by Nil NIKANDROV
The pursuit of hegemony is part and parcel of US policy in Latin America. Any attempt to take independent foreign policy decisions by a Latin America state is perceived by the White House as a challenge. The Obama administration has applied great efforts to destabilize the governments and countries in the Western Hemisphere that refuse to dance to the Washington’s tune.
Normally the same cut and dried accusations are brought against Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia and Nicaragua. The United States says they have authoritarian governments that oppress opposition, try to do away with democracy and independent media and turn a blind eye on growing drug trafficking and corruption. In different ways the same things are said about Argentina, Brazil and some Caribbean states. Everything is done to undermine the authority and political reputation of leaders who have fallen out of favor with the United States. The accusations, falsified evidence and deserters are continuously used to discredit politicians.
For several months Rafael Correa, the President of Ecuador, has been resisting the attacks launched by opposition calling upon people to stand up and fight for «justice against bureaucracy». It succeeded in making the trade unionist United Workers Front (El Frente Unitario de Trabajadores) and the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE) join its ranks. The majority of Ecuadorians stand for Correa and his Citizens’ Revolution. He is supported by middle class, military and police. At that plotters instructed and funded by CIA use each and every opportunity to rock the boat. Correa says the opposition leaders want clashes to take place so that they could find a martyr to be turned into a symbol of resistance movement. Nobody knows how long the stand-off will last but law enforcement agencies already have casualties. Dozens of policemen suffered as «peaceful demonstrators» fired shots.
An attempt to stage a «hungry riot» took place in Venezuela. In San Felix crowds looted food shops. Police intervened in time to quell the unrest. President Nicolas Maduro made a TV address. He showed photos and video recordings to prove that the incident was an outright provocation. According to the President, the unrest was staged by a leader of the Justice First (Primero Justicia – PJ) opposition party Julio Borges who escaped to Columbia. The Venezuelan President emphasized that the US Southern Unified Combatant Command (USSOUTHCOM) is involved in sending agents to Venezuela with a mission to provoke a social unrest.
Nicolas Maduro also said that there are about thirty paramilitary armed formations operating in the country that have gone through a combat training course in Columbia. Some militants have been put under arrest. During the interrogations they told about the links with ultra-right opposition. The brutal murder of young woman called Liana Hergueta sparked a scandal. Her body parts were found hidden in a bag left in a public place. It was interpreted as a sign of war launched against the Bolivarian regime. Indeed, it was a contract killing perpetrated by opposition militants. Then somebody spread a rumor that babies were mass murdered in a provincial maternity hospital.
Brazil is hit by the smear campaign. The organizers accuse President Dilma Rousseff and former President Inacio Lula da Silva of being involved in a corruption scandal at the oil company Petrobras. Western media play a provocative role trying to denigrate well-known leaders of Brazil’s Workers’ Party. The reports about allegedly extremely low ratings of Dilma Rousseff have become routine. They influence public opinion to make people demand her resignation. Information is spread that the investigation has enough evidence to go upon and make the President face justice. Dilma knows how to counter the attacks. Political scholars say the intensity of opposition activities is declining. The Rousseff supporters note that the Petrobras corruption row had started long before the incumbent President even entered the office. The story was overblown to clear the way to power for Aécio Neves, the opposition candidate at the recent election supported by Washington.
The propaganda efforts against Rafael Correa, the President of Ecuador, Nicolas Maduro, the President of Venezuela, Bolivian President Evo Morales, Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, Cristina Fernandez, the President of Argentina and Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff have intensified recently. The US State Department, the National Security Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency take part in the coordinated actions to remove these politicians and substitute them with «democratically oriented» ones ready for a dialogue with Washington. The scenarios aimed at toppling the politicians who hinder the establishment of US total control over Latin America take into account the operational situation in each of these countries. There are advocates of drastic measures in the Obama administration who want «to improve» the state of things in Latin America. They are ready to go as far as putting into action the «Libyan scenario».
Many a time the United States special services have attempted to physically eliminate foreign politicians who have fallen out of favor. No doubt this kind of activities will not stop. The people of Latin America are often scared by the flows of hatred and animosity aimed at their leaders that come from the country that considers itself «an exemplary democracy». Doing away with those who are declared to be US enemies would allow Washington to undermine the process of regional consolidation. It would pave the way for delivering a blow against such organizations as the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC). Then the US could curtail cooperation within the framework of Petrocaribe and the activities of the South American Defense Council (CDS).
There are enough people in Latin America who are ready to kowtow to the United States. They will try to undermine the activities of BRICS and curb the cooperation of their relative countries with Russia and China. No doubt that the attempts to destabilize and destroy «populist» governments are intertwined with the US policy aimed at isolating Russia. Washington has a desire to involve Latin American states into the sanctions war against Russia.
The goal of US policy in Latin America is wreaking havoc on the continent. It wants to do away with independent politicians and sovereignty of individual states to make Pax Americana triumph.
The United States has been unable to turn Latin America into a neocolonial reservation. The efforts to reach this goal are doomed to fail.