Saturday, May 3, 2014

Ecuador: 20 US Military Personnel Leave Quito, Government Alleges Meddling in Internal Affairs

According to The Latin American Post, twenty US military personnel based in Quito have been asked to leave Ecuador by April 30.

Earlier this month, President Rafáel Correa told the US Department of Defense to leave amid concerns of meddling in Ecuador's internal affairs, none of which were specified by the President's office.

The order does not include the Office of the Defense Attache in Quito.

A US spokesman in Quito said the US regretted President Correa's decision.

"Our close military cooperation over the past four decades has produced major advances in the fight against drug trafficking, human trafficking, counter-terrorism and other transnational crimes," Jeffrey Weinshenker, spokesman for the US Embassy, told BBC Mundo.

The expulsions make good on an inaugural threat by the President to drastically reduce the number of Pentagon personnel in his country.

COMMENT: Paul Harvey, the notable radio commentator once said, "Here is the rest of the story."

Unfortunately, very little is known as to why President Correa asked twenty US military personnel to leave, after seven+ years working in Quito, other than the fact that he is one of Latin America's most left-leaning heads of state.

President Correa's political philosophy can best be found in the company the Ecuadorian president keeps, including former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad; Argentine President Christina Fernández de Kircher, President of Bolivia Evo Morales, President of Cuba Raúl Castro and the late President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela.

Correa continues to reiterate a promise to continue the "socialist revolution," his plans to end poverty and to continue "stamping out the structural causes of poverty."

Most of the region's Socialist experiments have failed. That being said, President Barack Obama, the most ideologically motivated US President in American history, and one of the most secretive, has demonstrated that his own version of Socialism has failed miserably with the recent announcement of growth of only 0.01%. 

In December 2013, the left-wing president complained that the US had "a very high number" of military officers in Ecuador.

Relations between Quito and Washington have been strained ever since Correa came to office in January 2007.

In 2009, Ecuador refused to renew an agreement with the US that allowed its drug-interdiction flights to be based at an Ecuadorean airfield.

That same year, the Andean nation expelled two US diplomats, accusing them of meddling in its internal affairs, charges Washington rejected.

In 2012, Ecuador provided asylum in its Embassy to WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, whose organization published thousands of leaked US military documents and diplomatic cables.