The Star Bulletin - Daily News Updates

Guatemala is in a political limbo between elections and US liberalism.

limbo and US progressivism

After the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) preliminary declaration of the suspension of the results a week after the general elections, nobody knows who won the elections in Guatemala.

Ollantay Itzamna

Nine parties asked the Constitutional Court (CC) to require the TSE to re-examine electoral records. The CC instructed the TSE “not to declare any winner” until it rectified the issues.

Nobody knows if the second round of elections will take place on the scheduled date. Winners and voters are in political limbo.

On 25 June, the TSE declared that Sandra Torres of the National Unity of Hope (UNE) party and Bernardo Arévalo of Semilla would advance to the second round of the presidential elections on 20 August.

This news has gone global. Progressive political groups across the continent applauded Bernardo Arévalo’s “sudden news” in the second round. Conservatives and some liberals, particularly those implicated in corruption, have been praying for the return of the “legion of 30” anti-corruption jurists “expelled” from Guatemala in recent years.

Semilla and the US government
2015 urban social demonstrations against corruption spawned Semilla. “Before making the leap from the social to the political, we traveled to North America to consult with Democratic and Republican representatives if this decision was correct or not,” said middle-class mestizo founder Alberto Fuentes Knight, later imprisoned for corruption. The US-promoted Guatemalan anti-corruption rallies gave rise to the “social democrat” political party Semilla.

In 2015, US ambassador Todd Robinson, from a decaying tiny school in Izabal, advocated for large urban social uprisings in Guatemala “against corruption” that overthrew Otto Pérez Molina and Roxana Baldetti.

After Pérez Molina, Lula, and Correa were imprisoned and banished, but the “fight against corruption” had already cooled because the US no longer cared.

Corruption, CICIG, and US apathy
After establishing itself as the “avenging angel” against corruption in Guatemala and the continent, and after promoting the imprisonment of Lula da Silva and the removal of Dilma Rousseff in Brazil (Rafael Correa, former president of Ecuador, exiled in Europe and politically disqualified like Cristina Fernández in Argentina), the US government forgot about “its battle against corruption” on the continent.

In Guatemala, the government of Jimmy Morales (who admitted to corruption) expelled the head of the International Commission against Corruption and Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) and dismantled the FECI. The US government kept silent.

After that, the judicial brawl or retaliation between ghettos of the corrupt oligarchy in the country is current news: more than 30 prosecutors, judges, and lawyers against corruption ostracized, journalists imprisoned or prosecuted, and media publications like El Periódico forced to close. US government cared? NO.

Progressive America
Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Honduras, Nicaragua, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Bolivia, and Chile voted for “progressive” rulers after the judicial persecution of rulers “contrary” to US interests.

In desperation, the North American government joined forces with its enemy, progressivism, to delegitimize from within and prevent progressives from winning elections. Gabriel Boric’s progressive Chilean government, currently serving US interests, is one example. Even criticizing regional progressive regimes.

Semilla never opposed US meddling in Guatemala.

Semilla’s presidential candidate, Bernardo Arévalo, was educated and was a diplomat in Israel (he never protested US invasions but condemned Nicaragua and Venezuela). Arévalo’s father, Juan José Arévalo, was Guatemala’s liberal president from 1944 to 1954 when the US government crushed the National Revolution.

The US embassy demanded “respect for the country’s democratic principles” in response to the “judicialization” of the 25 June election results, which analysts said was meant to “exclude Bernardo Arévalo from the second round of voting”. The US embassy did not comment when the TSE unconstitutionally disqualified anti-system presidential candidates Thelma Cabrera and Jordán Rodas, or two other candidates, in the middle of the 2023 elections.

The bicentennial Monroe Doctrine (2 December), a US policy of annexing (garrote) the continent’s peoples, will be remembered in a few months. This Doctrine, like other foreign beliefs, has lost popularity among Southerners in recent years. Thus, the cunning eagle seeks to crush its prey again. Could it be that the North American government’s indifference would lead us to cheer a progressivism that will bury Guatemala’s and the continent’s ideals of freedom for generations?

By Fredric M. Wiseman

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