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Pat Mcgroin

Coast Guard dispatching ships and personnel to Costa Rica to threaten

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Andy - Why would you want to put this topic to rest? I think it has been an interesting discussion and worthwhile and timely, especially in the light of Venezuela cutting off diplomatic relations with Colombia.

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Andy - Why would you want to put this topic to rest? I think it has been an interesting discussion and worthwhile and timely, especially in the light of Venezuela cutting off diplomatic relations with Colombia.

I want it put to rest because there are almost NO FACTS surfacing. It's all conjecture, hyperbole, innuendo and in some cases, flat out lies and distortion. It's much worse on CRL, but it seems that all the wackos who either hate the US, hate Obama or think the US is launching a major military assault on Latin America seem to surface to voice their paranoiac rhetoric.

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It seems to me that expat99 provided a lot of facts. Of course, how and where and which of the ships he listed will be deployed is still a matter for conjecture, but, who knows -- maybe someone out there knows more about it ...

 

I'm with CRF on this one - if you don't want this thread to continue, just don't read it. I think there is a lot more to discuss as things unfold.

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People love to brag about Costa Rica as being a peace loving country, having no standing army since 1948. I argue it has a de facto military. Who ya gonna call next time Costa Rica? Ghost Busters or the U.S. military, again?!!! Grow up get real, and get off your so called peace loving high horses all you U.S. protesters. Who needs an expensive military of your own when you have the best in the world in your hip pocket for free? You protest against the U.S. and its military on the one hand and come crying to Uncle Sam for financial aid and military support on the other. So quit the hypocrisy already!! After the revolution of 48, the U.S. bailed Costa Rica out financially from its decade long economic slump. And who backed up your revolutionary hero, Figueres, who you still hold in high regard today? The U.S., that's who. So put up or shut up. Either pay your own way financially and defend yourself against all enemies foreign and domestic and retain bragging rights. Or continue to accept financial and military assistance and shut up about it already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

Every country on the planet (including Costa Rica with no current "standing" army) interacts with its neighbors and the world promoting in its own nationalistic self interests. The primary function of all responsible governments is the security and safety of its inhabitants. Costa Rica continues with no standing army because its leaders/people believe that is the best way to ensure the safety of its citizens. You can disagree with the strategy (no army) but the motivation of self interest is universal and is as applicable to Costa Rica as with any other country. Costa Rica's no army status is not now, and never has been for the promotion of peace outside its boarders!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The origin of the abolition of the army is mostly misunderstood by today's Costa Ricans and foreigners alike through a rewrite of the Costa Rican school curriculum and propaganda. My Costa Rican mother in law and other non Figueres supporters know and can tell you the true story. To the victors go the spoils of war and the rights to propaganda.

 

 

The abolishment of the army was definitely not some kind of nirvana epiphany moment of peace, good will, and a love for its neighboring countries. It was simply a tactical maneuver to put the death nail into any potential opposing force and to consolidate power and control over the country by the revolutionary "hero", Jose Figueres. I say "hero" because that's the way history has been rewritten to favor the revolution. It was at that time (1948 – 1949) he also temporarily abolished the legislative branch of the government, trashed the constitution, and ruled Costa Rica through his revolutionary junta for a period of 18 months. Why only 18 months? Because he figured it would take him that long to firmly establish his power base through his newly formed political National Liberation Party (the same NLP party still active and in power today) and finish cleansing Costa Rica of his political opponents.

 

 

Many social reforms taken for granted today by Costa Ricans such as the social security system, labor codes, housing for the poor, progressive income tax, and the reopening of the state university are incorrectly attributed to the revolutionary Jose Figueres when in fact they were instituted previously by his political opponent Calderon who was forced into exile to Nicaragua.

 

 

Read on if you want to know how a violent traitor comes to be known as a hero.

 

 

Basically Jose Figueres was a loud mouthed violent revolutionary with aspirations of absolute power. He started preparing and training a paramilitary force since 1942 for a military offensive and overthrow of the Costa Rican government. He conspired with other revolutionary types to expand their control throughout the Americas after they had finished the Costa Rican job. That plan never came to fruition. He was successful in unfairly labeling his political opponents Calderon, Mora, and the political party in power in Costa Rica as having more Communist ties and sympathies than was the case. The election dispute of 1948 and the severe prolonged economic crisis and resulting social upheaval presented him with his window of opportunity. He seized power, by overthrowing the legitimate government with his own military force backed by the threat of U.S. military intervention. At the time the U.S. was concerned with the expansion of communism throughout the Americas. The U.S. had ships stationed off the Coast of Panama.

 

 

After a relatively short military campaign and 1000 to 2000 mainly civilian deaths, the legitimate governmental forces of Costa Rica capitulated to the military forces of Figueres; primarily because of the aforementioned threat of U.S. military intervention and a lack of supplies. Costa Rica's supply line to the north through Nicaragua had been blocked by Samosa; Figueres and his forces approached the government forces from the south. As a result the eventual outcome was a forgone conclusion. The only concern for then Costa Rican president Picado once defeat was determined to be inevitable was to save as many Costa Rican lives as possible. On the other hand, the violent revolutionary "hero" "Don Pepe" Figueres was prepared and would have killed as many opposing patriotic Costa Ricans as necessary to secure his grab for power. The real Costa Rican hero in the conflict was the overthrown legitimate head of government, President Picado for not pressing forward with what would have been a prolonged blood bath.

 

 

Once in power Fegueres ruled through his revolutionary junta with an iron fist cleansing Costa Rica of his political opponents. He temporarily disbanded the legislature and abolished the constitution. Once he got all the institutional changes in place, he transferred power to Ulate (His man in the disputed election of 48) and then reauthorized the legislature. To this day, no one knows for sure who won the election of 1948, Ulate or Calderon. Figueres abolished the standing army early on as a strategy simply to hold onto power to and establish his political power base. He saw military allegiances as fickle and unstable and a threat to his retention of power. And after all, he had the U.S. military as his ace in the hole should anything truly threaten his hold on power and interfere with his plans. His newly secured political power base ensured his subsequent election as Costa Rican president after Ulate's term.

 

Fine, but I believe you are misleading. You act like the US military is the protector of CR (even say "again") because there was a vague threat that maybe it would intervene back in 1948. Well, it didn't. Maybe you are right that the threat that it would helped to determine the outcome, but this was before CR was pacifist anyway. Heck, there was a civil war going on. It is AFTER that when the pacifist history begins, and I defy you to find an instance when the US military has been of assistance to CR since then.

 

Second, you inflate CR pacifism into a dreamy global creed, which it is not. Of course it is self-interested (just as militarism is). Whoever denied that? It is also hard work, as the CR constitution says and most pacifists know. It is tough to belly up to the negotiating table without tanks behind you, and no pacifist in their right mind imagines it isn't. It is still a real world where others have tanks. So yeah, CR still plays geopolitics, and no doubt did in 1948, but this is zero argument for the US military being an asset to CR today, zero.

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It's not 46 ships all at once and their not warships. I suppose the term "warships" though is subject to interpretation. For example I don't consider a Coast Guard ship a "warship" but some might. It depends really on how one is spinning their side.

 

As far as what would happen if CR is threatened or attacked it is not speculation. Costa Rica is a charter member of the OAS (the first OAS session was actually held in San Jose in 1971) and is of course also a member of the UN. It is the job of both the UN and the OAS to defend their members. The process is formal, it’s in place and has already been used by other countries (see example below). The reality is CR diplomats in both organizations would be working simultaneously for a response while also working in Washington DC for US support and pressure on the UN and OAS.

 

So, if attacked or threatened CR would appeal to both the UN and the OAS for help of which they would surely receive. As far as which nations would be responding en force, it would be again led by... you guessed it, the US. There is no speculation there either. The US just has the military to respond (although currently stretched thin) and has reiterated time and time again that its role is to defend democratic nations.

 

The real speculation would be on who else would send a major force. One could speculate that Brazil has the capacity to send a large force as Brazil is also a charter member of both the UN and the OAS and is geographically close. (Brazil also happens to have the largest military force in Latin America).

 

Anyway, a high level example of how it works in five sentences…

 

Kuwait was invaded and annexed by Iraq in 1990. Kuwait appealed to the United Nations for help as is protocol. The UN went to the aid of its member and tried diplomatic solutions. The UN diplomatic solutions failed to remove Iraq from Kuwait. The UN then went into Kuwait and Iraq with a US led 34 nation coalition and freed Kuwait.

 

Well, Kuwait was arguably a part of Iraq, an illogically defined country by outsiders anyway, so who freed what could be disputed. It would be as if the US had lost WWII, Germany had carved out NY as a separate country, and then the rest of the US decided to recapture NY. After that Germany comes in on behalf of NY's independence and claims to have freed it. Maybe, but we're talking about nation-state borders not very different from the analogy I just presented.

 

More importantly, what is all this about "if" CR is invaded and who will defend it? Come on, you all are talking like you're playing a Risk game and assuming the very militarism that justifies your pro-US military point. In the real world, nobody wants to invade CR. This kind of thing sort of disappeared with manifest destiny. Except for the Gaza Strip and other symbolically salient lands, nobody conquers territory anymore. The ambition is to take the profits from a place, maybe to have a political ally, but these objectives are accomplished without military invasions. I mean, think about it: Ortega in Nicaragua has no love for CR, and he has the military capability to invade, but what would he do with the country if he conquered it? There's nothing he could do, so instead of invading he plays politics. Same with Chávez. He could conquer CR if he wanted to, but instead he makes oil deals and tries to schmooze. In the real world the days of Alexander the Great are over. Even dictators don't want territory anymore--too much hassle governing it--they only want the money that comes from the territory.

 

Several of these posts are imagining that we're still in a world where Hitler takes France. Well, anything is possible, and in the outside chance some crazy tried that with CR I suppose all the UN and OAS stuff would kick into gear, but that is not what is happening these days. This is war game stuff that isn't relevant to the world the way it is.

 

I mean, come on, Chávez and Ortega don't even want to conquer Colombia via invasion (with the US military staunchly defending Colombia). They want to nip at this and that and try to get an internal change in Colombia that will make it an ally, but neither wants to occupy Colombia militarily. It's just silly to see brute military force as the coin of the realm these days. The US still tries it, and fails repeatedly at it.

 

It is ironic that CR happened to dissolve its military at the very time when a military was no longer an asset. I suspect it got lucky. However, it was at the forefront. The notion that the US military backs CR is just outmoded. The world doesn't work that way anymore.

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really spent any time in the USA Military would know that

Kenn, Appatently you were a draft dodger back in the 60s. Because any person that really spent any time in the USA Military would know that

you are not overly informed in the acts of the USCG. I spent over 20 years there and was involved in the Cuban Muriel boat exeduses, Teaching the Bahama and Puerto Rico Coast Guards how to make boat stops and drug seizures and arrests of all persons on the boat. And if you that the drug cartels are not a problem here in Costa Rica either you do not live here or you do not read the paper nor watch the Tico news. Ron USCG Ret

 

Eat sh*t. No, I was NOT a draft dodger and I dare you insinuate that because you were cannon fodder you know the truth. Give me a break, so you're my hero because you were a grunt in a war machine? And tell me, how much of my tax dollars are you collecting to lord over me with your superior insights? Give a fact or shut up.

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I want it put to rest because there are almost NO FACTS surfacing. It's all conjecture, hyperbole, innuendo and in some cases, flat out lies and distortion. It's much worse on CRL, but it seems that all the wackos who either hate the US, hate Obama or think the US is launching a major military assault on Latin America seem to surface to voice their paranoiac rhetoric.

 

Of course there are NO FACTS of the sort that would apparently interest you. There are no military bases in CR, no wars, no problems. The issue for the opposition is what happens AFTER you get these ships and soldiers. Nobody is claiming any problems now. All they are saying is that if you pour a lot of gasoline on the ground and start playing with matches there might be problems, so maybe keeping the gasoline off the ground and keeping the matches in international waters is safest. But I guess you prefer to wait for the fire and then apologize?

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The Iwo Jima which I notice is number 44 on the list posted earlier has just deployed on a humanitarian mission to Costa Rica and the region.

 

 

 

 

 

"USS Iwo Jima deploys in support of Continuing Promise

 

Posted On: Jul 13 2010 12:29PM

 

USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) departed Naval Station Norfolk July 12 in support of Continuing Promise 2010 (CP10).

 

Continuing Promise is an annual humanitarian civic assistance operation that provides opportunities to establish new partnerships with other nations, non-government organizations (NGOs), international government organizations and learn from host nations and civilian experts.

 

During the scheduled four-month surge, relief operations will be conducted in Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Panama and Suriname.

 

CP10 is a U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) directed operation implemented by U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command and U.S. 4th Fleet (COMUSNAVSO/C4F).

 

There are more than 1,600 Sailors, Marines, Soldiers, Airmen and civilians including Commander Amphibious Squadron 6, Fleet Surgical Team 2, Navy Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit (CBMU) 202, Maritime Civil Affairs Team 206, Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force (SPMAGTF), CLR-25 Medical Detachment and contingents of medical personnel from the armed forces of The Netherlands, Canada and Germany and various other satellite commands embarked on board Iwo Jima. ..."

 

Well, I don't get the point. Claro que sí it is a humanitarian mission, and nobody disputes that. The issue is that it is the US military providing the humanitarian services. If the US wanted to be humanitarian, it could do so without using the military. Plainly it doesn't. Therefore this is PR for the military.

 

And seriously, this would not be tolerated within the US and has never been tolerated there. There are lots of things the military could do inside the US, and periodically it is for example suggested that it could assist in the fight against drugs. It probably could. Yet Americans overwhelmingly reject using the military this way at home because they don't want a militaristic state. They don't want their cops or doctors or IRS agents or anyone in domestic authority to be a soldier.

 

But abroad, the rules change. There it is all cool for the US military to provide the doctors and fight against drugs and so forth. Well, why would anyone in the rest of the world not have the same attitude toward the US military that Americans do?

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Perhaps now after all the USA haters and conspiracy theorists have had their say... can we now put this topic to rest?

 

And oh, I take your phrase "USA hater" as an offense, since it seems to be implied by you that anyone who questions the disgusting overreach of the US military therefore hates the country. If this is what you mean, then your USA is simply a militaristic empire, and as such deserves to be hated. MY USA is not, and I defy you to dare to steal it from me. Being a patriotic American and pro-military are simply NOT the same thing.

 

If I misunderstand you, I apologize. My fear is that I don't misunderstand you though.

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but this is zero argument for the US military being an asset to CR today, zero.

 

The US' history with CR, the fact that US companies account for more than half of CR's economy, and the substantial number of US expats living here strongly suggests that EVERY other country knows that the US would feel completely justified in defending CR against any foreign enemy.

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There are about 40,000 North Americans living in Costa Rica. Is this considered "a substantial number" by you? Less than one percent of the population? And just how much clout do you think this 1% of non-citizens has? And US companies account for more than half the economy? Do you mean US companies account for more than half the exports?

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There are about 40,000 North Americans living in Costa Rica. Is this considered "a substantial number" by you? Less than one percent of the population? And just how much clout do you think this 1% of non-citizens has? And US companies account for more than half the economy? Do you mean US companies account for more than half the exports?

 

It is not about "clout". It is a simple, historical fact that the US has gone to great lengths to protect its citizens wherever they live in the world when there are more than a few US citizens who are in harm's way.

 

It doesn't matter how you want to play with the words about the impact of US companies on the CR economy, the result is the same.

 

Even the posturing, self-serving idiots like Chavez and Noriega would not dare threaten the US companies and US citizens in CR.

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