Origin and Current Status of Operation Condor

Fabián Escalante Font
https://i1.wp.com/www.roughdiplomacy.com/wp-content/uploads/bloody-hand-.jpg?fit=1518%2C818&ssl=1The National Security Doctrine of the United States, sustained and fed by the Monroe doctrine and other fascist concepts (Kissinger) were the fathers of Operation Condor, whose name, according to the Cuban-born terrorist Antonio Veciana, comes from the plot -so called by the CIA- to assassinate Fidel Castro on the occasion of his trip to Chile and later served as a cover for the sabotage and overthrow of Salvador Allende’s government.

These operations were led by the then Latin American head of the CIA, David. A. Phillips, a diabolical character who participated in all the aggressions against our peoples from 1954 to 19751 and there is evidence that also places him in the plot to assassinate President Kennedy, due to the CIA’s suspicions of an eventual change in policy towards Cuba.

Cuba’s example and influence were the causes of that monstrosity, because Latin America changed radically after the triumph of the 1959 Revolution. The combat against the National Liberation and progressive movements in the past, as well as gainst medical collaboration in the present, were the pretexts used. Cuba has been and is the COCO of the oligarchies and the Empire.
https://live.mrf.io/statics/i/ps/www.telesurtv.net/__export/1432439564425/sites/telesur/img/2015/05/22/pinochet_condor.jpg?width=1200&enable=upscaleOperation Condor’s targets were activists, organizers, and opponents of the dictatorships. Photo: Pinochet | Chile

Operation Condor was and continues to be a state terrorism mechanism, operative, illegal and clandestine, which operates within or with the collaboration of the military and regional police apparatus, to annihilate the left, progressive and democratic movements of the continent. By its nature it is of a neo-fascist ideology. The United States has directed such a strategy yesterday and today, through the CIA and other subversive and criminal organizations (USAID, drug trafficking mafias).

The Condor bases used by the CIA were the Latin American military dictatorships that emerged in the second half of the 20th century, then headed by Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia, Brazil, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala and with the tacit support of the armed forces and police forces of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela.

Today, they use the right-wing governments that have gradually been installed in the region, with the military and repressive forces of the past, which were maintained by previous governments, along with a corrupt legal system that now supports them, for the purpose of judicializing politics. Brazil is the most notable example.

Initially Chile, through DINA, was the organizer and public manager of the Condor project, whose objectives included the exchange of information and prisoners, as well as extrajudicial executions of its adversaries.2 The idea was to annihilate all leftist opponents. In Argentina alone, more than 30,000 people were estimated to have disappeared.
https://www.history.com/.image/t_share/MTYyNDg0MzU0MTA1MjIyODIy/mothers-of-the-disappeared-getty-496009036-promo.jpgOperation Condor: 30,000 People Were ‘Disappeared’ in Argentina’s Dirty War.

A byproduct of Condor, Operation Colombo, killed 119 Chileans, many in that country’s prisons, crimes that had been made visible through a clever press campaign in the form of settling of scores over internal contradictions within that country’s revolutionary organizations.

Little by little, in the following years, the Argentine army, through the 601st intelligence battalion, acquired greater prominence when it lent itself to organizing – on the orders of the United States – the overthrow of the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, in an extraterritorial operation (Calipso) of unprecedented proportions.3 It could be said that it was the last war of the 20th century on our continent, which claimed more than 50,000 victims.

Condor turned to Cuban-based terrorist groups in Florida for external executions.4 The most important were the Poder Cubano of Orlando Bosch and the Movimiento Nacionalista Cubano of Felipe Rivero and the brothers Ignacio and Guillermo Novo Sampol. These elements were led by Manuel Contreras and his terrorism specialist, American and CIA agent Mike Townley. They were responsible for the assassination of General Carlos Pratts and his wife in Buenos Aires, former Foreign Minister Orlando Letelier and his secretary Roni Morffi in Washington, Democrat Bernardo Leighton and his wife in Rome, Italy, Bolivian General Juan Jose Torres and later, the disappearance, torture and assassination of Cuban diplomats Crescencio Galañena and Jesus Cejas. Afterwards, under the same strategy and with the support and direction of the CIA, Poder Cubano led CORU, which became the coordinator of the terrorist groups of Cuban origin in Florida, which in the 1970s were responsible for 377 acts of terror in the United States and other countries, the bombings that killed Cuban diplomats in Portugal and Canada, and finally the downing of the Cuban commercial airliner in Barbados.5

To finance such activities, Condor turned to drug trafficking from Colombia to the United States, according to the U.S. Senate’s investigative committee.6 Incidentally, this is also the case today with the incorporation of the Mexican cartels.

Investigators in the United States and the region hold Condor responsible for the murders of General Omar Torrijos in Panama, President Jaime Roldos of Ecuador and General Rafael Hoyos of Peru, because of their leftist leanings.

Today, once again, the spectre of Condor resurfaces in the actions of the armed forces and puppet governments of the region, with the military coup d’état in Bolivia being the most visible example. In addition, the military are gradually assuming “legal” positions of power in governments such as Brazil, while in Paraguay the power bases of the dictator Alfredo Stroessner remain intact, one of the axes of the events reported, while from Colombia and Peru the fascist pact “the Lima group” against Bolivarian Venezuela is promoted.

Today, Latin America suffers a new type of imperial aggression, a new Condor plan, through which numerous right-wing governments dictatorially impose their neoliberal policies by destroying all the collective legal instruments previously created and impose the “law of the revolver” in the best style of the Yankee West, under the abject gaze of the countries of the “developed” world and their political bodies.7

Condor has undergone a metamorphosis, and what it previously did clandestinely and illegally, it now does in full view of everyone. The coup in Bolivia, again, is the best example.

Preventing and thwarting such neo-fascist pretensions is the task of all revolutionaries, democrats and rational people in our region unless they intend to return to the past and once again see the Condor with its claws destroy our countries, as has happened in Brazil, Chile, Bolivia and Ecuador.


1 David A. Phillips began his terrorist activities when he actively participated in the coup that overthrew the government of Jacobo Arbens in Guatemala in 1954, then he was an asset in the CIA war against Cuba, later from Mexico he was one of the leaders of the assassination plot with Kennedy, later he was a special envoy to the Dominican Republic when the United States overthrew the democratic government of Juan Bosh, continuing his “career” in Bolivia leading the persecution and execution of Commander Ernesto Guevara; Chile would be his next stage, participating first in the assassination attempt on Fidel Castro and then in the overthrow of President Salvador Allende. Condor was one of his creations, when he realized the need to fight on the continental stage against the revolutionary influence of the Cuban Revolution. In 1975, he retired after the U.S. Congressional Commission investigated the CIA’s plots to assassinate foreign political leaders.

2 DINA, Chilean National Intelligence Directorate.

3 Operation Calipso, through which the CIA, from 1981 to 1990, organized, armed and directed the Nicaraguan CONTRA to attack and overthrow the young Sandinista revolution from Honduras and Costa Rica, something they could not do and in which they were defeated, but which destroyed the country in lives and property.

4 These groups arose in 1963 when the CIA decided to remove the center of its operations from U.S. territory, under the operational concept of financing, identifying the objectives, facilitating the means and bases in countries of the region and then “finding out” through the press about the results, that is, the aggressions, assassinations and damages produced in Cuba.

5 CORU, Comandos de Organizaciones Revolucionarias Unidas, founded in mid-1976 in Santo Domingo on the orders of the CIA and whose leader was Orlando Bosh.

6 Senatorial Commission presided over by John Kerry