Monday, July 13, 2009

Why I'm doing this

Why would someone with no personal connection to the people or government of Honduras, buy a camera, start a webpage, and fly to Honduras to become a citizen journalist? It just doesn't make sense. I've been asked that question numerous times, and at times I don't fully understand what drove me to such extreme actions, so here an explanation of events that shaped my thinking and pushed me towards this endeavor.

To begin with, I am proud to be an American. I do, however, strongly disagree with the direction our country has been heading the past few months. I recently finished serving my country as a rifleman in the United States Marine Corps.

I enlisted late 2004, and after boot camp and the school of infantry I was sent to Fox CO 2nd Battalion 5th Marines. Up until my assignment to 2/5 all I had been told was that I was going to Iraq, yet the Marine Corps had different plans for my unit, and we were sent on the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit.

We were on ship and traveled to different countries in the Western Pacific. We were in the Philippines during the mudslides, and different elements of the unit helped in the search and rescue effort. I was not part of the rescue operation, as I was in one of three squads that were sent to Jolo Island, providing security while Air Force Engineers built new school buildings.

My second deployment was to ar Ramadi, Iraq, where 2/5 was one of the surge elements. Now I am not going to go into details of the deployment, but the deployment was a success, contrary to the initial reporting from many main stream media news releases.

I saw first hand the changes that were taking place during the al Anbar Awakening. Police recruits were receiving formal training, Our combat outpost hosted two platoons from our company and elements of the Iraqi army and Police. Local governing boards were established and there was a sense of order in the streets. The Iraqi's began policing their own neighborhoods, working shoulder to shoulder with their US counterparts. Despite all of these positive gains being made, it took awhile for accurate stories to surface.

I extended my contract to do a third deployment with Regimental Combat Team 5 where I was a part of a platoon of infantryman, tasked out with company and regimental level missions. Throughout 2008, I saw how the US was handing control back to the Iraqi's, with little press available because of the media circus surrounding the election trail.

I saw first hand the good that was being done overseas, yet the news was inaccurate and unfair, especially to the families of servicemen and women. I am now experiencing the same fears and worries that family members of the armed forces experience, as close friends of mine (which should be read as "brothers") are now in Afghanistan and I have to dig for information to see how they are doing, and all I can do is pray for their safety and success.

In June the world watched as Iranians took to the streets, protesting the election results, and the US administration say idly by, with the decree that the US can not interfere with other governments. Yet with the removal of Zelaya from office, President Obama was quick to take a stance, siding with Zelaya and against the "coup".

Immediately, an overwhelming majority of national (and international) press began condemning Honduras. I looked to the internet where I came across some great articles, that explained what happened was legal.

I was working at my parent's business for the summer until I return to school in the fall. Always ready for a new adventure, I decided to go find out for myself. I was tired of biased news reports and I had to see for myself if this tiny Central American country truly underwent a coup, or if they legally removed a potential dictator and chose to be a free people.

This site is just a one trick pony. My stay here in Honduras is quickly coming to an end. Once I return to the States, I will no longer be updating on the situation here in Honduras. All I hoped for was to see what was truly happening and write about it on this little blog. If it was able to accurately inform at least one person, then I consider this venture a success.


  1. Thanks for all the info youve been posting. Its interesting how you came to our country and told things are they really are. Great experience!

  2. Thanks Hunter for your heart! Those of us who live, and will remain, in Honduras know the truth without the biased AP, Reuters, TeleSur, and Chavez News Network (CNN) reporting. I am thankful that folks such as yourself take the time to see through the smoke. Best of everything to you, and I will be looking for the book on Amazon (lol). If you happen to see Juanca Llorca or Will Weissert of the AP on your way out (they will be the guys with the real LONG noses and wooden smiles) tell them that there is a guy in western Honduras waiting to have a word with them…

  3. Amazing. What a blessing you are! Thank you for your service to this Country...and thank you for taking the time to find the truth and share it with others. In this country, where people seem to believe what the MSM blabbers constantly, it is refreshing to see others search for the absolute truth in all matters. You are in my prayers (as well as your brother in Afghanistan).

  4. Just a fellow American in Central America for the summer (living in neighboring El Salvador) that would like to express his thanks for your decision to take matters into your own hands. I have been positively SCANDALIZED by the inadequacy of the reporting over this incident, and I've found your blog a reliable source that's provided me and others back in the states with a ground-level picture.
    I certainly wouldn't envy being on the ground in the middle of the pro-zelaya protest. Thanks for getting in harm's way (again) for the common good.
    And thanks for the link to PJTV!

  5. Thanks for the Int. Hunter, I wish you could stay, but your life and the living of it must take precedence. Good luck in all your future endeavours.

  6. Hunter, your blogging has been priceless. Thanks for all.

  7. You've done a great job, Hunter. So much so that this is one of the places I came to first for Honduras information, rather than the MSM. I hope you continue your foray into journalism - the world needs more honest reporters.

  8. Hunter, first and foremost I would like to thank you for your service to the Republic...Semper Fi Rules!

    I too am an American born and raised in Miami, however my father has conducted business in Honduras for well over 45 yrs.

    During the '60's up until the '80's, he was a "Company Man" there and througout Latin America.

    My niece, is half Honduran and the great niece of Cadinal Rodriguez in Tegucigalpa.

    I am very close to the former FM, Ortez Colindres, whom unfortunately became a victim of the US Ambassador, Llorens, and his agenda of imposing socialism, by re-instating Zelaya, in Honduras!!!

    Thank you for your coverage and your courage....keep us updated in terms of any new blogs or sites you will be involved with.

    God Bless you, Marine!

  9. Thank you very much for what you're doing. Its quite ineteresting reading about our situation from another point of view, in this case yours and whats more intriguing its that you're not from here. I absolutly admire what you're doing, I havent had the courage to go out and take pictures (love taking pics) of whats going on and posting them on my blog well in my case its facebook jeje. Thank you for not letting the media win you over with their biased infomation. Im impressed with your pictures and if you dont mind ill like to save em and show them on facebook. We have alot of political debates there. Anyway im tracking off, I dont know for how lng you're staying but hopefully it'll be some more time cause im very entertained by your point of view and the sites youu have been visiting. Our city has changed and normally it aint like this. I would love to stay intouch.

    Isabella Arevalo

  10. your blog was one of the only places on the net I knew I could get objective, up-to-date info about the honduran situation. Many thanks.

  11. Thank you for all of this. I've been sharing with all my friends and family. My parents were actually there when everything happened and I was surprised at the clash between what they were telling me and what the major news networks were saying.

    Again, thanks.

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  13. Thank you, Hunter. Very bold of you. I too have been dissapointed in the news coverage, and I also think Honduras is being abandoned, much as Austria and Cezchoslovakia were in the 1930s. Best wishes for your project and for your safety.

  14. Well then Semper Fi! brother
    Im Danny former Honduran Marine, nice to know other fellow Marines

    Thanks for reporting from the trenches, we really appreciate your work and dedication.

    If you are still here send me an email so we can have a couple of cold treat.

  15. Hunter thanks for a great job!! i have been following.

  16. You are terribly ignorant of the history of Central America and the role of the United States in that history.

    Do you believe that the Guatemalan coup of 1954 was also "legal" and legitimate? The Chilean coup of 1973? The Argentine coup of 1976? The Brazilian coup of 1964? The coups that brought military regimes to power in El Salvador, Ecuador, Uruguay, and Bolivia? The attempted coup in Venezuela in 2002?

    Do you have any sense of the effect of neolibaralism and the Washington Consensus on the majority of people in Latin America? The obstructionist role played by the US in preventing peaceful solutions to its civil wars and ending dictatorships?

    I didn't think so. Your expertise comes from military indoctrintation. Your great "first hand" knowledge of Iraq came while shielded from the people by a uniform and a gun. My guess is that you don't speak their language, or really have much of a clue.