OAS: Tool of U.S. Imperialism

Revolutionary Worker #1058, June 11, 2000

As we go to press, protests are planned at the June 4-6 meeting of the Organization of American States in Windsor, Ontario in Canada. The following excerpt is from a leaflet put out by the Revolutionary Communist Party, Detroit Branch:


The corporate empire-builders expected to quietly fly into Windsor for the meeting of the Organization of American States. They thought they would be hidden while they make their decisions that will change the lives of thousands and tens of thousands of the oppressed in this hemisphere. They hoped to meet out of the sight of the people over an agenda that aims to make the Americas an even stronger base area for U.S. capitalist/imperialists.

The decisions they make will mean the land of more peasants is opened up for sale to corporate agribusiness, while those peasants become part of the dispossessed finding any way they can to survive in the shantytowns outside the major cities like Mexico City and Buenos Aires. They will mean more extreme lopsided development, where a few in the countries benefit while the poorest are made much worse off. They will mean more wars against popular uprisings in the name of the War on Drugs.

The OAS has one purpose--to safeguard the Americas for the interests of the U.S. imperialists. It was chartered in 1948 at a time when the U.S. came out of World War II as the top imperialist power. Its roots were in the Monroe Doctrine--which stated that no one besides the U.S. could colonize Latin and Central America. The OAS has served well in helping the U.S. plunder the Americas, backed by Yanqui troops and death-squad dictators.

The OAS is chartered to "promote democratic institutions." Just a few examples of what this has meant for the people of the Americas:

  • In the 50 years of OAS existence, the U.S. has invaded country after country to impose its rule, including the Dominican Republic (with backing from an OAS "peacekeeping force"), Haiti, Grenada, and an attempt to invade Cuba. It has imposed dictator after dictator, including the butcher Somoza in Nicaragua, born-again Christian fascist General Ríos Montt who presided over the genocide of the Indian people of Guatemala, killing over 150,000, Papa Doc and Baby Doc in Haiti into the hundreds of thousands across the Americas. Genocide has been waged against the native people of Mexico and Central America. With the direct assistance of the CIA, the Chilean military massacred over 30,000 people under Pinochet's rule. Peru's government has used paramilitary forces to massacre peasants for rising up and supporting Maoist revolution... The OAS says that one of its main missions is to "combat terrorism," a code word for developing specific steps to crush progressive and revolutionary uprisings. Its 1996 anti-terrorism meeting was held in Peru and hosted by President Fujimori, who wages genocidal campaigns against the villages which support the revolution led by the Communist Party of Peru and tries revolutionary leaders in military tribunals with black-hooded judges.

    To survive against competition by other capitalists, the U.S. capitalist/imperialists must find the ways to better invest their wealth and extract more profits. With NAFTA, the U.S. opened up Mexico to even more exploitation. Now they want to do the same with the rest of the Americas.

    The OAS is creating the Free Trade Area of the Americas--FTAA. This is a plan to eliminate trade and investment barriers in the Western Hemisphere for the capitalists, to be finalized and implemented by 2005. The FTAA is closely linked with World Trade Organization and IMF policies that have already turned peasant farmers who used to support families with their crops into workers on cash crops for the U.S. markets, and have driven many of them off the land.

    The FTAA aims to:

  • Pry open the economies of Central and Latin America for the U.S. (and Canadian) capitalists to buy and reorganize any way they want. It will tremendously intensify the exploitation and suffering of the peoples in these countries. It will be accompanied by incredible destruction of the environment, including the rainforests;
  • Maximize the freedom of action of imperialist capital--so that investments can be moved quickly from one location to another to maximize profits, sending even more people into ruin and desperation;
  • And manage disputes and competition among the imperialist countries.

    The FTAA is not about "free trade." It is about creating a U.S.-dominated regional trade bloc...

    RCP Chairman Bob Avakian has said:

    "If you can conceive of a world without America--without everything America stands for and everything it does in the world--then you've already taken great strides and begun to get at least a glimpse of a whole new world. If you can envision a world without any imperialism; exploitation, oppression--and the whole philosophy that rationalizes it--a world without division into classes or even different nations, and all the narrow-minded, selfish, outmoded ideas that uphold this; if you can envision all this, then you have the basis for proletarian internationalism. And once you have raised your sights to all this, how could you not feel compelled to take an active part in the world historic struggle to realize it; why would you want to lower your sights to anything less?"

    This article is posted in English and Spanish on Revolutionary Worker Online
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