Latin-America: Continual hybrid war against projects of national sovereignty
It is clear that Latin America faces a new offensive from its northern neighbor, which has the goal of controlling their “backyard” and impeding the South-American nations in order to pursue their own interests and aims. Nevertheless, unlike former plans like the infamous Operation Condor, which was developed in several places of America, and included the collaboration of US intelligence services (supporting the establishment of a repressive system by means of dictatorships in some countries of the region during 1970’s and beginning of 1980’s), the current operations against the legitimate governments of south-America follow the guidelines of so-called “Hybrid War”.
As was explained in the manual for US Special Forces Unconventional Warfare (2010): "The US efforts in unconventional warfare are aimed at exploiting the psychological, economic, military and political vulnerabilities of an adversary country to develop and sustain the forces of resistance and achieve the strategic objectives of the US". Thus, the main objective is to disrupt the multipolar national and transnational projects within a country through conflicts of identity (ethnic, religious, political, etc.) caused externally. In the concrete case of Brazil, the economic BRICS partnership seems to be one of the main objectives of this "hybrid war" among many other reasons: to conduct international trade in native currencies to avoid the US dollar, the creation of the New BRICS Development Bank, or its intention to increase integration in Eurasia.
And so, at least it seems that different political leaders who in recent days have spoken clearly about it, like Rafael Correa, Evo Morales, Nicolas Maduro, Dilma Rousseff, and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, perceive it.
The president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, last Thursday called for unity within South American and Caribbean people to prevent "destabilizing attacks and coups" by the "power-hungry" forces. Correa warned about the possibility of a new Operation Condor against certain governments in the region, but stressed that "the unity of the free and sovereign countries leave the conspiracy without success". "We will continue the battle from the street with those who observe daily the true historical change in the South American continent", Correa said, highlighting the advances in education, health, and culture that have occurred during his tenure. Demonstrations against the Ecuadorian President took place in the context of mass mobilization to support the Government and counter-protests organized by the opposition, which focused on different areas of the capital, against the President’s plan to implement new taxes, including the capital outflow from the country.
Meanwhile, in Bolivia, just a couple of days later, President Evo Morales warned the South American people about the new form of the neoliberal right to overthrow governments, using judicial and parliamentary coups rather than military or civil riots. "Now the coups are no longer military or civilian, but have a judicial and parliamentary character. Media and political campaigns are aimed at weakening the image of the anti-imperialist rulers and damaging the stability of countries," he said. "To get where we arrived in Bolivia," stressed Morales, "has been very important the unity of people of all social sectors. There will be accusations, lies, and neoliberal – well-known in the country as "vendepatrias" (those who sold their country) “They will try everything for it to end this process”, he added.
"We've beaten them in all previous battles”, he said, “but in the referendum last February 21st, we could not beat them on social networks, a new method they used to make political campaign based on lies and manipulation," Morales said after reviewing the various attempts to oust him from power. "With the unity of the people and the different social sectors, this process will continue, and it will continue to improve because the national economy continues to grow, as was recognized by international agencies when they speak of the Bolivian economic model". "Before, things were decided here by the "Chicago boys", but today they are decided by the "Chuquiago (Aymara word) boys", i.e. the president said, "before, gringos decided our policies, and today we do - the Bolivian Indians”, he said.
After reiterating their solidarity with the president of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, and former president of Argentina Cristina Kirchner, Morales said, under fierce media attacks, any pretext is sought to disqualify Lula as a candidate in Brazil’s next election.
Lula da Silva, at a ceremony held in Rio de Janeiro on Monday 11th, accused vice-president Michel Temer and the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Eduardo Cunha, of being the principal authors of the plan to impeach Rousseff (Cunha, one of the promoters of the summoning of dismissal, is under investigation for alleged involvement in the corruption scandal in the state oil company Petrobras, and he is also the focus of several investigations of alleged illegal activities). The event coincided with a massive rally in support of the Brazilian President near the Congress building after the committee announced that the president would be subject to a political trial on charges of violating tax laws. 38 members of the special committee of lawmakers voted for impeachment, while 27 rejected it. The impeachment bill will now go to Congress next Friday, and will conclude on Sunday night when a final decision will be taken. If the Chamber of Deputies validate it in the coming days by a two-thirds majority, and then the Senate ratifies it, Rousseff will be removed from office for a maximum period of 180 days in the hope that the Senate will give its final decision.
Dilma Rousseff, meanwhile, called this decision, to impeachment her, like an attempted coup. She also warned that in the coming days, the desperate attacks of those who seek to stage a coup in the country through the process of "impeachment" could occur. "We must be attentive and vigilant, as the coup will involve all of the streets, and will seek to intimidate, publicize new illegal and factional leaks, and make new accusations without evidence," said Rousseff, who added: "The coup is not against me, but especially against the project that I represent and that in the last 13 years had the support of the people and the tireless work of social movements and those who wanted to see a stronger Brazil and equal opportunities for all".
But the "impeachment" of Rousseff for alleged falsification of public accounts has resulted in not only the rejection of the president, her supporters, and some regional countries like Bolivia, Ecuador, and Chile, but also of certain international organizations such as the OAS or UNASUR, which expressed concern about the progress of the process without any crimes being verified.
A similar situation of harassment exists in Venezuela, where the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJ) declared the amnesty law passed by Parliament, to release violators of human rights, common criminals, and jailed opponents, unconstitutional. The reasons issued by the Court highlight the infringement of Article 29 of the Constitution and international agreements signed by the Government, such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Nobody knows what the consequences of a decision of this type will be for Venezuelan democracy, as if they remember that it’s the state that dominates parliament, where the opposition is also part of the state that violates the law, tacitly it gives a guarantee to the rest of society to do so too.
This decision provoked diverse and significant reactions, including from the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, who expressed "serious concerns" about the fairness of justice in the country. Meanwhile, the US newspaper The Washington Post devoted a hard editorial to the government of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela, where they said that the situation in the country requires a "desperate" form of political intervention from the rest of the American States.
Confronted with these attacks, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro denounced, last Thursday at the UN, the "permanent harassment" to try and "isolate" Venezuela. Days earlier, Maduro criticized Washington for its interventionist policies in other countries. "The Empire has been responsible for sowing hatred through interventionism" argued the head of the Venezuelan government at a ceremony to honor the 14 years of the coup on April 11, 2002, perpetrated by the Venezuelan right and supported by US, against the former President, Hugo Chavez. He also anointed to US President Barack Obama to repeal the presidential decree renewed against Venezuela so that it is not listed as a threat to US security. He also announced the creation of the Truth Commission to investigate the violence that occurred in anti-government protests in 2014, under the patronage of the Secretary General of UNASUR, to ensure the "non-recurrence of coups, guarimbas, and attacks" orchestrated by the right side. Maduro also denounced the fact that Venezuela is financially beleaguered internationally by attacks from the United States to boycott the access and provision of loans to the Latin American country.
Meanwhile, in Argentina, finance minister Alfonso Prat-Gay, after managing to acquire new loans from Washington, admitted that his government, as was arranged by Congress, must pay the vulture funds by issuing debt bonds up to 15 billion dollars, when both the Senate and the House of Representatives set the figure at 12 billion. The things stated by Prat-Gay to justify the onerous debt are the same things that were said by Carlos Menem and his economy minister Domingo Cavallo, who plunged the country into the deepest crisis in its history.
Meanwhile, thousands of Argentines traveled to Jorge Newbery airport in Buenos Aires to welcome former President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who appeared last Wednesday to answer questions about the accusations of the opposition linking the former president with the case of "fraud against the public administration" for future sales of the dollar, managed by the Central Bank during the Fernandez government. The same Cristina Fernandez urged the Argentine people to create a Citizen Front to defend freedom and all the social gains achieved in the last 12 years, and called for joint efforts to ensure the protection of their rights, and to stand against the neoliberal actions of the current president, Mauricio Macri, who in just four months has devalued the national currency by 40%, has tripled the rates of basic services, and used vulture funds to pay a debt that will cost Argentina 12 billion dollars.
In Peru, although former Peruvian neoliberal presidents Alan García and Alejandro Toledo suffered their political demise after defeat in the elections, neoliberal Keiko Fujimori, of Fuerza Popular (“Popular Forces”, right), won the elections held on Sunday in Peru with nearly 40% of the vote, but will have to contest a second round with Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (former economy minister and former World Bank official, a neoliberal also), from Peruanos Por el Kambio (“Peruvians for Change”), who is more popular than Veronika Mendoza from Frente Amplio (“Wide Front”).