News you may have missed #367 (Gaza flotilla edition IV)

  • Flotilla raid dead include US citizen. One of the nine people killed in an Israeli commando raid on a flotilla of ships heading for Gaza this week was a United States citizen of Turkish descent, according to officials in Turkey and Washington. Still no response from the White House or the US State Department.
  • South Africa, Ecuador, Nicaragua recall envoys from Israel. Ecuador President Rafael Correa says he has recalled the country’s ambassador to Israel following the deadly Israeli Navy raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla. The Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry said the ambassador would leave Tel Aviv immediately. Meanwhile, Nicaragua has suspended all of its diplomatic ties with Israel. South Africa has also recalled its ambassador to Israel. A South African Foreign Ministry spokesman said the move marks “a low point in relations” between the two countries.

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US forces helped assassinate top FARC commander in Ecuador

Raúl Reyes

Raúl Reyes

By IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
US military intelligence and combat troops helped Colombian forces assassinate a senior leftwing Colombian paramilitary commander on Ecuadoran soil last year, according to an Ecuadoran government report. As this blog reported last month, Colombia’s soon-to-be-dismantled DAS intelligence service admitted it paid “an informant in the Ecuadorean security forces” US$2.5 million to supply information on the whereabouts of Raúl Reyes, senior leader in the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Reyes was assassinated along with 16 of his guerillas in a daring raid by Colombian forces, around a mile inside Ecuador’s border, on March 1, 2008. Now an Ecuadoran government report claims that Reyes’ killing, which sparked the so-called 2008 Andean diplomatic crisis between Ecuador, Colombia and Venezuela, was conducted with logistical and combat assistance by US forces stationed in Ecuador. Read more of this post

Documents allegedly describe joint US-Colombian spy operations

Tarek El Aissami

Tarek El Aissami

By IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
A day after announcing the arrest of a number of Colombian intelligence agents on Venezuelan soil, Venezuelan officials presented what they described as “irrefutable evidence” of joint US-Colombian spy operations. Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Venezuela’s interior minister Tarek El Aissami, said documents acquired in connection with the capture of the Colombian intelligence agents, show that their actions were part of “an ambitious CIA-funded operation”. Venezuelan security forces detained the two Colombians, Angel Jacinto Guanare and Eduardo Gonzalez Muñoz, along with an alleged Venezuelan accomplice, Melvin Argenis Gutierrez, on October 2, 2009, in the city of Maracay, 50 miles west of Venezuelan capital Caracas. El Aissami suggested that documents relating to the activities of the three men reveal that they were part of Operation FALCON, a joint project by the CIA and Colombian intelligence agency DAS, which aimed “to collect information about the Bolivarian National Armed Forces” and recruit informants from anti-government circles. Read more of this post