Monday, October 6, 2008
The Americas, New Arms Races & the Right to Self-defense
By Jerry Brewer
A new era of global conflict
and global insurgency has raised its diabolical head in the Western Hemisphere. This
resurrection brought about by leftist rhetoric, manipulation, and provocative military movement and massive arms purchases. In fact, Latin America is en route to a new arms race.
President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela
has focused his efforts on an administrative that is an obvious and growing threat to the stability of the region. Colombian officials labeled the joint military maneuvers of Venezuela with Russia as "tensions between
the United States and Russia being relocated to Andean and Caribbean scenarios."
The facts of such statements
are clearly tempered with the acts of Chavez's forced Marxist ideology on his people – a modern creation of socialism
and leftist rhetoric directed at the manipulation of Venezuela's neighboring countries by threat and fear. In his ranting directed at the U.S., Chavez called the U.S. president the "Devil," as well as referring
to the U.S. populace as "Yankees of … (excrement)."
He joins Iran's President Ahmadinejad
as "kings" of terrorist threat. Ahmadinejad continues to threaten the extinction
of Israel in what could only be described as another Holocaust.
Venezuela has increased its military
budget by nearly 50% with the country's petrodollar revenue, clearly the largest military investment in the region. Military equipment purchased from Russia has been estimated at around US$3 billion. The acquisition of multi-purpose aircraft/fighters, 50 helicopters, and 100,000 AK-103 rifles are clear
indications of a propensity to use them.
Latin America has seen
its fill of weapons, ordnance, and death throughout its history by rogue leftist regimes attempting to end freedom and democracy,
and force dictatorial mandates. Transnational crime in the region, overwhelmingly
directed at instilling fear and rejecting the rule of law and authority, has been taking root from the tri-border confluence
of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay to the U.S. border with Mexico.
The ritual slaughter is indiscriminate
and continuous. Over the past two years almost 20% of the approximate 25,000
international terrorist attacks were directed against law enforcement. In the
past several years automatic weapons have replaced bombs as the number one weapon of choice for international terrorist organizations.
Hugo Chavez has brought the Russian
military – that he enthusiastically embraces – to the region with Russian Tupolev Tu-160 bombers landing in Venezuela
recently for "joint military maneuvers." These bombers have the capability of
carrying multiple cruise missiles and nuclear warheads. Chavez comically stated
that "Russia brings security to Latin America." When Chavez's rhetoric overloads
his posture, he sometimes cries wolf as he accuses the United States of planning to invade Venezuela or assassinate him.
It is indeed clear that
Venezuela has no real threat from anyone in the Western Hemisphere, albeit the internal struggles by the homeless and hungry
within its homeland due to the populace not reaping benefits from the massive oil income.
Meanwhile, arms escalation
in Latin America increases as Brazil and Chile step up their arms purchases in response to the new potential for threat in
the region. While the United States continues to be engaged and distracted in
fighting terrorism in Afghanistan, the migration of Middle Eastern terrorists has rapidly expanded into Latin America.
Preventing terrorism, as well
as tactically and strategically engaging terrorists, requires intensive organizing and training among an international community
as a first line of defense. Colombia, as a proactive example, has had much success
against their domestic insurgency with the FARC and ELN guerrillas, as well as drug cartels.
Many of these terror-trained commandos have been displaced to points north in Central America and beyond.
The terrorist threat is a global
phenomenon. The specter of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD)
is a critical issue. It is an ever-changing threat of home grown sleeper cells,
as well as independent "lone wolf" attacks instigated by the radicalization efforts of leftwing organizations, rogue foreign
intelligence services, and other terrorist group hierarchies. This newest trend
in terrorist modus operandi shows innovative and loosely organized self-financed international networks.
The conceptual model of antiterrorism
is a deliberate and dynamic process that has been learned in response to prior attacks.
The deployment capabilities of antiterrorism forces must incorporate coordinated and synchronized offensive and defensive
measures, while degrading opportunities for the terrorists to be successful.
Those in the path of terrorists
have an inherent right to self-defense. As the United States initiated military
operations in 2001 against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, and strongholds of al-Qaeda since 1996, with the assistance
of 136 countries Latin American nations must now step up in unity to secure their homelands.
Jerry Brewer is Vice President of Criminal Justice International Associates, a global risk mitigation firm headquartered
in Miami, Florida.