Posts Tagged ‘rafael correa’


Published time: January 06, 2013 15:31 

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has said the CIA may try to kill him prior to upcoming elections. Citing reports of a plot to “destabilize the region,” Correa said the threats were “credible,” given the history of US involvement in Latin America.

Correa alluded to reports by Chilean journalist Patricio Mery Bell, who allegedly passed on information to the Ecuadorian government that President Correa’s life was “under threat” by a CIA plot.

“There are many cases of [the CIA] interfering” in Latin American affairs, Correa said during a campaign tour in the coastal province of Guayas. “These are credible [reports] because this has happened before in Latin America.”

The head of the US diplomatic mission in Quito, Adam Nann, responded to Bell’s claims by saying that Washington “would never get involved” in Ecuador’s electoral process.

Although Correa conceded that he believed the statements of the US ambassador, he warned that agencies such as the CIA often follow their own agenda and maintain links with organizations representing the extreme right in the countries in which they operate.

Bell first voiced his concerns for the safety of President Correa three months ago when he released a report claiming the CIA sought to “destabilize” Ecuador. He said that the threat to Correa’s life would be at its height from January 15 and onwards, as Correa applies to run for another presidential term.

“We will have to be three times more vigilant with President Correa,” Bell said in an interview with publication El Ciudadano. Bell maintained that although he was not a staunch supporter of Correa, it was his duty as a Latin American citizen to warn of the alleged $88-million CIA plot to destabilize the Ecuadorian government.

The journalist believes that this money will be divided amongst extremist anarchist, leftist and hardline conservative groups, in the hopes of discrediting Correas.

Bell claimed in his report that the main motives behind the CIA plot were the closing of the US Manta military base, hailed as a victory for Ecuadorian national sovereignty, and the granting of asylum to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

President Correa is often described as echoing the policies of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, especially in anti-US rhetoric. The 49-year-old economist has reduced poverty and increased stability and the overall standard of living in Ecuador during his presidency, winning popularity amongst the country’s poorest as well as the educated middle class.

Correa will run for reelection against six other candidates when campaigning begins on January 15. Ecuadorians will vote for the next president and vice president on Sunday, February 17.

January 6th, 2013

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has said the CIA may try to kill him prior to upcoming elections. Citing reports of a plot to “destabilize the region,” Correa said the threats were “credible,” given the history of US involvement in Latin America.

Correa alluded to reports by Chilean journalist Patricio Mery Bell, who allegedly passed on information to the Ecuadorian government that President Correa’s life was “under threat” by a CIA plot.

“There are many cases of [the CIA] interfering” in Latin American affairs, Correa said during a campaign tour in the coastal province of Guayas. “These are credible [reports] because this has happened before in Latin America.”

The head of the US diplomatic mission in Quito, Adam Nann, responded to Bell’s claims by saying that Washington “would never get involved” in Ecuador’s electoral process.

Although Correa conceded that he believed the statements of the US ambassador, he warned that agencies such as the CIA often follow their own agenda and maintain links with organizations representing the extreme right in the countries in which they operate.

Bell first voiced his concerns for the safety of President Correa three months ago when he released a report claiming the CIA sought to “destabilize” Ecuador. He said that the threat to Correa’s life would be at its height from January 15 and onwards, as Correa applies to run for another presidential term.

“We will have to be three times more vigilant with President Correa,” Bell said in an interview with publication El Ciudadano. Bell maintained that although he was not a staunch supporter of Correa, it was his duty as a Latin American citizen to warn of the alleged $88-million CIA plot to destabilize the Ecuadorian government.

The journalist believes that this money will be divided amongst extremist anarchist, leftist and hardline conservative groups, in the hopes of discrediting Correas.

Bell claimed in his report that the main motives behind the CIA plot were the closing of the US Manta military base,  hailed as a victory for Ecuadorian national sovereignty, and the granting of asylum to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

President Correa is often described as echoing the policies of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, especially in anti-US rhetoric. The 49-year-old economist has reduced poverty and increased stability and the overall standard of living in Ecuador during his presidency, winning popularity amongst the country’s poorest as well as the educated middle class.

Correa will run for reelection against six other candidates when campaigning begins on January 15. Ecuadorians will vote for the next president and vice president on Sunday, February 17.

Obama's War on Democracy in Latin America

The ejection of USAID from Russia was a long-awaited and welcome development. Moscow has repeatedly warned its US partners via an array of channels of communication that the tendency of USAID to interfere with Russia’s domestic affairs was unacceptable and, particularly, that the radicalism of its pet NGOs in the Caucasus would not be tolerated. When, on October 1, the decision made by the Russian leadership takes effect, the Moscow-based USAID staff which has been stubbornly ignoring the signals will have to pack and relocate to other countries facing allegations of authoritarian rule…In Latin America, USAID has long earned a reputation of an organization whose offices are, in fact, intelligence centers scheming to undermine legitimate governments in a number of the continent’s countries. The truth that USAID hosts CIA and US Defense Intelligence Agency operatives is not deeply hidden, as those seem to have played a role in every Latin American coup, providing financial, technical, and ideological support to respective oppositions. USAID also typically seeks engagement with the local armed forces and law-enforcement agencies, recruiting within them agents ready to lend a hand to the opposition when the opportunity arises.

To varying extents, all of the Latin American populist leaders felt the USAID pressure. No doubt, Venezuela’s H. Chavez is the number one target on the USAID enemies list. Support for the regime’s opponents in the country shrank considerably since the massive 2002-2004 protests as the nation saw the government refocus on socioeconomic issues, health care, housing construction, and youth policies. The opposition had to start relying more on campaigns in the media, around 80% of which are run by the anti-Chavez camp. Panic-provoking rumors about imminent food supply disruptions, overstated reports about the crime level in Venezuela (where, actually, there is less crime than in most countries friendly to the US), and allegations of government incompetence in response to technological disasters which became suspiciously frequent as the elections drew closer are bestowed on the audiences as a part of the subversive scenario involving a network of Venezuelan NGOs. In some cases, the membership of the latter can be limited to 3-4 people, but, coupled to strong media support, the opposition can prove to be an ominous force. Pro-Chavez commentators are worried that USAID agents will contest the outcome of the vote and, synchronously, paramilitary groups will plunge Venezuelan cities into chaos to give the US a pretext for a military intervention.

USAID is known to have contributed to the recent failed coup in Ecuador, during which president R. Correa narrowly escaped an assassination attempt. Elite police forces heavily sponsored by the US and the media which made use of the liberal free speech legislation to smear Correa were the key actors in the outbreak. Subsequently, it took Correa serious efforts to get a revised media code approved in the parliament contrary to the USAID-lobbied resistance.

Several bids to displace the government of Evo Morales clearly employed the USAID operative potential in Bolivia. According to journalist and author Eva Golinger, USAID poured at least $85m into destabilizing the regime in the country. Initially, the US hoped to achieve the desired result by entraining the separatists from the predominantly white Santa Cruz district. When the plan collapsed, USAID switched to courting the Indian communities with which the ecology-oriented NGOs started to get in touch a few years before. Disorienting accounts were fed to the Indians that the construction of an expressway across their region would leave the communities landless, and the Indian protest marches to the capital that followed ate away at the public standing of Morales. It transpired shortly that many of the marches including those staged by the TIPNIS group, had been coordinated by the US embassy. The job was done by embassy official Eliseo Abelo, a USAID curator for the Bolivian indigenous population. His phone conversations with the march leaders were intercepted by the Bolivian counter-espionage agency and made public, so that he had to escape from the country while the US diplomatic envoy to Bolivia complained about the phone tapping.

In June 2012, foreign ministers of the ALBA bloc countries passed a resolution on USAID. It read: «Citing foreign aid planning and coordination as a pretext, USAID openly meddles in sovereign countries’ domestic affairs, sponsoring NGOs and protest activities intended to destabilize legitimate governments which are unfavorable from Washington’s perspective. Documents released from the US Department of State archives carry evidence that financial support had been provided to parties and groups oppositional to the governments of ALBA countries, a practice tantamount to undisguised and audacious interference on the US behalf. In most ALBA countries, USAID operates via its extensive NGO networks, which it runs outside of the due legal framework, and also illicitly funds media and political groups. We are convinced that our countries have no need for external financial support to maintain the democracy established by Latin American and Caribbean nations, or for externally guided organizations which try to weaken or sideline our government institutions». The ministers called the ALBA leaderships to immediately deport USAID representatives who threaten the sovereignty and political stability of the countries where they work. The resolution was signed by Bolivia, Cuba, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.

Paul J. Bonicelli was confirmed by the US Senate as the USAID Assistant Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean last May. Former USAID chief Mark Feuerstein gained such notoriety in Latin America as the brain behind the ousters of the legitimate leaders of Honduras and Paraguay that the continent’s politicians simply had to learn to avoid him. The USAID credibility is increasingly drying up, and it is unlikely that Bonicelli, a PhD and a conservative, will be able to reverse the tendency. His record includes heading various USAID divisions and «promoting democracy» in concert with the US National Security Council.

Bonicelli’s views are reflected in his papers in the Foreign Policy journal. To Bonicelli, Chavez is not a democrat but a leader eager to get rid of all of his opponents. The new USAID boss holds that, apart from the drug threat, Chavez – having inspired populist followers in Ecuador, Bolivia, and Nicaragua – poses the biggest challenge to the US interests in Latin America. Bonicelli therefore urges the US to prop up the Venezuelan opposition in every way possible, providing material support and training, so that it can maximally take part in elections and civilian activities.

Another paper by Bonicelli portrays Russia’s present-day evolution as grim regress and a slide towards «neo-Tsarism». Based on the perception, Bonicelli argues that the West should hold Russia and its leaders accountable in whatever concerns freedom and democracy – even if freedom in the country is important to just a handful of people – and cites the case of Poland where the US used to stand by Lech Wałęsa.

Chances are slim that a reform of USAID would restore the agency’s credibility in Latin America. Sticking to a trimmed list of priorities, USAID axed a few minor programs and shut down its offices in Chile, Argentine, Uruguay, Costa Rica, and Panama, with Brazil next in line. USAID believes that the above countries are already in reasonable shape and no longer need assistance, so that the agency can throw its might against its main foes – the populists and Cuba, and do its best to have the politicians unfriendly to Washington removed across the Western Hemisphere. The stated USAID budget for Latin America is $750m, but estimates show that the secret part of the funding, which is leveraged by the CIA, may total twice the amount.

In 2008 Agence France-Presse reported on a story that the CIA had infiltrated Ecuador’s military.

QUITO (AFP) � The US Central Intelligence Agency had “full knowledge” of the deadly Colombian raid March 1 on a FARC rebel camp inside Ecuador that led to a rupture in ties between Bogota and Quito, Ecuador’s Defense Minister Javier Ponce said.

The CIA “had full knowledge of what was happening in Angostura,” the border area in Ecuador where the attack took place, Ponce said while presenting the results of an official investigation into the suspected infiltration of Ecuador’s armed forces by US intelligence agents.

Investigators “even detected a call by the CIA on the morning of March 1 announcing the attack in Angostura,” the minister added.

Authorities suspected that the incursion — decried by the Organization of American States as a Colombian “premeditated violation” of Ecuadoran sovereignty — relied on support from a US aircraft assigned to joint US-Ecuador anti-drug missions from a US Former Operating Location (FOL) in Manta, Ecuador, he said.

“The main doubt is about the activities of a US intelligence aircraft which surprisingly arrived at FOL Manta one week before the attack…. The arrival of this plane marked the beginning of night flights that had not been normally undertaken from the FOL,” Ponce said.

The same aircraft “permanently withdrew from the base” four days after the raid, he added.

In April, Ecuador’s leftist President Rafael Correa sacked his defense minister and police chief after alleging the CIA had infiltrated his country’s security apparatus to help US ally Colombia.

The raid on the camp of the Marxist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) killed more than 20 people, including FARC’s number-two guerrilla Raul Reyes, four Mexicans and an Ecuadoran.

A diplomatic stand-off quickly ensued, with Quito expelling Bogota’s ambassador on March 3 and both sides ordering thousands of troops to their common border.

While military tensions have eased, diplomatic relations between the neighbors have yet to be normalized.

The FARC is Latin America’s oldest and most powerful insurgency, and has been trying to topple the Bogota government since the 1960s.

Ecaudorian President Rafael Correa, source Wikimedia commons

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is using drug money to fund Rafael Correa’s opposition in the coming 2013 Ecuadorian elections, intelligence sources have revealed to Chilean independent media. The accusations do not stand alone. In October, former UK diplomat Craig Murray said that the CIA had tripled its budget to destabilize the government of Ecuador.

The allegations were made public by President Rafael Correa on November 3rd on national television, just days after his official visit to Chile to meet with President Sebastian Piñera.


For translation, click on the CC (captions) widget, choose Spanish, then select Translate and English (or preferred language).

Correa reaffirmed information that appeared in an article written by Chilean independent media outlet Panoramas News, revealing that the CIA and DEA stations in Chile were running a narcotics trafficking network through that country with the full knowledge of Chilean authorities and police.

One of the sources quoted by Chilean media, a former police officer in the Policia de Investigaciones (PDI) by the name of Fernando Ulloa, said that 300 kilograms of cocaine were entering Chile monthly under the escort of members of his own institution, the Carabineros, and the Chilean Army. In May 2011, Fernando Ulloa met with then Chilean Minister of Interior Rodrigo Hinzpeter in La Moneda to inform him about the drug network. After more than one year, the Piñera’s government had done nothing to investigate the case.

The scandal resurfaced again after 10 Chilean cops were detained with links to a minor drug smuggling ring, not connected to the one Ulloa was exposing. Although Chilean television was more open to talk about police corruption, Ulloa was only interviewed by two TV networks, where he accused Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter of covering up the larger narcotics ring he was investigating before being kicked out of his job as PDI inspector.

The links to US intelligence emerged after an anonymous source from the Agencia Nacional de Inteligencia (ANI) told Panoramas News that the smuggling of 300 kilos of cocaine was in fact a highly sensitive CIA/DEA operation that would help to raise money to topple the government of Ecuador. The operation is similar to the one carried out by the Agency in Central America during the Iran-Contra scandal in the 1980’s, the source said.

The director of Panoramas News, journalist Patricio Mery Bell, was planning to hand over the information to Rafael Correa while the Ecuadorian President was visiting Chile, but he was strangely accused of beating a woman after she stole his cell-phone. The cell-phone memory contained a video testimony of Mery’s intelligence source, destined to be passed to Correa, but it ended up in the hands of the police after the mysterious incident.

Once he was in Ecuador, President Rafael Correa connected the dots and decided to go public with the information. He quoted Murray’s early warnings about the CIA’s intent to “fund, bribe or blackmail media and officials”, originally written in the former diplomat’s own blog, adding that the Agency was dealing drugs just as Oliver North had done during the Contra support effort.

In an interview with NTN24, journalist Patricio Mery added more details to the case, relating the cover-up of the CIA drug dealing operation to the deaths of two different people in the last seven years: former soldier Fabian Vega, who was found hung in the northern city of Calama in 2005, and young citizen Nestor Madariaga Juantok, found death with two bullets in the port of Valparaiso in 2006. Both were ruled as suicides.


For translation, click on the CC (captions) widget, choose Spanish, then select Translate and English (or preferred language).

Mery also gave the name of the alleged CIA liaison with the Chilean Navy, former captain Jesus Saez Luna, who is now being held in a penitentiary after he mysteriously escaped from Navy custody. Saez Luna was described in his arrest as the biggest drug dealer of the coastal city of Viña del Mar, with networks in Santiago de Chile and the Bio-Bio southern region of the country. Known as “El Marino”, the former captain utilized “military intelligence” tactics to avoid detection by police, according to the Chilean newspaper La Segunda.

The case is being depicted as “Chile-Contras”, in reference to the history of CIA narcotics trafficking in Nicaragua. This is just another example of how drug money is used to fund covert operations, such as the ones we have seen in Syria, with whole guerrilla armies and opposition forces being financed to overthrow countries that aren’t part of the Anglo-American establishment and don’t bow to American corporate interests.