked across the border and camped out at the Brazilian embassy, these divisions are enflaming again today on the streets of Tegucigalpa. For many years, Honduras was Central America’s most politically stable nation outside of Costa Rica; now, it has become polarized.