Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Real Scandals of Obama's Latin America Summit

A US-trained 'jungle commando' disembarks from a
Blackhawk helicopter, while a crop-spraying plane
flies past, during an anti-drug operation in an illegal
coca plantation, in 2000, under the US-backed,
billion-dollar Plan Colombia.
(photo: Reuters/Eliana Aponte
By Amy Goodman, Guardian UK
21 April 12

resident Barack Obama's re-election campaign launched its first Spanish-language ads this week, just after returning from the Summit of the Americas. He spent three days in Colombia, longer than any president in US history. The trip was marred, however, by a prostitution scandal involving the US military and secret service. General Martin Dempsey, chair of the US joint chiefs of staff, said:
"We let the boss down, because nobody's talking about what went on in Colombia other than this incident."
Dempsey is right. It also served as a metaphor for the US government's ongoing treatment of Latin America.
The scandal reportedly involves 11 members of the US secret service and five members of the US Army special forces, who allegedly met prostitutes at one or more bars in Cartagena and took up to 20 of the women back to their hotel, some of whom may have been minors. This all deserves thorough investigation, but so do the policy positions that Obama promoted while in Cartagena.
First, the war on drugs. Obama stated at the summit: READ MORE

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