Honduras Shadow Fighting in Limbo

Teetering between extremes, the country is neither at war nor peace

In one sector of the red-tiled capital of Tegucigalpa, the walls are scarred with angry slogans. DEATH TO COMMUNISM, the bloodred graffiti say. OUT, SOVIET TRASH! On the other side of the city, not far from the main drag of pizza parlors and Dunkin' Donuts outlets, where Madonna's hit Papa Don't Preach squeals from every radio, the signs say, AMERICAN MURDERERS OUT and OUT, YANKEE TRASH! Somewhere in the middle, there are a few quieter and more plaintive messages: PEACE YES, WAR NO.

The graffiti war in Honduras is at once a parody and a paradigm of the larger phantom war...

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