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New York Times editorial: Showdown in Guatemala

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Jimmy Morales was elected president of Guatemala in 2015 on a promise of stopping the country’s fabled corruption and restoring conservative values. A former television personality widely known for his comic role in the series Moralejas (Morals), Mr. Morales rode popular anger to victory in 2015 as an outsider whose slogan was “not corrupt, nor a thief.”

But on Aug. 27, when a United Nations-backed anticorruption unit began getting uncomfortably close to him and his supporters, Mr. Morales ordered its chief expelled. Guatemala’s top court overturned the order, but the nation still faces a crisis.

The United States, which supported the Guatemalan military during the brutal civil war and is the main political and financial backer of the international commission, should take the leading role, alongside the United Nations, in ensuring that Mr. Morales backs down and lets the investigation lead where it must.

Source: New York Times