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Last week, members of the extreme Latin American right wing held a meeting in Washington with high-level representatives of the US Congress. The event is evidence of an escalation in US aggression toward the region, writes Eva Golinger in her article “US Congress to Increase Aggression Against Venezuela, ALBA Countries.”
The countries in the region include Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua – all members of the Bolivarian Alliance of the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) and they were the topic of debates in the meetings that centered around 3 main questions.
- Are democracy and human rights in danger under the “21st Century Socialism” of Venezuela, Ecuador, and Bolivia?
- Does the ALBA Alliance of Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua constitute a threat to US interests and inter-American security?
- Is current US policy toward the region equipped to respond to the erosion of democracy and the pernicious influence of such hostile actors as Iran, foreign and domestic terrorist groups, and narcotics traffickers?
US Congress members at the meeting include House Foreign Affairs Committee members, including Elliot Engel, New York Democrat and current chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere; Connie Mack, Florida Republican and incoming chairman of the same committee; Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and many more who met with the extreme Latin American right wing responsible for coup d’état’s terrorism and destabilization.
Eva concludes in her article that this event is proof, following the November 2 elections, that Washington’s policies toward Latin America will be more aggressive in the near future.
- The meeting took place in the US Capitol Visiting Center on November 17th, 2010, and it was titled Danger in the Andes: Threats to Democracy, Human Rights and Inter-American Security.
- The meeting counted on the participation of several figures, personalities in Latin America from the extreme right.
- There were some people from Bolivia who attempted to overthrow the Morales administration.
- One member participating in the meeting at the US Congress in November was involved with directly in an attempt to assassinate the president of Bolivia, Louis Nunez
- In Latin America there’s been a shift toward more progressive governments and policies, regional integration but at the same time an increased assault on Latin American stability and democracy coming from forces that either held power in prior years or want to take power in the region.
- We’ve seen five coups in the past ten years. Venezuela in 2002, Haiti in 2004, Bolivia in 2008, Honduras in 2009, and Ecuador this year.
- Two of those were successful, Haiti and Honduras. All right wing coups backed by the United States.
- The decision that they (Latin American right wing) came to at the meeting is that the US isn’t doing enough.
- The policy toward Cuba is equated directly with Venezuela, and the policy of Venezuela is going to Ecuador and Bolivia because they all form part of this regional block called ALBA.
- We have people like Connie Mack running the Subcommittee on Foreign Relations on Latin America who declared in that conference in the Congress last month that with the new Republican majority they need to take action and confront Hugo Chavez head on.
- There are right wing governments in Latin America, we’ve got Peru, Columbia and Chile, but they also rejected the coup attempts.
- Honduras Wikileaks memo: The document was an internal memo sent from a US ambassador to the US Secretary of State. It said that the coup that took place June 2009 against President Manuel Zelaya was completely illegal, had no constitutional foundation. It is completely the contrary position the US assumed publicly. The US State Department never declared formally the events as a coup d’état.
- The basis of my work is to use the US Freedom of Information Act to try to declassify US documents, not obtained illegally. One piece of evidence that was demonstrated irrefutably is the increase in funding coming out using US tax payer dollars to fund organizations and political groups in Latin America that are trying to destabilize democratically elected governments.
Guest – Eva Golinger – winner of the International Award for Journalism in Mexico (2009), named “La Novia de Venezuela” by President Hugo Chávez, is an attorney and writer from New York, living in Caracas, Venezuela since 2005. She is the author of the best-selling books The Chávez Code: Cracking US Intervention in Venezuela, Bush vs. Chávez: Washington’s War on Venezuela, and The Empire’s Web: Encyclopedia of Interventionism and Subversion. Since 2003, Eva, a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College and CUNY Law School in New York, has been investigating, analyzing and writing about US intervention in Venezuela using the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain information about the US Government’s efforts to destabilize progressive movements in Latin America.