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Friday, May 23, 2008

Manufactured Threats

It's easy to forget that this administration launched a 'global' war on terror that extends beyond Iraq and Afghanistan. They have tried to make the case for action against North Korea, Syria. Now there is an extensive effort to drum up support for unilaterally attacking Iran. Hugo Chavez has never been a friend of the Bush administration, and he's paid for it with anti-Venezuelan propaganda, including this latest attempt to build a case using Colombia as a tool. It reeks of the fables we heard against Iran and N. Korea, and the media campaign to support action leading up to the invasion of Iraq.
After the Colombian military illegally attacked a FARC camp in Ecuador in March with US assistance, the Uribe government claimed to have found laptops belonging to the rebels that they say show clear ties between the FARC, Venezuela and Ecuador. The Colombian government handed these laptops to Interpol for verification, but what did Interpol really find?

'[T]he demonization campaign seems to be reaching another level nowadays. Look at these developments. A US Navy surveillance plane—the Pentagon admitted they had entered Venezuelan airspace. They are trying to resurrect, in fact, the force fleet. And on top of it, the Pentagon plans to build a Colombian military base near Venezuela's border. So where are we heading next?

...This is, along with the disinformation campaign, there's clearly a sort of escalation of provocations. And I would say that it's roughly similar in some ways to the escalation of provocations with Iran. And it's very hard to know what is happening inside the Bush administration right now. At no point has it been characterized by transparency, and in that respect it's very much like the Colombian regime of Alvaro Uribe—they're joined at the hip; they're sort of Siamese twins. But right now it's not clear what exactly is going on in terms of this sort of escalation of provocation, but it looks very much like the pattern we see in Iran. And it's incredibly worrisome, because Colombia's violation of Ecuadorian sovereignty was one of the gravest breaches of diplomacy in the hemisphere in some time, and instead of kind of drawing back and really, you know, rethinking that type of policy of provoking its neighbors, Colombia has continued on the same path and has been encouraged to do so by the United States and the US media. But I agree with you that this has clearly reached kind of a new level of tension and polarization and provocation.'

1 comment:

Matthew said...

I'm not impressed by the discussion.

The assertion is that there is no proof they did not tamper with it. Nice. Getting past that, they basically dismiss the interpol report which corroborates the Colombian claim of an improprietous relationship between Venezuela, Ecuador, and FARC, and center instead on the idea that no one could read all the documents in time. The clear implication is that the a priori story was that there was a relationship, and they tampered with the laptops in order to generate this data. Ignoring, of course, the specific claim by Interpol that there is no evidence of tampering.

They don't even mention that such a relationship between the governments was not claimed to have been discovered on the laptops, it was claimed to have been discovered among paper documents with letters between the principle parties. I find this to be a very conspicuous silence.

Look I'm under no delusions as to the 'party line' in the media and governement regarding Chavez, or as to our track record for honesty in the region. But these two are like Alex Jones.....assume there is something wrong going on, spend your time talking about your explanation as to how it got past notice, and employ a major conspiracy to fill in the gaps. Please.