US ‘War of Terrorism’ extends to Venezuela
By Andy Goodall
Oct 20, 2006, 13:20
On October 17th U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul (TX), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security Subcommittee on Investigations, released a report on border violence in the Southwest. The bulk of the report – 38 pages out of 39 – deals with the increasing violence and influence of Mexican drug cartels operating on the US southern flank and is obviously of great concern for US security and the health of its population from the increasing “drug menace” which is being pushed by more narcotics consumption at home. (See page 32 of the report, and footnote 117)
On October 17th Fox News interviewed McCaul and the next day CNN followed suit. Both interviews allowed McCaul to bring Venezuela into the mix alleging that the Venezuelan government has been issuing ID documents to potential terrorists from Colombia, Cuba and the Middle East, countries which host foreign terrorist organizations.
The source for these revelations is an article written by one Linda Robinson in US News and World Report on October 6th 2003 and can hardly be classified as ” “intelligence information.” This article is a mix of hearsay and innuendo and when it was published three years ago was part of the campaign to discredit the democratically elected and constitutional government of President Hugo Chávez, who called the article “sewage and disgusting” when questioned about it in 2003.
Robinson provides no hard evidence for her claims in the article which was long since discredited in 2003. The US taxpayer should be asking the question why millions of dollars are spent producing House Subcommittee Reports based on spurious allegations from a paid hack?
At this time in 2003 Venezuelan authorities were issuing ID documents to millions of Venezuelans and foreign residents who did not possess such documents, since it is a constitutional right for everyone to have a legal identity in Venezuela and hence the right to vote in elections. In this context, unidentified US officials stated at that time: “The list easily totaled several thousand,” the official says. “Colombians were the largest group; there were more than a thousand of them. It also included many from Middle Eastern `countries of interest’ like Syria, Egypt, Pakistan, Lebanon.” The official adds: “It was shocking to see how extensive the list was.”
What is not mentioned is that there are at least four million Colombians historically living in Venezuela and the other countries mentioned also have large populations in Venezuela as a multi-ethnic and multi-cultural country. None of this is new. However, it was twisted into a red herring in 2003 and has now been revived by McCaul in his October 17th report.
Read the rest of it here.