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OP/ED: Another Ecuadorian Political Eruption?

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posted on Apr, 21 2005 @ 09:23 PM
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Will Ecuador survive as a free nation or succumb to some sort of colonial status? This question is on the minds of Ecuador's neighbors as the nation descends into chaos amid another violent political movement. Is America or will America be justified in sending in troops to restore order?
 



Reuters
QUITO, Ecuador (Reuters) - Brazil granted asylum to Ecuador's ousted president Lucio Gutierrez on Thursday as his successor named a new Cabinet in an attempt to restore political stability after a week of violent protests.
Gutierrez, the third president of the Andean nation toppled amid popular unrest in eight years, was still holed up in Brazil's embassy residence in Quito, where he fled on Wednesday after angry crowds stopped him from leaving the country.
-and-
CONSTITUTIONAL SOLUTION
Still, U.S. officials were cautious when asked about recognizing the new government, but said they were working with Quito authorities to help ensure a constitutional solution.
"There needs now to be a constitutional process to get to elections, if that is what is in the future," Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told Fox News.
Ecuador is South America's fifth-largest oil producer and the region's No. 2 exporter of crude to the United States behind Venezuela, but state oil firm Petroecuador said production and shipments were unaffected by the turmoil.

What is going on in Ecuador?


CIA factbook
The "Republic of the Equator" was one of three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830 (the others being Colombia and Venezuela). Between 1904 and 1942, Ecuador lost territories in a series of conflicts with its neighbors. A border war with Peru that flared in 1995 was resolved in 1999. Although Ecuador marked 25 years of civilian governance in 2004, the period has been marred by political instability. Nine presidents have governed Ecuador since 1996.



CIA factbook

The President of Ecuador is hiding out in the Brazilian embassy. Since the last military coup (2000) politics in the country have remained highly charged. Gutierrez (President) came to power from the Army with promises of reform. As his policies failed to correct the fractured economy demands from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) caused increasing unrest as austerity programs were forced upon the nation.


CNN

Finally a $20 billion default forced Ecuador to 'dollarize' the economy as Panama had done previously. With the economy now effectively controlled by the U.S. Treasury the nation is in turmoil.

Military coups in 1925, 1963, and 1972 followed decades of corruption by a ruling elite. The vast majority of Ecuadorans are mestizo (mixed race) while the ruling elite are primarily of European descent (white). The latest coup was brief, used to oust
the Supreme Court has been disbanded as of April 18th.

Ecuador supplies about 350,000 barrels of oil a day to the U.S.. while exports in bananas and cocoa assist in the exports the IMF mandated austerity collapsed the local economy.

A nation on the brink of collapse. Will the U.S. Intervene? As history has shown the possibility is real and imminent, especially if oil exports become interrupted. Brazil and near neighbors in South America are alarmed at the prospects of American intervention.

While Ecuador has all the trappings of a democracy the true enfranchisement of the masses is absent. Centuries of oligarchial rule have left the nation of 12 ½ million with over 8 million impoverished peasants that once again are clamoring for some type of economic justice.

Will America be justified to militarily impose its presence in another nation? If America moves in this direction then will Venezuela become even more nervous and belligerent?

Financial times

Related News Links:
Independent news- Supreme Court link
hacktivismo
News telegraph
News com au

Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
ATSNN thread about Bolivia(neighbor)
ATSNN thread about arms embargo


[edit on 21-4-2005 by JoeDoaks]




posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 12:46 PM
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I wonder if this will affect the oil trade with the US, more and more I see the people trying to get hold of their countries back from governments that all they do is to profits for themselves and forget about the citizens.

Now US will have to keep not only on Venezuela that has taken matters of their own destiny in their hands but also Ecuador, I wonder what will come out of all this, if this country also take the matters of their resources in their hands too.



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 12:58 PM
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I agree marge, oil trade must be a large concern. An on-going insurgency lurks in the same region as the oil industry. without a functioning central government to protect the fields and supply conduits disruptions are more than possible.

This is indeed another sad turn for this ancient area. Very impoverished masses ecking out a living could erupt into another South American style war.



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 01:20 PM
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You know one thing that is hard to understand is......that countries that have oil most of their citizens are poor, how in the world this countries with so much wealth in natural resources can not keep their citizens in better conditions.

Eventually the people is going to see that the wealth of their country is only for the elite while they are starving and occurs the people will end up taking matters in their hands.

The problems is how to avoid having another elite born to control the wealth, eventually power does corrupt leaders.



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 01:22 PM
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Ecuador isn't much of a power house in the oil industry. So if the implication is that we would become involved in order to preserve some stability dependent on the 300,000 bbl we get from them, I don't think it holds much water.

In relation to how this could be interpreted by Venezuela, it's not exactly all that close geographically. Furthermore, Venezuela has a couple of pretty good supporters now in their oil industry Watch out OPEC There's a New Gang in Town, so I'm not sure they're going to get all that nervous about what the U.S. will do. I have a feeling China has been able to convince them that the U.S. constituting the largest consuming nation is only for the short future - not the long-term future, and Venezuela has had the long-term vision to listen.

What's of greater concern to me is that the entire area - Ecuador, Colombia and Peru seem to be each in their own state of upheaval right now. It's a bit of a jicky region.



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 01:25 PM
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I agree marge. It isn't just oil. The end result is always the same as well. Look at South Africa, Iraq, Iran, the list is long.

As long as a few control the wealth then poverty and turmoil result. Sad in places lioke Ecuador where a real and viable nation could be built with dispersion of wealth. But then 'they' wouldn't be so rich



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 02:18 PM
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Ecuador has had 9 presidents since 1996, that's a president each year. Change in any country does not happen in one year, so i don't think the people have given enough time for these former presidents to actually make a change in Ecuador.

BTW Lucio Gutierrez is a leftist and he has claimed, like so many others do nowadays, that the problems that are happening in Ecuador are financed by "business tycoons....."


Gutierrez had said earlier he would not resign and insisted the protests were financed by business tycoons.


Excerpted from.
sg.news.yahoo.com...

One more thing worth of notice is that the protests have not really been that big from 10,000-50,000 protesters that i know of.


[edit on 24-4-2005 by Muaddib]



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 02:26 PM
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Muaddib do you think that is all about the control of the oil in that country? taking in consideration that as now we have been worry so much about oil resources been depleted.

I feel that in countries like south America is going to be struggle more than ever for control of the oil.



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 02:56 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043
Muaddib do you think that is all about the control of the oil in that country? taking in consideration that as now we have been worry so much about oil resources been depleted.

I feel that in countries like south America is going to be struggle more than ever for control of the oil.


Marg, what is happening in South America is not about oil. There is a movement that has been infiltrating in south America that they do not want any south american country to have any ties with the US....

Gutierrez came into power in Ecuador with the promise that he would end any cooperation with the US, he was backed back then by the CONAIE, (Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador) but when he came to power he strenghtened the ties with the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the US.

Last year there was a large demonstration against Gutierrez which was initiated by the CONAIE as a response to the attempt on the life of the president of this group. The president of CONAIE, Leonidas Iza, was attacked on February 1, 2004 after he had completed a visit with president castro in Cuba.... castro has been known to support and give aid, in all manners to such leftist revolutionaries.

Gutierrez is a leftist, which is why CONAIE helped him get in power, but he saw that in order to help the economy of Ecuador the country needed an alliance with the US. When this happened the rest of the "revolutionaries" decided to break the governing alliance they had until last year and oust Gutierrez.

---edited for errors---

[edit on 24-4-2005 by Muaddib]



posted on Apr, 24 2005 @ 08:58 PM
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Reading the comments so far I can see my view of Ecuador is a bit different from some others.

As to 350,000 barrels of oil not being worth a military pressence (Valhall), I'm not all that sure I agree with this. These fields are paid for, no development cost. They at one time belonged to American companies (Texaco mainly.) Although the U.S. Takes between 315-350,000 of this, the fields are producing 528,000 (DOE site)


Several exceptional factors affect oil production in Ecuador. First, many private companies have clashed with the government over contract and tax issues, especially dealing with rebates of the value-added tax (VAT) paid by oil exporters. Both Occidental Petroleum and EnCana have taken legal action against the Ecuadorian government over VAT rebates.


While 1/3 million barrels a day doesn't compare with Canada or Saudi Arabia, over a years time 113 million barrels is nothing to throw away. Pipeline expansion projects that would have doubled the capacity have not been completed. As much as $2.8 Billion dollars (American) is contemplated for new investments in this area. This was all 'in the mill' to be completed by 2003. Ecudorian reserves of four of its fields exceed 900 million barrels.

Internet data on Ecuador varies greatly from site to site. If there is a consensus, it is that there is no consensus.

Others have raised issues relating to non-oil related reasons (Muaddid, marg). This may be as much a cause belli as any to a military entry in to the country. This entire area (Colombia down to Chile) has been a hot bed of revolutionaries, gangs and drug lords for decades. The Shining Path and its ilk operate from Peru but Ecuador has its own 'brand' of revolutionaries. PCMLE (claiming 40 years), to Trotskyites selling books on the web (capitalism?) Ecuador has a long history beginning with Simon Bolivar of revolutionaries.

external image

Ecuador is just south of Columbia and would make a fine port location for trans-Andean/Amazon exports to Asia (China!)




Here's the links again from the original post. I checked them and the ones in the story got 'garbled'- my fault.

Financial times

Related News Links:
Independent news- Supreme Court link
hacktivismo
News telegraph
News com au

Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
ATSNN thread about Bolivia(neighbor)
ATSNN thread about arms embargo







 
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