Ecuador - State Sponsor of Terrorism?

A rather controversial title, but it is looking increasingly likely that it could soon be proved that Ecuador is a state sponsor of terrorism. So should you visit Ecuador knowing that it’s President has received funding from terrorists, and that it’s government actively supports terrorists?  

This week it came to light that Ecuador’s President, Rafael Correa, received funding for his presidential campaign from FARC guerillas in Colombia.  Many of us “Westerners” from Europe/North America mistakenly imagine the FARC as being some type of semi-romantic socialist movement that fights for Colombia’s poor, but the actual truth is that the FARC are a bunch of drug-running terrorists who recruit child soldiers, assassinate indigenous leaders, bomb and murder innocent civilians and generally terrorize the population of Colombia, almost all of whom hate the group.

This begs the question - should you actually travel to Ecuador right now?  Ethical travellers often argue that we shouldn’t be travelling to Myanmar/Burma or Cuba.  Might they soon start arguing that we shouldn’t travel to Ecuador, given the fact that it is becoming evident that the government supports terrorist activity over the border in Colombia?  By visiting Ecuador, it might be argued that one is helping to prop up an increasingly oppressive and aggressive government that has received funding from and now (many argue) helps to fund and support terrorists.

So think about it if you’re an ethical traveller - here’s some reading - educate yourself about Latin American politics before you visit:

Wall Street Journal article about Ecuador’s cosy relationship with the FARC - a very informative article revealing various ways in which Ecuador supports FARC terrorists.

Associated Press video about the links between Ecuador’s president & FARC - (wait for the 15 sec advert at the start to pass).

Associated Press article about Correa’s links to terrorists

Reuters Article about the video and Correa’s rebuttal

Washington Post Article about Venezuela’s state complicity with drug traffickers - don’t even get me started about Chavez and Venezuela! It’s long been known that Venezuela supports terrorists in Colombia. As an ethical traveller, there is no way in the world you should consider visiting Venezuela.

Guardian article about Chavez’s links to the cocaine trade & FARC terrorists - this really is a fascinating read.

I’d like to point out that I have lived in both Ecuador and Colombia, and have many friends in both countries. Sadly, many of my Ecuadorean friends, some of whom actually campaign on behalf of Correa, are very misguided indeed.

6 Responses to “Ecuador - State Sponsor of Terrorism?”

  1. What a load of BS! You think that it is only FARC involved in drug trafficking and terrorism? what a joke, do some research and see how the paramilitary and government of Colombia is just as heavily involved. Just look at the THOUSANDS of trade unionists murdered in Colombia over the last decades. The Government of Correa is a progressive socialist leaning and democratically elected. Correa does not support FARC. All you need to do is look at the number of FARC camps destroyed under the Correa government as opposed to the past. What you have written above is pure propaganda based on lies designed to undermine democratically elected governments that actually have the support of the majority poor. This type of propaganda is actually only coming from the elite minority that want to preserve their privilege.
    There is no evidence Correa or his government supports FARC actually the evidence supports the opposite. But even if FARC somehow did fund the campaign it doesnt mean it was known to Correa,
    Left and right leading organisations tend to support those that are the best for their ideologies and interests, even if they are not on the same side.
    It is without doubt that the US has been a state sponsor of terrorism in latin America, supporting thugs that provide the elite protection of their business interests. But are you suggesting we not travel there also?

  2. Adam,

    you say “do some research and see how the paramilitary and government of Colombia is just as heavily involved” in drug trafficking and terrorism - can you help me there? I’d really like to see some evidence of Uribe’s governments involvement in terrorism and drug trafficking.

    “Correa does not support FARC” - you clearly haven’t read the Wall Street journal article I’ve linked to above. Read it - it provides strong evidence that Correa & Ecuador do indeed support the FARC. Encouraging the international community to grant “belligerent status”(ie. International legitimacy), is a means of supporting & helping the FARC. Just because Ecuador went and dismantled a couple of FARC camps a few days after the Colombian raid into Ecuador’s terrority doesn’t mean that they pro-actively do much about these camps normally. What a publicity stunt - you’re the one falling for the propaganda I would suggest.

  3. Heres a few for you just to start:

    zcommunications.org/znet/viewArticle/18642
    ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=46600
    colombiasupport.net/200004/znet-chomsky-0424.html
    redpepper.org.uk/Sans-titre

    I suggest swallowing your pride Chris and realise at the very least that there is alot more to it than the articles you refer to suggest.

    #

    And another
    www.zmag.org/znet/viewArticle/14562

    “can you help me there? I’d really like to see some evidence of Uribe’s governments involvement in terrorism and drug trafficking”

    http://www.wola.org/media/Feb%202007%20Para%20Demob%20Update.pdf

    And here some general background you could well do to read

    http://www.utdallas.edu/~pineres/Drugs,%20Violence%20and%20Development%20in%20Colombia%20with%20maps.pdf

  4. Thanks for the links Adam - I found them interesting reading, though nothing particularly new for me. To be honest, a lot of those articles are rather out of date, and relate to the Colombia of many years ago rather than the Colombia of present. There’s no doubt that a lot of the “old school” Colombian politicians have a rather murky past - but to suggest that there is now top level (Colombian) government complicity in terrorism and drug trafficking is rather absurd. On the other hand, to suggest that there is currently top level Ecuadorean involvement with the FARC is rather easier, as proved by the authorative links I’ve provided. Lets talk about now, not 5/10/20 years ago - Colombia has had a terrible past, one that it is only just beginning to shake off. You haven’t actually suggested any authorative sources/links there - a few of the authors (especially the first one) are so uninformed I find it offensive. While I do appreciate that Noam Chomsky always raises many fascinating and interesting points (I love his books - especially Failed States) - I hope you realise that you’ve got to take his articles along with a large pinch of salt - he’s hardly the most balanced of commentators.

  5. Articles out of date???
    Article 1 2008
    Article 2 2009
    Article 3 2001?
    Article 5 2007
    Article 6 2007
    Article 7 2002 or 2003
    You say take Noam Chomsky with a pinch of salt, what about the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal? And if you like reading chomsky mabye you should look at “manufacturing consent”, maybe you might see it as out of date, but relevant I think to todays media and their connection to large corporate interests.

    You are jumping to conclusions and pointing the finger at Ecuador as being a “state sponsor of terrorism” but if you research US foreign policy or Colombian gov support for paramilitaries (who according to the Colombian Commission of Jurists commit 70% of the atrocities) you will see that it is hypocritical to say we should boycott visting Ecuador and not the US or Colombia. The point is that there is alot of right wing propaganda designed to undermine governments hostile to the business interests of the elite, regardless if they are democratically elected or not.

    Unfortunately most of the large foreign media have distorted the positive work and intentions of the Correa government that tend to serve the interests of the poor rather than the elite, instead trying to falsely portray Correa as some sort of crazy dictator, when he is in fact a highly intelligent academic and economist with good intentions. Researching the matter people can make up their own minds

  6. We’ll agree to disagree then Adam. By all means carry on the debate at http://poorbuthappy.com/colombia/post/does-ecuador-sponsor-terrorism/ …. I’m off travelling for 6 weeks….