Newsbrief: Colombian President Seeks Iraq-Like Mobilization Against Traffickers 1/17/03

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14. Newsbrief: Colombian President Seeks Iraq-Like Mobilization Against Traffickers

Never one to miss an opportunity to rachet up war and talk of war, hardline Colombian President Álvaro Uribe asked the US government Wednesday to deploy a military force in Caribbean and Pacific waters around Colombia similar to the build-up the US is now undertaking near Iraq. Speaking in Quito, Ecuador, at the nomination of incoming Ecuadorian President Lucio Gutierrez, Uribe continued his campaign to confound armed opposition to his regime with the global "war on terrorism" -- a campaign that has resonated with the Bush administration, which has labeled all parties to the ongoing Colombian civil war except the Colombian state as "terrorists."

"I see that the conflict of the drug trade and terrorism in Colombia is more dangerous to the democratic stability of the continent in the medium- and long-term than the conflict with Iraq itself," Uribe said in remarks reprinted in El Tiempo (Bogota). "If you [the US] are sending to the Persian Gulf thousands and thousands of men and all that technology, then what you must do is continue with the same force and make the same decision about all the routes where the drug business is, where the money-laundering is, where the arms traffic is," he added.

While the US and the democratic world are preoccupied with Iraq, said Uribe, "a greater problem of terrorism is growing, against Colombian democracy, against the continent, against the world, financed by drugs," Uribe warned. "This is a more serious menace than Iraq. Why do they not think of a similar operation to remove the drug traffic from the seas and skies? They need a real operation," he said, obliquely criticizing his US allies and financiers. "There is much talk, but little action."

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Issue #272, 1/17/03 The Road to Mérida: Interviews with Participants in the "Out from the Shadows" Campaign | The Road to Mérida: Interview with Dr. Francisco Fernandez, Anthropologist and Former Rector of Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán | The Road to Mérida: Interview with Al Giordano, publisher of Narco News | Bolivian Government Represses Coca Protests, Four Dead... So Far | Ed Rosenthal Medical Marijuana Trial Underway -- Judge Blocks Mention of Prop. 215, Has Trouble Seating Jury | Canadian Prime Minister Promises Motion on Decriminalization as Courts Continue to Chip Away at Marijuana Laws | Latin American Anti-Prohibition Conference, Feb. 12-15, Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico | Cumbre Internacional Sobre Legalización, 15-Dec Febrero, Mérida, México | Newsbrief: Souder Pushes Partial HEA Reform, Frank to Reintroduce Drug Provision Repeal Bill | Newsbrief: Racine Caves Before the Ravers | Newsbrief: MPP "War on Drug Czar" Continues -- State Reacts to Allegations | Newsbrief: 12 Dead in Brazil as Drug Police Raid Shantytowns | Newsbrief: Mexican Soldiers Bust Narcs | Newsbrief: Colombian President Seeks Iraq-Like Mobilization Against Traffickers | Newsbrief: Some Colombian Terrorists May Be More Equal Than Others | Newsbrief: Alaska Lieutenant Governor Disqualifies Marijuana Legalization Petition Signatures, Proponents Vow Fight | Newsbrief: Return of the RAVE Act | Newsbrief: Ecstasy Rarely Kills, British Study Finds | Alan Shoemaker Ayahuasca Legal Defense Fund Needs Support | Media Scan: Washington on Forchion, Cockburn on Rosenthal, Forbes on Walters, Szasz on Drug Medicalization, Bruce McKinney, GAO on DARE | DC Job Opportunity at DRCNet -- Campus Coordinator | The Reformer's Calendar
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