Editor Note: Warning… contains a couple of graphic images.
The Latin American card is one of the Clinton’s main trump cards in the presidential campaign. As a candidate, she enjoys the exclusive support of immigrants from Latin America living in the United States. She promises to ease conditions for migrants and does not seek to build a high wall on the border with Mexico, contrary to the campaign promises made by Donald Trump. But does she really deserve the support of Hispanics? To answer this question, it is necessary to look at the previous work of Mrs. Clinton in Latin America.
At least as the US Secretary of State, she could improve relations with Latin America, but a reality check shows otherwise: Hillary Clinton was a firm supporter of rabid US imperialism. Successful and failed coups, death squads, drug wars and destabilization of entire countries, collaboration with corrupt politicians, and information war against people of Latin America, are Clinton’s legacy in the region.
Supporting the death squads of Colombia
Clinton’s family has a long history of supporting pro-US regimes in Columbia. One of the lasts steps of Bill Clinton’s administration was $1.3 billion aid going mostly to the Colombian military. “The interpretation allowed the administration to dodge entirely any certification or waiver of human rights conditions attached to the aid”, as American journalists Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair wrote on the subject. Thus. according to them, American funds went directly into the hands of infamous death squads, engaged in operations against political opponents of pro-US regimes.
Hillary Clinton came out against the Free Trade Agreement with Colombia, when she first time tried to become the Democratic Party nominee in 2008, but shortly after she became Secretary of State, she reversed her position and came out supporting it. This change coincided with a huge financial flow to the Clinton family fund from Colombian and US business interests. For Colombians, the signing of this agreement meant increased exploitation of locals by foreign capitalists who have discovered the US market. In the first 10 months of the Santos administration in Colombia, who was rewarded by Clinton with the Free Trade Agreement, 104 labor and human rights activists were murdered in the country. Over 50 union activists were killed by death squads. Some local sources blamed multinational corporations from the US and Canada for using gangs against workers (including Dole, Coca-Cola, Drummond Coal, and Chiquita, formerly known as the United Fruit Company). All of this happened while Hillary Clinton was the US Secretary of State, and the intensification of political repression and exploitation was a deliberate result of her policy towards Columbia.
Embracing the Honduras coup
During Hillary’s Clinton stay in office she supported the outcome of the military coup in Honduras in 2009. In this military takeover, the legitimate president José Manuel Zelaya, who tried to bring his country closer to Venezuela and more independent from the US, was ousted. Tom Shannon, Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs from Clinton’s State Department was in Honduras a week before the coup, consulting with the military and civilian groups later involved in it.
Even President Obama did not officially support the Honduras coup, but Clinton did. The systematic abuse of human rights, violence and suppression of opponents was the obvious result of the military takeover. However, Clinton lauded the illegitimate election of Porfirio Lobo, who had endorsed the coup and rewarded coup loyalists with top ministries, as a step towards “democracy”.
As the Nation points out the democratic transition in Honduras ended with a very predictable result.
A month ago, on March 3, the renowned environmental activist Berta Cáceres was murdered in her home by unknown gunmen. Two weeks later, Nelson Garcia, a member of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), co-founded by Cáceres, was shot to death. Since then, thousands of Hondurans have protested what Democracy Now! has described as a “culture of repression and impunity linked to the Honduran government’s support for corporate interests.”
The killings have brought the US government’s programs in Honduras under increased scrutiny and drawn sharp criticism of Clinton’s covert support for the 2009 coup while she was Secretary of State.
Drug wars in Mexico
When Clinton was Secretary of State, the US increased arm sales to the Mexican government to counter drug cartels. In fact, the US fueled war on drugs turned into a bloody drug war, which lead to a drastic deterioration of the situation in the country. Mexico was an example of how the United States tried to solve their problems at the expense of its neighbors, without taking into account possible losses that may result from their decisions. The arm sales benefited U.S.-based contractors. Clinton and Obama told Americans that they are leading a tough war against drug cartels, but as a result the situation in Mexico has badly deteriorated. The so-called drug wars have killed more than 100,000 people since 2006.
Mexican authorities were involved in systematic human rights violations and Clinton knew that (as WikiLeaks showed), but despite that the US laws prohibit arms sales to such regimes, she approved arm sales and boasted military and security cooperation.
Under Hillary Clinton as State Secretary, the US continued its policy of sabotage and information war against Venezuela. While she publicly welcomed improved relations between the two countries, in fact she contributed to the destabilization of the South American republic. She insisted on delegitimising the politics of the president Hugo Chavez. Documents show that Clinton was interested in “how to rein in Chavez” and endorsed the amplifying of activities of The Broadcasting Board of Governors – BBG (the Marti stations, Voice of America, Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks) countering “US enemies”, among which Venezuela was also mentioned.
Recent Wiki Leaks documents reveal that Debbie Wasserman Schultz, U.S. Congresswoman from Florida and former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, who rigged the Democratic primaries in favor of Hillary Clinton, sponsored sanctions against Venezuela, despite the harsh economic situation in the country.
Coup plot in Bolivia
Clinton managed to worsen relations with Bolivia, even though it was already bad under the previous Republican administration. In 2009, when she became the Secretary of State, President Morales expelled the US ambassador from the country for supporting a opposition-led conspiracy against him. During this time, Hillary Clinton accused Morales of “fear-mongering.” Later in 2010, Chelsea Manning revealed that the plot by the US government to assassinate Bolivian President Evo Morales and orchestrate a putsch really existed. This information was published in the book “The WikiLeaks Files: The World According to US Empire”.
Coup attempt in Ecuador
In 2010 an attempted coup d’etat took place in Ecuador. Units of the National Police tried to oust President Rafael Correa. A year earlier the Ecuadorian authorities protested against the potential influence of the US on appointments to Ecuador’s top police officials. Venezuelan-American lawyer Eva Golinger claimed that the coup attempt was planned by the US. She revealed that despite the words of support, the US under Obama and Clinton continued the policy of destabilizing states of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), led by Venezuela. Their purpose was to destroy any alternative to US dominance in the Western Hemisphere.
The regime change in Paraguay
In Paraguay, President Fernando Lugo was impeached in 2012 through what he and other Latin American leaders called a “parliamentary coup”, in which the’s US recognizes the illegitimate change of President through extra-constitutional manners. Clinton’s State Department in WikiLeaks showed she was at the very least informed about the preparations for a coup attempt. Reformist Lugo was always perceived by the US with suspicion.
Influencing Brazil and Argentina
While supporting or directly orchestrating regime changes in little or medium-sized Latin American countries, Clinton explored a more delicate attitude towards two giants – Brazil and Argentina. She tried to engage Brazil in common projects and to establish personal relations with President Dilma Ruseff. At the same time, she attempted to drive a wedge between Brazil and Venezuela, claiming that she wishes Venezuela would be “looking more to its south and looking at Brazil and looking at Chile and other models of a successful country.” Regarding Argentinian President Cristina Elisabet Fernández de Kirchner, Hillary Clinton vowed for the rapprochement with her country, privately saying however that she thought her to be mentally ill, and asking how she may be influenced through emotions.
Hillary Clinton’s policy towards Latin America was always aggressive and imperialistic, and was marked with unprecedented number of coup attempts and other subversive activities. There is no evidence that she is prepared to change her mind or attitude. She treated the region as the US’s “backyard”, where the only one dominating power is the US. During her stay in office, Hillary Clinton was one of the most enthusiastic supporters of Trans-Pacific Trade and Investment Partnership. The essence of the agreement already signed by three LA nations – Chile, Peru and Mexico- is the creation of a corporate supranational structure, that would subordinate individual nations to the rule of transnational corporations. Today she claims that she opposes it, but knowing how Hillary treated her previous promises, we may assume how she will treat an agreement beneficial to big business. So economic enslavement will become one more feature of Clinton’s course towards Latin America. Pro-US presidents of Argentina and Brazil – Macri and Temer – are ready to embrace this agenda, and after these economical giants are taken over, other economies will have no escape. Donald Trump may say confusing things about Mexicans, but at least he always opposed these plans and openly states his opposition to globalism and the TTIP.
Source: Fort Russ