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US officials threaten Latin America

This week, US officials insisted in previous allegations about Cuba's alleged weapons of mass destruction program.

Quoting baseless reports, Bush administration says Cuba may hide weapons of mass destruction; Venezuela may aid terrorists in the Caribbean island of St. Margarite; Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay may hold a terrorist sanctuary on their triple border and are a source of instability due to their “left wing populist rhetoric”.

This week, US officials insisted in previous allegations about Cuba's alleged weapons of mass destruction program. Quoting baseless reports, Mr. John Bolton, undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, said there is a strong case for believing Cuba has a biological weapons program. Independent sources and the Cuban government denied the allegations, unless they are not new.

Mr. Bolton first made allegations about Cuba in May 2002, on the eve of former President Carter's trip to the island.  At the time, Bolton's charge, which was later repeated by other officials, was much more circumscribed. He said Cuba had "at least a limited, developmental offensive biological warfare research-and-development effort". Bolton said then that Cuba was providing some of its technology to rogue states. Jimmy Carter said he never received information about that.

A spokesman for the Cuban Interests Section in Washington, D.C., ridiculed Bolton's allegations yesterday. “Those are the usual, ridiculous lies that this man habitually makes about Cuba," said Lazaro Herrera Martinez, first secretary of the Interests Section. "It is ridiculous to say that Cuba poses a threat to the national security" of the United States.

However, it is not the first time Bush administration makes such groundless accusations. Early this month, a top US official said Venezuela may aid terrorist in the Caribbean island of St. Margarite, under its jurisdiction. The information was denied by Caracas and other independent sources.

Even earlier, US Southern Command Chief Officer, Cap. Hill had repeatedly expressed his concern about the situation in the triple border between Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. The area is well known by the large Arab community that has lived there for decades... And nothing less, despite the usual black market operations that take place in almost every South American border. Both Brazil’s and Argentina’s secret services said they had no information regarding terrorists movements there. However, Washington insists.

Recently, it became known that disregarding self-determination principles and respect for the free choice of people, the same Cap. Hill said “left wing populist rhetoric” of Argentine President Nestor Kirchner and his Brazilian counterpart, Lula Da Silva, was a threat to region’s stability. Mr. Hill should remember both leaders have been elected in democratic and constitutional elections.

Perhaps, Washington is concerned about the economical consequences of the independent line taken by Latin America. Perhaps, Bush is afraid of anything he cannot handle. Perhaps, the union of the weak makes the strong feels threatened.