The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Sunday, January 11, 2004
 

Follies over at State still have their moments


I moseyed over to the State site to look for any word of a USG on the issue of Bolivian requests for sovereign sea access (there needs to be a snappy acronym in the (thoroughly implausible) event that this thing ever really gets going).

(There is wishful thinking in the Bolivian press [1] that, when Bush meets Carlos Mesa after the Cumbre Extraordinaria de las Américas in Monterrey next week, Bush will in some way come to the aid of the party.)

Nothing in the briefings so far this year. But worthy of note from the January 5 session is this interchange with Richard Boucher's alternate, Adam Ereli:
QUESTION: New subject. There are some reports coming from Latin America that the Cuban and Venezuelan Governments have been jointly creating and funding an effort to cultivate anti-American sentiment in the region. Do you know anything about -- have you heard anything about this?

MR. ERELI: We've seen those reports. I would say that we are concerned about any action that might impede free and fair democratic processes throughout the hemisphere. I would note that the Castro regime, as is well known, has a long history of attempting to undermine democratic governments throughout the region...

Matt.

QUESTION: Your comment about Cuba and its long history of interfering with democratically elected governments in this hemisphere. Does the United States also have a long history of interfering with democratically elected governments in this hemisphere?

MR. ERELI: I don't think the comparison is a valid one.

QUESTION: No? So you wouldn't suggest that, say, Chile's neighbors should have been concerned back in the '70s about involvement there?

MR. ERELI: I would not suggest it, and I reject the comparison.

QUESTION: A follow-up on that?

QUESTION: And you --

MR. ERELI: I reject the comparison between the United States' record, in supporting of democracy and freedom, and Cuba's.

QUESTION: (Inaudible.)


That's some pretty fulsome (and, surely, politically unnecessary?) backing for the USG Chile policy back then. Uncle Henry Kissinger will no doubt be delighted with the unsolicited testimonial.

And who is
Matt
I wonder.

And State apparently can't spell Ecuador. In the headlines, they spell it Equador - which I'm fairly certain is not a permissible alternative. (From a cursory search, I sense it may be right in Italian and Portuguese, but then, the briefing transcript is in English...)

Is there any kind of editing applied? Or does it work on the AP system...

  1. As, for instance in La Prensa January 10.


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