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  1. RichardDawson TerrorismmovementsinLatinAmerica Thisresearchpaperexplainsthe existence of terrorismmovementsinthe WesternHemisphere (especiallyinthe…
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  • 1. RichardDawson TerrorismmovementsinLatinAmerica Thisresearchpaperexplainsthe existence of terrorismmovementsinthe WesternHemisphere (especiallyinthe AndeanRegion),the linksof Hezbollah (the proxyof Iran) withthe Colombian FARC,andthe failuresof the foreignpolicyof the UnitedStates todeal withit,revealingthe lackof a counterterrorismstrategyandof coordinationamongthe differentagenciesregardingnarcotrafficand terrorism, aswell asbetweenthe State Department,the Defense Department,andthe Congressinhow to deal withterrorism inthe WesternHemisphere. Connie Mack,the RankingRepublicanof the Subcommittee onthe WesternHemisphere said:“The evidencelinkingVenezuela’sHugoChaveztothe FARCand Hezbollahisoverwhelmingaswell ashisstrategicandtactical alliance withIranthatthreatens the peace and stabilityof the whole Hemisphere.”1 Afterconductingextensive research andanalysisof terrorism inthe AndeanRegion;Ibelieve thatthe terroristmovements inLatinAmericamainlythe ColombianFARC,Hezbollah andthe Mexican Zetas, are coordinated by Iran,Cuba andVenezuelathathave developedaclose andcooperative allianceagainst the U.S. and insupportof terroristgroupsand statesincludingthe ALBA countries. AccordingtoJaime Suchlicki,these countries are increasingly coordinatingtheirpoliciesandresourcesin amultiple partnership thatinvolvesdrugs,weaponsandtrainingcamps counteractingandcircumventingU.S. policiesinthe Middle East andLatin America. Cubaisplayingastrategicrole because of hisproximityto the U.S. gatheringintelligence with electronicallysurveillance andwithhuman intelligence (HUMINT) and disseminatingitamongthe terroristorganizations.AsJaime Suchlickisaysinthe Castroand TerrorismChronology:“There existsanexus of Narcoterrorism between Hezbollahand Venezuelaasa resultof cooperation among Latin American drug cartels and the Middle East extremiststhat are beingfundedby the AndeanRegion cocaine.”2 Duringthe course of my research I have reviewedliterature aboutHezbollah (the proxyof Iran) and FARCwiththe assistance of the governmentof Colombia,the DEA,the ColombianandPeruviandesk officersof the State Department,the National Defense Universityandthe SouthCommand, and differentthinktanksinWashingtonD.C.like the Inter-AmericanDialogueandthe HudsonInstitute. And carriedout research andanalysisof terrorism inthe AndeanRegion,(specificallyinthe political, economic,militaryandsocial fields andthe impactinthe foreignpolicyof the UnitedStates. Duringmy researchI hadaccess to openanddeclassifiedinformationthathelpedme indeterminingthe level of penetrationof Hezbollahineachcountryof the region (National SecurityArchivesof the George WashingtonUniversity).Iusedthisinformationtodifferentiate Hezbollah’slinkswith FARC, other terrorist’smovementsinthe worldand political organizationslikethe ALBA Movementpromotedby 1 Connie Mack,theRanking Republican ofthe Subcommittee ontheWestern Hemisphere. 2 Pons, E. (2001). Castro and terrorism: A chronology. Coral Gables, Fla.: ICCAS.
  • 2. Hugo Chavez(formerPresidentof Venezuela),inthe WesternHemisphere.ALBA includes IranandSyria as observers .Ialsohadthe opportunityof interviewing CongresswomanElianaRos-Lehtinenand Connie Mack (bothfromFlorida) aswell asthe AmericanAmbassadorsinthe AndeanRegionandthe ColombianandPeruDeskofficersatthe State Department. Thisresearch uncovers the presence of terrorisminthe WesternHemisphereinthe Andean Region, the linksof Hezbollah (the proxyof Iran) withthe ColombianFARC,the foreignpolicyof the UnitedStates and the needtodevelopcounterinsurgencystrategiesandcounterradicalizationprograms todeal with themand to develop abettercoordinationamonglaw enforcementagenciesandthe intelligence community. I had the opportunityto enhance myresearchfindingsbyworkingwiththe USState and Defense Departments andthe National SecurityArchivesof the George WashingtonUniversity,todetermine the presence of Hezbollahinthe Andean Regionanditslinkswithnarcottraffickingandorganizedcrime at the international level. Visitingthe U.S. Southern CommandI obtainedmore informationaboutits participationinthe fightagainstnarcotraffickingandterrorismanditslevel of involvementand coordinationwiththe armedforcesof the countriesinvolvedinthe regioninordertoreview the command’sstrategiesandtacticsandits level of successandvisionof the future. Mypointsof contact withthe US SouthernCommandare JohnCope,Sr.,Fellow of the National Defense University,andDr. RichardD. Downie, formerDirectorof the CenterforHemisphericDefense Studies. Ianalyzedall the informationobtainedfromthe regionandfromthe US SouthernCommandinorderto developa hypothesisandpredictive analysis,gathered the informationandfeedbackof all the partiesinvolvedin the AndeanRegionconflictandsharedthe informationandmyconclusionswiththe OAS representativesof the five Andeancountriesandthe Ambassadorsof eachcountryinorderto make the necessaryadjustments. AmericanCongress. CongressmanConnie Mack(FL-14) and CongressmanRonKlein(FL-22),citingVenezuela’stiesto internationally-recognizedterroristorganizationssuchasthe FARC andHezbollah, introducedbipartisanlegislationinthe House of Representativesthatcalledonthe Secretaryof State to add Venezuelatothe listof statessponsoringterrorism. (Mack,KleinIntroduce BipartisanLegislationto Name VenezuelaaState Sponsorof Terror).CongressmanConnie Mack(FL-14) and CongressmanRon Klein(FL-22) introducedbipartisanlegislationinthe House of Representativesthatcallsonthe Secretary of State to addVenezuelatothe state sponsorsof terrorismlist,citingVenezuela’stiesto internationally-recognizedterroristorganizationssuchasthe ColombianFARCandHezbollah,(the proxy of Iran). The legislationwasnotenactedbecause of the pressuresexertedbythe Chevron Texacolobby inWashington,D.C.3 The State DepartmenthasnotyetincludedVenezuelainthe listof State Sponsors 3 According to informationprovidedto mein an interview with a highexecutiveofChevronTexaco, whose name must beundisclosed.
  • 3. of Terrorismthatwas alsoconfirmedtothe audience atthe PotomacInstitute byRogerNoriega,former undersecretaryof state.4 In myinterviewwith Connie Mack,the RankingRepublicanof the Subcommittee onthe Western Hemisphere whointroducedsimilarlegislationinthe 110th Congress,he toldme: “That the evidencelinksVenezuela’sHugoChaveztothe FARCand Hezbollah –twoof the most dangerousterroristorganizations,responsibleformanybombings,kidnappings,killingsanddrug trafficking–is overwhelming.He hasgiventhemmoney,weapons,resources,fuel,asafe havenwithin Venezuelanborders,andevenpublicsupport.Coupledwithhisclose tiestostate sponsorsof terrorism like Iran,Chavezcontinuouslythreatensthe peace,freedom,andstabilityof the entire hemisphere. CongresswomanElianaRos-Lehtinen,who wasalsopresent,added: “NamingVenezuelaastate sponsorof terrorismwill strengthenthe stabilityof the region.The Administrationmustnotturna blindeye toChavez’sdangerousaggressionandmustaddVenezuelato the state sponsorsof terrorismlistwithoutdelay.” AndKlein,closingthe interview said: “DesignatingVenezuelaasa state sponsorof terrorismisthe rightthingto do forour national security,” Kleinsaid.“Venezuela’srelationshipwithIrananditsterroristallieshave ledtoactionsthatcould endangerthe people of SouthFlorida.Venezuela’sassistance tothe FARCinColombiadestabilizesthe regionandplacesthe Chavezregime squarelyoutsidethe internationalcommunity.Thislegislation seekstostopVenezuela’sfacilitationof terrorismnow.The UnitedStatescannotandwill notaccept such actionstakingplace soclose to home.” National Defense University I alsointerviewedBorisSaavedra,retired AirForce armygeneral andformerheadof the Intelligence Service of Venezuela,whocurrentlyteachesatthe CenterforHemisphericDefenseof the National Defense University,where he expressedhisconcernsaboutIranianagentsinfiltratingVenezuelaand Nicaragua, because they supportterroristgroupsassociatedwithHezbollahinothercountries,and aboutthe involvementof LatinAmericainthe Iran-USconflictas a dangerousgame forthe region. Addingatthe conference atthe Hudsoninstitute thatIranandRussiaare supportingaVenezuelan nuclearprogram,that ispart of a multi polarworldwithmid-level nuclearpowers(10-15years program)thatFARCand Hezbollahare workingacrossthe world(ConferenceThursdayApril the 15th 2010 at the HudsonInstitute) 4 Noriega, R. F. (2012). “Hezbollah’s Strategic Shift: AGlobal Terrorist Threat”Washington,D.C.Retrieved fromhttp://www.aei.org/wp- content/uploads/2013/03/-hezbollahs-strategic-shift-a-global-terrorist-threat_134945797264.pdf
  • 4. ALBA Countries ALBA,the Spanish Alianza Bolivariana,alsocalledBolivarianAlliance forthe Americas,isaregional organization.Itwasfoundedin2004 by Hugo Chavez,the formerPresidentof Venezuela,andFidel Castro,then-Presidentof Cuba. Itspurpose isto promote social,political,andeconomicintegrationin Latin America. Itwas createdas an alternative tothe Free Trade Areaof the Americassponsoredbythe UnitedStates. Membercountriesinclude AntiguaandBarbuda,Bolivia,Cuba,Dominica,Ecuador, Nicaragua,SaintLucia,SaintVincentandthe Grenadines, andVenezuela. Apartfromthe eightLatin Americancountrymembers,ALBA has three observerstates:Haiti fromthe WesternHemisphere,and Iran and Syriafromthe Middle East. Although, ALBA isplannedtobe an alternative tothe Free Trade Areaof the Americasdisguisethe FARC-Hezbollahactivitiesof narco-traffickingandterrorisminthe regionas an economic/populistalternative. The leadersof these membercountriesholdyearlymeetings to discusspoliciesforthe regionandhow toimplementthem.5 Iran’smembershipin ALBA reinforces the argumentthatIranhas the intention of promotingpopulist socialisteconomicmovementslikeinthe ALBA countries of LatinAmerica.Thiswouldbe forthe purpose of provokingaconfrontationwiththe UnitedStates,leadingthemtoafinal confrontationwith the UnitedStatesas part of theirglobal strategy. Furthermore,Iargue thatthe formationof ALBA was premeditated.Forexample,showinghisintentionandvisionof the future, FidelCastro,duringhis tour of Iran,Syriaand Libya—andthree yearsbefore the foundationof the ALBA countries—declaredinIran: “Iran and Cuba,incooperationwitheach other,can bringAmericatoits knees.The U.S.regime isvery weak,andwe are witnessingthisweaknessfromclose up”6 History of FARC FARCis a Marxist–Leninistrevolutionaryguerrilla organizationthatisbasedinColombia,andisinvolved inthe ongoingColombianarmedconflict.7 FARC-EPwasoriginallyapeasantarmywhichproclaimed itself asa revolutionary,agrarian,anti-imperialistMarxist–Leninistorganizationcreatedmore thanforty yearsago. Nowit isa drugcartel andterroristorganizationof BolivarianinspirationthatopposesUnited StatesinfluenceinColombia,and isalliedwithHezbollah. Currently, itisholdingpeace negotiations withthe ColombiangovernmentatlaHavana Cuba,a country that wasdesignatedasa State Sponsorof Terrorismin1982 by the UnitedStates. Cuba haslongprovidedsafe haventomembersof Basque FatherlandandLiberty(ETA) andthe RevolutionaryArmedForcesof Colombia(FARC). Reportscontinuedtoindicate thatCuba’stiestoETA have become more distant,andthatabout eightof the two dozenETA membersinCubawere relocated withthe cooperationof the Spanishgovernment. Throughout2013, the Governmentof Cubasupported and hostednegotiationsbetweenthe FARCandthe Governmentof Colombiaaimedatbrokeringa peace agreementbetweenthe two. The Governmentof Cubahasfacilitatedthe travel of FARC 5 Encyclopedia Britannica. (2015). “FARC:Colombian MilitantGroup.” Encyclopedia britannica. Chicago, IL:Encyclopedia Britannica. 6 Pons, Eugene. (2001). “Castro and Terrorism: AChronology.”OccasionalPaper Series, Institutefor Cuban & Cuban-AmericanStudies. Retrieved from: http://www6.miami.edu/iccas/terrorism_email.pdf 7 Hezbollah. (2015). In Wikipedia. RetrievedApril22, 2015, fromhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hezbollah
  • 5. representativestoCubato participate inthese negotiations,incoordinationwithrepresentativesof the Governmentsof Colombia,Venezuela,andNorway,aswell asthe RedCross.8 Additionally,the Colombiangovernmentandthe country'slargestleft-wingrebel group,the RevolutionaryArmedForcesof Colombia(FARC),are tryingtoendmore thanfive decadesof armed conflict. The twosidesstartedholdingformal peace talksinNovember2012 in the Cubancapital, Havana. The governmentand FARCrebelseachhave ahigh-profile teaminHavana. The government's negotiationteamisledbyformerVice-PresidentHumbertode laCalle.Alsopartof the teamare retired generalsfromthe militaryand police forces,twoinstitutionswhichwere initiallyvery skeptical about the peace talks.The FARC teamisledby IvanMarquez,a memberof the FARC’ssecretariat,itshighest body.9 In May 2013, aftersix monthsof conversations,the twosidesannouncedtheyhadagreedonland reform,one of the most contentiousissuesonthe agenda. InMay 2014, theyforgeda compromise on the illegal drugstrade,one of the mainsourcesof fundingforthe FARC. Unfortunately,asetbackcame whenthe talksbetweenFARCandthe Columbiangovernment were suspended inHavanaonthe 14 of November,2014 by PresidentJuanManuel Santosof Colombia.Thiswas afterGeneral Ruben Dario Alzate wascaptured a fewdaysearlierinNovemberbythe RevolutionaryArmedForcesof Colombia (FARC). General Ruben washeadof the Titantask force,whichisincharge of fightingthe FARC inthe westerndepartmentof Choco,andwas a highprofile targetforFARC. Duringthe 34th roundof peace talks,which endedon March 27, 2015 the Colombiangovernmentand the FARC continuedtoworkontwo parallel trackstoreach agreementon victimsand endingthe conflict.Earlierprovisional agreementsonrural agrarian development, political participation,andillicit crops have alreadybeenreached.10 Abruptly, onTuesdayApril the 14 ,2015, a serioussetbackhappenedwiththe killingof 10 soldiersbythe FARCin Colombiaandwiththe resuming of the bombingsorderedbypresidentJuanManuel Santos againstthe FARC.This situation canpotentiallyputatriskthe negotiationsbeingheldatCuba.11 History of Hezbollah HezbollahwascreatedbyMuslimclericsandfundedbyIranto offerresistance tothe Israelisafterthe Israeli invasionof Lebanonin1982. Theirforceswere trainedbythe RevolutionaryGuardthat wassent by the AyatollahKhomeiniwiththe authorizationof the Syriangovernment.Afterthe invasion,Israel occupieda stripof SouthLebanonand Hezbollahwagedaguerrillacampaignsupportedbyacontingent of 1,500 IranianRevolutionaryGuards,defeatingthem. Israel hadtowithdraw fromSouthLebanonon May 24, 2000. 8 State Department PublicDiplomacyOverview. Retrieved from:http://www.state.gov/j/ct/list/c14151.htm) 9 BBC News. (2015,January 15). What is at stakein theColombian peaceprocess? Retrieved fromhttp://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin- america-19875363 10 Bouvier, Ginny.(2015,March 30). “Colombia Calls.”Retrieved from: https://vbouvier.wordpress.com/author/vbouvier/ 11 Neuman, William. (April 15,2015). “Killing of10 Soldiers Deals a Setback to Colombian PeaceTalks with FARC Rebels.” The New York Times. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/16/world/americas/colombia-attack-attributed-to-farc-threatens-peace-talks.html
  • 6. Hezbollahnowhasseatsinthe Lebanese governmentprogramsforsocial developmentandcharitable organizations,aradioand TV station,anda large militarydeploymentoutside Lebanon’sborders.They have become a “state withinastate” andhave strong Shi’asupportbutface resistance fromthe Sunni’s. Theirmilitarystrengthgrewsignificantlyafterthe endof the Israeli occupationespeciallyitsparamilitary wing12 . Hezbollahisnowmore powerfulthanthe Lebanese Army,receivingmilitarytraining,weapons and financial supportfromIranandpolitical supportfromthe Syriangovernment. Accordingto Yussef BodanskyHezbollah’sfatwafromthe 1980’s mentioned“we are makingdrugsfor Satan – Americaand Jews.If we cannotkill themwithguns,sowe will kill themwithdrugs”13 Sheikh Subhi Tufaili wasitsfirstSecretary-General.In1991 SheikhSayedAbbasal-Musawi substitutedas Secretary-General,buthe waskilledwithinmonthsbyIsrael andSheikhSayyedHassanNasrallah succeededhim.14 The twobombingsthatHezbollahclaimedresponsibilityfortookplace in1992 and 1994 inBuenos Airesandkilled 115 Israeli Embassyandthe JewishMutual Associationmembers,leaving125 injured.In addition,“HezbollahisconsideredaproxyforIran,whohas beenheavilyinvestinginVenezuela. PresidentAhmadinejadandPresidentChavez’srevolutionaryideologies have unitedboth administrations”.15 “Chavezhas beenaccusedrepeatedlyforharboringterroristorganizationsamongthemFARCand Hezbollah.U.Sofficialshave expressedconcernsthatHezbollahisable totap intolarge Lebanese DiasporainVenezuelawhere FARCmembershave beenhiding”.16 The ItaliannewspaperCorriere dellaSerareportedthatHezbollahhas“establishedacenterof operationsinCubato expanditsterroristactivityandfacilitateanattackon Israeli targetsin Latin America”.The newspaperalsoreportedthatHezbollahmightbe planningamajorattack againstIsraeli targetsin the westernhemisphere inretaliationfor Israel’s killingof Hezbollah’s chief assassin,Imad Mughniyeh, inDamascusin2008. Mughniyeh wasaHezbollahterroristleaderimplicatedinthe two huge attacks inBuenosAiresArgentinainthe 1990’s on Jewishtargets. Last Januarythe 18th NismananArgentineanprosecutorwasfounddeathinhisapartmentone day before goingtothe Congresstosupport his accusations againstChristinaKirchnerthe Argentinean Presidentcoverupinfavorof Iranianinvolvementinthe bombingsforeconomicandpolitical reasons.17 12 Berman, I. “Statementto the U.S.Houseof Representatives.” Committee onHomeland Security, Subcommittee onCounterterrorism and Intelligence, 2011. 13 Halibozek,E., & Jones, A. (2008). TheCorporate Security Professional’s Handbookon Terrorism. Elsevier. 14 Hezbollah. (2015). In Wikipedia.Retrieved April22,2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hezbollah 15 Berman, I. “Statementto the U.S.Houseof Representatives.” Committee onHomeland Security, Subcommittee onCounterterrorism and Intelligence, 2011. 16 Berman, I. “Statement to theU.S. House of Representatives.”Committeeon HomelandSecurity,Subcommitteeon Counterterrorismand Intelligence, 2011. 17 Zraik, Karen.(February 20, 2015) “TheMysterious DeathofAlberto Nisman.” The New York Times. Retrievedfrom: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/02/07/world/americas/argentina-alberto-nisman-case.html
  • 7. RecentlypresidentMaduroof Venezuelahasbeen accusedof negotiatingtrainingcampsforHezbollah inVenezuelabyEmil Blazcoinhisbook“BumeranChavez”.18 Hezbollah’sLinksto Latin America In the AndeanRegion,HezbollahworksbycreatingconnectionswithFARC. There existsfactual informationaboutthe linksof the FARCwithHezbollahas takenfromRaul Reyes’computers. Reyes was the highestleaderof FARCandwas killedathisterroristbase inEcuadoracross the borderColombiaby the Colombian Army.19 The CounterTerrorismBureauof the State Departmentarrangeda meetingforme with the DEA CountryTeamat the AmericanEmbassyinLima,Peru,where theyconfirmedtome the presence of HezbollahinPeru(DEA Peru2012), somethingwhichIhadalsoheardfromJay Bergman,Regional Directorof the DEA inColombia,in2010.i20 The DEA CountryTeamalsoinformedme thatthe leaderof ShiningPathinthe VRAEAyacucho,Jose Quispe Palomino,whoreplacedArtemio,isthe linkwith the FARCand HezbollahinPeru.21 IalsointerviewedduringmyfieldtriptoPeru CarmenMasiasthe Czar antidrugand she commentedme thatapparentlythe DEA was exchangingweaponsfordrugstoShining Path at the VRAE(Valleyof the RiversApurimacandEne).AfterthatI metwiththe countryteam of CEDRO that wasworkingat the VRAE to preventthe use of drugsinthe communityandpromote cultural and recreational activitiesamongthemmentioningme thatCoronel Rojasincharge of intelligence atthe VRAEalsomentionthemthatDEA wasexchangingweaponsfordrugsinexchange for informationthatledtothe capture of Artemio. AuthoritiesinPeruhave reportedlyarrestedaHezbollahmemberwhowasallegedlyplanningtocarry out attacks againstIsraeli andJewishtargetsinthe SouthAmericancountry.22 Mossad Intelligence Service providedPeruvianintelligenceserviceswithinformationabout Amador.DanMariashinof B’Nai B’rithdeclared atthe HudsonInstitute “The inc
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