Above Photo: Defense Minister Jorge Chavez at Inter-American Defense College in Washington. US Air Force.
Solidifying US Militarization Of Country.
Peru’s coup regime enhances its alliance with the U.S. with visits to Washington and arms supplies to Ukraine.
National Strike, Day 217
As the political crisis in Perú deepens eight months after the parliamentary coup that ousted Pedro Castillo and threw the South American country into the bloodiest period it has seen in decades, the US militarization of the country intensifies. From August 7-12th, de facto Peruvian Defense Minister Jorge Chávez traveled to Washington DC to “update bilateral military agreements” between the two nations. He met with various officials in the Defense Department, including the US Undersecretary of Defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Daniel P. Erikson, the head of the National Guard, General Dan Hokanson; and the Director of the Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, Paul J. Angelo, and the Inter-American Defense College. With the region shifting towards the multipolar world with groupings such as the BRICS, and increased infrastructure investment from countries like China rather than participation the US BUILD Act, the US is solidifying its grasp on Perú to use it as a base in the region against its perceived adversaries and to realize full spectrum dominance.
Among the agreements reached during the visit were the lifting of the two decades long blockade on aerial interdiction against drug trafficking allowing the Peruvian Air Force to once again receive US cooperation in intelligence, financing, training, and communications. to “strengthen actions against illicit drug trafficking” in the zones of VRAEM and Putumayo, and in the Loreto region where recent unrest left at least 20 injured in the district of Alto Nanay.
This process is beginning months after the arrival of at least 1100 US military troops in the Peruvian territory to “conflict zones”, particularly in the southern regions of the Andean country, and after more than 80 deaths since the US backed coup began, including those shot from helicopters. As of today, no charges have been filed against any of those involved in the massacres and extrajudicial killings, including coup President Dina Boluarte and Prime Minister Luis Otarola and the heads of the armed forces. The Inspectorate of the Peruvian National Police archived four of the eleven cases that have been filed since the uprisings began to cover up these crimes against humanity.
The US has also been pressing countries in the region which have Russian and Soviet era military equipment to “donate” them to Ukraine in the US/NATO proxy war against Russia. It can now count on a significant stockpile of arms, including “24 Mi-17 military helicopters and two Mi-35 attack helicopters from Moscow” and arms bought during the Fujimori regime. As Commander General of SOUTHCOM, General Laura Richardson stated in January of this year during a virtual appearance to the Atlantic Council, they “are working with the countries that have the Russian equipment to either donate it or switch it out for United States equipment” with six countries in particular, Perú being among the leaders in possession of Russian military equipment.. This offer of arms donations to Ukraine was largely rejected by the rest of Latin America.
In January of this year, Ukraine purchased drones from Perú shortly after the December 7th coup and the resulting violence of the armed forces against the masses of people who protested the US backed regime change This deal did not become public until months later in May. Prior to the coup, much like the rest of the region, Perú stayed out of the conflict and did not send weapons to Ukraine. As Guillermo Burneo, Peruvian journalist and political analyst, stated recently, this is nothing more than an adjustment in the regional strategy that the US is making to achieve its international goals in Ukraine in a situation that Perú should avoid.
Along with the recent bilateral agreement with the corrupt Lasso government in Ecuador to train armed forces a month before elections that the left wing Correista candidate leads in polls, it’s clear the US is trying to maintain its Monroe Doctrine hegemony in the region and the “international rules based order” now competing with multipolar forces. In a March 2022 House Armed Services Committee hearing on National Security Challenges and Military Activity in North and South America, General Richardson warned how big a threat the US considers both Russian and Chinese investment in the region, describing the “biggest eye opener has been the extent to which China and Russia are aggressively expanding their influence in our (emphasis added) neighborhood.”
The strengthening relationship between the Peruvian coup regime led by Boluarte and the right wing Congress and the US and NATO is a violation of the sovereignty of the region that rejected pleas to send weapons to Ukraine, opting to not prolong the war. As Bolivian ex president Evo Morales said on social media, “The entry and exercise of military troops by the US in Perú is a provocative interventionist action that endangers the peace and integrity of Latin America, especially Bolivia which is in the attack sights of SOUTHCOM that publicly acknowledged its interest in (our) lithium.” To Washington DC, the more than 80 deaths and thousands injured and unjustly imprisoned in Perú are but mere collateral damage in their war efforts against those they see as their adversaries and a threat to their agenda of full spectrum dominance.