Ecuadorian president warns of possible ‘CIA attack’ before elections

Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa (Reuters / Stringer)

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. Continue reading

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‘End of capitalism’: Bolivia to expel Coca-Cola in wake of 2012 Mayan ‘apocalypse’

A woman stands on a street corner in Oruro, a Bolivian mining town in the Andes Mountains

In a symbolic rejection of US capitalism, Bolivia announced it will expel the Coca-Cola Company from the country at the end of the Mayan calendar. This will mark the end of capitalism and usher in a new era of equality, the Bolivian govt says.

“December 21 of 2012 will be the end of egoism and division. December 21 should be the end of Coca-Cola,” Bolivian foreign minister David Choquehuanca decreed, with bombast worthy of a viral marketing campaign.

The coming ‘end’ of the Mayan lunar calendar on December 21 of this year has sparked widespread doomsaying of an impending apocalypse. But Choquehuanca argued differently, claiming it will be the end of days for capitalism, not the planet. Continue reading

Obama’s dirty dozen: Secret Service men behaving badly in Colombia

Barack Obama (L), surrounded by US Secret Service agents (AFP Photo / Saul Loeb)

Eleven Secret Service agents have been relieved from their duties in light of claims they spent time set aside for planning President Obama’s visit drinking and visiting prostitutes.

They were on location in Cartagena, Colombia, preparing for Obama’s arrival and participation in the Summit of the Americas. But instead, they engaged in activities that caused a scandal that could possibly overshadow the summit itself.

US Secret Service Assistant Director Paul Morrissey noted that allegations of misconduct were made against 11 Secret Service members, including both special agents and Uniformed Division officers. However, he did not specify exactly what kind of misconduct it was.

The nature of the allegations, coupled with a zero tolerance policy on personal misconduct, resulted in the Secret Service taking the decisive action to relieve these individuals of their assignment, return them to their place of duty and replace them with additional Secret Service personnel,” Morrissey said in a statement. Continue reading