Spearhead Special Report – 21.02.2019
By Syed Murtaza Zaidi
Research Analyst, Spearhead Research
South America has been a hotbed for socialist and communist movements for years and was the subject of a power struggle between the US and the USSR during the height of the Cold War. During this time, the US, in an attempt to limit Russian influence in its neighboring regions, followed the disastrous policy of opposing democratically elected socialist leaders in countries like Chile, Guatemala, Brazil and Argentina etc. in favor of tyrannical dictators. Popular victims of this strategy included President Jacobo Árbenz of Guatemala who was replaced with Carlos Castillo Armas, President Salvador Allende of Chile who was replaced with Augusto Pinochet, and President João Goulart of Brazil who was replaced with Humberto de Alencar Castelo Branco.
Fortunately for the citizens of Latin America, the demise of the USSR and the increasing international scrutiny over the US’s interventionist foreign policy, prevented the US from repeating their mistakes from the sixties and seventies. For better or worse, this allowed former military leader and socialist Hugo Chavez to come to power in Venezuela, a country that had traditionally been a US ally even during the rise of the Left in its bordering nations.