From the LA Times: U.S. bending rules on Colombia terror? By Josh Meyer, Times Staff Writer, July 22, 2007
Several lawmakers say multinationals that aid violent groups in return for protection are not being prosecuted.
The Bush administration has declared that a hallmark of its counter-terrorism policy is to go after the financiers of terrorism just as aggressively as the terrorists themselves ? anywhere in the world. But the situation in Colombia underscores the difficulty in prosecuting such goals when it conflicts with American economic interests abroad and trade relations with friendly governments. Making the matter particularly sensitive, the U.S. is in the midst of negotiating a free-trade agreement with Colombia, and sends it billions annually in military and other aid.
“Do our economic interests trump the war on terror? Are we making trade-offs?” Delahunt asked. “If we are, at the very least the public should know about it.”
Lance Compa, an international trade specialist at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, acknowledged that there were many competing priorities in Colombia.
“But the general proposition that gross human rights violations should be weighed against trade policy and foreign policy is a mistake,” Compa said. “The paramilitaries have infiltrated the highest levels of the [Colombian] government, and the Bush administration is looking the other way.
“It makes it all the more incumbent on U.S. policymakers to put a stop to any corporate dealings with paramilitary death squads.”
So we are financing them over there so we can fight them over there2 so we can get rich over here. I see. Another magic triangle.
And did we ever expect to hear “It makes it all the more incumbent on U.S. policy makers to put a stop to any corporate dealings with paramilitary death squads”? Excuse me, I thought they were killing people only with fake food, denial of medical care, contaminating the environment, freezing wages, guzzling gas, dropping retirement plans, exporting jobs, downsizing, and outsourcing. Who thought ??corporate dealings with paramilitary death squads??